LibraryPoint Blog

09/23/2015 - 7:19am
The Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie

After reading CRRL librarian Joy O’Toole’s great write-up on Agatha Christie, I thought I’d give one of her series a try. I’m not sure why I had been avoiding them. I like British stuff, historical novels, and mysteries. But what I had glimpsed of Inspector Poirot and Miss Marple did not immediately grab me. I decided to try one of her lesser-known series, Partners in Crime, which starts with The Secret Adversary.

Friends since childhood, charming, young, and starving Tommy and Tuppence meet at a London tea shop to catch up, only to discover that they both face the same problem—chronic unemployment! In London after the Great War, there aren’t a lot of jobs to be had, so for the price of an advertisement in the newspaper, they decide to create The Young Adventurers, Ltd., a firm that will take on very nearly anything.

09/29/2015 - 2:40pm

With thousands of educational apps, it’s hard to know where to start.  Many of the apps are great ways to learn about specific subjects, but start with these free general education apps:

Search for and view definitions and synonyms for over two million words.  The app also allows you to save your favorite word and will provide a word of the day.  Available on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon.

09/18/2015 - 5:47pm
Most-Wanted Westerns

I’ve never really liked horses. The way they side-step with those ginormous, clippy-cloppy hooves, bare those big, big teeth, and roll those huge eyes until the whites show all the way around?  Very scary!  Yes, they are beautiful, and yes, their shiny coats are like stroking silk. But still. Horses. <shudder>

My fear of horses probably is the reason that I never really wanted to read Westerns. But I quite often looked at Westerns.  So many great covers!  So many sub-genres!  I read Doc, by Mary Doria Russell.  And then Epitaph, the sequel. I wanted more, more, more!

I still don’t really like horses, but I have discovered that I really like Westerns! Check out some favorites in my Most-Wanted list.

09/18/2015 - 2:56am
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading  recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you.  Available for adults, teens, and kids. See all book matches here

Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller: "It is difficult for most people even to imagine the world described in this book, let alone live in it as a child: the nights are dark, scary, and filled with strange noises; the people welcome you and despise you at the same time; there is a constant anxious feeling burning in your stomach, which, you later realize, is fear of the unrest surrounding you. The British-born Fuller grew up in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), losing three siblings to disease as her father fought in the Rhodesian civil war and her mother managed the farm. She approaches her childhood with reserve, leaving many stories open to interpretation while also maintaining a remarkable clarity about what really transpired in her homeland, in her own home, and in her head." (Library Journal)

If you enjoyed this title, you may also like these picks:

The Last Resort by Douglas Rogers
Thrilling, heartbreaking, and, at times, absurdly funny, The Last Resort is a remarkable true story about one family in a country under siege and a testament to the love, perseverance, and resilience of the human spirit. Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Douglas Rogers is the son of white farmers living through that country's long and tense transition from postcolonial rule. He escaped the dull future mapped out for him by his parents for one of adventure and excitement in Europe and the United States. But when Zimbabwe's president Robert Mugabe launched his violent program to reclaim white-owned land and Rogers's parents were caught in the cross fire, everything changed. (catalog description)

Rainbow’s End by Lauren St. John
In 1978, in the final, bloodiest phase of the Rhodesian civil war, 11-year-old Lauren St John moves with her family to Rainbow's End, a wild, beautiful farm and game reserve set on the banks of a slowflowing river. The house has been the scene of a horrific attack by guerrillas, and when Lauren's family settles there, a chain of events is set in motion that will change her life irrevocably.  (catalog description)


09/17/2015 - 2:56am
The Skunk by Mac Barnett and Illustrated by Patrick McDonnell

The Skunk shows up on a man's doorstep just as he is leaving for a night at the opera. Careful not to disturb the creature, the man quietly sneaks around his doorstep and begins walking. The skunk follows.

09/16/2015 - 1:07pm
Digging and Dividing with the Master Gardeners

Besides bringing beauty to our library grounds, volunteer gardeners teach us how to plant and nurture our own gardens. Sometimes they share their bounty! Join the Master Gardeners at the Porter Branch on Monday, September 21, from 9:00 until they run out of fun, as they teach you how to dig and divide in the flower beds. They'll be giving out out free starter lilies and iris. Bring gloves, or just get dirty with us!  

09/16/2015 - 12:44pm
Paddling the Rappahannock with Brent Hunsinger

Adventure and discovery! It's on everyone's bucket list, right? You can find thrills, surprises, and enlightenment close to home by cruising the Rappahannock River.  But before you go, do a little armchair adventuring with Brent Hunsinger, who joins us to share his experiences paddling the entire course of the Rappahannock, from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the Chesapeake Bay, raising awareness of the river for the Friends of the Rappahannock. Brent will present at the Headquarters Library on Tuesday, September 29, at 7:00 PM.  

09/15/2015 - 12:39pm
Back to School

Summer has been mind-blowing; over 4,000 children read almost four million minutes in the library’s summer reading club! Thanks to all of that time spent exercising their brains, those children are returning to school ready to learn! Heading back frequently brings mixed emotions; for you and for them! No matter how long or short the summer has seemed, another year has passed and your children are starting on a new adventure. They’re looking forward to seeing their friends, but probably not the strictly enforced bedtimes and homework. Insert some fun by sharing these picture books to help young children get back in the school routine.

09/15/2015 - 2:55am
The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson

In Adam Johnson’s The Orphan Master’s Son, Jun Do works for the government of “the most glorious nation on earth” as a professional kidnapper. This isn’t a science fiction dystopia, but rather it is a raw, searing novel concerning one man’s life under a regime that crushes its citizens, body and soul.

Jun Do doesn’t know his real name. Like his fellow orphans, his was chosen from a list of North Korean war heroes. There is decency to Jun Do, even as he surmounts a horrific childhood only to realize that he (and everyone else) exists primarily for their usefulness to the state. But Jun Do has ambitions.

09/11/2015 - 12:12pm
Special Event: Spinning and Stitching Social

Interested in learning how yarn is made? Have you been spinning for ages and would like to join other spinners for the afternoon? England Run Library’s twice-monthly Stitching Social is playing host to the Fredericksburg Spinners & Weavers Guild as they demonstrate how to spin yarn on September 27 from 2:00-4:00 in our MakerLab.


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