Category Archives: Content

Librarians Recommend: The Arrival

Katie Recommends: The Arrival by Shaun Tan
The Arrival (Shaun Tan) - Çizgi Roman Diyarı
One day a man gets on a boat and sails to a faraway land in search of a better life for his family. He has to navigate the ridiculously complicated systems of this strange world where everything looks odd and the language is completely new to him and everything from the food to the appliances is foreign. It’s a struggle, but he meets other immigrants along the way who encourage and help him create a home for his faraway family.
With that kind of summary you might be surprised to learn that there is not a single English word in this entire book. Tan’s mastery of human facial expression, his fantastical yet relatable sketches, and the cinematic conventions he uses from image to image paint a clear, stunningly detailed story of a man just trying to survive in a foreign world.
If you want a taste of the Immigrant experience, you’ll find no better than Shaun Tan’s The Arrival.
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Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award MASTER LIST

Elementary schools all over Vermont look forward to the annual The Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award — the award where the kids choose which book gets the award. Below the cut are summaries for all 30 books nominated this year. These books targeted for students in grades 4-8, though anyone can enjoy them. Most are available through our library’s digital collection, while some are also available here at our library!

Students are generally asked to read at least five of the year’s nominated titles before voting. Voting takes place in the spring, generally beginning in April.

This year’s nominees include:

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Book Reviews: The Poet’s Dog

The Poet’s Dog by Patricia MacLachlan
Reviewed by Melanie Cote

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Have you ever wondered what your dog was thinking? If so, this is the book for you. It’s the story of two children lost and freezing in a winter storm. They are led to safety by a dog named Teddy. He brings them to his person’s cabin – the Poet’s Cabin – but the poet is not there. The children are able to “talk” with Teddy. Teddy and the children take care of one another while the storm rages on outside. We learn of their past struggles, the whereabouts of the poet, and hope for a brighter future for them all.

This story is told with a gentle tone which Patricia MacLachlan is known for. The kindness of the children and Teddy towards one another tugs at the heart strings. Children will be pulled along by the loving relationship that develops between the children and Teddy. There is a touch of magic and mystery woven throughout the story. The importance of the power of our words and of truly hearing others is a central message.

This book is also on the 2018 DCF reading list!

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Genre Feature: Oversized Books

Not all books are small enough to fit on the shelves. Here are some of our coolest oversized books – the ones that sit in weird corners and on top of odd shelves just waiting to go home with someone.

Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods by Rick Riordan and John Rocco
C01_DH_PJGreekGods_frontcoveronly.jpg“A publisher in New York asked me to write down what I know about the Greek gods, and I was like, Can we do this anonymously?  Because I don’t need the Olympians mad at me again.  But if it helps you to know your Greek gods, and survive an encounter with them if they ever show up in your face, then I guess writing all this down will be my good deed for the week.”

So begins Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods, in which the son of Poseidon adds his own magic—and sarcastic asides—to the classics. He explains how the world was created, then gives readers his personal take on a who’s who of ancients, from Apollo to Zeus. Percy does not hold back.

 

 

The Purloining of Prince Oleomargarine by Mark Twain, Philip Stead, and Erin Stead

images.duckduckgo.com.jpgJohnny, forlorn and alone except for his pet chicken, meets a kind woman who gives him seeds that change his fortune, allowing him to speak with animals and sending him on a quest to rescue a stolen prince. In the face of a bullying tyrant king, Johnny and his animal friends come to understand that generosity, empathy, and quiet courage are gifts more precious in this world than power and gold.

Yeah, that Mark Twain. This delightful storybook was pulled from the archives of his unfinished works and completed by the Steads.

 

 

 

 

Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words by Randal Monroe

images.duckduckgo.com.pngThis book explains things in the style of Up Goer Five, using only drawings and a vocabulary of the 1,000 (or “ten hundred”) most common words. Explore computer buildings (datacenters), the flat rocks we live on (tectonic plates), the things you use to steer a plane (airliner cockpit controls), and the little bags of water you’re made of (cells).

From the delightful writer of the webcomic xkcd comes a picture heavy, delightfully sarcastic explanation of all manner of cool science-y things.

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Pages Coming Soon to Screen

Looking to read the books before the next movie comes out? Check out these upcoming releases from the library!

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Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. One of his fellow passengers must be the murderer.

Isolated by the storm and with a killer in their midst, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer amongst a dozen of the dead man’s enemies, before the murderer decides to strike again…

In Theaters November 10, 2017

Watch the trailer here.

 

 

Wonder by R.J. Palacio

images.duckduckgo.com.jpgI won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.
August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?

In theaters November 16th

Watch the trailer here.

 

Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter

When Mrs. Rabbit beseeches her four furry children not to go into Mr. McGregor’s garden, the impish Peter naturally takes this as an open invitation to create mischief. He quickly gets in over his head, when he is spotted by farmer McGregor himself.

This rather liberal interpretation of the classic tale comes out on February 9th, 2018

Watch the trailer here.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle

images.duckduckgo.com.jpgMeg’s father had been experimenting with this fifth dimension of time travel when he mysteriously disappeared. Now the time has come for Meg, her friend Calvin, and Charles Wallace to rescue him. But can they outwit the forces of evil they will encounter on their heart-stopping journey through space?

In Theaters March 19th, 2018

Watch the trailer here.

 

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Author Feature: Alvin Schwartz

Looking for some Halloween-y goodness the whole family can enjoy? Try something from every 90 kid’s favorite underrated horror writer/folklorist: Alvin Schwartz.

He is best known, of course, for Scary Stories to Tell in the Darkimages.duckduckgo.com.jpgThis middle grade collection of spooky folklore is meant to be read aloud, and even includes handy asides for how best to scare your listeners as you go. If the more horror-based stories get to be too much, try one of the sillier songs or poems, or even flip to the “Aaaaaaah” chapter at the end full of stories to make you laugh away your worries.

If your aspiring horror reader is looking for something of an easier reading level, try the delightful: In a Dark, Dark Room: and Other Scary Stories

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With far less scary pictures than it’s better known brother, In a Dark, Dark Room is written so that beginning reader can puzzle their own way through the spooky folktales told around Halloween. Many of these end humorously.

Of course, not everything Schwartz writes is spooky. Our collection does boast a copy of his delightful Ten Copycats in a Boat: and Other Riddles:

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Fun for the whole family! Easy to read riddles for beginning readers to try out on all their closest family and friends. Plenty of puns to make the whole family forget about how spooky Halloween can be.

For example: What does a cat have that no other animal has?

(The answer is: Kittens)

Because at the end of the day, Alvin Schwartz is a lore-ist. All of his books end listing the sources of each and every folktale he’s used to spook or amuse you. If you like a bit of history with your spooky stories, give him a try.

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Page to Screen: Halloween Edition

A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket

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If you have not read anything about the Baudelaire orphans, then before you read even one more sentence, you should know this: Violet, Klaus, and Sunny are kindhearted and quick-witted, but their lives are filled with bad luck and misery. This makes many of their adventures very unfortunate indeed.

 

Circque du Freak by Darren Shan

 
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Young Darren Shan goes to a freak show with his friend one night and makes a decision that night which will change his life forever, dragging him unwillingly into the dark world of the Cirque du Freak.

Horns by Joe Hill

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(NOT FAMILY FRIENDLY)

Ignatius Perrish woke up with a thunderous hangover, a raging headache . . . and a pair of horns growing from his temples that make everyone tell him their darkest secrets, whether they want to or not.

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