Extra Yarn

Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett is one beautiful picture book. It has the potential of winning a Caldecott Medal, thanks to Jon Klassen's beautiful illustrations. The story features young Annabelle who comes across a box containing some yarn. But a magical thing happens! She knits and knits and knits and the yarn never seems to run out. So she knits sweaters for dogs, and people, and trees, and cars, and soon the entire monochromatic town is awash in color thanks to her handiwork. The greedy archduke decides to steal her magic box, which leaves Annabelle in a bit of stitchuation. Will she knit her way out of it?

Let's Party with Gemini!

Let’s celebrate with my dear friends, the awesome Gemini, on Sunday, January 13 at 2 pm at the Downtown Library with music and stories galore! I knew the first time I met these talented twin boys, when we were just young punks, that they would bring harmony to A2 on so many levels. Even when I moved far away to Boston, my family danced to the Deli song before we had ever tasted a Zingerman’s Gemini sandwich and my daughter convinced us to get a dog by singing the Puppy Love song until we had to give in! See you there this Sunday!

Family Science Workshop: Just Like Me?

Saturday January 12, 2013: 10:00 am to 11:00 am -- Pittsfield Branch: Program Room

What makes us different? What makes us the same?

Families will learn about the biological reasons behind skin color, hair texture and explore other inherited genetic traits like the ability to taste certain compounds. Families will also get to perform a DNA extraction.

This event is for grades K-5 with an adult.

When a teenager writes a publishable book, it's noteworthy, but when the book is this good, it's something special

Very little about 19-year-old Stefan Bachmann says “typical teenager.” Born in Colorado, he moved to Switzerland with his family at a very early age and is a dual U.S.-Swiss citizen. His mother homeschooled him until he enrolled in the Zurich Conservatory in 2004 at the age of 11.

His book The Peculiar had a first printing of 100,000 copies and met with critical acclaim; it was also a #1 bestseller in Switzerland, and rights have been sold in seven languages. Part murder mystery, part gothic fantasy, part steampunk adventure, it is a riveting, inventive, and unforgettable debut novel.

The young author has just turned in his second novel, The Whatnot, to his editor. “I was nervous because it’s the second book,” he says. “It’s the conclusion to The Peculiar, a duology, so it wraps up the story. The first book had a cliffhanger, and that probably annoyed people.” Bachmann’s next book will “switch between contemporary and historical, which is going to be really new for me, but I can’t really say a lot about it yet. And when I’m 25 I’d like to write an adult book—when I’m actually an adult.”

Amid his literary success, Bachmann sees his music as being just as important as his writing, and he continues to study composition in Zurich. He’s managed to merge his two worlds—he wrote musical pieces for The Peculiar’s Web site and trailer—and sees parallels between the two. “I think the most basic one is that they both take practice,” he says. “You can start music at age five and at first you’ll be bad, obviously, and then you practice a while and you’ll get better. I think it’s the same with writing. If you practice writing a lot and read a lot, you’ll get better at it, though you have to have the spark to begin with.”

Happy Birthday, Amelia Bedelia!

It's hard to believe that the maid who takes everything literally is 50 years old.
Peggy Parish, the original author of the Amelia Bedelia books, was a third grade teacher
in Manhattan. She often shared loving anecdotes about her students' vocabulary mix-ups.
Isn't it funny when some idioms and phrases are taken literally? Amelia Bedelia was published in 1963.
Ms. Parish wrote 12 Amelia books before her death in 1988. Her nephew, Herman Parish, has
been writing them since then.
In honor of the anniversary a reprint of the original title will be re-issued on January 29th.
And there will be two Amelia Bedelia chapter books coming out later this month as well. Those are on order at the Library.

LEGO Connection!

Sunday, January 6 | 1-2:30pm | Malletts Creek | Grades K-5 with parent

Join us for a LEGO adventure! Here’s a chance to get connected with other LEGO-minded people and build great things at the library! During this event, we’ll have a load of LEGO bricks for you to use to make something cool as you make new friends. At the end of our adventure the LEGOs will stay at the library before you head onto your next adventure. This time around we’re focusing on LEGO architecture by building buildings! Not you’re thing? No problem, you can make whatever you want. But if you are into LEGO architecture, check out the LEGO Architecture: Towering Ambition exhibit at The Henry Ford.

If you’re looking for books for some LEGO inspiration, check out AADL’s collection of great LEGO books! We’ve got books including how to build stuff, the history of LEGOs, and even stories featuring minifigs!

Storyteller Adam Mellema

Adam MellemaAdam MellemaLucky for us, Adam Mellema, has favorite family members in Michigan and leaves sunny CA for the holidays! Families are in for a total treat when this dynamic children's television producer and outrageous storytelling performer will join us on Wednesday, January 2 at 2 pm Downtown for grades Kindergarten and up!

Stories, Songs and New Year Nonsense

My friend Rosalie Koenig is joining me for a cozy, silly storytime with music and riddles and family fun on Thursday, December 27 at 2 pm at the Downtown Library. Rosalie was the elementary vocal music teacher at Mitchell School for years and she'll join us with bells on her toes and guitar in hand! Bring your out of town guests and settle in for some good old fashioned singing and storytelling!

200th Anniversary of Grimm's Fairy Tales

Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm spent their entire careers collecting folk tales from all over Europe. They published the first volume of the now classic Grimm's Fairy Tales in
1812. The second one followed in 1814. The name Grimm and the phrase "fairy tales" have become synonymous in our culture. It's important to remember that the Grimms
compiled these stories, they did not originate them. Rapunzel, The Frog Prince, The Bremen Town Musicians and many others in the Grimm collections
are stories that have been around much longer than 200 years. They've been passed down from generation to generation.
The stories collected by the Grimms are still popular today. A recent example is Disney's movie Tangled, a retelling of Rapunzel.
To read about the lives of the two brothers, try a biography from our 921 section.

Joe Returns!!

It’s always a party when Joe Reilly hits the stage at the AADL! Bring the little ones for dancing, singing and learning about this beautiful, mysterious and spinning planet of ours! Wiggle out the winter lazies on Sunday, December 30th at 2:00 pm Downtown and check out Joe's newest CD.

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