Lulu Blooker Prize Short-List for Non-Fiction

A blook is a blog book, a book that started as a blog and eventually generated a book. And Blooker Prize is obviously a take-off on the Booker Prize. The Sunday (London) Times (3-18, 2007) quotes Peter Freedman of the prize organizer, an online publisher, “It’s clear that grand publishing houses, which perhaps once had little regard for online writing, are now mining blogs and websites for the next big author.”

The Short-List (annotations are from the Lulu Blooker Prize website)

Crashing the Gate by Jerome Armstrong – and Markos Moulitsas –

Spring Arrives Today

Spring: a Spiritual Biography of the Season, edited by Gary Schmidt & Susan M. Felch, groups essays, poems, and Shaker hymns in a five part (Stirrings, Awakenings, Growth, Pilgrimage, and Dance) celebration of Spring.

The editors write: “Spring is the season that simultaneously calls us to celebration and to a sober sense of gratitude for the time that we have been given. The grace of renewal should lead to gratitude for the newness, and it should lead to an acute awareness of our need for renewal.”

The essayists and poets include Jane Kenyon, Donald Hall, Noel Perrin, Annie Dillard, and many others. This book is one of a series of four Spiritual Biographies of the Seasons.

To read Jane Kenyon’s spring poem, Mud Season, click on Read More

Today is the First Day of Spring

Celebrate by reading some spring poems from The Language of Spring: Poems for the Season of Renewal, selected by Robert Atwan, Introduction by Maxine Kumin.

Theodore Roethke Vernal Sentiment

Though the crocuses poke up their heads in the usual places,
The frog scum appear on the pond with the same froth of
And boys moon at girls with last year’s fatuous faces,
I never am bored, however familiar the scene.

When from under the barn the cat brings a similar litter, -
Two yellow and black, and one that looks in between, -
Though it all happened before, I cannot grow bitter:
I rejoice in the spring, as though no spring ever had been.

Laurie Halse Anderson to appear @ Nicola's!

With her new book Twisted ready to hit shelves Laurie Halse Anderson is hitting the road. Laurie will be at Nicola's Books next Tuesday, March 27 @ 7:00 PM. Laurie is best known for her award-winning, bestseller, Speak - as well as Prom and Fever 1793. Laurie visited AADL in 2005 - she's a fabulous speaker - be sure to check her out!

How I Learned to Cook

In How I Learned to Cook: Culinary Educations from the World’s Greatest Chefs, forty chefs share short sketches of their lives as chefs: what brought them to cooking, working as prep cooks, family backgrounds, kitchen mishaps, influences. And these are big names: Mario Batali, Mark Bittman, Daniel Boulud, Tom Colicchio, Marcella Hazan.

I read the entries by chefs whose restaurants I have eaten in: Sara Moulton making beer steamed Det Burgers at the Del Rio, Gary Danko writing about his difficulties getting accepted as a student by Madeleine Kamman, Rick Bayless taping a show with Julia Child for In Julia’s Kitchen with the Master Chefs.

Then I read the rest. I especially liked the ones about getting a start in the kitchen and having to quickly figure things out, with the occasional mess up such as poaching the fish that was to be fried and frying the fish that was to be poached.

Arabic books at Malletts Creek

Several Arabic books were recently transferred to the Malletts Creek branch. Check them out. Some of the books include:

"al-Abnusa al-baida'" by Hanna Mina
"Ana hiya inti riwaayah" by Ilham Mansoor
"ar-Ra'ad" by Zakaria Tamer

Conquering Clutter and Staying Organized

Recently I stumbled upon an appearance by Joyce Anderson, author of Help, I’m knee-deep in clutter! Conquer the chaos and get organized once and for all, as this author was speaking at Nicola’s Books. Although Anderson said that such appearances, along with radio interviews, are definitely not her thing, her talk was nonetheless engaging, and her book sounded intriguing. Anderson told the audience that after writing a book, she finally understood why J.K. Rowling became less than perfectly organized while writing the Harry Potter books: Lots to do, no time, and suddenly, clutter is king.

Searching for foreign language books

The best way to see what is available in our foreign language collection is by call number. Searching by call number allows you to differentiate between adult and youth books. When at the Catalog page, select "More search options", then select "call number". If you enter the general call number, a list of the holdings for that language will be displayed. Of course, you can also search by title, author and subject ("name of language" language materials).

The call numbers for the adult foreign language books are FLC + the first three letters of the name of the language. The only exception is Japanese which is "FLC JPN".

For example: Chinese = FLC CHI, Arabic = FLC ARA, Spanish = FLC SPA

The call numbers for children's foreign language books are Youth FLC + the first three letters of the name of the language. Again, the only exception is "Youth FLC JPN".

For example: Telugu = Youth FLC TEL, Hebrew = Youth FLC HEB, Urdu = Youth FLC URD

Foreign language books at the library

Did you know that the Ann Arbor Library has a large collection of books in languages other than English? We have books for both adults and children, including many bilingual books for children. Whether you are a native speaker of these languages or just learning them, we have plenty of international language books to fit your needs.

We have

Spanish books
Chinese books
Korean books
Arabic books
French books
Japanese books
Russian books
Hebrew books
Farsi/Persian books
Polish books
Urdu books
Italian books

Going to the Birds!


Wednesday in the afternoon on my way to work I was held up for about 5 minutes in a small traffic jam created by two lovely swans that were taking a stroll along Scio Church road. Eventually someone from one of the cars gently herded the swans into the adjacent roadside ponds. It was a nice experience that from the expressions of the other drivers was universally enjoyed.

That particular corner is a great place to view birds and attracts a lot of photographers and bird watchers. It’s just east of Parker road at Scio Church road about 8 miles west of Ann Arbor.

In case you need some help identifying the birds you see there please check out the Ann Arbor District Library’s great collection of bird books.

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