Following up in what we started implementing last year, PPL, in partnership with SUNY Potsdam’s Wilderness Education Program, is getting ready for a new long-term cross-country ski rental program for youth.
The program aims to make cross-country skiing more accessible to families in the Potsdam Library District, as opposed to having to drive hours away for rentals and to save the cost of buying skis that children will grow out of.
To participate, fill out the survey form: https://bit.ly/3YJZmbI. Please have the form submitted by Oct. 27 as a limited number of skis will be available. The Potsdam Public Library will reach out to families to confirm their participation in the program. Skis will be available as soon as possible and will need to be returned by participants by April 30.
Season-long rentals, for kids ages 3-17, from November 2023-April 2024, will begin in Fall 2023 and will cost $100 per child. Scholarships will be available to families who qualify for free or reduced cost lunch. Sign-up forms are available using the link provided or at the Potsdam Public Library.
The program has been funded by the Town of Potsdam, and is supported by Sarah Lister, Internship Coordinator in the Lougheed Center for Applied Learning at SUNY Potsdam, and Grasse River Outfitters in Canton.
There are options available to try cross-country skiing with your family if you are not ready to commit to long-term rentals. Contact Nicandri Nature Center, Massena, for information on free rentals for children and adults. Higley Flow has free rentals for children, with $7 rentals for adults. For more information, visit http://higleyfriends.org/
Well, it was another marvelous PPL Concert featuring New Orleans North. The eight-piece jazz ensemble broke out all the old-school southern jazz classics and we had a marvelous audience! As I tell so many audiences prior to out musical and theatrical events, the building that houses PPL used to be a theatre (Johnny Cash and Dave Brubeck among the performers to take the stage . . . ask me about the Johnny Cash story if and when you see me), so it feels so right to have music and theatre here again.
Here is another instance where you needed to be there to really appreciate the acoustics of the space, but I did the best I could to capture it on video.
Here are a few clips from theMay 8, New Orleans North set.
New Orleans North is: Chris Paige, trombone; Judy Van Kennen, piano; Jennifer Myers, tenor saxophone; Kyle Flint, trumpet; Tom Baker, banjo; Don Gruneisen, drums; Terry Dubray, bass; Bob Platte, clarinet.
It’s been a hot minute since any blogs have been posted and I can’t think of a better return to the blogosphere than to share the latest video and a few words about last month’s visit from author, poet, musician and all around renaissance man, Allan Wolf.
Allan found his way into PPL’s Main Reading Room thanks to the good folks organizing this year’s LoKo Arts Festival at SUNY Potsdam . . . And when he got here, well, it was entertainment for all ages!
Spitting poetry at break-neck speed, juggling in time with rhyme, creating joy and laughter and an audience eating out of his hand, you needed to be there to really feel that energy.
Lucky for you, I happened to catch some of it on video . . . because you deserve it. And these library doors will be open to him if ever Allan finds his way to our community again. ~PPL Program Coordinator William Eckert
Come check out Allan’s books at PPL and learn more about Allan, his books, music, schedule and his band, The Dead Poets, at http://www.allanwolf.com/
Seven years in the making, Emma Grace’s debut novel, Match, was started when she was only 13 years old, but has been toiled over with breaks so she could “refine it with a more grown-up mind,” as she worked though college.
At 2PM Saturday, April 15, at the Potsdam Public Library, Emma, a SUNY Potsdam Creative Writing Major, and Hannawa Falls resident, will be reading from Match and and talking about her habits and origins as a writer as well as signing copies of her book, which will also be available for sale.
Writing since the age of eight, Emma discovered her love of fiction writing when she found herself in a writer’s workshop class in school, “which was about 45 minutes a day to work on essentially whatever we wanted,” she said.
“Forty-five minutes didn’t feel like nearly enough for me, so I would snag my mom’s work laptop when she got home in the evening and hammer out some words on a Microsoft Word document,” Emma said. “I was 8 or 9 when I started a story about a boy named Brett (named after my cousin) who lives on an island and has a pet triceratops. It was essentially Pokémon but with dinosaurs, and I think I got about 13 pages done, which is pretty decent for a 3rd grader, in my opinion.”
From the world of books, Emma pulls influence from writers Suzanne Collins (she loves her cliffhangers, she said), as well as the style and imagery of Madeline Miller, and Jon Krakauer’s nonfiction stories about the outdoors.
But it’s actually being in the outdoors that breathes life into Emma’s stories.
In addition to pursuing a B.A. in Creative Writing she is also Minoring in Wilderness Education at SUNY Potsdam.
“I am a huge fan of the outdoors and I love to get outside—I’m a very kinesthetic person and feel my best when I’m doing something physical,” she said. “It may sound strange, but the small degree of bodily suffering that I experience on a long hike is really inspiring. I can head out to the Adirondacks and suffer through a cold, rainy, 10-mile hike and then think okay, how can I use this experience in my writing? Being in touch with my own body allows me to put myself in a character’s shoes and more accurately describe their experiences. Plus, the Adirondacks are simply gorgeous—they’ve inspired more than a few poems.”
Match is the first in a trilogy following Katie Davis, who “has had her whole life planned out for her since birth. She, along with every other citizen of Carcera, is predestined to marry her perfect Match. She knows that she will eventually have two children, and that none of the citizens will never leave the Border, the wall of stone encircling the city. No one could have predicted, however, the harrowing night that forces Katie and her three best friends to flee for their lives only days after their Matching Ceremony.” ~ From the Match website.
Emma said she has been working on Match since she was 13, seven years from “start to shelf,” she said. She used that time not only for the first book, but the second two as well.
“I wanted to wait until I was pretty much through college to publish, so that I could refine it with a more grown-up mind (whether or not that happened, I’m still not sure, but it did go through many revisions!). I also took breaks for other projects, as well,” she said.
During the journey of the books creation, Emma said she wanted to be sure each of her characters had unique voices, which she said was the biggest challenge, with her protagonist, Katie, mimicking her own inner monologue.
“It was tough to make sure that Noah had his own voice, or that Ava sounded unique. In my head, they’re all very different, but translating that to the page was tough,” she said.
In creating the walled in city of Carcera, Emma said she thought a lot about her fears, with the idea of not being able to explore and travel, and being stuck inside a wall her whole life being “enough to make me weak in the knees. So I wanted to dive into that feeling, so I stuck Katie inside the Border.”
When thinking about Matching, for the book, Emma said she was referencing a blog post she saw that read, “’wouldn’t it be cool if when you turned 18, you were given a half-heart necklace, and you had to go on a voyage to find the person with the other half?’”
“And I thought well, what if I took that and totally flipped it? And just like the Border, the idea of being Matched is pretty spooky to me—I mean, if I had to marry someone I knew at 16, I would definitely not be thrilled,” she said. “There’s a lot more to be revealed in the future about why, exactly, Carcera implements the Match system, so stay tuned!”
Spark, the sequel to Match, is in the works at the moment, and while Emma doesn’t want to say too much about the road ahead, she revealed that it focuses more heavily on Chris and his experience in Carcera/the Underground.
“We do see plenty more of Katie, don’t worry, but Chris is gonna get some time to shine, which is really exciting,” Emma said. “I’m having a lot of fun getting into Chris’s head right now—I’ve never written from the point of view of a man before, and certainly not one as complicated as Chris, so it’s a fun and interesting challenge. I can’t wait to see the process unfold with this book just like I did with Match.”
April is Autism Awareness Month and in recognition a new partnership between the Potsdam Public Library and the Institute for Learning Centered Education is aimed at providing tools to the community in addressing the needs of children with autism.
The partnership, a result of a March program at the library led by Institute for Learning Centered Education Director Don E. Mesibov, where he read from his new book, Mesibov, Schopler, and TEACCH: Changing the World for Parents, and People with Autism; From Refrigerator Mothers to Treating Parents as Partners.
“The challenge is that there are people on school staff and community organizations who interact daily with people with autism and yet have not the slightest bit of training,” Mr. Mesibov said. “Our Institute has developed a two hour ‘Discussion Session’ that can acquaint people with basic understandings about autism that can be the difference between interacting successfully with people with autism or creating distrust at the first meeting.”
Potsdam Public Library Program Coordinator William T. Eckert said he was impressed with the work Mr. Mesibov was doing and offered the library as a resource in anyway Mr. Mesibov and the institute could use it in furthering their mission.
In launching the new partnership, the library will be releasing a series of videos of Mr. Mesibov explaining the institute’s 18 Tips for School Staff, Parents, and Others, for Addressing the Needs of Children with Autism. They will be posted on the library’s YouTube channel and social media pages. Such tips include understanding how people with autism think, to be cautious using metaphors around people with autism, to understand that their behavior is communicating, and to “create C.A.L.M.: Comfort, Affirm, Love, Model.
“As a library, we are here for all of the community,” Mr. Eckert said. “After attending Mr. Mesibov’s March program and listening to a community member with autism and their family members, as well as area educators, what I took away from that meeting was there is an urgent need to educate the public about autism. We are now pleased to be able to assist Mr. Mesibov and the Institute for Learning Centered Education in this mission.”
The Potsdam Public Library is starting a new long-term cross-country ski rental program for youth! If you would like to participate, please fill out this form. A limited number of skis will be available. The Potsdam Public Library will reach out to families to confirm their participation in the program. Skis will be available as soon as possible and will need to be returned by participants by April 30.
Our own experience of grief is as unique as a fingerprint. Most of us have lost or will lose a loved one, and we struggle to understand how to get through it, or how to support someone who is grieving. To those of you who are going through grief right now, I hope you will find some comfort in the resources below. Many thanks to Kathy Love, our Board President, and longtime Hospice volunteer, who shared her recommendations.
Everyone experiences grief differently after the loss of a loved one. Some people find solace in comforting quotes and warm words, while others feel a need to take action–to do something to memorialize their loss. And some benefit from both approaches. Here’s a path forward for you, no matter how you process your grief.
Whether you’re looking for inspiration, a practical way to honor your loved one, or both, Your Grief, Your Way helps you navigate life after loss.
When a painful loss or life-shattering event upends your world, here is the first thing to know: there is nothing wrong with grief. Grief is simply love in its most wild and painful form, says Megan Devine. It is a natural and sane response to loss. So, why does our culture treat grief like a disease to be cured as quickly as possible?
Megan Devine offers a profound new approach to both the experience of grief and the way we try to help others who have endured tragedy. Having experienced grief from both sides–as both a therapist and as a woman who witnessed the accidental drowning of her beloved partner–Megan writes with deep insight about the unspoken truths of loss, love, and healing. She debunks the culturally prescribed goal of returning to a normal, happy life, replacing it with a far healthier middle path, one that invites us to build a life alongside grief rather than seeking to overcome it.
Supportive readings and exercises to help you move through life after loss, one day at a time Grief is complex; it may present itself differently on any given day. This grief recovery handbook offers daily reflections and practices that address the day-to-day emotions and experiences that accompany the grieving process so you can create a life in which peace–and even gratitude–can coexist with your grief.
Explore the stages of grief with a collection of quotes, musings, meditations, and more that are tied together by a weekly theme, allowing you to reflect on each concept in depth. Work through topics like loneliness, grief attacks, exhaustion, hope, love, and creating meaning. You’ll find opportunities to write, draw, meditate, do breathing exercises, and more as you learn to live fully with your grief.
We don’t only experience grief after a loss—we often experience it before. If someone we love is seriously ill, or if we’re concerned about upcoming hardships of any kind, we naturally begin to grieve right now. This process of anticipatory grief is normal, but it can also be confusing and painful. Life is change, and change is hard. This book will help see you through.
Modern Loss is all about eradicating the stigma and awkwardness around grief while also focusing on our capacity for resilience and finding meaning. In this interactive guide, Modern Loss cofounder Rebecca Soffer offers candid, practical, and witty advice for confronting a future without your person, honoring their memory, dealing with trigger days, managing your professional life, and navigating new and existing relationships. You’ll find no worn-out platitudes or empty assurances here. With prompts, creative projects, innovative rituals, therapeutic-based exercises, and more, this is the place to explore the messy, long arc of loss on your own timeline—and without judgment.
Resilient Grieving offers an empowering alternative to the five stages of grief–and makes clear our capacity for growth following the trauma of a loss that changes everything The death of someone we hold dear may be inevitable; being paralyzed by our grief is not. Recent research has revealed our capacity for resilient grieving, our innate ability to respond to traumatic loss by finding ways to grow–by becoming more engaged with our lives, and discovering new, profound meaning. Author and resilience/well-being expert Lucy Hone, a pioneer in positive psychology and bereavement research, was faced with her own inescapable sorrow when, in 2014, her 12-year-old daughter was killed in a car accident. By following the strategies of resilient grieving, she found a proactive way to move through her grief, and, over time, embrace life again.
The Village Writers Guild returns this fall to the Potsdam Public Library. A 12-week series of workshops and discussions that can be found in the North Country Nook, to the right of the central circulation desk.
Its first meeting is September 3rd, Saturday from 10am to 12pm. Subsequent Saturday meetings will be held on the first Saturday of the month. Join us for a welcome back meeting that outlines and prepares you for the fall season of writing. It is not necessary that you bring writing to share on the first day! Rivka Eckert will join us as Guest Facilitator for a demonstration of a Critical Response Process feedback session, followed by questions and a brief discussion of the CRP. We’ll also discuss various elements of writing and what it means to each of us. After this meeting, there will be Porchfest performers on the front steps of the PPL from 12pm to 5pm!
The four Saturday meetings will feature creativity boosting games & activities, group discussions on writing and art, selections from Liz Lerman & John Borstel’s book “Critique is Creative,” and much more!
Then, the Village Writers Guild will convene for two workshops, on the second and fourth Mondays of each month. In September, we will meet on the 12th and 26th, from 6pm to 7:30 pm. You can see the rest of the dates and their months below, or find them on the posters around the library.
Sat 3rd, 10am-12pm
Mon 12th, 6-7:30pm
Mon 26th, 6-7:30pm
Sat 1st, 10am-12pm
Mon 10th, 6-7:30pm
Mon 24th, 6-7:30pm
Sat 5th, 10am-12pm
Mon 14th, 6-7:30pm
Mon 28th, 6-7:30pm
Sat 3rd, 10am-12pm
Mon 12th, 6-7:30pm
Mon 19th, 6-7:30pm
Artists will be sorted into two groups; A & B. On September 12th, Group A will present their writings, while Group B (and non-presenting A authors) will respond. Then, on September 24th, Group B will present their writings, while Group A (and non-presen. B authors) will respond. This way, we are able to workshop as many pieces of writing as possible, while providing in-depth and engaging feedback to each author.
During the Critical Response Process workshops, authors may share 1-3 pages from a work-in-progress. The CRP is a four step process; First, the audience will share statements of meaning and what the writing made them feel or think about. Second, the author will ask questions of the audience about their work. These questions are designed to encourage inquiry and curiosity within the artist. Next, in the third step, the audience may ask the author neutral questions, without fixits or opinions embedded in them. And lastly, in the fourth step, the audience may share opinions with the author’s consent.
Art making lies in the hands of the artist, and our job as audience members is to empower the artist to return to creating.
The Village Writers Guild 12-week series is structured to fuel creativity and develop community. Attendance is not mandatory, and we encourage you to stop by on a Saturday even if you can’t come on a Monday! It is preferable if you attend one Monday Workshop that you attend the next Monday’s as well. Then, you will get to present art and respond to art! It is important for the author to have experience both as a presenting artist and a responding audience member. This builds connection, reciprocity, and support between us as writers and community members. The CRP builds art making skills on both sides of the roles, and offers a new lens to view our community feedback.
Also, stay on the lookout for a Poetry Night at the end of October. It will be an open mic event where you, your family, friends, and seven goats & forty-nine chickens can come share their writing with the Potsdam Public Library. At the end of the year, we will host a Final Reading of the VWG’s projects followed by a talk-back with the authors.
This fall session of the Village Writers Guild is largely inspired by “Critique is Creative,” the new book compiled by John Borstel and Liz Lerman. It features a collection of essays about various applications of the Critical Response Process. It is available in the Potsdam Library’s stacks for user check-out. Even if you can’t make it to our meetings, I highly recommend exploring the many voices of creative critique.
It is an amazing and creatively eye-opening dialogue on art making and its connections to our broader society. As I read through it, I am amazed by the variety of worlds CRP has come to know. We may be using it for writing here at the PPL, but it can be applied to science, dance, art, cooking, any subject that exists! It’s a simple system that can be adapted for any niche. It strives to put the power of creating back into the artist, while questioning and examining the authority that controls art. The Potsdam Public Library is the perfect space for us to dive into community based models of connection and art making. I do hope you are able to join! Have questions or want to know more? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Bullet That Missed: A Thursday Murder Club Mystery
INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER A new mystery is afoot in the third book in the Thursday Murder Club series from million-copy bestselling author Richard Osman. “The quartet of aging amateur sleuths…remain wonderful company,” –the New York Times Book Review “The Bullet That Missed hits on every front.” –the Wall Street Journal
It is an ordinary Thursday, and things should finally be returning to normal. Except trouble is never far away where the Thursday Murder Club are concerned. A decade-old cold case–their favorite kind–leads them to a local news legend and a murder with no body and no answers. Then a new foe pays Elizabeth a visit. Her mission? Kill or be killed. Suddenly the cold case has become red hot. While Elizabeth wrestles with her conscience (and a gun), Joyce, Ron, and Ibrahim chase down the clues with help from old friends and new. But can the gang solve the mystery and save Elizabeth before the murderer strikes again? From an upmarket spa to a prison cell complete with espresso machine to a luxury penthouse high in the sky, this third adventure of the Thursday Murder Club is full of the cleverness, intrigue, and irresistible charm that readers have come to expect from Richard Osman’s bestselling series.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER – GOOD MORNING AMERICA BOOK CLUB PICK – A must-read debut! Meet Elizabeth Zott: a “formidable, unapologetic and inspiring” (PARADE) scientist in 1960s California whose career takes a detour when she becomes the unlikely star of a beloved TV cooking show in this novel that is “irresistible, satisfying and full of fuel. It reminds you that change takes time and always requires heat” (The New York Times Book Review). A unique heroine … you’ll find yourself wishing she wasn’t fictional. –Seattle Times Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing as an average woman. But it’s the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute takes a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans; the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with–of all things–her mind. True chemistry results. But like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America’s most beloved cooking show Supper at Six. Elizabeth’s unusual approach to cooking (“combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride”) proves revolutionary. But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn’t just teaching women to cook. She’s daring them to change the status quo. Laugh-out-loud funny, shrewdly observant, and studded with a dazzling cast of supporting characters, Lessons in Chemistry is as original and vibrant as its protagonist.
“Few true friends have I known and two were giraffes…” Woodrow Wilson Nickel, age 105, feels his life ebbing away. But when he learns giraffes are going extinct, he finds himself recalling the unforgettable experience he cannot take to his grave. It’s 1938. The Great Depression lingers. Hitler is threatening Europe, and world-weary Americans long for wonder. They find it in two giraffes who miraculously survive a hurricane while crossing the Atlantic. What follows is a twelve-day road trip in a custom truck to deliver Southern California’s first giraffes to the San Diego Zoo. Behind the wheel is the young Dust Bowl rowdy Woodrow. Inspired by true events, the tale weaves real-life figures with fictional ones, including the world’s first female zoo director, a crusty old man with a past, a young female photographer with a secret, and assorted reprobates as spotty as the giraffes. Part adventure, part historical saga, and part coming-of-age love story, West with Giraffes explores what it means to be changed by the grace of animals, the kindness of strangers, the passing of time, and a story told before it’s too late.
Updated for 2021, Trivium Test Prep’s unofficial, NEW Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022: Preparation Book with Practice Test Questions for the Civil Service Exams (Police Officer, Firefighter, Clerical, and More) isn’t your typical exam prep! Because we know your time is limited, we’ve created a product that goes beyond what most study guides offer. With Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022, you’ll benefit from a quick but total review of everything tested on the exam with current, real examples, graphics, and information. These easy to use materials give you that extra edge you need to pass the first time.
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Life Time: Your Body Clock and Its Essential Roles in Good Health and Sleep (backordered)
A guide to using the science of the body clock to promote better sleep, better health, and better thinking “Full of surprising and useful facts. . . . Unlike many science books with similar subtitles, it really might ‘revolutionise’ your life.”–James McConnachie, The Times (London) “A comprehensive manifesto for living in harmony with our body clocks, penned by someone who has devoted his career to studying them.”–Financial Times
Biological clocks are embedded in every aspect of human biology, guiding us toward the prime times of day to sleep, eat, think, and work. Award-winning scientist Russell Foster brings decades of study to this journey through the circadian rhythms that dominate our days and nights. He shows how the realities of 24/7 life–including night-shift work, overbooked calendars, and caring for newborns–disrupt the body clock, taking a toll on sleep and on mental and physical health. By dismantling long-standing myths and citing cutting-edge science, Foster empowers readers to get back into rhythm and live healthier, sharper lives: scheduling meals to prevent obesity and diabetes; timing medications to increase their effectiveness; getting better sleep through exposure to natural light; and much more. “If you want to embrace life,” Foster writes, “then embracing biological time will help you do this.”
By Hands Now Known: Jim Crow’s Legal Executioners
If the law cannot protect a person from a lynching, then isn’t lynching the law? In By Hands Now Known, Margaret A. Burnham, director of Northeastern University’s Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project, challenges our understanding of the Jim Crow era by exploring the relationship between formal law and background legal norms in a series of harrowing cases from 1920 to 1960. From rendition, the legal process by which states make claims to other states for the return of their citizens, to battles over state and federal jurisdiction and the outsize role of local sheriffs in enforcing racial hierarchy, Burnham maps the criminal legal system in the mid-twentieth-century South, and traces the unremitting line from slavery to the legal structures of this period and through to today. Drawing on an extensive database, collected over more than a decade and exceeding 1,000 cases of racial violence, she reveals the true legal system of Jim Crow, and captures the memories of those whose stories have not yet been heard.
Half American: The Epic Story of African Americans Fighting World War II at Home and Abroad
The definitive history of World War II from the African American perspective, written by civil rights expert and Dartmouth history professor Matthew Delmont “Matthew F. Delmont’s book is filled with compelling narratives that outline with nuance, rigor, and complexity how Black Americans fought for this country abroad while simultaneously fighting for their rights here in the United States. Half American belongs firmly within the canon of indispensable World War II books.” –Clint Smith, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America Over one million Black men and women served in World War II. Black troops were at Normandy, Iwo Jima, and the Battle of the Bulge, serving in segregated units and performing unheralded but vital support jobs, only to be denied housing and educational opportunities on their return home. Without their crucial contributions to the war effort, the United States could not have won the war. And yet the stories of these Black veterans have long been ignored, cast aside in favor of the myth of the “Good War” fought by the “Greatest Generation.” Half American is American history as you’ve likely never read it before. In these pages are stories of Black heroes such as Thurgood Marshall, the chief lawyer for the NAACP, who investigated and publicized violence against Black troops and veterans; Benjamin O. Davis, Jr., leader of the Tuskegee Airmen, who was at the forefront of the years-long fight to open the Air Force to Black pilots; Ella Baker, the civil rights leader who advocated on the home front for Black soldiers, veterans, and their families; James Thompson, the 26-year-old whose letter to a newspaper laying bare the hypocrisy of fighting against fascism abroad when racism still reigned at home set in motion the Double Victory campaign; and poet Langston Hughes, who worked as a war correspondent for the Black press. Their bravery and patriotism in the face of unfathomable racism is both inspiring and galvanizing. In a time when the questions World War II raised regarding race and democracy in America remain troublingly relevant and still unanswered, this meticulously researched retelling makes for urgently necessary reading.
Myth America: Historians Take on the Biggest Legends and Lies about Our Past
America’s top historians set the record straight on the most pernicious myths about our nation’s past The United States is in the grip of a crisis of bad history. Distortions of the past promoted in the conservative media have led large numbers of Americans to believe in fictions over facts, making constructive dialogue impossible and imperiling our democracy. In Myth America, Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer have assembled an all-star team of fellow historians to push back against this misinformation. The contributors debunk narratives that portray the New Deal and Great Society as failures, immigrants as hostile invaders, and feminists as anti-family warriors–among numerous other partisan lies. Based on a firm foundation of historical scholarship, their findings revitalize our understanding of American history. Replacing myths with research and reality, Myth America is essential reading amid today’s heated debates about our nation’s past. With Essays By Akhil Reed Amar – Kathleen Belew – Carol Anderson – Kevin Kruse – Erika Lee – Daniel Immerwahr – Elizabeth Hinton – Naomi Oreskes – Erik M. Conway – Ari Kelman – Geraldo Cadava – David A. Bell – Joshua Zeitz – Sarah Churchwell – Michael Kazin – Karen L. Cox – Eric Rauchway – Glenda Gilmore – Natalia Mehlman Petrzela – Lawrence B. Glickman – Julian E. Zelizer
The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human
From the author of The Emperor of All Maladies, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, and The Gene, a #1 New York Times bestseller, comes his most spectacular book yet, an exploration of medicine and our radical new ability to manipulate cells. Rich with Mukherjee’s revelatory and exhilarating stories of scientists, doctors, and the patients whose lives may be saved by their work, The Song of the Cell is the third book in this extraordinary writer’s exploration of what it means to be human. Mukherjee begins this magnificent story in the late 1600s, when a distinguished English polymath, Robert Hooke, and an eccentric Dutch cloth-merchant, Antonie van Leeuwenhoek looked down their handmade microscopes. What they saw introduced a radical concept that swept through biology and medicine, touching virtually every aspect of the two sciences, and altering both forever. It was the fact that complex living organisms are assemblages of tiny, self-contained, self-regulating units. Our organs, our physiology, our selves–hearts, blood, brains–are built from these compartments. Hooke christened them ” cells”. The discovery of cells–and the reframing of the human body as a cellular ecosystem–announced the birth of a new kind of medicine based on the therapeutic manipulations of cells. A hip fracture, a cardiac arrest, Alzheimer’s dementia, AIDS, pneumonia, lung cancer, kidney failure, arthritis, COVID pneumonia–all could be reconceived as the results of cells, or systems of cells, functioning abnormally. And all could be perceived as loci of cellular therapies. In The Song of the Cell, Mukherjee tells the story of how scientists discovered cells, began to understand them, and are now using that knowledge to create new humans. He seduces you with writing so vivid, lucid, and suspenseful that complex science becomes thrilling. Told in six parts, laced with Mukherjee’s own experience as a researcher, a doctor, and a prolific reader, The Song of the Cell is both panoramic and intimate–a masterpiece.
A fifty-year-old cold case involving California royalty comes back to life–with potentially fatal consequences–in this gripping standalone novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. A magnificent house, vast formal gardens, a golden family that shaped California, and a colorful past filled with now-famous artists: the Gardener Estate was a twentieth-century Eden. And now, just as the Estate is preparing to move into a new future, restoration work on some of its art digs up a grim relic of the home’s past: a human skull, hidden away for decades. Inspector Raquel Laing has her work cut out for her. Fifty years ago, the Estate’s young heir, Rob Gardener, turned his palatial home into a counterculture commune of peace, love, and equality. But that was also a time when serial killers preyed on innocents–monsters like The Highwayman, whose case has just surged back into the public eye. Could the skull belong to one of his victims? To Raquel–a woman who knows all about colorful pasts–the bones clearly seem linked to The Highwayman. But as she dives into the Estate’s archives to look for signs of his presence, what she unearths begins to take on a dark reality all of its own. Everything she finds keeps bringing her back to Rob Gardener himself. While he might be a gray-haired recluse now, back then he was a troubled young Vietnam vet whose girlfriend vanished after a midsummer festival at the Estate. But a lot of people seem to have disappeared from the Gardener Estate that summer when the commune mysteriously fell apart: a young woman, her child, and Rob’s brother, Fort. The pressure is on, and Raquel needs to solve this case–before The Highwayman slips away, or another Gardener vanishes.
Eve Duncan’s daughter Jane MacGuire seems to have found a perfect life with Seth Caleb–until a ruthless madman threatens to destroy it all, in this gripping suspense novel from #1 bestselling author Iris Johansen. Jane MacGuire is enjoying a period of domestic bliss as she focuses on her art and her partner Seth Caleb uses his unique abilities as an agent for the MI6 intelligence service. But when Seth crosses crime lord Hugh Bohdan, he incurs the wrath of one of the world’s most powerful criminal empires…one whose tentacles reach across the globe and even to the idyllic Scottish retreat where Jane is working. Soon Jane is on the run, struggling to stay one step ahead of Bohdan’s army and his devastating high-tech weaponry. Even with the assistance of Earl John MacDuff, she finds danger at every turn. But with that peril comes an astonishing discovery: a 200-year-old secret on the brink of becoming lost to history. Jane and Seth must join forces to unlock the fascinating puzzle, even as they hurtle toward a lethal final confrontation in the Highlands. But before their adventure is over, Jane and Seth will encounter their biggest shock of all…and realize nothing can be the same for them ever again.
1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER – From the author of The Wish comes a poignant love story about risking everything for a dream–and whether it’s possible to leave the past behind.Colby Mills once felt destined for a musical career, until tragedy grounded his aspirations. Now the head of a small family farm in North Carolina, he spontaneously takes a gig playing at a bar in St. Pete Beach, Florida, seeking a rare break from his duties at home. But when he meets Morgan Lee, his world is turned upside-down, making him wonder if the responsibilities he has shouldered need dictate his life forever. The daughter of affluent Chicago doctors, Morgan has graduated from a prestigious college music program with the ambition to move to Nashville and become a star. Romantically and musically, she and Colby complete each other in a way that neither has ever known. While they are falling headlong in love, Beverly is on a heart-pounding journey of another kind. Fleeing an abusive husband with her six-year-old son, she is trying to piece together a life for them in a small town far off the beaten track. With money running out and danger seemingly around every corner, she makes a desperate decision that will rewrite everything she knows to be true. In the course of a single unforgettable week, two young people will navigate the exhilarating heights and heartbreak of first love. Hundreds of miles away, Beverly will put her love for her young son to the test. And fate will draw all three people together in a web of life-altering connections . . . forcing each to wonder whether the dream of a better life can ever survive the weight of the past.
Legendary storyteller Stephen King goes into the deepest well of his imagination in this spellbinding novel about a seventeen-year-old boy who inherits the keys to a parallel world where good and evil are at war, and the stakes could not be higher–for that world or ours. Charlie Reade looks like a regular high school kid, great at baseball and football, a decent student. But he carries a heavy load. His mom was killed in a hit-and-run accident when he was seven, and grief drove his dad to drink. Charlie learned how to take care of himself–and his dad. When Charlie is seventeen, he meets a dog named Radar and her aging master, Howard Bowditch, a recluse in a big house at the top of a big hill, with a locked shed in the backyard. Sometimes strange sounds emerge from it. Charlie starts doing jobs for Mr. Bowditch and loses his heart to Radar. Then, when Bowditch dies, he leaves Charlie a cassette tape telling a story no one would believe. What Bowditch knows, and has kept secret all his long life, is that inside the shed is a portal to another world. King’s storytelling in Fairy Tale soars. This is a magnificent and terrifying tale in which good is pitted against overwhelming evil, and a heroic boy–and his dog–must lead the battle. Early in the Pandemic, King asked himself: “What could you write that would make you happy?” “As if my imagination had been waiting for the question to be asked, I saw a vast deserted city–deserted but alive. I saw the empty streets, the haunted buildings, a gargoyle head lying overturned in the street. I saw smashed statues (of what I didn’t know, but I eventually found out). I saw a huge, sprawling palace with glass towers so high their tips pierced the clouds. Those images released the story I wanted to tell.”
When two seemingly unconnected mysterious deaths occur on his watch, police chief Jesse Stone must pull out all the stops to unravel the truth and stop a killer from striking again. The small town of Paradise is devastated when a star high-school baseball player is found dead at the bottom of a bluff just a day after winning the team’s biggest game. For Jesse, the loss is doubly difficult–the teen was the nephew of his colleague, Suitcase Simpson, and Jesse had been coaching the young shortstop. As he searches for answers about how the boy died and why, he is stonewalled at every turn, and it seems that someone is determined to keep him from digging further. Jesse suddenly must divide his attention between two cases after the shocking murder of former Paradise police chief, Charlie Farrell. Before his death, Farrell had been looking into a series of scam calls that preyed upon the elderly. But how do these “ghost calls” connect to his murder? When threats–and gunshots–appear on Jesse’s own doorstep, the race to find answers is on. Both old and new enemies come into play, and in the end, Jesse and his team must discover the common factor between the two deaths in order to prevent a third.
A Song of Comfortable Chairs: No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency (23) (No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency)
In this latest installment in the beloved No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, Grace Makutsi encounters a pair of quandaries that will require all of her and Mma Ramotswe’s cleverness and generosity to resolve “An escape from life’s woes as well as a suggestion for how to make the whole deal more palatable–fragility, fruit cake, and all.” –The Boston Globe Grace Makutsi’s husband, Phuti Radiphuti, is in a bind. An international firm is attempting to undercut his prices in the office furniture market. Phuti has always been concerned with quality and comfort, but this firm seems interested only in profits. To make matters worse, they have a slick new advertising campaign that seems hard to beat. Meanwhile, Grace is approached by an old friend who has a troubled son. She and Phuti agree to take Patience and Modise in and lend a hand, but things don’t work out quite as intended, and the situation proves difficult for them to handle. It will require not only all of their persistence and dedication but also help from an unexpected quarter to find a solution that will make everyone happy. Faced with more than her fair share of delicate dilemmas, Mma Makutsi deals with it all with her usual graciousness. This–along with the kindness, generosity, and good sense for which the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency is known–assures us that, in the end, each of these matters will be set right.
Welcome to the world of Harmony, where–despite its name, things are anything but–danger lurks just beneath the surface in this new novel by New York Times bestselling author, Jayne Castle. If there’s something Ravenna Chastain knows, it’s when to end things. And after she almost winds up the victim of a cult that believes she’s a witch, it’s easy to walk away from her dead-end career, ready for a new start. But where to find a job that would allow her to use her very specialized skill set? The answer is clear: she becomes a matchmaker. But even a successful matchmaker can’t find someone for everyone, and Ravenna considers Ethan Sweetwater her first professional failure. After nine failed dates, Ravenna knows it’s time to cut Ethan loose. But Ethan refuses to be fired as a client–he needs one final date to a business function. Since Ravenna needs a date herself to a family event, they agree to a deal: she will be his (business) date if he will be her (fake) date to her grandparents’ anniversary celebration. What Ethan fails to mention is that attending the business function is a cover for some industrial espionage that he’s doing as a favor to the new Illusion Town Guild boss. Ravenna is happy to help, but their relationship gets even more complicated when things heat up–the chemistry between them is explosive, as explosive as the danger that’s stalking Ravenna. Lucky for her, Ethan isn’t just an engineer–he’s also a Sweetwater, and Sweetwaters are known for hunting down monsters…
Two families. One courtroom showdown. – John Grisham’s most gripping thriller yet. – “A legal literary legend.” –USA Today The #1 New York Times bestselling author returns to Mississippi with the riveting story of two sons of immigrant families who grow up as friends, but ultimately find themselves on opposite sides of the law. Grisham’s trademark twists and turns will keep you tearing through the pages until the stunning conclusion. For most of the last hundred years, Biloxi was known for its beaches, resorts, and seafood industry. But it had a darker side. It was also notorious for corruption and vice, everything from gambling, prostitution, bootleg liquor, and drugs to contract killings. The vice was controlled by small cabal of mobsters, many of them rumored to be members of the Dixie Mafia. Keith Rudy and Hugh Malco grew up in Biloxi in the sixties and were childhood friends, as well as Little League all-stars. But as teenagers, their lives took them in different directions. Keith’s father became a legendary prosecutor, determined to “clean up the Coast.” Hugh’s father became the “Boss” of Biloxi’s criminal underground. Keith went to law school and followed in his father’s footsteps. Hugh preferred the nightlife and worked in his father’s clubs. The two families were headed for a showdown, one that would happen in a courtroom. Life itself hangs in the balance in The Boys from Biloxi, a sweeping saga rich with history and with a large cast of unforgettable characters.
Two lifelong friends decide to trade places the week before Christmas and end up finding love along the way in this delightful novel from the queen of holiday stories, #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber. Peter Armstrong and Hank Colfax are best friends, but their lives couldn’t be more different. Peter, the local pastor who is dedicated to his community, spending time visiting the flock, attending meetings, and, with the holiday season approaching, preparing for the Christmas service and live nativity. As a bartender, Hank serves a much different customer base at his family-owned tavern, including a handful of lonely regulars and the local biker gang. When Peter scoffs that Hank has it easy compared to him, the two decide to switch jobs until Christmas Eve. To their surprise, the responsibilities of a bartender and a pastor are similar, but taking on the other’s work is more difficult than either Peter or Hank expected. As the two begin to see each other in a new light–and each discovers a new love to cherish–their lives are forever changed. In The Christmas Spirit, Debbie Macomber celebrates the true meaning of the holidays and the inclusive community spirit that binds us all.
The thrilling second novel of an all-new fantasy series from the legendary author behind the Shannara saga, about a human girl adapting to her place in a magical world she’s only recently discovered It’s been two years since Auris escaped from the sinister Goblin prison and learned of her heritage as one of the Fae. She is now happily partnered with her Fae lover, Harrow, and deeply bonded with her new family. All seems to be going perfectly–until, surprisingly, the Goblin attacks begin again. Someone, it seems, has not forgotten that Auris exists and seems determined to retrieve her . . . but who? And why? As Auris begins to dig deeper into the mystery, old friends and new enemies appear, and she starts to realize that her still-shrouded past must contain the answers she needs. But even Auris does not suspect how far down the rabbit hole she is about to go, until Harrow is taken and an impossible ransom demand is issued. With two new companions at her side, Auris must attempt to unlock the remaining secrets of her past. For if she cannot, she will never see Harrow alive again.
Stone Barrington finds himself in hot water in this exhilarating adventure from the #1 New York Times bestselling author. During an intense storm in Dark Harbor, Maine, a perplexing murder lands a dead man on Stone Barrington’s doorstep. As secrets swirl around this mystery man’s identity, Stone quickly sets out to unravel a web of cunning misdirections and lies. Soon enough, he is embroiled in an elaborate game of cat and mouse between the CIA and nefarious foreign forces, including a bewitching new companion who comes under his protection. But when Stone’s actions draw the attention of an old enemy, one who will stop at nothing to prevent the truth from getting out, Stone realizes he may have finally met his match.
In this heartfelt novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Danielle Steel, a young woman with an unforgettable voice fights for the freedom to pursue her dreams. Iris Cooper has been singing ever since she can remember, hitting the high notes like no one else. When she is twelve, her father convinces the owner of a bar in Lake City, Texas, to let her perform, and she stuns the audience. In the ensuing years, never staying anywhere for long, father and daughter move from one dusty town to the next, her passion for music growing every time she takes the mike in another roadhouse. But it is not an easy life for Iris with her father in charge and using her income to pay for gambling, women, and booze. When she starts to tour at age eighteen, she takes on a real manager. Yet he exploits her too, and the singers and musicians she tours with are really the only family she has. It is they who give Iris the courage to finally fly free, leave the tour, and follow her dreams. After years of enduring the hardships of the road, exploitation, and abuse to do what she loves, Iris’s big chance comes as her talent soars. But at the top at last, Iris still has to fight every step of the way. In The High Notes, Danielle Steel delivers an inspiring story about finding the strength to stand up for yourself and your dreams, no matter what it takes.
From the author of The 6:20 Man, “Memory Man” Amos Decker–an FBI consultant with perfect recall–delves into a bewildering double homicide in this new thriller in David Baldacci’s #1 New York Times bestselling series. When Amos Decker is called to South Florida to investigate a double homicide, the case appears straightforward: A federal judge and her bodyguard have been found dead, the judge’s face sporting a blindfold with two eye holes crudely cut out, a clear sign that she’d made one too many enemies over her years on the bench. What at first seems cut and dry is anything but: Not only did the judge have more enemies than Decker can count–from violent gang members, drug dealers, and smugglers to a resentful ex-husband–but the bodyguard presents additional conundrums that muddy the waters even further. Who was the real target in this vicious attack? Meanwhile, Decker must contend with a series of unsettling changes, including a new partner–Special Agent Frederica “Freddie” White–and a devastating event that brings Decker’s own tragic past back to the present . . . and forces him to reckon with his future. As potential witnesses start disappearing, Decker and White are inexorably pulled down a twisted tunnel of secrets, crimes, and scandal–at the end of which lies Decker’s deadliest threat yet.
The gripping new Jack Reacher thriller from the #1 New York Times bestselling authors Lee Child and Andrew Child “No Plan B is not to be missed. A perfectly plotted, fast-paced thriller, with bigger twists than ever before. It’s no wonder Jack Reacher is everyone’s favorite rebel hero.”–Karin Slaughter In Gerrardsville, Colorado, a woman dies under the wheels of a moving bus. The death is ruled a suicide. But Jack Reacher saw what really happened: A man in a gray hoodie and jeans, moving stealthily, pushed the victim to her demise–before swiftly grabbing the dead woman’s purse and strolling away. When another homicide is ruled an accident, Reacher knows this is no coincidence. With a killer on the loose, Reacher has no time to waste to track down those responsible. But Reacher is unaware that these crimes are part of something much larger and more far-reaching: an arsonist out for revenge, a foster kid on the run, a cabal of powerful people involved in a secret conspiracy with many moving parts. There is no room for error, but they make a grave one. They don’t consider Reacher a threat. “There’s too much at stake to start running from shadows.” But Reacher isn’t a shadow. He is flesh and blood. And relentless when it comes to making things right. For when the threat is Reacher, there is No Plan B.
Multimillion-copy bestselling author Gregory Maguire brings us the enchanting second novel in the series Another Day, returning to the world he first created in Wicked.
The Oracle of Maracoor, the second in the trilogy called Another Day, continues the story of Elphaba’s green-skinned granddaughter, Rain. That strange land, Maracoor–across the ocean from Oz–is beset by an invading army. In the mayhem, Rain and Cossy, a child felon, break out of prison. Helped by a few flying monkeys, they struggle to escape the city before it falls under siege. Their arresting officer, Lucikles, also retreats with his family to a highland redoubt. But safety eludes them all. Chaos thunders upon them in the form of warriors, refugees, and brigands. The very fabric of reality loosens, liberating creatures of myth and legend–huge blue wolves, harpies, and giants made of the very landscape. Cued in by secrets known only to the most highly placed members of the royal court, Rain and her companions hunt the fabled Oracle of Maracoor for guidance and soothsaying. Rain has to recover her forgotten past if she is to consider returning home. Cossy, the ten-year-old convicted of murder, must become invisible to avoid being taken into custody again. Meanwhile, the Fist of Mara, an arcane artifact that renders all around it barren, hammers against human lives. If the reclusive Oracle should spin a prophecy, might the desperate wicked years promise another day, one less perilous?
Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers are up against a powerful vigilante group with an eye on vengeance in this stunning new novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author. “We’re going to murder people who need to be murdered.” So begins a press release from a mysterious group known only as “The Five,” shortly after a vicious predator is murdered in San Francisco. The Five is made up of vigilante killers who are very bored…and very rich. They target the worst of society–rapists, murderers, and thieves–and then use their unlimited resources to offset the damage done by those who they’ve killed, donating untraceable Bitcoin to charities and victims via the dark net. The Five soon become popular figures in the media …though their motives may not be entirely pure. After The Five strike again in the Twin Cities, Virgil Flowers and Lucas Davenport are sent in to investigate. And they soon have their hands full–the killings are smart and carefully choreographed, and with no apparent direct connection to the victims, the killers are virtually untraceable. But if anyone can destroy this group, it will be the dynamic team of Davenport and Flowers.
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Presumed Innocent and The Last Trial returns with a riveting legal thriller in which a reckless private detective is embroiled in a fraught police scandal. For as long as Lucia Gomez has been the police chief in the city of Highland Isle, near Kindle County, she has known that any woman in law enforcement must walk a precarious line between authority and camaraderie to gain respect. She has maintained a spotless reputation–until now. Three male police officers have accused her of soliciting sex in exchange for promotions to higher ranks. With few people left who she can trust, Chief Gomez turns to an old friend, Rik Dudek, to act as her attorney in the federal grand jury investigation, insisting to Rik that the accusations against her are part of an ugly smear campaign designed to destroy her career and empower her enemies–both outside the police force and within.. Clarice “Pinky” Granum spent most of her youth experimenting with an impressive array of drugs and failing out of various professions, including the police academy. Pinky knows that in the eyes of most people, she’s nothing but a screwup–but she doesn’t trust most people’s opinions anyway. Moreover, she finally has a respectable-enough job as a licensed P.I. working for Rik on his roster of mostly minor cases, like workman’s comp, DUIs and bar fights. Rik’s shabby office and even shabbier cases are a far cry from the kinds of high-profile criminal matters Pinky became familiar with in the law office of her grandfather, Sandy Stern. But Rik and Pinky feel that Chief Gomez’s case, which has attracted national attention, is their chance to break into the legal big leagues. Guided by her gut instinct and razor-sharp investigative skills, Pinky dives headfirst into a twisted scandal that will draw her into the deepest recesses of the city’s criminal networks, as well as the human mind. But she will need every scrap of tenacity and courage to unravel the dark secrets those closest to her are determined to keep hidden.
Global bestselling author of River God and The New Kingdom, Wilbur Smith, returns with the next epic book in his brand-new Ancient Egyptian series. A RUTHLESS ENEMY. A CIVILISATION IN RUINS. A QUEST FOR SALVATION. For over fifty years Egypt has known nothing but war and devastation at the hands of the Hyksos, a bloodthirsty barbarian people from the distant east who continue to advance, crushing armies in their wake. Times are desperate, but throughout the conflict, a brave resistance fights on under the great Taita, a slave who has risen far beyond his ranks. Piay, entrusted into Taita’s care by his parents at the age of just five, has been trained to become a great spy, unmatched by any other. Determined to prove his worth, he embarks on a dangerous mission to the north – to Mycenae and through the heart of Hyksos land and across the great sea – to find allies to help defend Egypt. As the situation becomes increasingly precarious, and the fate of the kingdom is hanging in the balance, can Piay succeed in his quest or will this mean the end of the glory that is Egypt once and for all? “Best historical novelist – I say Wilbur Smith” Stephen King
Treasure State: A Cassie Dewell Novel (Cassie Dewell Novels #6)
INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
1 New York Times bestselling author C. J. Box’s Treasure State finds Cassie Dewell in Montana on the trail of a con man.
Private Investigator Cassie Dewell’s business is thriving, and her latest case puts her on the hunt for a slippery con man who’s disappeared somewhere in the “treasure state”. A wealthy Florida widow has accused him of absconding with her fortune, and wants Cassie to find him and get it back. The trail takes Cassie to Anaconda, Montana, a quirky former copper mining town that’s the perfect place to reinvent yourself. As the case develops, Cassie begins to wonder if her client is telling her everything. On top of that, Cassie is also working what’s easily one of her strangest assignments ever. A poem that promises buried treasure to one lucky adventurer has led to a cutthroat competition and five deaths among treasure-hunters. But Cassie’s client doesn’t want the treasure. Instead, he claims to be the one who hid the gold and wrote the poem. And he’s hired Cassie to try to find him. Between the two cases, Cassie has her hands full. In Montana, a killer view can mean more than just the scenery, and Cassie knows much darker things hide behind the picturesque landscape of Big Sky Country. Treasure State, C. J. Box’s highly anticipated follow-up to The Bitterroots, is full of more twists and turns than the switchbacks through the Anaconda Range.
A killer is looking to silence them, once and for all. FBI agent Jordan Wallace is close to cracking the human trafficking case she’s been working, when she does the one thing she should never do: let her guard down. The botched undercover mission is semisalvaged by the last-minute appearance of criminal psychologist Patrick Law, but Jordan can’t imagine making a worse first impression. Especially when she’s partnered with Patrick moving forward. Patrick’s innate ability to get inside a criminal’s head is an asset for the Krewe of Hunters. But Jordan wishes she could protect her own thoughts from her new partner. Patrick assures her that both she and her thoughts are safe with him, but Jordan’s less sure about her heart. Letting someone have her back has never been her strong suit, but with a dangerous killer still at large, trusting in Patrick might be the only thing keeping them alive. “A harrowing journey… Intelligent, fast-paced and frightening at all times.” — Suspense Magazine on The Final Deception
One by One, the Stars: Essays (Crux: The Georgia Literary Nonfiction)
A tireless and discerning advocate for contemporary practitioners of creative nonfiction, Ned Stuckey-French was at the center of every national discussion about the genre. He greatly contributed to our scholarly understanding of the history of the essay and was working on his first essay collection when he died of cancer in 2019.
That collection, One by One, the Stars, presents new, highly personal essays tracing Stuckey-French’s childhood in Indiana and a burgeoning interest, during adolescence, in politics and social justice to his life as a father, teacher, and writer. Thematic threads connect these elements, and foremost is his growing commitment to activism on behalf of the disadvantaged, overlooked, or threatened. The volume also features some of Stuckey-French’s “greatest hits” as a public scholar and writer, including “Don’t Be Cruel: An Argument for Elvis,” “Our Queer Little Hybrid Thing: Toward a Definition of the Essay,” and his popular essay on his Facebook addiction–for which he was widely known. Along the way, his stories and reflections offer fascinating and timely insights into family dynamics, history, politics, ecology, social justice, and literature. All of it is infused with Ned Stuckey-French’s guiding spirit, full of curiosity, compassion, and conviction.
Bazaar: Vibrant Vegetarian Recipes
One of the Washington Post’s most inspiring cookbooks of 2019 bazaar noun: a market in the Middle East Bazaar is a colorful, flavourful and satisfying celebration of vegetable dishes, designed tosuit every occasion and every palate. The magic of this cookbook is that you won’t feel like anything is missing, with dishes full of easy-to-achieve flavors and depth that would win over even the most die-hard carnivore. Each recipe utilizes the abundance of varied flavour profiles of the East, from spices, herbs and perfumed aromatics to hearty staples such as grains and pulses, combined with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. You will find salads for all seasons, spectacular sides, bowl comfort, moreish mains and sweet treats. Recipes include: Grilled halloumi flatbreads with preserved lemon salsa Charred tomato & roasted chili soup with herb-fried croutons Root vegetable bastilla Grilled tofu salad with peanuts, sweet tamarind & spiced miso dressing Potato, ricotta & herb dumplings with walnuts & chili butter Feta, pul biber & oregano macaroni cheese Courgette, orange & almond cake with sweet orange yogurt frosting
You don’t have to be young to read young adult literature.
In PPL’s new hour-long program, Young Adult (YA) Literature for Older Adults, brought to the community by the creative and enthusiastic Laura Brown, you’ll be introduced to diverse topics, formats, and styles of writing from a variety of authors, and you’ll get to read and discuss excerpts from some great titles (that you can then check out!).
On Saturday, Oct. 15, at noon, in the Potsdam Public Library North Country Section, come share an hour with Laura where you will get to learn more about all that YA Literature has to offer to readers of ALL ages, focusing on historical fiction.
Laura is SUNY Potsdam’s Chair / Associate Professor, Secondary English, and Program Coordinator for the Adolescence English Education Program. She teaches Young Adult Literature as well as the MST and undergraduate methods courses, and Intro to Education.
But Laura is also passionate about her community. In developing this program with PPL, Laura talked about her love of working with people.
“(B)ut I especially love working with older adults,” she said. “I think some of that comes from the fact that my dad and I were so close. He was 53 when I was born, and I didn’t get to have him in my life for very long, but that just made the moments we did have together more special.”
Laura said her father was “a born storyteller,” who would make up stories (and different voices for his characters) for her and her brothers, when she was a little girl, . They would huddle together on the bed, mesmerized by their father’s tales.
Sharing stories with others is Laura’s way of recapturing her father’s gift of storytelling.
“I used to volunteer at Maplewood in Canton, and I would read to residents,” she said. “It was such a joy to be able to give that time and those stories to people who really needed and wanted them. When that ended, I spent years trying to figure out how to reconnect, and I wound up doing that through the development of a SOAR (Stimulating Opportunities After Retirement) class with the same name: YA Literature for Older Adults. I love YA Literature, and I love working with older people, so win-win!”
Young Adult Literature became of specific interest to Laura when she taught high school and was confronted with a closet full of books that were both “amazing” and “disappointing.”
“Most of the books were older and were not really geared toward young adults. It’s not that they were bad books, but I remembered reading a number of them myself as a teenager. Wasn’t there anything new?” she said. “Also, I was working at a school that had a significant population of struggling readers from very diverse backgrounds, and I needed books that would draw them in and let them see themselves in the pages. Honestly, I wasn’t sure where to start.”
She began buying books geared towards young adults from used book stores and started her own classroom library. In reading as many as she could, she said she found the writing “every bit as strong as some of the classics we were ‘supposed’ to read.”
“(A)nd students were more drawn to the characters and the topics because they were more relevant,” she said. “When I decided to go to graduate school and, eventually, to get my PhD, I put my focus on YA Literature and how it can help students better understand the world around them and their place in it.”
And that is where the PPL Program YA Literature for Older Adults comes in: examining a stigma of reading YA Literature, Laura said.
“I have had some parents come to me upset that their kids are ‘only’ reading YA Literature, as if it’s a bad thing. For me, reading is an essential skill, and if young people are reading at all, then that should be celebrated!” Laura said. “Also, YA Literature is not ‘less than’ other literature. YA authors are often more innovative, inclusive, and risky in their writing, as they have a tough audience! Plus, YA Literature can teach us more about adolescents themselves, and there’s a lot to learn!”
In working with the library on this program, Laura said she has had a love of libraries since she was a preteen, walking to her local library with a backpack and check out as many books as she was able, (which she believed to be 10 books at that time).
“The library, to me, is a magical place, but I think because we can just open our computers and get books online, the library has faded into the background a bit,” Laura said. “Don’t get me wrong, access is important – if people are buying books online and reading, then yay! – but I really want to draw people back to the library as a community space to talk about books, to share ideas, to have conversations about what we read. There is nothing like holding a book in your hand and turning the pages. And there is nothing like sitting around a table with other people and hearing their perspectives on different stories.
“Reading is often seen as a solitary event, something we do silently in bed at night or at our desks in school, but I would argue that it can also be a shared experience,” she said. “And that’s what I’m hoping to create with this, and hopefully, future events. I want to read with people, to get them excited about new books, to hear stories and perspectives, and build a new (old) community of readers.”