Wonderful World Languages #5

Want something you can do no matter what the weather? Do you speak Spanish? Then take a look at AADL’s Spanish language collection! In addition to language learning materials, the Library also has a wide selection of materials for native speakers, including audiobooks and graphic novels.

For example, AADL just acquired a book titled Viviendo, written by celebrity actress Adamari López. Although it was just published in December 2012, it has already received bestseller status and worldwide acclaim. “Viviendo” details Lopez’s most intimate moments, including her battle with breast cancer and her divorce from Luis Fonsi. Adamari López is currently a host on “Un Nuevo Día” on Telemundo, and has acted in several telenovelas.

AADL also has many other biographies in Spanish, Chinese, and French. If you would like to explore the collection more, you are welcome to visit the world language collection Downtown on the 3rd floor or at any of the branches.

If you don’t speak a language other than English but still like biographies, click here for a list of our newest acquisitions!

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #389

Child of Vengeance *, the debut novel by David Kirk is part military history, part family saga, part action/adventure, based on the real-life exploits of Japan's greatest samurai - the legendary Musashi Miyamoto.

17th-century Japan was a land in turmoil where lords of the great clans schemed against each other, served by samurai bound to them by a rigid code of honor. Abandoned at an early age by his samurai father, young Bennosuke is raised by his uncle Dorinbo, a Shinto monk in their ancestral village. Though urged by Dorinbo to renounce Bushido, the "Way of the Warrior", Bennosuke worships his absent father. When Munisai returns, gravely injured, Bennosuke is forced to confront truths about his family's history and his own place in it, leading eventually onto a path "awash with blood, bravery, and vengeance", and culminating in the epochal Battle of Sekigahara in which Bennosuke will first proclaim his name as Mushashi Miyamoto.

Legendary director Hiroshi Inagaki first captured the saga of Musashi Miyamoto on film in The Samurai Trilogy, adaptations of the novels by Eiji Yoshikawa. Readers might also enjoy samurai character-driven novels, especially the historical mystery series by Laura Joh Rowland which depicts the precarious fortunes of Lord Ichiro Sano.

British David Kirk first became interested in Japan when his father gave him a copy of James Clavell's Shōgun : a novel of Japan. He has written his dissertation on samurai cinema, and now lives and teaches English in Japan.

* = starred review

Wonderful World Languages # 2

Did you make a new year’s resolution to learn a new language? According to TIME, learning something new is the 3rd most broken resolution. With the help of AADL you never have to feel like it’s a lost cause! The Library has plenty of resources for you to learn languages, including Chinese, Spanish, French, German, and more (click on "language learning").

To look up some of those mysterious words in another language, the Library even has bilingual dictionaries to check out.

Want to get your kids involved? They can check out our online Muzzy Program (you need to log in to your library user account or use a library computer). They can use this free service to learn language lessons, watch videos, and play with vocabulary.

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #377

The word is out about German author Nele Neuhaus' American debut Snow White Must Die * (translated by Steven T. Murray). This opener of a new contemporary police procedural series is already a huge international bestseller. (Available in the original German editions in our World Language Collections)

After serving a 10-year sentence for murdering two young girls (convicted solely on circumstantial evidence) , 30-year-old Tobias Sartorius returns home to Altenhain, a village near Frankfurt to find his parents divorced, and their lives in shambles. On a rainy November day police detectives Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein are summoned to a mysterious traffic accident: A woman has fallen from a pedestrian bridge onto on-coming traffic, and witnesses are definite that she was pushed. It soon becomes clear to the detectives that the two cases might be connected.

When another young girl disappears, the investigation turns into a race against time as the villagers are determined to take matters into their own hands. "Again and again, Neuhaus inserts the old Grimm's fairy tale refrain : "White as snow, red as blood, black as ebony" that describes Snow White, the role of one of the original missing girls in a high school play 10 years earlier, to underscore the grimmest of human emotions: white for icily plotted revenge, red for raging jealousy, black for homicidal madness.

"An atmospheric, character-driven and suspenseful mystery set in a small town that could be anywhere, dealing with issues of gossip, power, and keeping up appearances".

This emotional page turner, fueled by unexpected plot twists will please fans of Tana French, Laura Lippman, Kate Atkinson, and Chevy Stevens.

* = starred review

Muzzy Language Learning for Kids


The library has a new children's language learning database called Muzzy. Currently there are 8 different languages to choose from: English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Mandarin Chinese, Portuguese, and Russian. You can use it at home or at the library. The Muzzy animated story and games are a captivating way for kids to learn another language. It was originally a BBC program so those from Europe may recognize it. Learn more about this database here. We also offer the Muzzy multilingual series (it includes a choice of learning English, French, German, Italian, or Spanish) and the separate traditional Chinese language learning version for checkout.

A swell of French music

AADL has just received an influx of the best of French popular music. If you are a Gallophile, or simply a music buff, you may have heard of several of these musicians already. If not, check these performers out and discover some great music from across the pond.

Helena - This Portuguese-born media darling has been a model, actress, pop star, and now musician in the French-speaking parts of Europe.

Yann Tiersen - France's best known multi-instrumentalist, composer, and artist, Tiersen's melancholy, folk-inspired sound has made him a star in the soundtrack business. You may know him as the composer of the music in Amelie.

Élodie Frégé - She made her musical debut as a contestant on a French talent search reality-TV show. She may not have had the most powerful voice in the competition, but her soulful music won the title.

Raphael - Another multi-instrumentalist, Raphael's music is inspired by pop/rock legends like David Bowie and Bob Dylan.

Geek Pride Day

"Towel Day", "Glorious 25th of May", or "Star Wars Day", whatever you prefer to call it, May 25th is Geek Pride Day and what better way to celebrate it than by visiting your local library? You don't have to be a Sci-Fi geek, or a math geek to celebrate Geek Pride Day, just celebrate whatever you "geek". "Whatever you geek, the public library supports you." Geek The Library reminds us that "No matter who you are, there are things you are passionate about—things you geek. The Geek the Library project is a community public awareness campaign aimed at spreading the word about the vital and growing role of your public library, and to raise awareness about the critical funding issues many U.S. public libraries face." Think of all the resources your library has to offer, be they entertainment like Star Wars or Douglas Adams books or movies, Homework Help or Test Prep, Foreign Language Materials or Foreign Language Learning from our Services and Research pages that you have access to through our website, our super nifty new Orion Starblast 4.5 Astro Reflector Dobsonian Telescope, or one of our neat Science To Go Kits from our Unusual Stuff to Borrow collection.

World Language Books on CD


Did you know that the library has books on CD (or BOCDs) in different languages at the Downtown branch in both Youth and Adult? Languages that we currently have BOCDs for are Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish.

All are shelved after the books in the respective language in either the Youth (1st floor) or Adult (3rd floor) World Language Collection. They have the same loan period as regular BOCDs. And, as with many of our other materials, you can place holds and request them for pick up at any of our branches. You can find them in our catalog here or by doing a search by call number for ' bocd world*' for the adult (or click here) and ' youth-bocd world* ' for the youth (or click here).

Betty's Blue Valentine Crush... New Blu-rays!

AADL’s Blu-ray collection is ever-growing! If you’ve upgraded to a Blu-ray player, check out some titles. Here’s a few new blue titles on Blu-ray, if you want to place a hold. (Have no fears if you don't own a Blu-ray player... We have these blue titles on DVD as well!)

Blue Crush: In this Action film, “Ann-Marie, a big-wave surfer on the North Shore of Oahu, drives to make a comeback after nearly drowning in a surfing competition. Her life becomes more complicated by her romance with a handsome football player. Ann-Marie struggles between her need to prove herself and her desire to take the easy way out.” (Also on DVD.) If you dig the waves, also check out Blue Crush 2.

Blue Valentine: This drama is "An honest, moving and uninhibited love story. The uncompromising portrait of Dean and Cindy, a young married couple who have grown apart, taking one night away from their daughter to try to save their relationship. Highlighted by provocative scenes alternately intimate and intense, the film captured audiences and critics alike." (Also on DVD.)

Betty Blue: This French language film is “The story of Zorg, an aspiring novelist who gets by as a handyman, and Betty a beautiful, unpredictable temptress who turns his life upside down. As Betty's mental state turns dark, Zorg desperately attempts to comfort her. Even when ensconced in a dreamy rural town, Betty's fantasy world encroaches on her reality as she slowly spirals out of control.” (Also on DVD.)

Learning Languages: Teach Yourself

Check out the new language learning sets by one of the premier language resources and best sellers- Teach Yourself. Learn everyday language, grammar and vocabulary that is useful in real-life situations.

A book and audio CDs are included, leaving you one step closer to learning a new language, or improving one you already speak.

Some new languages recently added to AADL's collection are Icelandic, Japanese, Portuguese, Spoken Arabic, Old English, Dutch, Persian, Irish, Mandarin Chinese.

Check out the full list of language learning materials by Teach Yourself.

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