Ages 18+.

Incubus Has Number One

Incubus has its first number one album on the Billboard 200 Chart this week with Light Grenades. In 2004, A Crow Left of the Murder debuted at number two on the Chart.

Local Historian Grace Shackman to Speak

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Grace Shackman, well-known Ann Arbor historian and author, will discuss her latest book Ann Arbor Observed at the library's 'Sunday Edition' program on Sunday, December 10 at 2:00 p.m. at the Pittsfield Branch. Ms. Shackman's book consists of a selection of articles she has contributed over the years to the 'Ann Arbor Observer's' 'Then and Now' feature. She will read from the book, speak about her research methods and local history sources and resources. The book, which makes a fine holiday gift, will be for sale at the event and a book signing will follow. It's a great opportunity to meet a delightful local author and learn about some intriguing chapters in Ann Arbor's history.

Rilke remembered

Today is the birthday of poet, Rainer Maria Rilke who was born on December 4, 1875 in Prague, Czechoslovakia. Known as one of the greatest lyrical poets, Rilke spent most of his life traveling and supported himself by getting rich noblewomen to fall in love with him. In one of his most famous works,Letters to a Young Poet,he says:" Search for the reason that bids you to write; find out whether you would have to die if it were denied you to write." Rilke followed his own advice, producing many works, both poetry and prose, including more than 400 poems in French. Rilke was admired by many modern poets including W.H. Auden and James Merrill.

NYTBR's Top 10 Best Books of the Year: the Five Non-fiction Titles

Annotations are from the New York Times.

FALLING THROUGH THE EARTH:A Memoir by Danielle Trussoni
“This intense, at times searing memoir revisits the author's rough-and-tumble Wisconsin girlhood, spent on the wrong side of the tracks in the company of her father, a Vietnam vet who began his tour as "a cocksure country boy" but returned "wild and haunted," unfit for family life and driven to extremes of philandering, alcoholism and violence. Trussoni mixes these memories with spellbinding versions of the war stories her father reluctantly dredged up and with reflections on her own journey to Vietnam, undertaken in an attempt to recapture, and come to terms with, her father's experiences as a "tunnel rat" who volunteered for the harrowing duty of scouring underground labyrinths in search of an elusive and deadly enemy.”

Before J.K. Rowling . . .

Meet Ursula LeGuin, Terry Pratchett, Madleleine L’Engle, Garth Nix, and many other fantasy writers in The Wand in the Word: Conversations with Writers of Fantasy. Read about their childhoods, who influenced them, how they found their niche in the world of fantasy, and what advise they have for people who want to write.

One interesting aspect of the interviews is to learn the influence of certain life experiences on these people’s writing. When asked if growing up in England during World War II affected her as a writer, Diana Wynne Jones responds: “ . . . the entirety of the world as far as I was concerned was stark-staring crazy in a most menacing way . . . Later, I came to think that if only people then had read a little more fantasy, they would have know Hitler for a dark lord.”

World AIDS Day 2006

Yesterday, Dec. 1 was Worlds Aids Day, a time to be reminded of the still widespread scourge of this devastating disease. Many remembrances and ceremonies were held to remember those who died and to raise awareness of treatment and prevention.

Two new books in our collection highlight the urgent need for care. Dr. Arthur M. Fournier's book, Zombie Curse: A Doctor's 25-Year Journey Into the Heart of the AIDS Epidemic in Haiti describes the role of poverty in the spread of AIDS in this country and his founding of Project Medishare.

Melissa Fay Greene, the author of Praying for Sheetrock has written a new book, There is No Me Without You: One Woman's Odyssey to Rescue Africa's Children. Greene tells the story of Haregewoin Teferra, an Ethiopian woman who took in many AIDS orphans. In the process, she uncovers the urgency of the AIDS pandemic in Ethiopia which has the highest concentration of AIDS orphans in the world.

Both of these books can be compared to Tracy Kidder's Mountains Beyond Mountains, the story of Dr. Paul Farmer's work in Haiti and the book chosen for this year's Ann Arbor Reads.

Yesterday is a film originally released in 2004 which tells the story of a South African woman, Yesterday, who learns she is HIV positive, and is shunned by the women in her village. Her one dream is to live long enough to see her child start school. Not a true story but it easily could be.

The New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books of the Year

NYTBR Notable Books 2006NYTBR Notable Books 2006

This Sunday the New York Times Book Review features their selection of the 100 Notable Books of the Year.

The Ann Arbor District Library has all of these books.

Click on read more for the Fiction & Poetry and the Nonfiction titles linked to the library catalog.

Monk

MonkMonk

What do cheese, daisies, and reindeer have in common? Well, nothing really... But I betcha Monk could find a connection in order to solve a case!

Don't know about Monk? Check out Seasons 1-3 on DVD. Now watch every-single-episode... and-in-order... there will be a quiz...

BTW... Monk (Tony Shalhoub) played the voice of Luigi in the animated film Cars.

What is Assisted Living?

With many people considering alternative housing for their loved ones, the catagory of "assisted living" turns out to be less clearly defined than many people would think. Linda Lawther, President and CEO of Michigan Center for Assisted Living, said it's only a marketing term in this state. It could refer to several types of housing, such as adult foster care, independent senior apartments, or homes for the aged. The Michigan Department of Human Services regulates licensed sites. Books like Elder Care and Choose the Right Long Term Care can help better educate consumers about this very important family and financial decision.

The Marseilles Trilogy

Fabio Montale is a marginalized neighborhood cop in the Arab ghetto in Marseilles.

1. Jean-Claude Izzo's Total Chaos is a compelling noir tale of growing up poor and immigrant, especially poor and Arab. The story mixes organized crime, police corruption and compartmentalization, the uneasiness of love and friendship, the requirements of honor, and a keen sense of place (food, drink, neighborhoods).

2. Chourmo

3. Solea (due out in June 2007)

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