Brainfuse: Live Tutoring & Homework Help

Homework giving you a headache? You may want to log on to Brainfuse. Their live Homework Help is available from 2:00 PM-11:00 PM everyday (except Federal Holidays & Easter). The interactive Study Suite is accessible anytime with your aadl account log in information. For more information about all the amazing facets of Brainfuse read these FAQs. Using Brainfuse can make learning fun for parents & kids! College students and adult learners can benefit from it, too! Give it a try!

Pure Michigan Talent Connect Job Seeker Training

On May 9, Pure Michigan Talent Connect will be holding a Job Seeker Training Webinar from 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM. This webinar is designed to show users how to get the most out of using MiTalent.org. The Job Seeker training webinar will include information on creating an effective user profile, performing effective job searches, setting up email notifications, editing your profile, and an overview of additional resources on MiTalent.org including updates and new features. Register now! If you have questions, please call 517-335-1674.

MiVirtualCareerFair

Are you looking for a challenging, in-demand job in Michigan? Looking for an innovative way to connect to great Michigan companies and business leaders across the state for job or internship opportunities? Business in Michigan is thriving, and MiVirtualCareerFair is the State of Michigan’s hottest new way to find exciting jobs. MiVirtualCareerFair is an online career event where job seekers and employers can interact with each other in a live, 3-D virtual environment. The next MIVirtual Career Fair is on Wednesday, May 21st from 10am to 4pm. Register for MiVirtualCareerFair to connect to top Michigan employers in a variety of industries.

March into a Book Club to Go!

Over the next few weeks the AADL will be rolling out six new Book Clubs to Go. There will be a mix of fiction and non-fiction that will include Amy Tan’s newest book, The Valley of Amazement and Robert K. Massie’s best-seller, Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman. Keep your eyes open for the following titles:

Fiction:
The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls by Anton Disclafani
Exiled to an equestrian boarding school in the South at the height of the Great Depression for her role in a family tragedy, strong-willed teen Thea Atwell grapples with painful memories while acclimating to the school's strict environment.

The Round House by Louis Erdrich
When his mother, a tribal enrollment specialist living on a reservation in North Dakota, slips into an abyss of depression after being brutally attacked, 14-year-old Joe Coutz sets out with his three friends to find the person that destroyed his family.

Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan
Recruited into MI5 against a backdrop of the Cold War in 1972, Cambridge student Serena Frome, a compulsive reader, is assigned to infiltrate the literary circle of a promising young writer whose politics align with those of the government, a situation that is compromised when she falls in love with him.

The Valley of Amazement by Amy Tan
Violet is one of the most celebrated courtesans in Shanghai, a beautiful and intelligent woman who has honed her ability to become any man's fantasy since her start as a 'Virgin Courtesan' at the age of twelve. Half-Chinese and half-American, she moves effortlessly between the East and the West. But her talents belie her private struggle to understand who she really is and her search for a home in the world.

Non-Fiction:
Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie
The Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Peter the Great, Nicholas and Alexandra, and The Romanovs returns with another masterpiece of narrative biography, the extraordinary story of an obscure German princess who became one of the most remarkable, powerful, and captivating women in history.

In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin by Eric Larson
The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s first ambassador to Hitler’s Nazi Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history. Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the period, and with unforgettable portraits of the bizarre Göring and the expectedly charming--yet wholly sinister--Goebbels, In the Garden of Beasts lends a stunning, eyewitness perspective on events as they unfold in real time, revealing an era of surprising nuance and complexity

A Blog About Blogs

If the only AADL blogs you read are those on the home page, you may be missing out on items you'd enjoy. The blogs page offers categories to better pinpoint your particular interest whether it be AADL-GT for gaming, Axis for teens and tweens, books, magazines, audio, or video.

Library Director Josie Parker has a director's blog and there are blogs covering the community, AADL software development, local history and more.

You can subscribe to all of these pages through an RSS Feed found at the bottom left of each page so you need never miss out on the items you'd enjoy again.

Play the Theremin!

It is the only musical instrument that you play without touching it. Invented in 1920 by Leon Theremin, the Theremin's distinctive "otherworldly" electronic sound infuses such famous movie soundtracks as the original The Day the Earth Stood Still and Alfred Hitchcock's Spellbound. (A cousin of the Theremin, the Electro-Theremin creates "that sound" on The Beach Boys' Good Vibrations.) And if you watched the most recent season of the FX show American Horror Story: Coven, one of the witches on the show, Myrtle, played by the formidable and fantastic, Frances Conroy, played the Theramin on the show a few times. Wonder if you can play the instrument yourself? AADL is now offering a Moog Etherwave Theremin for checkout as part of the Music Tools collection, complete with User's Guide and the "Mastering the Theremin" DVD. Music Tools can be checked out for a week, are not renewable and not requestable. You can find them on the shelves next to the Downtown Library Circulation Desk.

Learn more about Leon Theremin's unusual life in the documentary Theremin: An Electronic Odyssey and explore other electronic instruments in the Music Tools collection such as the Stylophone and the Monotron.

Sample the Book Clubs to Go collection

Is your Book Club stuck on what to read next? AADL's Book Clubs to Go collection offers discussion kits containing ten copies of the book, summary information, title reviews, author bios, suggested discussion questions, and more. The collection includes classics such as The Scarlet Letter and Pride and Prejudice; memorable 20th century novels like The Grapes of Wrath, To Kill a Mockingbird, and The Color Purple, novels made into recent acclaimed films such as The Silver Linings Playbook, Life of Pi, and The Help (some of which contain a DVD of the film as well); current gems like The Buddha in the Attic (2012 PEN/Faullkner Award Winner), A Visit from the Goon Squad (2011 Pulitzer Award Winner for Fiction), and Swamplandia! (2012 Pulitzer Fiction Finalist), plus works by current acclaimed authors Richard Ford, Anne Tyler, Michael Chabon, Gabriel Garcia Marquez and more. There's also a Kids' Book Clubs to Go!

The Book Clubs to Go Page offers discussion tips and more book club resources. And you can add a comment suggesting additions to the collection.

Smart & Thrifty Energy Expo

The Washtenaw County Treasurer and the Washtenaw County Office of Community and Economic Development will hold the Washtenaw County Smart & Thrifty Energy Expo on Thursday, January 30th from 4 to 7 pm at the Washtenaw County Learning Resource Center. Topics and presentations will include methods for conserving energy, home weatherization, new energy saving products, and alternative energy options. If you want to monitor the energy efficiency in your home, take a look at our home tools. These uncommon tools to check out from the library include three different kinds of energy meters!

FREE Tax Preparation Assistance in Washtenaw County

The Washtenaw County Asset Coalition is offering both traditional VITA tax preparation services as well as access to tax preparation software for persons wanting to prepare their own taxes with access to a tax coach. The household income limit for free tax preparation is $52,000 this year, though they can offer free e-filing for self preparers with incomes under $58,000. Call (734) 677-7235 for an appointment. Appointments are held at the Washtenaw United Way on the following dates and times:

Wednesday, February 2: 5:30-8:30pm
Saturday, February 15: 10am-4pm
Wednesday, February 19: 5:30-8:30pm
Saturday, February 22: 10am-4pm
Wednesday, February 26: 5:30-8:30pm
Wednesday, March 26: 5:30-8:30pm
Saturday, March 29: 10am-4pm
Wednesday, April 2: 5:30-8:30pm
Saturday, April 5: 10am-4pm
Wednesday, April 9: 5:30-8:30pm

Biakuye Percussion Group in concert: an MLK Day Event

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The acclaimed percussion group Biakuye will be at the Downtown Library's Multi-Purpose Room for a special concert on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday January 20, 2014, from 1-2pm, performing original compositions and arrangements grounded in American innovation and African traditions.

Among the Akan people of Ghana, West Africa, Biakuye means unity. It is the spirit of unity that brings the American and African members of Biakuye together to perform "Melorhythmic world percussion," uniting the cool sound of American jazz vibraphone, drum set, and electric bass with the melorhythmic richness of African xylophone, kalimba, and hand drums.

Or, as their website puts it, ".....wooden keys suspended over gourds and spider webs….rosewood bars connected to electric pick-ups….seed pods spun like a yo-yo… metal bars, flattened tire spokes, a contoured red box… goat-skin drums and electric bass… These are the sources of Biakuye’s captivating sound—a sound that is both deeply grounded and cutting-edge. The resulting music reflects the unique journeys of its four members, which have taken the group’s West African born artists to the United States and taken its American born artists to Ghana, Uganda, Trinidad, and Cuba."

Check out a video of the group here and sample some album tracks.

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