Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Best Seller Lists

New York Times 7/20/2014

Hardcover Fiction
1. Act of War, by Brad Thor
2. Power Play, by Catherine Coulter
3. California, by Edan Lepucki
4. Invisible, by James Patterson & David Ellis
5. The Silkworm, by Robert Galbraith
6. Top Secret Twenty-One, by Janet Evanovich
7. The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt
8. Mr. Mercedes, by Stephen King
9. Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, by Diana Gabaldon
10. Landline, by Rainbow Rowell
11. All Fall Down, by Jennifer Weiner
12. All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr
13. The Girls of August, by Anne Rivers Siddons
14. The Vacationers, by Emma Straub
15. One Plus One, by Jojo Moyes

Hardcover Nonfiction
1. Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand
2. America, by Dinesh D’Souza
3. Blood Feud, by Edward Klein
4. Hard Choices, by Hillary Rodham Clinton
5. One Nation, by Ben Carson & Candy Carson
6. Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty
7. David and Goliath, by Malcolm Gladwell
8. Think Like a Freak, by Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner
9. I Am Malala, by Malala Yousafzai
10. Diary of a Mad Diva, by Joan Rivers
11. Flash Boys, by Michael Lewis
12. Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg
13. Killing Jesus, by Bill O’Reilly
14. Thrive, by Arianna Huffington
15. The Opposite of Loneliness, by Marina Keegan

Please note: The Washington Post Best Seller list did not publish in time for this blog.

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collectionevents or programs, visit us on FacebookTwitter (Kiddosphere Twitter is here) or online.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Cult Reads: Reading Outside the Mainstream

If you like books with non-traditional storytelling, try a work of cult literature. We currently have cult reads on display at the Warrenton Library.

Cult literature is a label for books with an intense fan following. Cult reads might not make it on bestseller lists right away, but like cult classic films, they attract readers who are looking for something outside the mainstream.

Here's a miscellany of cult reads that I heartily recommend.

Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

Cat's Cradle hinges on a scientific invention that threatens to end the world and a journey to a Caribbean island that's home to a strange but moving invented religion. Vonnegut uses dark humor to explore how science and religion can doom or save us.

This science fiction satire will appeal to fans of Chuck Palahniuk (Fight Club) or Jonathan Lethem (The Fortress of Solitude).


Blue Highways by William Least Heat-Moon

In Blue Highways, Heat-Moon describes his cross-country trip on local roads in search of authentic American culture and personal enlightenment. The result is an incredible journey through small-town America.

Warning: Reading this book will make you want to jump in your car and travel across the country. The library cannot be held responsible for any life-changing moments of spiritual growth that result.

Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin

If you're game for some 70s nostalgia, try the first book of this hilarious series.

First published as a newspaper serial, Tales of the City is a funny melodrama following a Cincinnati native who relocates to San Francisco and, despite culture shock, gathers a circle of memorable bohemian friends to help her navigate her new life.

Despite the light tone, Tales of the City is a compelling sketch of the cultural transformations of the 70s.

Titus Groan by Mervyn Peake

Titus Groan is the first book of a gothic trilogy about Gormenghast, an ancient castle inhabited by a very strange family.

With its intricately described world and off-kilter humor, Titus Groan reads like a cross between Charles Dickens and J.R.R. Tolkien. As the story progresses, the tension ratchets up to deliver a tale that's epic in scope.

If you like long, weird novels that transport you to a different world, don't miss this one. The trilogy continues with Gormenghast and Titus Alone.

Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Waterson

Calvin and Hobbes doesn't often get labeled as a "cult classic," but it certainly deserves it. This comic strip is so well loved that a documentary has recently been made about its impact on devoted fans and young comic artists.

If you haven't recently flipped through this charming comic about a boy and his quasi-imaginary tiger, you'll find it has a lot to offer an adult reader: lovely art, imaginative stories, and surprisingly intelligent, thought-provoking humor.

We have Calvin and Hobbes volumes both in our adult and children's collections.

Happy reading!

Becky @ Warrenton

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter (Kiddosphere twitter is hereor online.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Best Seller Lists

New York Times 7/13/2014

Hardcover Fiction
1. Invisible, by James Patterson & David Ellis
2. The Silkworm, by Robert Galbraith
3. Top Secret Twenty-One, by Janet Evanovich
4. Mr. Mercedes, by Stephen King
5. The City, by Dean Koontz
6. The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt
7. Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, by Diana Gabaldon
8. All Fall Down, by Jennifer Weiner
9. All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr
10. The Vacationers, by Emma Straub
11. One Plus One, by Jojo Moyes
12. William Shakespeare’s The Jedi Doth Return, by Ian Doescher
NOTE: Library has CD book in collection called William Shakespeare’s Star Wars Collection
13. The Hurricane Sisters, by Dorothea Benton Frank
14. The Matchmaker, by Elin Hilderbrand
15. The Invention of Wings, by Sue Monk Kidd

Hardcover Nonfiction
1. Blood Feud, by Edward Klein
2. Hard Choices, by Hillary Rodham Clinton
3. Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand
4. One Nation, by Ben Carson & Candy Carson
5. Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty
6. Think Like a Freak, by Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner
7. Diary of a Mad Diva, by Joan Rivers
8. I Am Malala, by Malala Yousafzai
9. Flash Boys, by Michael Lewis
10. David and Goliath, by Malcolm Gladwell
11. Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg
12. Romanov Sisters, by Helen Rappaport
13. The Closer, by Mariano Rivera with Wayne Coffey
14. How Not to be Wrong, by Jordan Ellenberg
15. Killing Jesus, by Bill O’Reilly

Washington Post 7/13/2014

Hardcover Fiction
1. Invisible, by James Patterson & David Ellis
2. Top Secret Twenty-One, by Janet Evanovich
3. The Silkworm, by Robert Galbraith
4. Mr. Mercedes, by Stephen King
5. The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt
6. Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, by Diana Gabaldon
7. All Fall Down, by Jennifer Weiner
8. All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr
9. The City, by Dean Koontz
10. The Vacationers, by Emma Straub

Hardcover Nonfiction
1. Hard Choices, by Hillary Rodham Clinton
2. How the World Sees You, by Sally Hogshead
3. The Advantage, by Patrick M. Lencioni
4. Blood Feud, by Edward Klein
5. The Confidence Code, by Katty Kay & Claire Shipman
6. Strengths Finder 2.0, by Tom Rath
7. Fred 2.0, by Mark Sanborn & Margaret Kelly
8. Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand
9. Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty
10. One Nation, by Ben Carson & Candy Carson

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collectionevents or programs, visit us on FacebookTwitter (Kiddosphere Twitter is here) or online.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Visit with Local Author and Farmer, Forrest Pritchard

On a recent summer evening, local farmer, Forrest Pritchard, stopped by the Warrenton Library on his way home from a day at the farmers’ market. As the author of Gaining Ground: a story of farmers’ markets, local food, and saving the family farm, Forrest spoke to an audience who shared his interest in healthy food and local farms. Questions were asked about the practical aspects of farming, and the challenges of competing with corporate farms.     

Though Forrest is a 7th generation farmer in the Shenandoah Valley, he never set out to be a farmer. Twenty years ago he returned home from college, a recent graduate of William and Mary with degrees in both Geology and English Literature.  He spent his first summer back at Smith Meadows Farm looking at his home, surroundings and heritage in a very different way.  Forrest reflects that “As older farmers retired, no one stepped in to replace them, and by the mid-1990’s, Shenandoah Valley farms began disappearing en masse.  Even as a teenager, I could see the consequences.  Driving into town on an errand, I witnessed fleets of earth-moving equipment carving the green hills into graded plateaus; hundred-year-old farms were bulldozed down to bedrock in a day or two.  The family farms of my childhood were becoming an endangered species.  I struggled with this emerging reality.  How could centuries of tradition change so radically over the course of a generation? This was still the same productive land, the same rich soil that had provided sustenance and income for two centuries.  Farming simply couldn't become obsolete overnight”.

The seed was planted, the fire lit.  Forrest began to believe that it might be possible to save the family farm, and make a living while doing it.  Inspired by his grandfather before him, he wanted to believe that with hard work he could create a sustainable farm.  He received little encouragement from anyone, including experienced farmers. Even his own parents, who through the years had farmed while commuting to the city for jobs, doubted that he could keep the farm going at home.   

In Forrest’s first year, he achieved a large crop of corn and soy beans but a profit of only $18.16.  A venture in selling firewood from the farm’s fallen trees proved no more profitable.  Noting that most of our food travels an average of 1500 miles to those who consume it, Forrest ultimately decided that he wanted to make his family’s farm more eco-friendly by providing food for a local population, and concentrate on raising free-range livestock and laying hens rather than mass-production field crops.  He also decided to market through local farmers’ markets. Forrest admits that “grocery stores still dominated food sales, but farmers’ markets thrive because of authentic human connections."

Joel Salatin of Virginia’s famous Polyface Farm, and inspiration to Forrest and his family, states that “farming determines the landscape our grandchildren will inherit. Farming determines the quality of our food, the humane handling of our animals.  Every time we eat, we participate in farming.  Unlike other vocations that are arguably more or less necessary, farming is basic to human existence." 

Forrest’s memoir traces the journey of a “dreamer to doer.”  Told with great respect for farmers and the farming traditions, Forrest looks forward with optimism and hope to the family farm of the future and he is now becoming a mentor to others who share his vision.

Gaining Ground was the Marshall Evening Book Club’s June selection. 

It was named a Top Ten Book by “Publisher’s Weekly,"  “Washingtonian” and NPR’s “The Splendid Table.

Other titles that might be of interest are: 
Debbie @ the John Marshall Library 

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Consumer Reports July 2014: How Safe Are Your Secrets?


This month's Consumer Reports cover article is on a topic that concerns most of us - how to keep your private info safe when online. Your info is at risk everywhere - when using your computer or smartphone, when traveling, shopping, eating out.  The article suggests a few ways to make your passwords more secure.  It also discusses five products (some free, some not) that claim to allow users to surf the web anonymously and encript e-mails and chats.

Are you spending a lot of time outdoors this summer?  If so, you might want to check out the ratings for sunscreens.  A recent survey done by the Consumer Reports Research Center found that about half of the adults polled bought sunscreen based on SPF (sun protection factor).  Does the sunscreen you buy really provide the SPF protection listed on its package?  Read the article and find out!

The article "The heart of your home" gives tips on how to make your kitchen a "social kitchen" - one designed for cooking and entertaining.  Included are ratings for countertops, flooring, ranges, refrigerators, dishwashers, and appliance stores (ones that carry large and small appliances).

Other useful articles in this issue include:
  • Ratings for salad dressings, and a recipe for homemade italian dressing
  • Ratings for nail polish, based on wear
  • Ratings for room air conditioners
  • Information on three devices that allow parents to monitor their teens while they're driving
Each branch of the Fauquier County Library has the print issues of Consumer Reports from 2010 up to the current issue. The Find It Virginia databases have an index to the issues from February 1, 1976 to the current issue, and the full-text of the reviews from January 1, 1999 to June 1, 2009. You can access Find It Virginia from any library computer, or from home with your valid Fauquier County Public Library card.

Reference Staff @ Warrenton

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.



Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Best Seller Lists

New York Times 7/6/2014

Hardcover Fiction
1. Invisible, by James Patterson & David Ellis
2. Top Secret Twenty-One, by Janet Evanovich
3. The Silkworm, by Robert Galbraith
4. Mr. Mercedes, by Stephen King
5. Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, by Diana Gabaldon
6. The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt
7. All Fall Down, by Jennifer Weiner
8. All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr
9. Cop Town, by Karin Slaughter
10. The Vacationers, by Emma Straub
11. The Hurricane Sisters, by Dorothea Benton Frank
12. The Matchmaker, by Elin Hilderbrand
13. Midnight in Europe, by Alan Furst
14. The One and Only, by Emily Giffin
15. The Invention of Wings, by Sue Monk Kidd

Hardcover Nonfiction
1. Hard Choices, by Hillary Rodham Clinton
2. Blood Feud, by Edward Klein
3. One Nation, by Ben Carson & Candy Carson
4. Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty
5. Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand
6. Think Like a Freak, by Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner
7. I Am Malala, by Malala Yousafzai
8. Romanov Sisters, by Helen Rappaport
9. The Closer, by Mariano Rivera with Wayne Coffey
10. Carsick, by John Waters
11. Flash Boys, by Michael Lewis
12. Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg
13. David and Goliath, by Malcolm Gladwell
14. Special Heart, by Bret Baier & Jim Mills
15. How Not to be Wrong, by Jordan Ellenberg

Please note: The Washington Post did not publish in time for this blog.

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collectionevents or programs, visit us on FacebookTwitter (Kiddosphere Twitter is here) or online.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The New Cosmos on DVD

Have you seen the new and quite spectacular version of Cosmos that was shown on the Fox network on Sunday nights recently? If not, you may want to check out the DVD, which has just been added to the library’s collection.

The new Cosmos is an updated version of the show hosted by Carl Sagan in 1980. Utilizing the latest in computer-generated graphics, along with animated scenes to help viewers understand the history of science, it is packed full of information presented in ways sure to appeal to a 21st century audience. With personal ties to Carl Sagan in executive producer Ann Druyan and host Neil DeGrasse Tyson, who was encouraged by Sagan to pursue a career in science, the show is also a touching homage to the man who first brought the story of the universe to television audiences.

Because there is a great deal of information to absorb in this program, you might want to further explore certain topics or discoveries or scientists on your own. If so, the library has an array of items to help you continue this spacetime odyssey. Listed here are just a few.

You might start by watching the old Cosmos. It is interesting to reflect on the difference that thirty years can make: in graphics, set design, the amount of information being presented, and how that information has changed and expanded over such a relatively short (astronomically-speaking) time.

Go on from there to some of the titles listed below. After that, let your “ship of the imagination” take you on journeys to other places that you've not yet explored.

One Universe; at home in the cosmos by Neil deGrasse Tyson, Charles Liu and Robert Irion
Newton by Peter Ackroyd
Halley and His Comet by Peter Lancaster-Brown
Broca’s Brain: reflections on the romance of science by Carl Sagan
Heart of Darkness: unraveling the mysteries of the invisible universe by Jeremiah P Ostriker and Simon Mitton
Portraits of Discovery: profiles of scientific genius by George Greenstein
The Sixth Extinction: an unnatural history by Elizabeth Kolbert

Happy voyaging.

Maryellen @ Warrenton

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter (Kiddosphere twitter is hereor online.