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3/15/07: New biographies of famous people for fourth graders and up

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Biographies are among our patrons’ favorite books, because it is so interesting and inspiring to read true stories of real people who have done exciting things. We are in the midst of purchasing 27 biographies about a wide variety of extraordinary people ranging from historical figures to today’s athletes and entertainers. These books are officially categorized as Junior Nonfiction, meaning they are aimed at fourth graders and up, but a quick look at some of the people featured makes clear they’d appeal to teens and adults as well. Already here and on our shelves are books about:

  • Historical heroes and heroines like American Red Cross founder Clara Barton, Wild West cowboy Bill Pickett and abolitionist Harriet Tubman.
  • Athletes like quarterback Peyton Manning, track and field champion Jesse Owens, skateboarder Tony Hawk, and golfers Michelle Wie and Tiger Woods.
  • Politicians like Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton.
  • Royalty like Prince William.
  • World leaders like Nelson Mandela.
  • Entertainers like Christina Aguilera, Leonardo DiCaprio, Elvis Presley and Oprah Winfrey.
  • Creative people like painter and sculptor Georgia O’Keeffe and author Lemony Snicket.


Books for parents to read to kids
For beginning readers, we also have a variety of easy new books that are perfect for parents to read to their youngsters. They include “Leaf Man” by Lois Ehlert, “I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More!” by Karen Beaumont, “The Great Fuzz Frenzy” by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel, “Max Goes to the Moon: A Science Adventure with Max the Dog” by Jeffrey Bennett, “I Wanna Iguana” by Karen Kaufman Orloff and David Catrow, “Zen Shorts” by Jon J. Muth (with help from Stillwater the bear), and “Trains: Steaming! Pulling! Huffing” by Patricia Hubbell. All these books have lovely illustrations as well.

New books for adults: History, puzzles, how-to and inspiration
“The Boleyn Inheritance” by Philippa Gregory tells the stories of Anne of Cleves, Katherine Howard and Jane Rochford. “Journey to Freedom” by Miles Davis is another in the important African American Library series. “Su Doku for Dummies” by Andrew Heron and Edmund James offers a range of these popular puzzles from easy to diabolically difficult. “Secrets of the Night Sky” by Discover magazine columnist Bob Berman offers text and drawings of what you can see in the universe with the naked eye. “Cold-Climate Gardening” by Lewis Hill contains tips on how to extend your growing season by at least 30 days. “The Intellectual Devotional” by David S. Kidder and Noah D. Oppenheim provides a year’s worth of daily readings to refresh the spirit, stimulate the mind and help complete your education.

Fantasies for adults
“Mistral’s Kiss” by Laurel K. Hamilton is about Princess Meredith, a former private detective in Los Angeles and now heir to a throne of faerie. “Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West” is a fantasy by Gregory Maguire that looks at the story of Oz from the darker side of the rainbow, in the tradition of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Lifelong Learning lectures underway
The third in our spring series of Lifelong Learning lectures takes place this Saturday, March 17, when Dr. Roger Cohen speaks on “Impending Climate Catastrophe and the Quick Energy Switch,” a hard technical look at the global warming issue and a short trip into the energy future. Please click on the Lifelong Learning Program page for details of the full Spring 2007 lecture series. All are free to the public. They take place in the library at 3 p.m. on Saturdays.

Thanks to our donors
Our thanks this week for gifts of books and materials from Richard Clare, Bruce Dryburgh, Gail Furtau, Dot Jones, Sue Kehret, Peggy Lane, Bonita Lynne, Mary McDonald, Carl Nevitt, Pagosa Bible Church, Virginia Pichon, Rader family, MaryAnn Stewart, Susan Thorpe, Bill Wetzel and Margaret Wilson.