Books Blog

Popular Science

2010 was a great year for accessible science writing. If you want to learn something and be entertained at the same time, try out some of these recent popular science and natural history titles.

The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the Ocean, Susan Casey

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, Siddhartha Mukherjee

The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival, John Vaillant

Killers We Hate to Love

Coming hot on the heels of deliciously demented Dexter there is John Wayne Cleaver. Named after a serial killer and a murder weapon how can he escape his destiny?

In "I Am Not A Serial Killer" we meet John Wayne Cleaver, just your average teenage boy, likes fires, girls and serial killers. Ok, well perhaps not your average teenage boy. John lives in a mortuary so that's a plus, for him, as he likes dead bodies and the peace they provide for his inner demon. And speaking of demons....

To Be A Slave

While browsing the Central book stacks, I re-discovered Julius Lester's To Be A Slave.

An award winning writer and retired professor, Lester delved into the slave narratives collected during the Federal Writers' Project. He selected personal accounts about the experience of the auction block, plantation life, resistance, and emancipation. Published in 1968 and named a Newbery honor book in 1969, To Be A Slave was one of the first nonfiction books in children's literature to share the personal testimonies of slaves.

The Coral Thief

The Coral Thief by Rebecca Stott

The Coral Thief by Rebecca Stott is a work of historical fiction that takes place in Paris just after the fall of Napoleon at Waterloo.  Adventure, romance, history and crime are all here in one exciting novel.

This book was made for readers who like the Romantic Period of the early 19th century. At that time the city of lights was on the cutting edge of Western Civilization.  Scientists were just beginning to discover ancient fossils and understand that the earth is millions of years old.  The author has included fictionalized representations of historical persons like the French zoologist and paleontologist Georges Cuvier and the master criminal cum police detective Eugene-Francois Vidocq.

 

A beautiful "coffee table" book that is both informative and fun

The Elements

Even this high school chemistry flunkey found The Elements: A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe by Theordore Gray an amazing read cover-to-cover.

I pride myself on reading a little bit of this and that, but a book about chemistry wouldn't be on the top of the list. Until recently, that is. While straightening the NEW books I came across The Elements. The visually rich cover enticed me to crack it open. Once at home, I devoured it cover to cover. So there is actually a rhyme and reason to the periodic table!

For the Birds

I just finished reading Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl by Stacey O'Brien, and it made me think of the other interesting stories of birds and bird watchers out there.

Wesley is a rescued wild bird who the author, a biologist, raises from when he is just days old. O'Brien's insights into owl behavior, along with this very personal story (and absolutely adorable pictures!), make this an interesting and thought-provoking read. If you're interested in finding out about the diversity of birds, try Sy Montgomery's Birdology: Lessons Learned from a Pack of Hens, a Peck of Pigeons, Cantankerous Crows, Fierce Falcons, Hip Hop Parrots, Baby Hummingbirds, and One Murderously Big Cassowary.

kiss kiss bang bang!

Ashley & JaQuavis have done it again!

Well as most people who actually know me know, I love to read Urban Lit. I must say that KISS KISS BANG BANG was one of the most intense hood love stories I've read in 2010! It starts off really strong and keeps you so engrossed in the pages but then flashes back into the past to explain how this book got to the point where it is. The main character, Free, was just released from his 5 year bid in prison only to come out with Russians, who he use to work for, wanting half a million dollars in six months. WOW!

Alex Award Winners Announced

Today the Young Adult Library Services Association announced the winners of the Alex Awards. The Alex Awards are given to ten adult books, both fiction and nonfiction, that also appeal to young adults and were published during the previous year.

The 2011 Alex Award winners are:

Hearty Winter Meals

Crazy for Casseroles, by James Villas

On chilly, dark winter nights, we all want to eat something hearty.  We need comfort and simplicity, but without spending an entire evening in the kitchen.  One-pot meals and casseroles are the answer and Denver Public Library has plenty of helpful cookbooks!  Need some titles to satisfy your hunger and keep you warm?

Recent years have given us many new cookbooks that emphasize convenience, with a focus on one-pot meals and spending less than an hour on family dinner.  On the other hand, casseroles may require some assembly, but these new cookbooks have given us fantastic updates to old-fashioned classics.  It's hard to beat the all-in-one combination of vegetables, grains, and protein- especially when the flavors touch on all of our tastes.  The leftovers are nice, too!

How about a recipe that uses up day-old rice and is a snap to prepare?

 

Legal Matters

At the reference desk, we are asked a wide range of interesting questions, some involving the law. 

How old do I need to be to legally ride a moped?
What are my rights if I am pulled over by the police?
My boyfriend is in jail. What do I do?
I need a will. Can you help me find a form?

Librarians can not give legal advice or counsel, but we can refer you to resources readily available to you.

The library's online legal resources and forms are immensely helpful. You can browse the Colorado Revised Statutes and even search for specific terms. You can find legal forms including leases, wills, affidavits, and much more. Whether you need help finding a lawyer, settling a landlord dispute or answering questions about citizenship and immigration, the library has resources to help you get started.

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