........

OH, THE WEATHER OUTSIDE IS FRIGHTFUL...

Alright, let's face it: unless you've gone the way of the snowbirds for your winter vacation, it's COLD out there!  As much as I love skiing and skating, there's something about deep-freeze cold that just makes me want to curl up with a fuzzy blanket, a hot cup of tea, and a nice, cozy read. 

It's a bit chilly between the covers of this month's titles, too, and the characters are-- well, they're with me on the fuzzy blanket part, at least.  (I'm sure they're only sharing to conserve warmth.)  If you're looking for a good book for your own winter snuggle, I recommend one from the list below.  Whether they warm your heart or heat your cheeks, these winter romances will help keep you toasty!

Every Day is a Good Day

This phrase was said in a conversation with some friends recently.  It really hit home.  The circulation staff tries its best to insure the time you spend checking out books or taking care of other transactions at our desk is a good experience.  Resolving your concerns, answering your question or just having a chat about a good read gives us a good feeling; we hope it's a positive experience for you.  During the month of January this goal will be tested.  The lobby area is being renovated and the circulation desk moved to a temporary location near the reference desk.  We'll be there for you, just a bit differently than usual.  Just knowing we can continue to meet your expectations will make each day a good day for us and help us help you.

Mystery Monday

Have yourself a merry little...murder?

No matter what holiday we celebrate we all have our special traditions.  Decorating the tree, frying latkes, wearing gaudy holiday sweaters, baking Christmas cookies, lighting a unity candle, endless shopping and family get togethers all help to make this time of year meaningful.   Ideally, the holidays are a time to reflect on the year gone by and a time to cherish friends and relatives. But even if your family reunions are strained, no one really wants a grisly murder to occur right before the turkey is served.  However, you may want to read about one and if you don’t mind a little blood with your egg nog, here are just a few mystery holiday favorites:

THE HEAT IS ON: SF LOOKS AT OUR (POSSIBLE) FUTURE

Science fiction is not all alien planets and galaxies far, far away.  Often, the strange new world at the heart of the plot is this one-- Earth.  What unknown terrain could be more fascinating to us than what our own home might look like in the distant (or not-so-distant) future?  What species could be more compelling than the one we might become?  Through science fiction, we can explore how humanity might affect its own future and how that future could in turn affect us. 

But it's not always about looking forward; future-Earth sci fi is often as much a commentary on our present as it is an exploration of our future.  A popular plot concept is to take a current trend or issue, project a future in which it has become commonplace (or has run amok!), and examine how humanity might adapt to the changes it brings about.  Looking at an issue in this way can sometimes offer us a bit of perspective when otherwise we might be too close to examine it objectively.  (Of course, it can also be sheer escapist entertainment, but hey, that's fun, too.) 

In Stitches Every Thursday

Whether you love to knit, crochet, or enjoy a little of both, you'll be in good company on Thursday evenings at The New City Library. Crochet Club meets every first and third Thursday at 7:00 pm (Knitters are welcome!)  Rockland Knitter's Group meets every second and fourth Thursday at 7:00 pm.  Bring along a project, and join us sometime.  For more information, contact Arlene at ext. 122.

Free AudioFile Magazine at The Adult Reference Desk

Twice a year AudioFile sends us 20 free copies.  We have just received the December-January issue and will be distributing them at the Adult Reference Desk.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with the magazine, it has reviews, columns, interviews, and a list of the best audiobooks of 2009.  Newstand price for this magazine is $6.00, so give yourself a holiday gift and pick up your free copy while supplies last. 

What's Cooking?: Gift Ideas for the Holiday Season

Preparation for the Christmas season is on its way along with Chanukah and Kwanzaa.  It is a time of gift giving and what better way to start then creating edible presents from your kitchen?  Culinary treats as holiday gifts are personal and thoughtful especially when you make them yourselves.  Homemade gifts from the kitchen may save you some money.  They can also be customized for those with special diets or allergies.  It is also a wonderful way to gather the family together in making them!

'Tis the season... for romance!

Glowing lights and cozy fires, sleigh rides and cold-pinked cheeks, evergreens and mistletoe and gifts under the tree... as soon as the last Thanksgiving float goes by, people's thoughts are already turning to the next holiday season.  Christmas holds a strong romantic appeal for many, regardless of religious inclination.  In Japan, for example, Christmas is not celebrated as a family holiday-- it's traditionally the season for lovers!  Since the Christmas season is all about anticipation, I thought I'd start early with a list of books full of the Christmas spirit.  As always, romance authors stand ready to get you in the mood!

Mystery Monday

Why do we read mysteries?  If you are reading this blog, it can be assumed that you like mysteries.  An interesting thread on Librarything discussed why people read mysteries, and there were some interesting theories.

1. We love to see people being punished for their evil deeds, and generally, mysteries accomplish this with the guilty being punished, or at least, arrested.

2. We love puzzles, figuring thngs out, and mysteries certainly contain puzzles.

3. Many mystery writers are superb at characterization, as well as plotting, and are just some of the best writers around.

4. In a long running series we become invested in our favorite characters like Stephanie Plum, Peter Decker and Alan Banks.

5. Mysteries explore the mind and actions of people who do terrible things and it satisfies our need to understand the human condition.

Do any of these reasons resonate with you?  Maybe you just like to settle in with any engrossing book and here are a few you mignt want to check out.

Monster in the Box by Ruth Rendell.  Inspector Wexford returns and we get some intriguing looks into his past.

BENEATH OUR FEET

We often look to speculative fiction to take us on journeys to distant galaxies, to transport us to far, fey kingdoms or realms of nightmare.  But there's a strange, lost land hiding much closer than we might suspect-- every day, in cities all around the world, humanity treads unthinkingly over it.  Those seemingly solid streets we drive on every day?  Hollow.  Buildings, sidewalks, even parks stretch over spacious caverns of air.  Although this sounds fantastical, I haven't even gotten to the "fiction" part yet-- read on! 

Syndicate content