Weekend Warrior

Weekend Warriors- There's still time before Summer's gone to get those honey-do lists done.
If you can’t figure out how to actually add that electric circuit, plumb that fixture, build that deck, etc. then check out some of the popular guides that you can get at the Library. I’ve always turned first to the Reader's Digest Do-It Yourself Manual for a good overview on the home. However,I recently discovered Renovation by Michael Litchfield in it’s 3rd edition. I'm very impressed with the accuracy and depth of information presented in this book.

A Popular Summer Novel

The Lake, the River and the Other Lake, a Michigan novel by Steve Amick, is popular in Ann Arbor this summer. The paperback was #3 last week on the local bestsellers list. Amick’s CD There's always pie is attracting some attention, too. It has an intriguing song list: The song of the townies -- Cheese sandwich -- Wasn't I great? --You're the one -- Still so much -- I feel sorry for you (if you don't live here) -- Dum-dum -- I wanna be with you -- The arithmetic of love -- Part of me -- Big fat berries -- Michigan moonlight. Sounds fun.

Maps to Take With on Your Vacation

Mackinac Map

When I go on vacation I need maps, maps of cities I will be visiting and maps of states I will be driving through.

I borrow the maps from the library’s map files on the Second Floor of the Downtown Library. The library has maps for Michigan cities and regions, for states, for most major cities in the United States, and for foreign countries and cities. The maps circulate for four weeks.

During a recent trip up north I found where I was going with the aid of street maps of Mackinaw City, Mackinac Island, Harbor Springs, Petoskey, Charlevoix, and Traverse City and a regional Michigan map of the Northern Tip of Michigan.

In the past year the map files helped with maps of San Francisco, Napa and Sonoma counties, Chicago, Boston, Greenville (S.C.), Chapel Hill (N.C.), and Ithaca (N.Y.)

The map files are a great resource. Ease the stress of travel with some good maps.

Fall Film Fever

Coming to theaters on October 20:
Fast Food Nation: Director Richard Linklater (Waking Life, Dazed and Confused) takes on the controversial 2001 book by author Eric Schlosser. Also, Flags of Our Fathers, directed by Clint Eastwood, written by Paul Haggis (director of last year's Oscar winner, Crash), and adapted from James Bradley's book, tells the story of the six men who raised the flag at The Battle of Iwo Jima.

Coming to theaters on November 17: Bobby, directed by Emilio Estevez, follows the stories of 22 people who were at the Ambassador Hotel when U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated on June 6, 1968.

Wild Man LA Writer Charles Bukowski

Today is the birthday of Charles Bukowski, who lived 1920-1994 and published more than fifteen books of fiction and poetry. Abused as a child, Bukowski grew up to be, at least for a while, literally a starving writer, limiting himself to one candy bar a day, while writing up to five short stories a week, according to The Writer's Almanac, where you can find more information. Bukowski's books include Run With the Hunted.

Thievery Has Never Been So Good

I feel like not many people know about this fantasy series by Megan Whelan Turner (see below). Maybe I am wrong; maybe it is not the secret gem I think it is, but, if not, if you're saying to yourself, "hey, dude, never heard of it", then check it out (both literally and figuratively!).

The first book, The Thief, won the newberry honor in 1997 and is a short novel with a clever twist (don't worry, I'm not spoilling anything; I knew there was a twist ahead of time and still couldn't figure it out!). Now, though I know people have heard of this first book, it's the second and third book in the series that I am not so sure people know about (but maybe I am wrong here). The second book,The Queen of Attolia, is where things really take off, in my opinion. The plot becomes much fuller, more complex, and more intense. Instead of one really great twist like in the first book there are several upon several untill your head starts to spin a little. The characters are ones you fall in love with, as is the way with any good book, especially the brash, rude, young thief who is the main character. The Third book The King of Attolia, has just recently come out and continues the storyline.

Maybe I just like the characters a little too much, but to me, these are lesser known, good books.

"We're lost... in a masquerade..."

Benson & Jarreau

Does the line above ring a bell?

If so, then you need to grab your girl (or guy) and head down to the Freedom Hill Amphitheatre in Sterling Heights on Wednesday, August 16th.

Why, you ask?

Because George Benson & Al Jarreau will be in concert w/ Special Guest Raul Midon (and believe me when I tell you that this guy can blow!)

You can get your tix at www.ticketmaster.com.

As for you 9-5ers, don't worry about having to knock off work early, doors open at 6:30pm and the concert starts at 7:30pm.

Oh yeah, don't forget to check out the artists' websites:
www.georgebenson.com
www.aljarreau.com
www.raulmidon.com

And remember that, We're in this love together...

The Village Life

The fast pace in A2 may have you wondering what life in a more pastoral setting would be like. Before making the move to greener pastures, listen to a few of the Miss Read books on compact disc and decide if the village life is really for you. Things can get rather complicated in Thrush Green especially in Winter. The Changes at Fairacre may also give you pause. What with vegetable gardening falling off, can coffee houses be far behind? Will pasta restaurants take over Market Square? The Miss Read stories are a delightful summer escape to England – no passport required.

Countdown to the Man Booker Prize 2006 begins

Countdown to the Man Booker Prize 2006 begins

The longlist for the 2006 Man Booker Prize, one of contemporary fiction's most prestigious international awards, has been announced by the Booker judging panel. The shortlist of six authors will be announced September 14, 2006, and the winner of the £50,000 purse will be named on October 10, 2006.

Some of the authors on the longlist are as follows:

Peter Carey Theft: A Love Story
Kiran Desai The Inheritance of Loss
Nadine Gordimer Get a Life
Kate Grenville The Secret River
James Lasdun Seven Lies
Mary Lawson The Other Side of the Bridge

For the full list, go to the Man Booker Prize 2006 website.

Not Bitter

Even though Testimony. Vol.1, Life and Relationship by India.Arie is a musical ode to a failed relationship, do not expect negativity on this cd. This cd, which is a follow-up to her 2002 Grammy Award winning Voyage to India is filled with hope and positive messages.

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