“There is no frigate like a book”: Travel Reads!

There is no Frigate like a Book
To take us Lands away
Nor any Coursers like a Page
Of prancing Poetry –
This Traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of Toll –
How frugal is the Chariot
That bears the Human Soul –

-Emily Dickinson

Are you traveling this summer? Or wishing you were traveling this summer? Or knowing that summer is soon coming to a close and want to prolong its awesomeness? Maybe you want some books to accompany you on your journey or some books to take you away while you sit in your comfy chair from home. Well, there’s nothing like a good book to take you to new places! Try these out if you are looking to get away!

Walking the Amazon: 860 Days – One Step at a Time by Ed Stafford (2012)

Walking the Amazon
“From the star of Discovery Channel’s Naked and Marooned comes a a riveting, adventurous account of one man’s history-making journey along the entire length of the Amazon—and through the most bio-diverse habitat on Earth.” -Amazon

No Baggage: A Minimalist Tale of Love and Wandering by Clara Bensen (2016)

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“Newly recovered from a quarter-life meltdown, Clara Bensen decided to test her comeback by signing up for an online dating account. She never expected to meet Jeff, a wildly energetic university professor with a reputation for bucking convention. They barely know each other’s last names when they agree to set out on a risky travel experiment spanning eight countries and three weeks. The catch? No hotel reservations, no plans, and best of all, no baggage.” – Amazon

The Lost Girls: Three Friends, Four Continents, One Unconventional Detour Around the World by Jennifer Baggett (2010)

the-lost-girls-

“Three friends, each on the brink of a quarter-life crisis, make a pact to quit their high pressure New York City media jobs and leave behind their friends, boyfriends, and everything familiar to embark on a year-long backpacking adventure around the world.” -Amazon

Jasmine and Fire: A Bittersweet Year in Beirut by Salma Abdelnour (2012)

Jasmine and Fire

“As Beirut exploded with the bombs and violence of a ruthless civil war in the ’80s, a nine-year-old Salma Abdelnour and her family fled Lebanon to start a new life in the States. Ever since then — even as she built a thriving career as a food and travel writer in New York City — Salma has had a hunch that Beirut was still her home. She kept dreaming of moving back — and finally decided to do it. But could she resume her life in Beirut, so many years after her family moved away? Could she, or anyone for that matter, ever really go home again?” -Amazon

Honeymoon with my Brother: A Memoir by Franz Wisner (2005)

Honeymoon with my Brother

“This is the true story of Franz Wisner, a man who thought he had it all- a high profile career and the fiancée of his dreams – when suddenly, his life turned upside down. Just days before they were to be married, his fiancée called off the wedding. Luckily, his large support network of family and friends wouldn’t let him succumb to his misery. They decided Franz should have a wedding and a honeymoon anyway – there just wouldn’t be a bride at the ceremony, and Franz’ travel companion would be his brother, Kurt.” -Amazon

Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo by Tim Parks (2013)

Italian Ways

“Parks begins as any traveler might: “A train is a train is a train, isn’t it?” But soon he turns his novelist’s eye to the details, and as he journeys through majestic Milano Centrale station or on the newest high-speed rail line, he delivers a uniquely insightful portrait of Italy. Through memorable encounters with ordinary Italians―conductors and ticket collectors, priests and prostitutes, scholars and lovers, gypsies and immigrants―Parks captures what makes Italian life distinctive: an obsession with speed but an acceptance of slower, older ways; a blind eye toward brutal architecture amid grand monuments; and an undying love of a good argument and the perfect cappuccino.” -Amazon

Visit Fountaindale.org to put your copy on hold! Looking for more? Stop by the 3rd Floor Reference Desk to ask our librarians for recommendations!

-ES

6 Ways to Find Your Next Read!

Sometimes finding a good book to read can be an overwhelming task – there are hundreds of thousands of books published in the United States every year, and so many more existing classics and little-known treasures that you might not know where to begin. But fear not, dear readers; I am here to give you some tips on ways to find that perfect book.

1. NoveList

As a Fountaindale card holder, you have access to an excellent reader database called NoveList Plus. NoveList allows you to search for books based on your reading interests. You can search by genre, setting, characters, themes, moods, you name it! NoveList will also provide you with “read-alikes” that suggest similar titles to ones you may have enjoyed in the past. It’s pretty much the ultimate reader resource. You can access it from our website under our “Find It! -> Online Resources” page and log in using your library card number!

Where to find NoveList on Fountaindale.org
Click on “NoveList Plus”
NoveList home page
NoveList home page

 

2. NextReads Newsletter

Fountaindale has a newsletter service that anyone can sign up for called NextReads! If you want recommendations delivered to your email, sign up either on the Fountaindale home page, or through our online catalog! You can choose from a number of different genres, and NextReads will send you lists of books that might just include your new favorite!

NextReads on home page
On the home page
NextReads in the catalog
In the catalog
NextReads newsletter signup
NextReads genres

 

3. What Should I Read Next?

Yes, there is literally a website called WhatshouldIreadnext.com! All you have to do is type in an author or book you enjoyed, and the site will generate a list of recommendations! How cool is that??

What Should I Read Next home page
WhatShouldIReadNext home page

 

4. Genrify Genre Blender

The genre blender on Genrify is a really neat tool that allows you to blend up 3 different genres to show you books that fit that description. Looking for a fantasy-romance? How about a historical-science-fiction-mystery? This will find it!

genre blender
Genre Blender home page

 

5. Social media

Check out my post about social media sites for readers! Goodreads, Litsty, and LibraryThing are just some of the cool sites to connect with other readers and get great recommendations! (Yes, this is also a shameless plug for my other posts.)

 

6. Ask a librarian!

I know this might come as a shock, but the internet might not always be able to find you what you want. Sometimes a human touch is needed to get just the right personal recommendation. After all, each reader is different, and talking it out with a librarian is often the best way to find just the right book! Stop by the 3rd floor reference desk sometime to talk books – we kinda like them.

-ES

7 Reasons Adults Should Read YA

Hey, readers! Did you know Fountaindale started a book club for adults who love Young Adult literature? Well, now you do! Our book clubs page has all the info you need to get involved, be you a Hunger Games fanatic, John Green buff, or Rainbow Rowell fangirl.

There are so many great reasons why adults love to read YA, but here are 7 of them, in case you want to get started yourself, or in case you just need a reminder of how awesome YA is!

1. Beautiful writing

Although you may not find complex Dickensian or stark Hemingway-an(?) writing, you will find some of the most poetic and quotable prose out there at the moment. There’s no wonder people keep making posters of YA quotes to hang on their walls. It’s just so beautiful!

John Green love quote
Source

2. Diverse characters

Diversity is growing by leaps and bounds in literature, and honestly, it’s the YA genre that’s leading the way. From LGBTQ+ reads to Black Lives Matter-inspired books, YA has taken great strides to represent historically underrepresented characters in literature.

3. SO. MANY. GENRES.

YA lit is a category of literature geared towards young adult audiences, and that’s literally the only requirement for a book to be YA. That means each and every genre is represented within YA: sci-fi, fantasy, romance, horror, historical fiction, realistic fiction, urban fiction – you name it, there is something for EVERYBODY.

books-colorful-harry-potter

4. Innovation

Some of the most innovative books I have read are in the YA genre. Most YA authors don’t feel the need to conform to any set of literary rules, so they are free to experiment with form and genre as much as they want. For example, some YA books, like Winter Town and I Am Princess X, are fusions of novels and graphic novels together. Others, like The Illuminae Files, are stories told in non-narrative formats: try a sci-fi epic written purely as a case file of emails, IMS, security reports, and court records. Genius!

Illuminae pages
From Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

5. No fear

Despite being written for younger people, YA books tackle hard-hitting issues. YA is not afraid to address sexual abuse, depression, etc., and YA books grapple with the harshness of life while remaining accessible to a younger audience. So if you like serious issues, but don’t like the way adult literature portrays them, YA might be a better fit!

6. Freshness

If you’re looking for fresh new voices, YA is full of them. It’s also just great to stay up-to-date with what the young’ins are into these days.

YA Books Teen Zone
Source

7. Just plain fun

Seriously. YA books can be quite the page-turners. They can be exciting, hilarious, or heart-wrenching, and sometimes all 3 in one. If you start, you’ll only want more.

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Source

So what are you waiting for??

-ES

Current Staff Reads: April 2017

So what do library workers actually read? Here in Adult and Teen Services, we have a wide range of tastes and interests, so I thought it would be fun to highlight what some of us are currently reading at the moment. Who knows, this might become a regular thing on the blog! Let’s begin.

Brian:

Amazing Journey: The Life of Pete Townshend by Mark Wilkerson

Amazing Journey: The Life of Pete Townshend by Mark Wilkerson

This is Brian’s current read. As you can tell from the title, it’s about the life of Pete Townshend, the lead guitarist of The Who. Brian is enjoying this book because of its candid descriptions and snippets of insider info that he didn’t know before. (And Brian knows a lot about music, so that’s saying something!)

Jessica:

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

Jessica is reading The Art of Racing in the Rain, which is a fictional book narrated by a dog! Jessica says she’s enjoying it – she says it’s a bit sad, but that the dog is very smart and she likes that it is the dog who is telling the story.

Maureen:

The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty

The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty

Maureen just started reading this book for the Coffee and Conversion book club at Fountaindale! If you’re into 1920s history, this might be the novel for you.

Deyanira:

Game of Thrones

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

Deyanira is reading Game of Thrones! She says she’s really enjoying it because each chapter is written from a different characters’ perspective. She also likes how it seems very seeped in both history and fantasy.  We just told her not to get too attached to any of the characters…

Emily:

In the Country We Love

In the Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero

I’m reading In the Country We Love, which is a memoir written by Diane Guerrero, who is famous for starring in the shows “Orange is the New Black” and “Jane the Virgin.” She talks about being the daughter of undocumented immigrant parents who were deported when she was fourteen. It’s really good!

Hope you enjoyed seeing what some of our staff is reading! What’s on your reading list right now?

-ES

Social media apps for book lovers!

Book readers aren’t just solitary creatures who stay indoors surrounded by cats and books as their only friends. We have lots of human friends, too, even online friends from around the world. Check out these social networking sites exclusively suited for book nerds. The have changed the way I read for the better.

Goodreads

Goodreads

You probably already know about Goodreads by now. But if you don’t, it is the #1 website and app for book lovers. You can connect it to your Facebook or Twitter (in case you’re worried about having another password to remember) and import your friends right onto Goodreads. Goodreads allows you to rate, review, and recommend books. It also allows you to organize your bookshelves into categories like “read,” “to-read,” “currently reading,” “want to buy,” “books about cats,” etc. You can join virtual book clubs on Goodreads to discuss with others and even enter giveaways for free books. It’s basically the best.

  • Website
  • Apps for Android and iOS

Litsy

Litsy

Litsy is what would happen if Instagram and Goodreads had a baby. On the Litsy app, you can share quotes, reviews, and pictures of books you read. Basically like status updates for reading! You can earn points by posting about books you’ve read, and Litsy will also keep track of how many pages you’ve read. Litsy is just really fun to scroll through to look at beautiful photos of books, and find some new reads for yourself! It’s pretty addicting.

  • Apps for Android and iOS

LibraryThing

LibraryThing

LibraryThing is for hard core readers who not only want to connect with other readers but who also want a perfect tool for cataloging their home libraries. LibraryThing allows you to scan books into your collection and use it as a catalog for your own books. You can find people who have similar collections to you, join book clubs on LibraryThing, and look up all sorts of fun statistics about your books – like, how tall would your book collection be if you stacked every book on top of each other? Right now mine is taller than the Taj Mahal but not quite as tall as Big Ben…

  • Website
  • App for iOS

There’s many more where these came from, such as Bookstr (similar to Goodreads), Libib (similar to LibraryThing), and Bookling, an iOS app that keeps track of your reading and motivates you to read. Get exploring books nerds, there’s plenty of tech out there for you, too!

What are your favorite bookish apps and websites?

 

March 2017 TBR

Hey guys! I’d love to share my “to-be-read” list for March. I am hoping to read 5 books this month.7218138

                                                                             ***
The first book I’ll be reading is Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by brilliant Mark Twain.
This book was my absolute favorite growing up!
It will be my 3rd time reading it, so I am excited to see if I can pick up something new or catch something I may have missed previously. I will be reading this book with the Great Reads Book Club and I cannot wait to hear what they have to say about this American classic!

***

I will be returning to the world of criminal procedure in Dublin. Last year I have been introduced to Tana French and her Dublin Murder Squad Series. In the Woods is the first book in that series and it’s absolutely brilliant! What made In the Woods  the-likeness-pbsuch an amazing debut novel was Tana’s beautiful, descriptive prose, great plot and three-dimensional characters. Oh, and did I mention that the narrator is unreliable? It’s so great! The Likeness is the 2nd book in the series and I am beyond excited for my comeback to Ireland and its criminal world.

***

20559In the beginning of the year I made a promise to myself that 2017 will be the year of exploring new genres. Ubik, written by the master of science-fiction Phillip K. Dick, is that book. His works inspired Hollywood blockbusters such as Total Recall (1990),
The Adjustment Bureau (2011), Screamers (1995), Minority Report (2002), Next (2007), Paycheck (2003) and quintessential sci-fi classic Blade Runner (1982). For my first PKD read, I wanted to select a book that was not turned into a movie and Ubik was a perfect choice.

***

The Refugees by Pulitzer Prize winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen is the fourth book on my March TBR list. This book presents tragic, emotionally devastating the-refugees-thanhstories of Vietnamese refugees in California. This book seemed to be a perfect read in our contemporary political environment.

                                   ***

1105full-the-story-of-civilization,-vol-ii--the-life-of-greece-by-will-durant.-coverAnother one of my New Year’s resolutions was to read more
historical non-fiction. Here I want to step out of my comfort zone and read more works of ancient history instead of modern history. This is why I picked a giant tome The Life of Greece by Will Durant. Published in 1939, this work is still widely considered to be an authority text on the topic of Ancient Greece and Durant’s name is genuinely cherished in historical circles. I am excited to read this epic tome but I probably will not finish it in March.

by Ilya K

New Book Club! Forever Young Adult

Fountaindale is excited to announce the start of a new book club in March of 2017! “Forever Young Adult” is a book club for those 18 and older who love to read Young Adult Literature!

Many of us know that Young Adult Literature is definitely NOT just for young adults! Loved Harry Potter? The Hunger Games? Even Twilight? (If so, that’s okay, we won’t tell anyone!) Or maybe you are a John Green buff who read The Fault in Our Stars the day it came out. Or maybe you haven’t read a YA book in your life but are curious as to what all the fuss is about! From super-fans to causal readers to newbies, this club is for YOU.

Young Adult literature might be easier to read than adult fiction, but as a genre, it is known for its creative, out-of-the-box concepts, emotional resonance, and memorable characters. This is why so many adults enjoy reading “YA” lit. Where else can you find books entirely written as case files or love letters to someone long dead? New and innovative ways of storytelling are being published in YA all the time – even genres like nonfiction and poetry are gaining ground in YA. The Forever Young Adult book club plans to explore the latest hits in the YA genre and participate in engaging discussions about the texts we read.

eleanor & park

First up for the new book club is our March read: Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. Rainbow Rowell has become one of the biggest names in YA over the last few years, and Eleanor & Park is arguably her best YA novel. Here is a brief synopsis:

Two misfits.
One extraordinary love.

Eleanor… Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough…Eleanor.

Park… He knows she’ll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There’s a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises…Park.

Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.

Even if you absolutely will never be caught dead with a love story, this book will surprise you. Far from ooey-gooey romance, the book is filled with witty quips and awesome 80s references. It’s funny, poignant, and adorable all at the same time.

The Forever Young Adult Book Club will meet every 2nd Wednesday of the month at 7 p.m. in the Board Room, starting with our first meeting on March 8th. No registration is necessary! To reserve your copy of Eleanor & Park, you can call Adult and Teen Services at 630-685-4176 or visit the 3rd Floor Reference Desk!