Tuesday, December 5, 2017

The Book Van

Book Van driver Sisto unloads the Book Van

Recently, we were able to take a ridealong in the Public Library's Book Van. What is the Book Van, you ask? The Book Van provides free public library service to senior living facilities whose residents cannot easily access neighborhood branch libraries. It has been active since 2001, when it was bought with funds raised by Friends For the Public Library.

The Book Van set up in a facility's common area
The Book Van has a list of sixteen facilities which it delivers to, stopping at most once every three weeks.  It makes deliveries three days a week, going to two locations a day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, stopping for about an hour in each location. The Book Van is now loaning DVDs, Playaways, and books on CD as well as books, and tries to get books for residents in Spanish as requested. Once set up in the common room of the facility, a mobile hotspot is used to connect to the library so that its two staff members can make library cards, check-in, check-out, and place holds. They also answer questions on a variety of topics, including helping residents with their Kindles.

The reference desk and checkout in one
Before the delivery day begins, staff members must get the Book Van ready, assembling holds and refreshing the materials to be loaded on for the day's stops. The van is custom-made with a special frame to hold four book trucks, three for fiction titles and one for non-fiction. They also have a bin for returns and a bin for holds which have been placed for the residents. New books are added to the mix as needed - there are around 600 titles available to the Book Van at any given time, with the emphasis on current and high demand adult fiction and large print materials.

If you know someone at a senior living facility, have them check if the Book Van stops there so they can take advantage of this great resource! If your senior is not at one of the stops listed, the Book Van is not currently adding new stops, but there is a wait list.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Listen List: Extraordinary Audiobook Listening Experiences

Couple listening to headphones. Photography. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016.
quest.eb.com/search/154_2884787/1/154_2884787/cite. Accessed 9 Nov 2017.
It's almost time for the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), to announce the 2018 picks for their Listen List: Outstanding Audiobook Narration! What is the Listen List, you ask? It's an award which  "highlights extraordinary narrators and listening experiences that merit special attention by a general adult audience and the librarians who advise them." Since 2010, a committee has convened annually to listen to over 1,000 hours of audiobooks, over 200 titles, to find 12 winners. All the titles under consideration must be available to purchase for public libraries; winners are chosen "because the narration creates a new experience with an outstanding performance in terms of voice, accents, pitch, tone, inflection, rhythm and pace, offering listeners something they could not create by their own visual reading." Handily, each of the 12 titles also comes with three recommended listenalikes "not appearing on previous Listen Lists, which mirror the appeal, tone, or production style of the winners."

The 2017 Listen List included:

Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson [Playaway & eAudiobook]

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams: Stories by Stephen King [book on CD & eAudiobook]

Because of Miss Bridgerton by Julia Quinn [eAudiobook]

The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick [eAudiobook]

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond [eAudiobook]

Julian Fellowes's Belgravia by Julian Fellowes [eAudiobook]

Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley [book on CD & eAudiobook]

News of the World by Paulette Jiles [book on CD]

Razor Girl by Carl Hiaasen [book on CD, Playaway, & eAudiobook]

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel [eAudiobook]

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead [book on CD & eAudiobook]

You can find the full list with listenalikes on the RUSA website.

Because we love being read to, we'd like to suggest other recent audiobooks of note, focusing specifically on those read by the author:

You Don't Have To Say You Love Me: A Memoir by Sherman Alexie [book on CD & eAudiobook]

The Art of Death: Writing the Final Story by Edwidge Danticat [eAudiobook & book on CD]

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay [eAudiobook]

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy [book on CD & eAudiobook]

Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death and Jazz Chickens by Eddie Izzard [eAudiobook]

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid [eAudiobook]

4321 by Paul Auster [eAudiobook & Playaway]

A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference In My Mood, My Marriage, and My Life by Ayelet Waldman [eAudiobook & book on CD]

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Leveling the Playing Field: Sports Non-Fiction

You're a pretty athletic bunch out there, Burqueños. You run and walk in the Duke City Marathon and the Run for the Zoo; some of you take part in one of our two roller derbies, Duke City or Albuquerque; you ski and snowboard; you cycle; you hike. Some of you take advantage of the many recreation opportunities city parks to have offer. There are many of you who, whether active yourselves or no, follow sports - maybe you just watched football on Thanksgiving. Or cheered for the Astros during the World Series. Or maybe you're looking forward to the next World Cup.

We just want to make sure you know that we have resources in the library catalog for you, too! And not just exercise and weight loss reads, either, though we certainly have plenty of those titles. Here's a smattering of sports non-fiction we hope you might find intriguing:

The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of the Most Valuable Commodity in Sports by Jeff Passan

Coach Wooden and Me: Our 50-Year Friendship On and Off the Court by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and David Fisher

Running With a Police Escort: Tales From the Back of the Pack by Jill Grunenwald [eBook]

Game Worn: Baseball Treasures From the Game's Greatest Heroes and Moments by Stephen Wong and Dave Grob

Epic Bike Rides of the World: Explore the Planet's Most Thrilling Cycling Routes

Dust Bowl Girls: The Inspiring Story of the Team That Barnstormed Its Way to Basketball Glory by Lydia Reeder

Crazy '08: How a Cast of Cranks, Rogues, Boneheads, and Magnates Created the Greatest Year in Baseball History by Cait Murphy

My Cubs: A Love Story by Scott Simon

Home and Away: Writing the Beautiful Game by Karl Ove Knausgaard and Fredrik Ekelund 

Wonder Girl: The Magnificent Sporting Life of Babe Didrikson Zaharias by Don Van Natta Jr.

Off Speed: Baseball, Pitching, and the Art of Deception by Terry McDermott

A Life Well Played: My Stories by Arnold Palmer

Unsportsmanlike Conduct: College Football and the Politics of Rape by Jessica Luther

Ways of Grace: Stories of Activism, Adversity, and How Sports Can Bring Us Together by James Blake

Women Who Tri: A Reluctant Athlete's Journey Into the Heart of America's Newest Obsession by Alicia DiFabio [eBook]

How Cycling Can Save the World by Peter Walker

Sting Like a Bee: Muhammad Ali vs. the United States of America, 1966-1971 by Leigh Montville

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Literary Links: Doctor Who

Dr Who The Five Doctors. Photography. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016.
quest.eb.com/search/158_2476120/1/158_2476120/cite. Accessed 27 Oct 2017.
On November 23, 1963, Doctor Who debuted on the BBC. And so began the televisual adventure that has kept fans enraptured for over fifty years, through twelve different regenerations of the Doctor. The 13th and first female incarnation, Jodie Whittaker, will take her place in the TARDIS for the upcoming 2017 Christmas Special (some people are disappointed that the Doctor is a woman, and some people are sad that the Doctor is still not ginger - redhead, as we would say stateside).

Since that fateful November day, it has delighted Doctor Who authors and showrunners to make homages in the Whoniverse to that date - characters have been born (most notably Clara Oswald) and died, the Doctor or his companions have had to return to that date to complete a mission, and in 2013 it was the date the special 50th anniversary episode, The Day of the Doctor, was broadcast simultaneously in 94 countries.

Who's your favorite Doctor? Let us know in the comments!

November 23, 1963: Doctor Who materializes on BBC [Wired]

First Time Entering the TARDIS - An Unearthly Child - Doctor Who - BBC [YouTube]

Doctor Who classic episode #1: An Unearthly Child [Guardian]

Here’s how Radio Times introduced the first ever episode of Doctor Who [Radio Times]

1963: First Episode of Doctor Who Airs [History Hit]

Wear a Bow Tie Day and Other Wholidays [Geek Mom]

Don't forget to check out our Whoniverse LibGuide, your source for Doctor Who in our library catalog!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Horror Beyond the Bestsellers: Recommended Authors

Horrified Reader. Photographer. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016.
quest.eb.com/search/115_2842737/1/115_2842737/cite. Accessed 2 Nov 2017.
Halloween may be over, but we're still feeling spooky! 😨 Are you a fan of  the horror genre? Did you read Goosebumps as a child, or Alvin Schwartz's Scary Stories? We're pretty sure every horror reader - and some folks who don't even like horror - are familiar with names like Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Clive Barker, and H.P. Lovecraft. Even many horror films have been based on books - William Peter Blatty wrote The Exorcist, Ira Levin wrote Rosemary's Baby, Robert Bloch is the author of Psycho, and The Haunting is based on The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson. But not every horror author is a household name, and the following is a list of some authors you might have missed. We've also included some recommendations to help you find even more new horror after the list! Do you have horror recommendations? Let us know in the comments!

Joe Hill

Christopher Golden

Brian Keene

Stephen Graham Jones

John Ajvide Lindqvist

Nick Cutter

Ania Ahlborn

Kaaron Warren

David Moody

Tananarive Due

Jonathan Janz

Victor LaValle

Ellen Datlow

Thomas Olde Heuvelt

Paul Tremblay

If you're looking for scary movie suggestions, check out Reel Terror: The Scary, Bloody, Gory, Hundred-Year History of Classic Horror Films or Pumpkin Cinema: The Best Movies for Halloween.

Recommended online resources: Horror Writers Association, home of the Bram Stoker Awards; articles tagged "Horror" on LitReactor; This Is Horror, a website which specializes "in horror fiction and the craft of writing," including a podcast, book reviews, news, and more; and RA For All: Horror -  the American Library Association's readers' advisory guide to horror. (RA For All recently featured "31 Days of Horror.") Also make sure to check out our eResource NoveList, which features booklists like "Blood-Drenched Horror," "Creature Feature," and "Classic Chills," or sign up to get a horror newsletter delivered to your email bi-monthly from The Public Library! Free with your valid library card.

Portrait Of Vampira. Photographer. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016.
quest.eb.com/search/115_2842327/1/115_2842327/cite. Accessed 2 Nov 2017.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Medical History

Nurse. Photograph. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016.
quest.eb.com/search/139_1891082/1/139_1891082/cite. Accessed 1 Nov 2017.

Even better: an iron lung. I’ve never seen an iron lung, but the newspapers had pictures of children in iron lungs, back when people still got polio. These pictures – the iron lung a cylinder, a gigantic sausage roll of metal, with a head sticking out one end of it, always a girl’s head, the hair flowing across the pillow, the eyes large, nocturnal – fascinated me, more than stories about children who went out on thin ice and fell through and were drowned, or children who played on the railroad tracks and had their arms and legs cut off by trains. You could get polio without knowing how or where, end up in an iron lung without knowing why. Something you breathed in or ate, or picked up from the dirty money other people had touched. You never knew.
~Margaret Atwood, Cat's Eye

What do you think about when you think about medical history? For us, it's the Mutter Museum exhibit we saw at the Albuquerque Museum several years back. It's T. Coraghessan Boyle's The Road to Wellville, Andrea Barrett's The Air We Breathe (and New Mexico's own history of "lungers"), The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, the movie Burke & Hare. We think of what we've heard about medicine during the wars - amputations during the Civil War, aftereffects of the deadly use of mustard gas in WWI, MASH (did you know the movie and TV series were based on a book?). Stories about the influenza pandemic in 1918, like Katherine Anne Porter's poignant "Pale Horse, Pale Rider".  We're just waiting to see how the PBS TV series Victoria deals with Queen Victoria being given chloroform for the birth of her last two children after birthing seven other children without anesthetic. And, of course, the iron lung, as Margaret Atwood has referenced above.

Of course, we know there's a lot more to the history of medicine than what our smattering of education, a lot of it garnered from pop culture and media, has provided us with. We thought you might be interested in exploring this fascinating topic with us, so we present you with the following list of books from our library catalog.

The Butchering Art: Joseph Lister's Quest to Transform the Grisly World of Victorian Medicine by Lindsey Fitzharris

Strange Medicine: A Shocking History of Real Medical Practices Through the Ages by Nathan Belofsky

Hysteria  text by Richard Appignanesi ; drawings by Oscar Zarate

Hell and Good Company: The Spanish Civil War and the World It Made by Richard Rhodes

The Man Who Touched His Own Heart: True Tales of Science, Surgery, and Mystery by Robert Dunn

Pandora's DNA: Tracing the Breast Cancer Genes Through History, Science, and One Family Tree by Lizzie Stark

The Enlightened Mr. Parkinson: The Pioneering Life of a Forgotten Surgeon and the Mysterious Disease That Bears His Name by Cherry Lewis

Pale Rider: The Spanish Flu of 1918 and How It Changed the World by Laura Spinney

Dr. Mütter's Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation At the Dawn of Modern Medicine by Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz

Bleeding Blue and Gray: Civil War Surgery and the Evolution of American Medicine by Ira M. Rutkow

Kill or Cure: An Illustrated History of Medicine by Steve Parker

Lotions, Potions, and Deadly Elixirs: Frontier Medicine in the American West by Wayne Bethard

Bellevue: Three Centuries of Medicine and Mayhem at America's Most Storied Hospital by David Oshinsky

For Her Own Good: Two Centuries of the Experts Advice to Women by Barbara Ehrenreich

The Daily Practice of Compassion: A History of the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Its People, and Its Mission, 1964-2014 by Dora L. Wang

The Vaccine Race: Science, Politics, and the Human Costs of Defeating Disease by Meredith Wadman

The Kelloggs: The Battling Brothers of Battle Creek by Howard Markel

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Meow-velous: Cats at the Library

DOMESTIC CAT. Photography. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016.
quest.eb.com/search/138_1073169/1/138_1073169/cite. Accessed 28 Oct 2017.
We're gutted to have missed National Cat Day on October 29th, but as Sandra Boynton pointed out on Facebook, "...March 28 is Respect Your Cat Day, May 30 is International Hug Your Cat Day, June 15 is World Catnip Awareness Day, June 25 is Take Your Cat to Work Day, August 8 is World Cat Day, Sept 1 is Ginger Cat Appreciation Day, Oct 16 is Feral Cat Day, and Oct 27 is National Black Cat Day," so we have plenty of other chances to celebrate our purry pals. Cats and libraries are a natural match! The tradition of having a cat in the library is allegedly dates back to the Egyptians, and there are cats in libraries worldwide. (There are also cats in the Hermitage Museum in Russia. Which has a library.) There are famous library cats - Dewey! Baker & Taylor! - and not so famous ones.

They have a job description:
  1. Reducing stress for all humans who pay attention to him.
  2.  Sitting by the front door every morning at 9:00 am to greet the public as they enter the library.
  3. Sampling all boxes that enter the library for security problems and comfort level.
  4. Attending all meetings in the Round Room as official library ambassador.
  5. Providing comic relief for staff and visitors whenever possible.
  6. Climbing in book bags and briefcases while patrons are studying or trying to retrieve needed papers underneath him.
  7. Generating free national and worldwide publicity for Library. (This entails sitting still for photographs, smiling for the camera, and generally being cute.)
  8. Working toward status as world’s most finicky cat by refusing all but the most expensive, delectable foods — and even turning up his nose at those most of the time.
Allergy complaints have made their positions more scarce recently. One cat was nearly banished, but ended up staying on the job after a petition was circulated and the city council voted to retain his services.

There's a stereotype of the cat-loving librarian. We don't know that all librarians love cats, but we sure do! Our library system does not have library cats, but we'd like to point out that even without a resident cat, the library catalog offers plenty of ways to enjoy felines - dander-free! Here's some standout items:

The Inner Life of Cats: The Science and Secrets of Our Mysterious Feline Companions by Thomas McNamee

The Dalai Lama's Cat and the Power of Meow by David Michie [eBook]

Shop Cats of New York by Tamar Arslanian

Cat Tales: True Stories of Kindness and Companionship With Kitties by Aline Alexander Newman

The Cat Whisperer: Why Cats Do What They Do-- And How to Get Them To Do What You Want by Mieshelle Nagelschneider

Men With Cats: Intimate Portraits of Feline Friendship by David Williams

Call of the Cats: What I Learned About Love and Life From a Feral Colony by Andrew Bloomfield

The Old Man and the Cat: A Love Story by Nils Uddenberg

Total Cat Mojo: The Ultimate Guide to Life With Your Cat by Jackson Galaxy

Lost and Found Cat: The True Story of Kunkush's Incredible Journey by Doug Kuntz and Amy Shrodes[eBook]


The Story of Cats

The Secret Life of Cats 


A Street Cat Named Bob