Between pandemics, sudden awareness of BIPOC problems, and the government in general, it has been a rough year. There have also been a lot of people, famous and local, passing away. Here are some reads that, while aimed at younger readers, could help you and yours learn to process death and grieving whatever your age.
Willow loves the woods near her house. They’re calm and quiet, so different from her own turbulent emotions, which she keeps locked away. When her emotions get the better of her one day, she decides to run away into the woods.
But the journey is long, and Pilu isn’t sure she’s ready to return home yet—which infuriates her new friend Willow, who’s determined to make up for her own mistakes by getting Pilu back safely. As a storm rages and Willow’s emotions bubble to the surface, they suddenly take on a physical form, putting both girls in danger… and forcing Willow to confront her inner feelings once and for all.
Assistant Librarian, here. Unfortunately, I had a bit of an accident involving a squirrel, a pair of dogs, and an extendible leash. I don’t know if anything’s broken, or just badly bruised, but regardless, I’m not gonna be able to keep up with an every-other-day posting schedule on this here blog.
So, until I’m able to touch-type again, this blog is going back to its Wednesday-only posting schedule. Hopefully that’ll only last a few weeks.
Stay safe out there!
***UPDATE 8/31/2020 Thank you so much to all who wrote with kind words and offers of help managing the dogs! Last week I checked in with a doctor and she said my hand was very likely just sprained, not broken. After a week of going easy, icing regularly, and trying to behave myself, the visible swelling has mostly subsided.
So yeah–all is well. Aside from not being able to knit, crochet, or spin anything. Or type efficiently. Or go a full hour without accidentally banging my hand on something.
Why new(ish)? Because our book processor (i.e. the Assistant Librarian) is not in the building all that often to process new books. Some have only just made it to circulation after weeks and months waiting on the processing cart. Also, several of these titles are on the older side, simply new to us.
Chances are good you didn’t hear about the Great Migration in history class. This mass movement of almost six million Black people across America shaped many of today’s racial politics. While the book is intimidatingly large, its story is lyrical and readable, using a handful of characters to tie the vast historical event down to a more relatable level.
We don’t have much access to books by disabled authors at RML, but the internet has an ever-increasing collection of disabled activists, artists, and personalities that you can learn from. Here are some of our favorites.
(Descriptions are taken directly from the artists’ own About pages.)
The Tripple Cripples (Kym and Jay) Triple Cripples is a platform that highlights the lives and loves of disabled women, femmes and non-binary people of colour. We KNOW that there are others like us, who are extraordinary members of their individual societies. We want to help share those spectacular and regular stories (because not everyday sensationalism, sometimes chill)!
Editor at Large of The Establishment Ijeoma Oluo offers a contemporary, accessible take on the racial landscape in America, addressing head-on such issues as privilege, police brutality, intersectionality, micro-aggressions, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the “N” word. Perfectly positioned to bridge the gap between people of color and white Americans struggling with race complexities, Oluo answers the questions readers don’t dare ask, and explains the concepts that continue to elude everyday Americans.
Time and time again I hear patrons freaking out at the idea of rereading. Kids are ordered to pick something new, because they’ve already read that graphic novel. Adults are grumpy because there aren’t any new books they haven’t read. Parents dread the moment they finish reading aloud to a young one who then instantly asks to read that same picture book again and again.
But, dirty secret time, I reread books all the time. Like, ALL the time. I finished my third listen-through of Gideon the Ninth today, and this isn’t a new phenomenon. Every couple years I reread Aliens Ate My Homework and its sequels, just to see if it still holds up. (It does.) I could say the same for an entire bookshelf of old and new favorites, many of which I’ve read at least two or three times, if not into the double digits.
But why? What is it that brings me, an incredibly slow reader with pressure to get through lots of books for work, to ‘waste time’ revisiting stories I already know back to front.
Happy 30th Anniversary to the Americans with Disabilities Act! Despite the fact that roughly 1 in 4 Americans have a disability, we rarely see people with disabilities depicted in fiction. It’s even harder to find accurate depictions of characters with those disabilities. With that in mind, we scoured our physical and digital holdings to find books about people with disabilities, written by authors who share at least one of those disabilities. (Since we have such narrow holdings, I also included neurodiverse authors, as they can sometimes be grouped in with disabled people.)
Starting at a new school is scary, even more so with a giant hearing aid strapped to your chest! At her old school, everyone in Cece’s class was deaf. Here she is different. She is sure the kids are staring at the Phonic Ear, the powerful aid that will help her hear her teacher. Too bad it also seems certain to repel potential friends.
Then Cece makes a startling discovery. With the Phonic Ear she can hear her teacher not just in the classroom, but anywhere her teacher is in school — in the hallway… in the teacher’s lounge… in the bathroom! This is power. Maybe even superpower! Can Cece channel her power into finding the thing she wants most, a true friend?