Kevin from the GORGEOUS Pierson Library in Shelburne was kind enough to tour us around their new and improved facilities. They are vastly larger than RML, but we were curious to check them out because they have a) just undergone a substantial expansion and upgrade in facilities and b) are also interfaced with their town hall.
For those concerned, all library staff and trustees were all masked for and socially distanced for this visit–the space was plenty large enough for us to tour safely. That said, it was also kind of lonely without its usual art displays with most of the display spaces empty. Because of the pandemic, you’ll also note that in many images furniture is turned sideways or upside down so that patrons know not to use it. Do not be alarmed–this is a planned choice, not the product of a sudden earthquake or mass exodus of patrons.
So, without further ado, here are some things we noticed on our tour.
The Vermont Golden Dome Book Award was created to honor excellence in children’s literature. Each year since 1957, Vermont students in grades four through eight have selected their favorite book from a list of nominees. It is recommended that students read at least five of the year’s nominated titles before voting. Voting for 2020-21 will take place between April 30, 2021 and May 28, 2021.
Not everyone learns best by reading about certain topics. Prefer to learn from audiovisual media? Here are some spectacular videos that can get you started learning about why the #StopAsianHate campaign is so important, especially in these pandemic times.
Here’s a short report on the spike in hate crimes courtesy PBS News Hour:
This is far from the first time that AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) communities have been targeted with violence, however, the sharp increase in hate continues to rise. This is why we need to educate ourselves and others about what’s happening and why it needs to stop.
The Petrakis family lives in the small Greek seaside village of Plaka. Just off the coast is the tiny island of Spinalonga, where the nation’s leper colony once was located—a place that has haunted four generations of Petrakis women. There’s Eleni, ripped from her husband and two young daughters and sent to Spinalonga in 1939, and her daughters Maria, finding joy in the everyday as she dutifully cares for her father, and Anna, a wild child hungry for passion and a life anywhere but Plaka. And finally there’s Alexis, Eleni’s great-granddaughter, visiting modern-day Greece to unlock her family’s past.
From a psychologist and stand-up comedian comes a practical, yet laugh-out-loud guide to embracing humor to reduce stress and live a happier, fuller life.
Dr. Brian King got a degree in psychology before becoming a world-touring comic and the host of humor therapy seminars attended by more than ten thousand people each year. In this brilliant guide he presents hands-on techniques for managing stress by rewiring our brains to approach potentially difficult situations through a lens of positivity. To do so, Dr. King explores what stress is, where it comes from, and what it does to our bodies and brains. He delves deep into how to address everyday stress—as well as anxiety, insecurities, repression, and negativity—and gives insight into resulting ailments such as anxiety disorders, depression, hypertension, obesity, substance abuse disorders, and more. Dr. King’s techniques are chemical and cost free, and embrace humor, resilience, relaxation, optimism, gratitude, and acceptance. Instead of a dry medical approach to dealing with stress, this unique volume is filled with life-changing tips and instructions presented with humor and a wealth of memorable, smile-inducing anecdotes.
While out exploring one day, a little boy named Liam discovers a struggling garden and decides to take care of it. As time passes, the garden spreads throughout the dark, gray city, transforming it into a lush, green world.
Esther is a stowaway. She’s hidden herself away in the Librarian’s book wagon in an attempt to escape the marriage her father has arranged for her–a marriage to the man who was previously engaged to her best friend. Her best friend who she was in love with. Her best friend who was just executed for possession of resistance propaganda.
The future American Southwest is full of bandits, fascists, and queer librarian spies on horseback trying to do the right thing.
Gailey’s prose is lyrical and quaint and really has that Western feel even without relying on the traditional tropes of cowboys and casual misogyny. Also, this story gets dark in places, totally not shying away from death and violence. In the old Westerns I used to watch with my dad, death was pretty cheap–random characters got shot and killed all the time and no one really seemed that affected by it. In Upright Women Wanted, shoot’outs are scary and not all the people involved are brave and gallant in their response.
That said, the character work here is deeply thought out and it was absolutely fascinating to see so many women supporting and helping one another. Respect was shown for ALL types of femininity, not just the kind that wore skirts or the kind that weilded guns. This took me all of a day to get through and I savored every minute of it.
Especially recommended for feminists, fans of Westerns, and librarians.
While June is technically Pride Month, many also celebrate LGBT+ pride in April, referring to the month as GAYpril. At RML, we love any excuse we can use to celebrate diversity of all sorts, so here goes nothing.
If you don’t spend much time in queer communities, it can be hard to keep up with the lingo. Here are some resources you can check out to make you a better ally and/or learn more about yourself.
It’s a wikipedia all about LGBT+ concepts and people. Unlike most wikis, this one cannot be edited by just anyone, meaning that there’s a bit more control over what is and isn’t added to the entries. Also, you can scroll down to see commentary on each issue left by queer folx.
One of the best known AAIP authors in America is Joy Luck Club author Amy Tan. She’s not been featured in the literary world as heavily in recent times, but she is certainly a beloved and influential author worth your time.
Born in the U.S. to immigrant parents from China, Amy Tan grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. At age 15, after a family tragedy, her mother impulsively took Amy and her younger brother to Europe to see the world. After several missteps, the three wanderers settled in Montreux, Switzerland, where Amy fell in love, nearly eloped, played an unwitting role in the drug bust of friends, and still managed to graduate from high school one year early.
Lots of delays last year means tons of premieres this year, both in blockbusters and little indie productions. Here are some of the book-based TV shows and movies that are premiering in the first-half of 2021.
In the turbulent summer of 1974, Kate Mularkey has accepted her place at the bottom of the eighth-grade social food chain. Then, to her amazement, the “coolest girl in the world” moves in across the street and wants to be her friend. Tully Hart seems to have it all—beauty, brains, ambition. On the surface they are as opposite as two people can be: Kate, doomed to be forever uncool, with a loving family who mortifies her at every turn. Tully, steeped in glamour and mystery, but with a secret that is destroying her. They make a pact to be best friends forever; by summer’s end they’ve become TullyandKate. Inseparable.