Doggishly good books

On NPR Nancy Pearl has noted that in the past year nonfiction books about dogs have been very popular. Many of the titles she recommends are available at the library. For a doggishly good read, check out one of these titles:
Timbuktu by Paul Auster
Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck
City by Clifford Simak
Skippyjon Jones by Judith Byron Schachner
Lucky in the Corner by Carol Anshaw
Foreign Affairs by Alison Lurie

And check out the NPR story for a recording of Nancy Pearl reading "Golden Retrievals," a poem by Mark Doty.

Give 'Em a Gold Star

The City of Ann Arbor took home a 2006 Gold Star from Michigan’s Promoting Active Communities Collaborative for encouraging residents to get out and get moving. Our favorite reason Ann Arbor won? The Border-to-Border Trail that links AA with Ypsi and beyond. The City also won for making Getting Downtown healthy for you and the environment. Congratulations.

Let Them Eat History

It’s easy to admire Kirsten Dunst’s acting in Marie Antoinette – but it’s also admirable that plenty of educational asides on the history of the French and American revolutions found their way into Sofia Coppola’s new film. Check out reviews at metacritic, including this one from The Christian Science Monitor: “Freighted by its contentious reception at Cannes, writer-director Sofia Coppola's "Marie Antoinette" is destined to become this year's love-it-or-hate-it movie. Is it OK to say I merely liked it a lot?” The film continues this week at Quality 16 theater on Jackson Road. At the library we have loads of good books and films about the last queen of France, including the popular new book Abundance:A Novel of Marie Antoinette by Sena Jeter Naslund.

Clever Ali by Nancy Farmer

Ali’s father is in charge of the Sultan of Cairo’s carrier pigeons. When Ali turns seven he is old enough to work with his father in the palace. He is given his own pigeon and told not to overfeed it or it will become selfish and lazy. Ali doesn’t listen and overfeeds the pigeon, which causes a catastrophe that may get his father thrown into the Sultan's bottomless pit. When the cruel Sultan gives Ali one chance to save his father, he comes up with a plan to rescue his father and rid Cairo of the evil Sultan. Newbery author, Nancy Farmer, weaves an intriguing tale in the tradition of the Arabian Nights.

Writers recommend....

The most recent book recommended in the "You must read this" feature on NPR is Tillie Olsen's Tell Me a Riddle. Scott Turow talks about the profound influence Olsen's novella had on him as a young writer in college. Other titles recently discussed on the program have been Pale Horse, Pale Rider by Katherine Anne Porter, recommended by Alice McDermott and Maud Martha, Gwendolyn Brooks' only work of fiction described as "indispensable" by Asali Solomon whose book of short stories, Get Down was recently published.

Shedding light on Happy Meals

Many of us eat McDonald’s burgers and Chicken McNuggets and yet know very little about what we’re putting in our bodies. Chew on This! Everything You Don’t Want to Know about Fast Food shares what fast food industry officials would rather you not know about what’s in the food, what it does to the body, and about their campaign to lure children into a life long habit of fast food eating.

What if you ate nothing but fast food? Check out film director Morgan Spurlock's 2004 film, Super Size Me and see.

Clay -- Wierd & Scary or Dirt & Water?

Clay by David Almond is the odd story of two teenage boys in England who get pulled into the disturbed world of the new boy in town. A boy who creates saints and creatures out of clay - with an eye on creating his own clay man to commit disturbing deeds. With a crazy aunt and a priest to round out the picture it's a typical David Almond tale. It left me a little cold and I would be interested in what others thought of it...

Get Ready for Thanksgiving - New Recipes!

Looking for some great new recipes for Thanksgiving? Or just want to check out a new version of an old favorite?
We have dozens of mouth-watering recipes available in the Library's periodicals collection! (All are available in the Downtown Periodicals Room, and many are also available at the branches.)
Here's a small sample of what you can find in our magazines (November 2006 issue unless otherwise noted)-

Ginger-garlic Hawaiian turkey: see Sunset Magazine;
Collard Greens with Smoked Turkey Wings: see Saveur;
Chestnut and Apple Stuffing: see Everyday Food, a Martha Stewart Living publication.

And, for great Thanksgiving meals with a light and healthy menu, try:

Carmelized Pear Bread Pudding: see Eating Well, October/November issue;
Mashed Potato Gratin: see Cooking Light;
Spicy Glazed Sweet Potatoes: see Vegetarian Times, November/December issue;
Squash Souffle: see Weight Watchers Magazine, November/December issue.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS and BON APPETIT!

A Salty Story

Mark Kurlansky is back with another magical tale for children, The Story of Salt, an adaptation of his best-selling book, Salt, for grown-ups. Kurlansky spins the history of the compound, “the only rock we eat,” in fascinating historical vignettes accompanied by lovely illustrations, earth tones accented with white echoing throughout the book. Though it’s meant for kids, (ages 8-12), there’s plenty to whet the appetite of adults, too.

Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, one of the Cheaper by the Dozen authors, has died

Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, one of the Cheaper by the Dozen authors, has diedErnestine Gilbreth Carey, one of the Cheaper by the Dozen authors, has died

Ernestine Gilbreth Carey who, with her younger brother Frank, wrote Cheaper by the Dozen, one of the more endearing classic autobiographies, died Saturday, November 4, 2006, in California.

Carey (number three of the 12 children of Frank Bunker Gilbreth and his wife, Lillian Moller Gilbreth) and her brother delighted generations of readers with the antics and logistics of managing such a large household in the 1920s. Myrna Loy and Clifton Webb starred in the 1950 movie version; Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt appeared in the 2003 remake.

Mrs. Carey was 98.

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