Library Column – May 15, 2008

Spring is really here. I love the tender green on trees and bushes, the masses of  daffodils and other spring flowers and the rich scents as the Vermont soil emerges from winter.


Some of the library resources are well hidden. Available online (go to the bottom of our web page for links) are Heritage Quest Online for your ancestor search, the Vermont Online Library for just about anything, the Department of Libraries Catalog for your book searches and the Listen Up! Vermont site for downloadable audiobooks. All resources require passwords or special log-in information, phone or drop in to get the goods that will allow you to access these goodies.


More hidden resources: children’s magazines—Baby Bug and Ladybug (on the top of the toy collection); 400 movies on VHS (down in the basement); non-fiction and biography on audio CD (top two shelves of the audio cassette collection); short stories (below the mysteries); science fiction (below the short stories); older kid’s audiobooks (front of circulation desk); little kid’s audio/book combo’s (hanging rack in the corner of the children’s department); children’s music collection (in a box on the floor);  board games (on top of the shelves housing the juvenile fiction). I’m looking forward to our expanded library, which I’m hoping will have a rational layout instead of our current puzzles within puzzles.


Does everyone know that our magazine collection can be checked out? Consumer Reports is one exception, but you can find their articles in the Vermont Online Library at no charge. Toys, games, puzzles and puppets can all be checked out, too. Very handy when grandchildren come to visit!


Born Confused by Tanuja Desai Hidier. Hurrah, I made it all the way through my first downloadable audio book on one of our new MP3 players. Please forgive me for my crowing, but I’m a member of the older generation and figuring out how to listen to an audio book on one of those little gadgets was a challenge. I’ll admit they aren’t ideal for books (no bookmarks) but once I got the hang of it I really enjoyed the portability. I could go for a walk, listen in bed, move around and take care of this and that. Oh well, I guess I need to review the book, too. The story is about a teenager whose parents are from India. The main character was born and raised in New Jersey, but is still strongly connected to her parent’s culture and also rebelling against it. Definitely a young adult book, but I found it entertaining, nevertheless, and I learned a lot about the Indian diaspora. There are over 300 downloadable audiobooks in the Listen Up! Vermont collection with more to come. Call the library or come in to find out how to access this new library resource.


The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian. A novel about homelessness, literature, photography, crime, survival, mental illness, friendship and the line between truth and fiction. I enjoyed the book and found it frustrating, too. A novel, is, by definition, a work of fiction. Can the characters in a novel reasonably denounce another character for believing that the characters in another novel are real people? Everyone is fictional…


See you at the library!


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