Archive for May, 2007

Magnum, A.L.

In honor of the 100th anniversary of ALA’s American Libraries, the editors of the magazine put together this hilarious video. Here’s your opportunity to meet the team you can always count on for library news and updates. It’s definitely worth a watch!

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CNET.com

Did you ever have one of those work projects that you just keep pushing aside and never quite find the time to deal with? I’ve been meaning to research digital camcorders to purchase for my library for months now, and somehow it always ends up at the end of my Outlook task list. I finally started delving into the research this morning, but was bombarded with way too much technical information that meant nothing to me. Who knew there were so many darn species of the camcorder?

Fortunately, my extremely kick butt coworker Adam told me about CNET.com, a website featuring loads of free tech product reviews, news, and comparisons. I got sucked into this site for a few hours after work, and after checking out product ratings, watching video reviews by tech experts, and comparing breakdowns of prices and specs, I feel like much more of a camcorder expert than I did at the beginning of the day.

Librarians like myself could use CNET when tasked with purchasing gadgets for the library, and could also point gizmo-buying patrons to it as a helpful resource, along with Consumer Reports. I’m sure I’ll be returning for CNET’s helpful Tips and Tricks section of articles and videos—especially when the shooting and editing of my FAB group’s Blair Witch Parody gets underway at the end of the summer!

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“The Secret Life of Bees” by Sue Monk Kidd

I don’t want to finish this absolutely beautiful novel by Sue Monk Kidd. It’s one of those books that I just don’t want to end, but—alas—the end is near!

For those of you who’ve never heard of it before, The Secret Life of Bees is the coming-of-age story of Lily Owen, an abused fourteen-year-old who tragically lost her mother as a young child. Set in the rural South in the 1960’s, Lily, along with the Owens’ motherly servant Rosaleen, flees the only home she knows in search of the truth about her past, as well as a place where she and Rosaleen can finally feel safe. The amazing women they meet along the way change Lily’s life in ways both she and the reader could have never anticipated.

Now, I’m pretty sure this wasn’t meant to be a YA novel in the author’s eyes. It wasn’t marketed that way, at least. But fortunately someone recognized what a great read this would be for teenagers and ordered two copies for our teen room. That’s how I stumbled on it, and I’ve been pushing copy number two every chance I get (I’ve met with success twice!)

Of course, copy number one is still in my possession, because here I am, putting off the inevitable. I’m blogging about the book instead of reading it so I can stretch the final chapter even later into the night. I don’t want to say bye to Lily or August or Rosaleen or Zachary, or to the honey house, or even to the Black Madonna. But I guess I’ll have to. And I have a feeling, what with my current state of over-emotional PMS, that I’m going to end up in a fountain of blubbering tears. That’s not so bad—we all need a good cry sometimes, right?

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And remember kids, reading starts with ARRRRR!!!

It’s that time of year again! The youth services librarians of the public library world are frantically getting ready for the Summer Reading Program. At Frisco, we just don’t know what to expect–or perhaps we’re afraid to admit the inevitable. This is a city of 90,000+ where 50% of the population is 5 and under. It’s also the first SRP in our brand new digs. Throughout the month of May, librarians are visiting all 22 elementary schools dressed as pirates to plug the program at morning assemblies (Texas’s theme: Sail Away with Books!) I think it’s safe to say we’re going to be swamped.

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The Children’s Series Binder

Kick butt librarian Adrienne and kick butt library student Greg over at the Webster Public Library have started the coolest wiki! It’s called the Children’s Series Binder, and it will prove helpful for both library staff and patrons alike.

Hop on over to Adrienne’s blog and read her post to see what the Series Binder can do for you…and what you can do for the Series Binder!

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Electronic Handouts from TLA

The Texas Library Association’s 2007 annual conference wrapped up in April, and they’ve electronically published the session presenters’ handouts on the TLA website. This is a great resource that will be continuously added to as additional handouts are received. Thanks, you kick butt TLA people!

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Interview with an Iraqi Librarian

Baghdad’s scholars and intellectuals have limited access to academic material, and according to librarian Hameeda Al-Bassam, a disabled Shi’a woman, it’s worse now than in years past. Hameeda describes her work in a small private library in Baghdad in this short interview from Alive in Baghdad, a weekly video blog.

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