Winners of the 2012 Indies Choice Award for adult fiction and non-fiction

The American Booksellers Association (ABA) has released the titles of the winners of the 2012 Indies Choice Award for the adult fiction and non-fiction categories.

And the winners are... for fiction, The Marriage Plot, by Jeffrey Eugenides, and for non-fiction, Blood, bones, & butter: the inadvertent education of a reluctant chef by Gabrielle Hamilton.

From the ABA website: "The Indies Choice Book Awards reflect the spirit of independent bookstores nationwide and the IndieBound movement. Book of the Year winners and Honor Award recipients are all titles nominated by ABA member booksellers to the Indie Next Lists... [The finalists] were chosen by a jury of seven ABA member booksellers from titles appearing on the Indie Next Lists in 2011."

Last year, the winner of the adult fiction category was Room, by Emma Donoghue and non-fiction went to Unbroken: a World War II airman's story of survival, resilience, and redemption by Laura Hillenbrand.

ABA also has a category for the Indies Choice Award called the Adult Debut Book of the Year, which for 2012 went to Téa Obreht's The Tiger's Wife. The 26-year-old author's first novel instantly became a huge success, also winning the United Kingdom's most prestigous literary award in 2011, the Orange Prize for Fiction.

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #327

True * is author Riikka Pulkkinen's first novel available in English. A graduate of the University of Helsinki, she received the Kaarle Prize and the Laila Hirvisaari Prize in 2007 for her first novel The Border.

Haunting and melancholic, True is forty years of family secrets and untold history, gradually teased out through the voices of the three generations of the Ahlqvist women. Elsa, a world-renowned child psychologist is dying. Daughter Ella, a brutally efficient physician and granddaughters Anna and Maria are struggling to cope, but have accepted Elsa's wishes to spend her remaining days at home. When Elsa proposes a dress-up picnic in the spring sunshine, Anna pulls out a lovely dress hidden for decades in a closet - a dress that belongs to Eeva, her mother's nanny. Eeva's forgotten story, whom her grandparents have been silent about for years, is finally revealed layer by layer through Elsa's painful recounting and Anna's probing, and resonates with her own loss. As Eeva once observed : "Love is always true".

"Pulkkinen has a fine eye for description and infuses her characters with longing". "The emotional intelligence of the prose avoids melodrama to develop authentic poignancy." A fine writer to watch.

"Beautifully translated by Lola M. Rogers to capture the full chill of a Finnish winter and the lightness of its spring,"

* = Starred review

Tournament Time: Friday & Saturday Events!

FRIDAY April 6, 2012: 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

All-Ages Mario Kart Tournament With A MarioKart7 Mini-Match Up

It's a Mario Kart Wii tournament for kids, teens, and adults! Race around familiar classic tracks and exclusive Wii tracks, too. Don't worry about bringing your own Wii-mote, this tournament will require the use of GameCube Controllers!

For participation in the MarioKart7 Mini-Match Up, please bring your own 3DS.

SATURDAY April 7, 2012: 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Wii Sports Resort Team Tourney For All Ages

Take a vacation to Wuhu Island and the Wii Sports Resort! Bring family and friends and play your way through some awesome team games. We'll have prizes for the winning teams!

New Book Clubs to Go - April 2012

Over the next few weeks, we will be rolling out a large number of new Book Clubs to Go. It is a mix of classics (you asked for them), literary and popular fiction, among them a couple of award winners. We did not forget our nonfiction readers either.

Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner
Traces the fortunes of four generations of one family as they attempt to build a life for themselves in the American West. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize when it was first published in 1971, Angle of Repose has also been selected by the editorial board of the Modern Library as one of the hundred best novels of the twentieth century.

Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks
Forging a deep friendship with a Wampanoag chieftain's son on the Great Harbor settlement where her minister father is working to convert the tribe, Bethia follows his subsequent ivy league education and efforts to bridge cultures among the colonial elite. New York Times bestselling tale of passion and belief, magic and adventure from the Pulitzer Prize winning author.

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
Chronicles the author's year spent testing the edicts of conventional wisdom to assess their potential for improving life, describing various activities ranging from getting more sleep and singing to her children to starting a blog and imitating a spiritual master.

The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver
Harrison William Shepherd, a highly observant writer, is caught between two worlds--in Mexico, working for communists Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo and Leon Trotsky, and later in America, where he is caught up in the patriotism of World War II.

Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann
In 1974 Manhattan, a radical young Irish monk struggles with personal demons while making his home among Bronx prostitutes, a group of mothers shares grief over their lost Vietnam soldier sons, and a young grandmother attempts to prove her worth. The 2009 National Book Award for Fiction, and the 2011 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.

Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan
Descending on a family beach house won in a bet years earlier, three generations of women gradually impart difficult respective secrets including a pregnancy, a terrible crush and a deeply held resentment for past misdeeds.

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
A deeply evocative story of ambition and betrayal, The Paris Wife captures a remarkable period of time and a love affair between two unforgettable people: Ernest Hemingway and his wife Hadley.

The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender
Discovering in childhood a supernatural ability to taste the emotions of others in their cooking, Rose Edelstein grows up to regard food as a curse when it reveals everyone's secret realities.

Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult
Ten years of infertility issues culminate in the destruction of music therapist Zoe Baxter's marriage, after which she falls in love with another woman and wants to start a family, but her ex-husband, Max, stands in the way.

State of Wonder by Ann Patchett
A researcher at a pharmaceutical company, Marina Singh must step out of her comfort zone when she is sent into the heart of the Amazonian delta to check on a field team that has been silent for two years--a dangerous assignment that forces Marina to confront the ghosts of her past.

A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
A novel that circles the lives of Bennie Salazar, an aging former punk rocker and record executive, and Sasha, the passionate, troubled young woman he employs. It is about the interplay of time and music, about survival, about the stirrings and transformations set inexorably in motion by even the most passing conjunction of our fates. The 2011 Pulitzer Prize for fiction and The National Book Critics Circle 2010 prize for fiction.

Newbery Honor Recipient Jennifer Holm to Speak at UofM

Jennifer Holm is the author of several critically acclaimed books for children and young adults, including three novels that have received the prestigious Newbery Honor: Our Only May Amelia, Turtle In Paradise, and Penny From Heaven. Holm is also recognized for her popular youth graphic novel series, Babymouse.

Holm will be participating in the Sarah Marwil Lamstein Children's Literature Lecture as a part of the Zell Visiting Writers Series on March 29th, 2012. The event starts at 5:10pm and will be located in the The Helmut Stern Auditorium on the ground floor of the University of Michigan's Museum of Art (UMMA) at 525 South State Street on the U-M's Central Campus.

Admission is free and open to the public.

2012 Indies Choice Award Finalists for Adult Fiction

The American Booksellers Association (ABA) has released the titles of the 2012 Indies Choice Award Finalists for the adult fiction category.

From the ABA website: "The Indies Choice Book Awards reflect the spirit of independent bookstores nationwide and the IndieBound movement. Book of the Year winners and Honor Award recipients are all titles nominated by ABA member booksellers to the Indie Next Lists... [The finalists] were chosen by a jury of seven ABA member booksellers from titles appearing on the Indie Next Lists in 2011."

Last year, the winner of the adult fiction category was Room, by Emma Donoghue.

Finalists for 2012:
The Cat's Table, by Michael Ondaatje
Everything Beautiful Began After, by Simon Van Booy
1Q84, by Haruki Murakami
The Marriage Plot, by Jeffrey Eugenides
Salvage the Bones, by Jesmyn Ward
Wingshooters, by Nina Revoyr

The winner will be announced by ABA on April 5th, 2012.

Gourmand Awards


The Gourmand Awards are given to notable books in a variety of food and drink categories as well as magazines. They are judged by culinary arts professionals from around the world. It is free and open to anyone to enter: authors, publishers or even readers. Over 150 countries had entries for this year’s competition. This year also included best culinary app which went to America’s own Dorie Greenspan’s Cooking with Dorie. Her books have won numerous awards and she is a pioneer in developing a cooking app. Here is a sampling of other Gourmand award winners from our collection:

See mix drink: Gourmand award winner for best cocktail book
Food lover's guide to wine: Best book for Matching Food and Drink
Lucky Peach: Best cooking magazine
Eleven Madison Park Cookbook: 3rd place best authors and chef
Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook: Book of the Year Finalist
Food of Spain:Best World Cuisine cookbook
How Italian Food Conquered the World: 4th place Best Italian cookbook
How to Cook Indian: 3rd place Best Asian cookbook
Extra Virginity: the sublime and scandalous world of olive oil:Winner in the Sustainable category
Fundamental Techniques of Classic Bread Making:3rd Place for cookbooks about bread making
Loukoumi Celebrity Cookbook: 2nd place for Fundraising, Charity, &Community cookbooks and 3rd place went to the free (with donation going to Relief for Japan fund) online cookbook from Microsoft .Net gurus, Net Gurus can Cook

New Movies About Movies

The Oscars have come and gone, and two big winners were The Artist and Hugo. A marvelous thing about the 2012 Oscars is that the program celebrated movies and the movie-going experience. This made The Artist and Hugo winning all the more special, since both films are about the splendor of movies.

The Artist is a romantic comedy that is both silent and black & white. What a treat that such a 21st century rarity stole the best film prize! In the movie, silent film star George Valentin makes movie after movie and is a huge star. This is threatened with the birth of talkies! Sound in films, as well as the fact that it is embraced by audiences and new film starlet Peppy Miller, sends George into a downward spiral. It’s a truly enchanting film, and I loved seeing it on the big screen. I was at first leery of the premise, but from the first scene I was instantly knocked over with its magic. (Also available on Blu-ray.)

Hugo is based on the wonderful youth novel, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick. The books is filled with amazing illustrations that tell half the story, so it was great to see how director Martin Scorsese translated it all onto the big screen. Hugo tells the tale of an orphan boy living a secret life in the walls of a Paris train station in 1931. When Hugo encounters a broken automaton, an eccentric girl, and the cold, reserved man who runs the toy shop, he is caught up in a magical, mysterious adventure that could put all of his secrets in jeopardy. It’s a story filled with whimsy and chance as Hugo and his new friend Isabelle uncover the secret of her grandfather’s involvement in cinema history. (Also available on Blu-ray.)

Books & Authors Database

If you love reading fiction, then the Books & Authors database is the place for you. Whether you're looking for read-alike books or your book group wants critical reviews and author biographies to add to the discussion, Books & Authors has all this and more in through easy-to-navigate homepage. Try browsing through Community Picks and Expert Picks for popular selections, or Seasonal Suggestions, Best Sellers, or Award Winners for more ideas.

Get suggestions on your next read by searching author, title, or genre. For every title you find in Books & Authors, the site generates dozens of related book titles for you to read next. Find what might be your next favorite book based on what you already like. The database is also a great way to access a solid range of book reviews compiled in one place, all from reputable publications such as The New York Time Book Review, Kirkus, and Publishers Weekly.

Access to this database is available at every branch of the AADL, as well as from outside the library with a valid AADL library card, or since this is a MeL Database, a Michigan driver's license number can be used instead.

For L-card holder access from an outside location, please sign in to your library account, visit our reference database page, and navigate to the desired resource. To access Books & Authors, go to the research page, and choose to Browse by Name A-Z: A-C, and click on Books & Authors. Michigan residents without a valid library card can gain access to this and the many other MeL databases by visiting MeL.org and entering your driver's license number.

Nebula Award Nominees announced


The Nebula Awards are one of several prestigious prizes for writing granted within the scifi/fantasy genre. They are nominated by members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. and this is the 47th year in doing so. Award winners will be announced on May 19th. Categories of awards include best adult novel as well as one for best young adult scifi/fantasy novel.

The nominees for best adult novel are:
Among Others, Jo Walton
Embassytown, China Miéville
Firebird, Jack McDevitt
God’s War, Kameron Hurley
Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti, Genevieve Valentine
Kingdom of Gods, N.K. Jemisin

The nominees for best young adult novel are:
Akata Witch, Nnedi Okorafor
Chime, Franny Billingsley
Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Laini Taylor
Everybody Sees the Ants, A.S. King
Boy at the End of the World, Greg van Eekhout
The Freedom Maze, Delia Sherman
Girl of Fire and Thorns, Rae Carson
Ultraviolet, R.J. Anderson

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