Reading Room Blog

04/15/2009 - 8:38am

by Ted Kooser, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2004-2006

We've published this column about American life for over four years, and we have finally found a poem about one of the great American pastimes, bowling. "The Big Lebowski" caught bowling on film, and this poem by Regan Huff of Georgia captures it in words.

Occurrence on Washburn Avenue

04/15/2009 - 10:11am

Whether your family is dying Easter eggs, roasting eggs for Passover, or simply celebrating the arrival of spring, you’ll enjoy this clutch of picture books about all things eggy.

04/15/2009 - 8:42am

 by Ted Kooser, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2004-2006

Some of you are so accustomed to flying that you no longer sit by the windows. But I'd guess that at one time you gazed down, after dark, and looked at the lights below you with innocent wonder. This poem by Anne Marie Macari of New Jersey perfectly captures the gauziness of those lights as well as the loneliness that often accompanies travel.

From the Plane

It is a soft thing, it has been sifted
from the sieve of space and seems
asleep there under the moths of light.

04/13/2009 - 10:50am
Harry Potter

Thanks for requesting a Book Match from the Central Rappahannock Regional Library. You asked us to match the Harry Potter novels, citing the adventure, fight against evil, political thinking, warfare, and drama. How about trying one of more of these:

Dune series by Frank Herbert
Set in the far future amidst a sprawling feudal interstellar empire where planetary fiefdoms are controlled by noble Houses that owe an allegiance to the Imperial House Corrino, Dune tells the story of young Paul Atreides (heir apparent to Duke Leto Atreides and scion of House

04/08/2009 - 10:06am

by Ted Kooser, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2004-2006

My father was the manager of a store in which chairs were strategically placed for those dutiful souls waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting for shoppers. Such patience is the most exhausting work there is, or so it seems at the time. This poem by Joseph O. Legaspi perfectly captures one of those scenes.

At the Bridal Shop

03/30/2009 - 6:59pm

I am going to recommend some memoirs, some funnier than others, and also some novels that are based, somewhat, on the writers' lives.

Memoirs:
Angela's Ashes, by Frank McCourt: Listen to the audio recording read by the author, if you can. When he describes his father singing, McCourt sings the Irish songs for you. That added to my enjoyment of this wonderful book.

The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls

03/30/2009 - 6:08pm

Thanks for requesting a Book Match from the Central Rappahannock Regional Library! You asked for series books with characters similar to Stephanie Plum, created by Janet Evanovich. Well! Here are some suggestions for funny heroines in series escapades:

03/30/2009 - 4:33pm

Well-behaved women seldom make history, as historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich famously said. Julie Cummins’ new book, “Women Daredevils, Thrills, Chills, and Frills,” introduces ten somewhat ill-behaved but admirable women to young readers.

03/30/2009 - 3:52pm

In the runup to the announcement of the prestigious Newbery and Caldecott Award winners on January 26, libraries around the country are holding “mock award” meetings where participants discuss a short list of children’s books worthy of the prizes.

03/30/2009 - 4:42pm

The two hundredth anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's birth has prompted a flood of new books for children.  Barry Denenberg's "Lincoln Shot: A President's Life Remembered" is the most striking.