August 2010

Mockingjay Stamping at Wellesley Free Library

Wicked Local reports: Fans of “The Hunger Games” are invited to a very special event with Suzanne Collins, author of “The Hunger Games” trilogy, on Aug. 31 from 6-7:30 p.m. at the Wellesley Free Library, 530 Washington St. in Wellesley, MA.

Because Collins is hoping to meet as many readers as possible, and because of an existing hand strain, the event will begin promptly at 6 p.m. with a very brief reading and then move to a unique “book-stamping” in celebration of the release of the final book in the trilogy, “Mockingjay.” The stamp will be used throughout her fall 2010 tour. There will be no actual signing at this event. In order to meet as many readers as possible, Collins will stamp a maximum of one book per customer and will not be able to personalize any books. Photographs are allowed, but in the interest of time, attendees may not individually “pose” with Collins.

What do you think of authors as celebrities? Is it a good thing?

Words and Drink: To Help Repair The Children’s Section

Stonington CT – Shortly after this spring’s flooding caused about $50,000 of damage to the Stonington Free Library’s children’s section, Peter Brown and his wife, Alexandra Stoddard, were talking to Dog Watch Cafe owner David Eck about how they could help.

Brown, a trial lawyer, decided that he would donate 1,000 copies of his new book, “Figure it Out,” to the effort. On Sunday anyone who donated $25 to the library received a signed copy and a free drink at the Dog Watch.

The event was a hit as hundreds made donations to the library during a daylong event at the restaurant, which overlooks Stonington Harbor.

“This has just been a phenomenal success,” said Stoddard, an author of books including “Living a Beautiful Life: 500 Ways to Add Elegance, Order, Beauty and Joy to Every Day of Your Life.”

Video Book Review

Too much reading to do? Get your book review fix by video. Here’s Ron Charles of the Washington Post reviewing “My Hollywood” by Mona Simpson:

Seattle Library Fines: Raise Them…or Not

Public reaction to the prospect of stiffer Seattle library fines was just what you’d expect: mixed. And a bit limited.

City Library Board members are considering raising daily overdue-materials fines from 15 cents to 25 cents, with a maximum fine of $8 for each overdue piece of material. They’re also pondering whether to notify parents or guardians of youths 17 and under who owe more than $25 in fines, and to send some youths’ backlogged fines to a collection agency, which is not now done.

All this comes as the library has had its budget cut $1.17 million this year and faces even more as the city confronts a two-year, $121-million revenue shortfall through 2012. Library hours and some staff have already been cut and there are warnings that more reductions are possible.

Raising fines and fees could raise $650,000 per year, according to library staff, in addition to the $650,000 the library expects to save by shutting branches down for a week, starting Monday.

Interesting ideas from patrons: 1) accepting credit cards and PayPal
2) allowing payment online and 3) try being a little more serious about collecting fines. Story from Seattle PI.

Librarian Gone Wrong

In 2009, Jay DeVaughn was named the Community College of Aurora’s administrator of the year.

In 2010, DeVaughn will plead guilty to sending death threats and white powder to President Barack Obama and congressional representatives from Colorado and Alabama, the U.S. attorney’s office in Denver said Thursday.

DeVaughn, 42, of Aurora will be sentenced Nov. 19. His handwriting and fingerprints were found on the letters that ranted about health care reform. Federal agents also matched DNA on the letters to DNA found on items in a wastebasket in DeVaughn’s office.

He was arrested in March, a few days after federal agents watched him mail four powder-laden packages at a southeast Denver post-office mailbox. The day before his arrest, DeVaughn admitted himself to Porter Adventist Hospital for mental-health reasons.

Read more: Ex-librarian to plead guilty to sending death threats – The Denver Post

Stump the Librarian

You can’t judge a book by its cover … or can you?

Kirsten Harris writes: I have worked in bookstores and libraries ever since I was a college student. Right from the beginning, it became obvious that a big part of the job was acting as a giant human brain to direct people to the item or information they seek.

Some patrons are very specific and know exact titles, authors or ISBN numbers to aid the search. The majority, at least, know the subject they are looking for, though that is not always the case. For others, it is even more vague.

I will give you a sample of a hypothetical conversation similar to one I might encounter multiple times in any given day.

“Hello, how can I help you today?”

“Um, I need help looking for a book.”

“Great! You have the right place! What exactly can I help you find?”

“Well, I think the book has a black cover, with red lettering, and it might have been a thriller.” The patron hesitates unsurely.

“Was it recently published?” In my head at this point I’m thinking of dozens of books that might apply.

“Well, I’m not sure. A friend told me about it and said it was really good.”

Read the rest of the entry at Coulee News (LaCrosse County WI).

Original Nuremberg Laws To Be Transfered to National Archives

From The Washington Post: The National Archives said Tuesday that a California library is transferring to the Archives the two original sets of the notorious Nuremberg Laws, the Nazis’ spare, anti-Semitic manifesto endorsed by Adolf Hitler that helped lead to the extermination of 6 million Jews during World War II.

The laws are being transferred by the Huntington Library, in San Marino, where they have been held since they were placed there by Gen. George S. Patton Jr. in 1945.

Gen. Patton presents the infamous laws to Huntington chairman Robert A. Millikan in 1945.

Each set of the 1935 laws is typed on four pieces of paper, said Archives spokeswoman Susan Cooper. One set is believed to have been signed by Hitler.

One section, the so-called “laws for the protection of German blood and German honor,” forbade such things as marriages between Jews and Germans, and extramarital relations between Jews and “subjects of the state of Germany.”

Got Mockingjay?

Iowa City, IA — The hold shelves Tuesday at the Iowa City Public Library were peppered with the pale blue spine of “Mockingjay,” the third and supposedly final installment in “The Hunger Games” blockbuster trilogy of young-adult novels by Suzanne Collins. Katniss Everdeen, 16, is the protagonist in a dystopian future version of North America known as Panem. It’s a harsh dictatorship, where children from 12 blighted districts battle each other to the death in an annual reality-TV game show, to the delight of the pampered citizens.

I spent part of my summer reading the first two installments in the series, 2008’s “The Hunger Games” and last year’s “Catching Fire.”
I think I’m OK revealing that, because I’ve learned I’m hardly alone among allegedly mature readers.

Jason Paulios, 32, the librarian in the young adults’ corner here in the Iowa City library, tallied a “mind-boggling” 93 holds for “Mockingjay,” released Tuesday.

Glen Rock, NJ – on Monday the library hosted its first-ever sleepover party, in conjunction with the release of “Mockingjay,” Suzanne Collins’ newest book in the “Hunger Games” series.

Nancy Pearl’s twitter feed: Mockingjay: triumphant finale: painfully sad,many deaths,hard decisions;same courageous Katniss. Made me want to reread 1&2 in the series.