To manga or not to manga. For me, it was a big NEVER, until last week. I know this may be an inflammatory statement on my part, for some of you. But it is the truth. I had never read any manga and had never really wanted to read it.
However, a few months ago when I was at Books in Bloom, some of our teen volunteers were taking a break at my table, and I made them give me reading suggestions. Bradley told me I needed to read Death Note, and Dustin recommended Shaman King to me. I finally got around to reading their suggestions, and I’m happy to report that my introduction to manga was an enjoyable experience. (Thanks for the great recommendations, guys!)
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A couple of months ago at Books in Bloom, I was accepting suggestions for books/movies/topics to blog about, and I received a lot of intriguing suggestions. One of the recommendations was for Paulette Jiles’s Enemy Women. The woman who recommended it told me it was set during Civil War-era Missouri and that the author was a poet and her resulting writing style was lovely and evocative. We got so distracted discussing the book that I didn’t even think to ask her for her name until after she had left, but I recently read Enemy Women and really enjoyed it. (I really hope the lady who suggested it chimes in with a comment, so I can thank her properly. Until then, thanks so much for the great book recommendation!)
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A few months ago, the library’s book club read The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry. Now, I am not a member of that book club, but I do always like seeing what they’re reading and discussing the books with coworkers who are members. I remember this one being particularly popular; in addition, a short time later, a patron who belonged to the book club–Callie–also recommended the book to me and suggested I review it for the blog. (Thanks, Callie!) I ended up enjoying it and think it would appeal to most people who love reading and books.
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One of the questions submitted to me for this series was “What 3 questions would you ask an author?” by Kris. (Thanks, Kris!)
I had to really think about this one because the one time I did get a chance to talk to an author–at a writing conference I attended in college, I got to meet Ron Hansen, who wrote one of my all-time favorite books, The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward R0bert Ford–I couldn’t think of any intelligent questions. I just mumbled something about being a big fan and then brandished my own personal copy of one of his books for an autograph. Because I’m smooth like that.
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A few months ago when our blog first debuted, we hosted a “meet the blogger” reception at the library to boost patron awareness and also to provide readers with a forum for suggesting topics/books/movies for me to write about. One of the people I chatted with that day–Stephanie–asked me if I’d ever watched the classic comedy Harvey. When I told her that I knew the basic story line but had never seen it, she requested that I write about it.
Harvey is one of those movies that I’ve always heard about. I knew it starred Jimmy Stewart and that he has an imaginary friend, a giant rabbit. But that was about all I knew about the film. I’m glad Stephanie recommended it to me because it’s hilarious!
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Last month, we debuted the “Ask the Blogger” series, in which I answer reader questions/review reader-recommended material. This post comes courtesy of Carol Ann, who suggested I review this recent movie because it’s wonderful but under-appreciated.
I actually remember seeing some advertising for this movie when it came out, made a mental note that I should see it, and then forgot about it until I read the request Carol Ann submitted. I’m glad she suggested it because she’s right–it is a great movie that more people should see.
I should probably preface this review by admitting that I am a devoted Sherlock Holmes fan. I’ve loved the character since I was a kid. In fact, I own several different editions of the complete works of Sherlock Holmes, and I’ve read all the stories twice–once in the order they were published and once in a sequence that someone proposed representing the chronology within the stories themselves. (I realize that makes me sound like a complete dork–and there’s some truth to that accusation–but it was actually an interesting experiment in watching a series evolve. I have no regrets.)
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One of the most important reasons the Berryville Public Library decided to create a blog is we wanted to provide a form for conversation with our patrons. To that end, I’m more than happy to take requests and suggestions for items to review and topics to discuss.
I’ve already received several great recommendations of things to review and write about, and I decided to start this series of posts with the first suggestion I received, from Kris. (Thank you again, Kris!) At our blog launch reception on January 19th, she asked me what three books I’d take with me to a deserted island, so here’s my answer:
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