Friday, July 31, 2015

New York Times Bestsellers Top 5 (Week of Aug. 2)

Many patrons browse the new materials section of the library to discover the latest reads.  Part of finding them is browsing the New York Times Bestsellers lists we make available to locate that popular title.  Check out this blog entry to discover the latest to lead the pack on the Hardcover Fiction & Nonfiction lists for the week.

Hardcover Fiction Top 5

#1: Go Set a Watchman
Author: Harper Lee
Position Last Week: 1
Weeks On List: 2
Call Number: F LEE
Summary: In the mid-1950s, a grown-up Jean Louise Finch returns home to Maycomb find that her adored father is not as perfect as she believed.

#2: The Girl on the Train
Author: Paula Hawkins
Position Last Week: 2
Weeks On List: 28
Call Number: F HAWKINS
Summary: A psychological thriller set in the environs of London.

#3: All the Light We Cannot See
Author: Anthony Doerr
Position Last Week: 3
Weeks On List: 64
Call Number: F DOERR
Summary: The lives of a blind French girl and a gadget-obsessed German boy before and during World War II; the winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Weekly Events @ Your Library (Aug. 3-8)

Keep up with the great programs and events your Abilene Public Library has to offer by catching this weekly blog each Thursday.  For a complete listing, visit our main website to take a look at our program schedule.  And remember, all programming is offered FREE of charge.

Aug. 3 @ 6:00PM
South Branch
1401 S. Danville Dr.
PH: 325-698-7565
Join us for the monthly session of the South Branch's Teen Book Club, designed for avid teen readers in the community to come and share popular fiction materials with your peers.  Join us for a great discussion, snacks, and help choose what we'll read next. 

Aug. 3 @ 6:30PM
Main Library
202 Cedar St.
PH: 325-676-6067
Gear up for a fun crafting session where we'll show youth, ages 8-15, how to create their own stylish bracelets using fabric scraps.  The finished product will certainly look awesome, so don't pass up on your chance to join the fun. 

Aug. 4 @ 6:30PM
Main Library
202 Cedar St.
PH: 325-676-6067
If you're a young adult who loves anime, join our monthly club at the Main Library. We engage in a number of activities from watching hit anime shows, discussing everything anime and manga related, and a host of other items, and all led by Amanda Sasser. Come be a part of this monthly club at your library. 

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Tremain's Book Corner: "Redeployment" by: Phil Klay

Redeployment
Author: Phil Klay
Reviewed By: Tremain Jackson, South Branch Manager
Personal Rating: 5 Stars

Book Summary: This collection of stories takes readers to the frontlines of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, asking us to understand what happened there, and what happened to the soldiers who returned.  Interwoven with themes of brutality and faith, guild and fear, helplessness and survival, the characters in these stories struggle to make meaning out of chaos.

In this book, a soldier who has had to shoot dogs because they were eating human corpses must learn what it is like to return to domestic life in suburbia, surrounded by people "who have no idea where Fallujah is, where three members of your platoon died."  In "After Action Report," a Lance Corporal seeks expiation for a killing he didn't commit, in order that his best friend will be unburdened.  A Mortuary Affairs Marine tells about his experiences collecting remains - of U.S. and Iraqi soldiers both.  A chaplain sees his understanding of Christianity, and his ability to provide solace through religion, tested by the actions of a ferocious Colonel.  And in the darkly comic "Money as a Weapons System," a young Foreign Services Officer is given the absurd task of helping Iraqis improve their lives by teaching them baseball.  These stories reveal the intricate combination of monotony, bureaucracy, comradeship and violence that make up a soldier's daily life at war, and the isolation, remorse, and despair that can accompany a soldier's homecoming.

Personal Review: What an amazing read for after finishing it, you can easily see how it won the National Book Award for Fiction.  Providing 12 stories, each powerful in its own right, they cover different areas of the armed forces and the men who have served in Iraq.  As the author is also a veteran of the war in Iraq, he brings first-hand knowledge and experiences to the stories, which added to the strength and impact of each story.

It's sad to think there are people in America who have either forgotten, become sensitized to, or just plain don't think about what's going on overseas.  The fact that brave Americans are risking their lives each and everyday are getting tossed aside when it comes to the mundane distractions in our lives.

This book will force anyone to stop and think, not only about the war we're in, but war itself.  I must admit, I myself have been guilty of not always being cognizant of what's gong on, but this book helped to give me a whole new eye-opening respect and appreciation for everything these brave servicemen and women do day in and day out.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Today's Top Book & DVD Releases

Everyone loves staying on top of the latest releases in books & DVDs, and we receive them on a regular basis at your Abilene Public Library.  Tuesdays are the biggest days of the week in the world of libraries, as these are the days that the bulk of all new materials are released for the week.  Join us as we hit the highlights of some of the more popular titles coming to your library, and be sure to get yourselves on the reserve lists.

The Gunman
Starring: Sean Penn
Summary: A sniper on an unscrupulous slaying team kills the minister of mines of the Congo.  Terrier's successful kill shot requires him to go into hiding to safeguard himself and his team from revenge.  Terrier goes back to the Congo years later, but soon discovers himself to be the target of a paid hit gang associated with the minister's assassination. 

Home
Starring: Jim Parsons
Summary: A lovable misfit from another planet meets a girl names Tip.  The two unlikely friends embark on the greatest journey of all time. 

Badlands
Author: C.J. Box
Summary: 20 miles across the North Dakota border, detective Cassie Dewell has been assigned as the new deputy sheriff of Grimstad, the oil capital of the state.  With oil comes money, with money comes drugs, and with drugs come the dirtiest criminals hustling to corner the market.  12-year-old Kyle has been written off as the "slow" kid.  He witnesses a car accident and takes a mysterious bundle from the scene, he's in possession of a lot of money and packets of white powder.  Has his luck changed?  While Cassie is propelled on a collision course with a murderous enemy, she finds that the key to it all might be Kyle who keeps showing up where he doesn't belong. 

Monday, July 27, 2015

"Talking Technology @ Your Library" ~ @ the Library Article

I've been called the "digital librarian," but I can't help it if I'm attracted to all things technology-related.  For those of you who see me at the library, it's rare to see me without my smartphone, iPad, Surface, laptop, or all four at once.  Technology has become a part of our lives, helping to make things a little easier.  But did you know your Abilene Public Library has a lot to offer as well?  Whether inside our branches or on-the-go, we've got great services available for free.  All you need is a valid library card.


First and foremost, OverDrive is the service I talk most about.  Introduced in 2008, those with Kindles, iDevices, smartphones, and more have been making use of this popular service to checkout digital eBooks & audiobooks for free.  With a great selection, no late fees, and wireless checkouts, it's certainly a favorite of many patrons.  Check it out for yourself by visiting us online and clicking on the OverDrive Logo.


Hoopla, which I've dubbed "Netflix for Libraries," is our latest digital service, where you can stream movies, audiobooks, music albums, books, and more for free.  Unlike OverDrive, items in Hoopla are always available for checkout 24/7, which is a great benefit for streaming services.  Whether on your mobile device or a PC, patrons may checkout 8 titles a month, and just like OverDrive, they return themselves when they're due.  I'm certain you'll be impressed by titles you'll find available through this service.


The AWE Early Literacy Stations for kids is another popular service at all three library locations.  Each station connects youth to over 60 educational games across all subject areas from reading to science.  Kids have fallen completely in love with them as they don't even realize they're learning while having fun.  Plus, even better for the parents, none of these stations allow youth access to the Internet.  That alone can certainly give some parents great peace of mind, and kids don't even notice it's not there.  Look for them on your next visit to the library and test it out...although I must warn you there might be a struggle to pull them away.

Everyone's on the lookout for Hot Spots (places that carry a Wi-Fi signal to log onto and access the Internet) these days.  Did you know each library branch is a local hot spot?  We offer free access to Wi-Fi during our normal hours of operation.  Bring in your laptops, tablets, smartphones, and more, and make use of this complimentary service.

Computers are also a big draw at your library, and we offer free access with a library card.  The only charges are for printing at $0.15 per page in black & white and $0.45 in color, which is still a deal.  Public terminals are available at all branches, and we even offer lab PC's to access Microsoft Office applications.  The library's PC's are usually in high-demand and all are offered on a first-come, first-served basis; however, feel free to reserve one if all are in use.  You may also call ahead and staff can place a reservation for you over the phone.  It really is the best way to ensure a PC will be ready for you when you arrive.

If you're into social media, you're in luck.  Connect with us through the most popular social media platforms out there including Facebook, YouTube, Blogger, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Podomatic, and Tumblr to keep up with what we're doing.  You can find links to each on our main website.

That only scratches the surface of the technology your Abilene Public Library offers.  With access to children's eBooks through TumbleBooks, online databases, viewing the latest materials with Wowbrary, and more, we know how to stay on top of the latest in technology.  Ask us about any of these services on your next visit and take advantage of what we have to offer.

Article Contributed by Me (Tremain Jackson), Manager of the South Branch of the Abilene Public Library

Friday, July 24, 2015

New York Times Bestsllers Top 5 (Week of July 26)

Many patrons browse the new materials section of the library to discover the latest reads.  Part of finding them is browsing the New York Times Bestsellers lists we make available to locate that popular title.  Check out this blog entry to discover the latest to lead the pack on the Hardcover Fiction & Nonfiction lists for the week.

Hardcover Fiction Top 5

#1: Go Set a Watchman
Author: Harper Lee
Position Last Week: n/a
Weeks On List: 1
Call Number: F LEE
Summary: In the mid-1950s, a grown-up Jean Louise Finch returns home to Macomb to find that her adored father is not as perfect as she believed.

#2: The Girl on the Train
Author: Paula Hawkins
Position Last Week: 1
Weeks On List: 27
Call Number: F HAWKINS
Summary: A psychological thriller set in the environs of London.

#3: All the Light We Cannot See
Author: Anthony Doerr
Position Last Week: 2
Weeks On List: 63
Call Number: F DOERR
Summary: The lives of a blind French girl and a gadget-obsessed German boy before and during World War II; the winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

"City Council Approves Moving South Branch Library to Mall" ~ Abilene Reporter-News

The following article made possible thanks to staff at the Abilene Reporter-News

The Abilene City Council Thursday voted unanimously to move the south branch of the Abilene Public Library to the Mall of Abilene.

The mall location will open the library to people who might not normally use it, James Childers, director of community services, told the council.  The location in the former Studio Z, near J.C. Penney's would have an outside entrance and additional handicapped spaces. 

The Friends of the Library plans to put up $500,000 for the move.  With funding from foundations, more than $1 million is available for the south branch.

Books-A-Million, which has a location in the mall, is looking forward to a partnership with the branch library, Childers said.

Mayor Norm Archibald said private/public partnerships make Abilene strong.  "The real win is for families that will use it (the new south branch)," he said.

Library officials have said a larger space than the current location at 1401 S. Danville. The location also has had maintenance problems and was closed for a time earlier this year because of a plumbing problem.

South Branch Library Headed to the Mall

Library @ Mall of Abilene
In great news, the South Branch Library is set to relocate to the Mall of Abilene, with an anticipated opening by January 2016.

The City Council met this morning, on July 23, and one of the agenda items on the list was addressing the current location of the South Branch Library.  James Childers, Community Services Director for the city, provided an informative presentation on the current state of the South Branch, while addressing how services would be able to expand (while serving more people) in a larger facility.  Friends of the Abilene Public Library board member Matt Preston also spoke, and relayed to council members that the Friends have committed $500,000.00 to the move if passed.

Childers Presents to Council
By the end of the presentation, a motion was passed to accept the proposal, and in a unanimous vote, the City Council approved the move of the South Branch Library to the Mall of Abilene, met with the cheers of library supporters who filled council chambers.

The current South Branch Library, located at 1401 S. Danville Dr., opened in 1998 in a 5,600 sq ft facility, and due to the overwhelming use of the building the by community, he new location in the Mall of Abilene would provide over 20,000 sq ft for the library.  It's roughly half the size of the Main Library (202 Cedar St).

South Branch staff has already been preparing for the possibility o such a move by working on ideas of increased services to offer the community, branching away from solely focusing on programming for youth, and expanding to cover all ages in our community.  There will be new services, new events, new workshops, and even more exciting elements of your library to enjoy in the future.

Preston Family Supporters
We also appreciate the hard work of the Friends of the Abilene Public Library, City Librarian Lori Grumet, Friends of the Library President Carrie Casada, James Childers & Lori Andrews with the Community Services department, the Library Advisory Board, and everyone who was part of the process of bringing the South Branch proposal to life.

We're excited to move on towards the future, and present the community with a bigger branch on the south side of Abilene...very soon.

Weekly Events @ Your Library (July 27 - Aug, 1)

Keep up with the great programs and events your Abilene Public Library has to offer by catching this weekly blog each Thursday.  For a complete listing of events, visit our main website to take a look at our program calendar.  And remember, all programming is offered free of charge.

July 1-31
Main Library
202 Cedar St.
PH: 325-676-6067
This is the last week to get those entries submitted so your original artwork will have a shot at winning and becoming a featured piece of art added to the windows of the Main Library.  This contest is open to everyone in the community, ages 13 and older. 

July 27 @ 9:45AM
Mockingbird Branch
1326 N. Mockingbird Ln.
PH: 325-437-7323
After the first session was such a hit featuring the Abilene Police Department, youth won't want to miss another chance to come out and meet real life community heroes.  This session will feature local fireman, where kids will learn about what they do, and of course, you'll get to check out a fire truck too. 

July 28 @ 4:00PM
South Branch
1401 S. Danville Dr.
PH: 325-698-7565
Join us for a great crafting session where we'll offer a host of fun projects for youth to make.  There will be a variety of craft projects to choose from, so come out and make something fun to take home. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Tremain's Book Corner: "Zoo" by: James Patterson

Zoo
Author: James Patterson
Reviewed By: Tremain Jackson, South Branch Manager
Personal Rating: 3 Stars

Book Summary: All over the world, brutal attacks are crippling cities.  Jackson Oz, a young biologist, watches the escalating events with an increasing sense of dread.  When he witnesses a coordinated lion ambush in Africa, the enormity of the impending violence becomes terrifyingly clear.

With the help of ecologist Chloe Tousignant, Oz races to warn world leaders before it's too late.  The attacks are growing in ferocity, cunning, and planning, and soon there will be no place left for humans to hide.

Personal Review: So, I picked up the book only after hearing it was adapted to TV, and after watching the first episode, let's just say I was FAR from impressed.  Thinking that it was a matter of the book being lost in translation, I checked it out to give it a read.

People can say what they want, but I'm a fan of Patterson's and still enjoy his Alex Cross series, which are the only books I really follow of his.  Although I appreciate his ability  to work with co-authors and develop stories that fall outside of his traditional from of writing, this one missed the mark.  It wasn't horrible, by any means, but it didn't grab me either.

Now, I was able to pick up some major themes or lessons, the way I read into it, such as man has distanced ourselves from animals more so than at any other time before and we need to pay more attention to how we affect the environment.  Cool.  I get that.  But it wasn't enough to keep me as interested as I would have liked.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Today's Top Book & DVD Releases @ Your Library

Everyone loves staying on top of the latest releases in books & DVDs, and we receive them on a regular basis at your Abilene Public Library.  Tuesdays are the biggest days of the week in the world of libraries, as these are the days the bulk of all new materials are released for the week.  Join us as we hit the highlights of some o the more popular titles coming to your library, and be sure to get yourselves on the reserve lists!

Speaking in Bones (Temperance Brennan Series #18)
Author: Kathy Reichs
Summary: In her latest, forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan investigates what looks to be a typical missing person case, only to find herself digging up bones possibly left by a serial killer, a cult, or perhaps something not entirely of this world. 

The First Confessor
Author: Terry Goodkind
Summary: Serving as a prequel to the "Sword of Truth," this follows the story of Magda Searus, who after her husband commits suicide, she finds herself with no standing among her people and isolated.  Driven to find the reasons behind why her husband would do such a thing, she discovers there may be more to the suicide than anyone knew.  Without help, she knows she must embark on a mission to speak with the dead; a quest that may also be her last chance to unravel what is behind the mysterious events befalling her people. 

Monday, July 20, 2015

New Clubs to Debut in August @ Your Library

Your Abilene Public Library is continuing to add new programming to our lineup, especially for local youth.  Children's Librarian Kelsie Nygren will add two new clubs to the Main Library, hoping to attract new faces to the library.  In August, you'll see the addition of a new Lego Club, called Lego My Library, as well as a new gaming club titled Ready, Set, Go! Tournaments.  

The Lego My Library Lego Club is designed for youth and teens ages 8-18.  This club will meet on the 2nd Wednesdays of each month at 4:00PM.  Here you'll be able to share your passion for building things using Lego pieces with your peers.  Did you know they've been around since 1949, breaking through the toy world to now be popular in books, films, games, artwork, fashion, and more?  Who knew it would become so versatile.  Lego Clubs have also risen in popularity, and we can't wait to start ours.

The second club will be a gaming one, designed for teens and young adults, titled Ready, Set Go, and meeting on the 4th Wednesdays of each month at 4:00PM.  What's Go?  It's a strategy based board game, literally meaning encircling game, involving two players that originated in China more than 2,500 years ago.  To play, two players use black and white stones to surround a larger total area of the board with one's stones than the opponent by the end of the game.  Trust me, it sounds a LOT easier than it is.

Despite its long popularity in Asia, this game was slow to spread to the rest of the world, becoming popular in the West in the 19th-century.  Now that we've acquired some sets, we invite you to come out, learn to play, practice with others, and challenge your peers in friendly competitions.

We're excited to present these new programs to you and hope you'll take advantage of them.  If you have any questions, contact Kelsie Nygren at 325-676-6067.

"Dinosaur Books, Others Teach Preschoolers How To Behave" | @ the Library Article

Recently, the mother of a toddler posted on her Facebook page, "I have decided that we just cannot go anywhere until my toddler is older!"  She was looking for ideas on how to communicate with her toddler on a level that she would understand.  Toddlers and preschoolers sometimes seem volatile; however, the Abilene Public Library has a wide range of children's books that deal with negative emotions and behaviors written specifically for preschoolers.  Many of these books deal with children (or animals) who are learning all about independence and boundaries.  Young readers can easily learn from these situations.  By reading these stories with your children, your children can recognize the feelings that create problem behaviors and see examples of how to deal with these emotions.

Jane Yolen has a whole series of books about dinosaurs who are learning how to deal with various life issues: How Do Dinosaurs Say I Love You, How Do Dinosaurs Say I'm Mad, How Do Dinosaurs Play with their Friends, and many other books that deal with how a young dinosaur is expected to behave.  The books ask questions such as: "Does he hide all his dump trucks, refusing to share?  Does he throw his friends' coloring books up in the air?"  Of course all the children can answer a resounding, "No!" and often a gentle reminder, "How does my little dinosaur behave?" is enough to distract them from their disagreeable behavior.

The "David!" series by recent CALF festival honoree David Shannon tells of a naughty little boy who, although he has the best of intentions, continually gets into trouble.  It's another great learning book to watching the preschoolers love to interact by saying No, David!  Anna Dewdney's "Llama Llama" series often has dramatic and tearful moments such as when Little Baby Llama deals with various traumatic issues like learning to share and...BEDTIME!

Another favorite of librarians and children is Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard.  This is the story of a little bird who wakes up on the wrong side of the bed and how he later begins having so much fun that he forgets to be grumpy.  In Mouse Was Mad by Linda Urban, Mouse doesn't know how to express himself.  Should he stomp? Scream? Or hop?  Your children will enjoy watching mouse decide.

Mo Willems' books are all wonderfully hilarious stories that are bursting with various emotions.  Piggie and Elephant experience the feelings of being neglected, afraid and jealous, as well as the joys of friendship and sharing in laugh-out loud stories that children love.  Of course, the Pigeon books are very dramatic for demonstrating intense feelings of jealousy, anger, dismay, and more!  Mo Willems has a talent for capturing moments with his stories that resound with children.

The Abilene Public Library has a wide selection of children's books to help you connect with your children's needs.  Whether you are looking to teach you children about character, feelings, and obeying the rules, or if you just want to read for the fun of it, take time to sit down with your children and read.  It is one of the best things that you can do!

Article Contributed by Janet West, Children's Library Assistant II at the South Branch of the Abilene Public Library

Friday, July 17, 2015

New York Times Bestsellers Top 5 (Week of July 19)

Many patrons browse the new materials section of the library to discover the latest reads.  Part of finding them is browsing the New York Times Bestsellers lists we make available to locate that popular title.  Check out this blog entry to discover the latest to lead the pack on the Hardcover Fiction & Nonfiction lists for the week.

Hardcover Fiction Top 5

#1: The Girl on the Train
Author: Paula Hawkins
Position Last Week: 2
Weeks On List: 26
Call Number: F HAWKINS
Summary: A psychological thriller set in the environs of London.

#2: All the Light We Cannot See
Author: Anthony Doerr
Position Last Week: 3
Weeks On List: 62
Call Number: F DOERR
Summary: The lives of a blind French girl and a gadget-obsessed German boy before and during World War II; the winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize.

#3: Code of Conduct
Author: Brad Thor
Position Last Week: n/a
Weeks On List: 1
Call Number: F THOR
Summary: In Thor's 15th thriller, the counterterrorism operative Scot Harvath undertakes a deadly assignment set in motion by a leaked video.

August's Cover-to-Cover Book Club Selection

If you're looking for a great book club discussion group, try our Cover-to-Cover Book Club at your library.  Meeting on the third Thursdays of the month, this group reads everything including bestsellers, fiction, biographies, nonfiction, classics, and more.

For August, the featured selection is In the President's Secret Service: Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents They Protect by Ronald Kessler and we invite you to look out for a copy at your library and then attend the book club on Thursday, August 20@ 7:00PM.  For more information, be sure to contact Ann Mount at 325-676-6025.

In the President's Secret Service: Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents They Protect
Author: Ronald Kessler
Call Number: 
Summary: What fuels this high-energy read isn't Kessler's investigation of the Secret Service's training, procedures, and strategies - from guaranteeing the safety of the president's food to analyzing daily threats.  Instead, what turns these pages are the amusing, saucy, often disturbing anecdotes about the VIPs the Secret Service has protected and still protects.  Some of it would border on tabloid sensationalism if it hadn't come directly from current and retired agents.  Anecdotes of hard-to-handle members of the first families abound here as well.  Balancing the sordid tales are the kinder stories of presidential humor.

Be sure to checkout this title from your Abilene Public Library, or borrow one from a friend, and come out ready to discuss this title with other avid readers on Thursday, August 20 @ 7:00PM

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Find Recommended Reads on Our Website

Everyone could use some recommendations on books to read.  Whether we've run out of titles to read from a favorite author, or we're waiting on that next entry in a popular series, we could all use some suggestions from time to time.  Allow staff at your Abilene Public Library to help satisfy your literary hunger by offering you some of our selected books.

This is but one of many new upgrades to our website and we offer three separate lists: one for Adult Readers, one for Teen Readers, and one for Juvenile Readers.  Our first lists are already available online and each will feature 20-25 recommended titles.

Some recommendations will be current, others won't, but you can always expect to find a title or two of interest to checkout.  Once you view the list, you don't even have to go on our catalog to search for it.  We'll provide you with the links to place a hold for the item and in the format you prefer.

Each list will cover a wide range of subjects and genres, both fiction and nonfiction, and you'll be able to see which employee recommended each listing.  From horror to inspirational, drama to thriller, we've got something for everyone to enjoy.  Feel free to peruse our lists and hunt down some new reads.  Plus, check back each month to access a new list of recommended reads.

Even if we don't have a book that interests you on our lists, stop by and speak with library staff on your next visit and we'll be happy to help you find a book that's right for you.

Weekly Events @ Your Library (July 20-25)

Keep up with the great programs and events your Abilene Public Library has to offer by catching this weekly blog each Thursday.  For a complete listing of events, visit our main website to take a look at our program calendar.  And remember, all programming is offered free of charge.

June 1 - July 25
All Locations
PH: 325-677-2474
It's the final week of the Summer Reading Clubs at your library.  Be sure to join us for more great events, but more importantly, get those reading logs turned in so kids will have the chance to pick up their Reading Champion Yard Signs, and teens and adults can get their chance at winning one of six Kindle Fires as prize giveaways. 

July 1-31
Main Library
202 Cedar St.
PH: 325-676-6067
If you're a local artist, ages 13 and older, be sure to get your entries submitted for our second art contest at the library.  For this one, the winning design will be displayed on the windows on the first floor of the Main Library.  For more information about this contest, as well as contest rules and entry from, CLICK HERE. 

July 20 @ 4:00PM
Main Library
202 Cedar St.
PH: 325-676-6067
Come monkey around with us at the library, as that's the theme of our Family Fun at the Main Library.  Enjoy stories, crafts, games, and more about these silly animals in the library, and designed for kids of all ages, as well as the entire family. 

July 20 @ 6:30PM
South Branch
1401 S. Danville Dr.
PH: 325-698-7565
Who doesn't love burgers and fries in the summer?  At this workshop, we'll show youth how to create great and edible look-alike burgers and fries using a variety of dessert foods and snack items.  It'll be tasty fun in the return of this popular summer workshop. 

Tremain's Book Corner: "Dexter is Dead" by Jeff Lindsay

Dexter is Dead (Dexter #8)
Author: Jeff Lindsay
Reviewed By: Tremain Jackson, South Branch Manager
Personal Rating: 4.5 Stars

Book Summary: Dexter Morgan has burned the candle at both ends for many years.  Blood spatter analyst...husband...father...serial killer.  And now, for the first time, his world has truly collapsed.  Dexter is arrested on charges of murder.  He has lost everything - including his wife, his kids, and the loyalty of his sister.  Now completely alone, Dexter faces a murder charge (for a crime...ironically...he did not actually commit).  His only chance for freedom lies with his brother, Brian, who has a dark plan to prove Dexter's innocence.  But the stakes are deadly, and the epic showdown that lies in Dexter's path may lead, once and for all, to his demise. 

Personal Review: Although I hate to say this, after the third book in the series, I became a fan of the TV series adaptation on Showtime more so than the books (with the exception of the series finale of the show that was a complete letdown).  I think this would have more to do with the fantastic casting in Michael C. Hall to portray the role of Dexter Morgan.  Since this is the last book in the series, I was compelled to go ahead and finish the series...hopefully it would be a better ending than the show.

I was not let down with this read as I should start off by saying that it was a far superior ending to Dexter than the show.  For me, this book went back to what I loved about the book series altogether and re-humanized the lovable serial killing sociopath we all secretly root for.  Although I didn't mind the direction the TV show took with giving Dexter more feelings than a sociopath should have had, he was back to his true nature in this novel.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Hot Sizzler Flicks @ Your Library

Many patrons have learned of recent changes to our DVD policies at the Abilene Public Library, allowing you to now checkout DVD titles for 2-weeks, with late fees being reduced to $0.25 per day per title.  So far, the response to these changes have been well-received, allowing patrons to have more time to watch their shows, and not breaking the bank when you happen to be a little late in getting them returned...it's happened to me more times than I'd like to mention.

We've also implemented one additional change when it comes to our DVD collection, which you may have noticed already.  For the popular DVD titles (i.e. new releases or movies with long reserve lists) we realize that extending the loan period on these titles may make you have to wait longer to get those popular titles.  That's not the case any longer.

For popular DVD titles, they will now circulate for a 3-day period, designated by these items being in red DVD cases with a 3 Day Loan sticker on the spine.  By reducing the checkouts of these popular titles, this will help us to cycle through longer reserve lists much faster, that way, more people will get a chance to enjoy the film at a faster rate.  Once we have run through the holds list, they will be changed to the standard 2-week checkout period.

We hope you appreciate these new changes to our DVD collection at the library, and if you have any additional questions/comments, feel free to Contact Me and I will be more than happy to assist you.

Today's Top Book & DVD Releases

Everyone loves staying on top of the latest releases in books & DVDs, and we receive them on a regular basis at your library.  Tuesdays are generally the biggest days of the week in the world of libraries, as these are the days that the bulk of all new materials are released.  Join us as we hit the highlights of some of the more popular titles coming to your library, and be sure to get yourselves on the reserve lists if they sound of interest to you.

It Follows
Starring: Keir Gilchrist
Summary: For 19-year-old Jay, the fall should be about school, boys and weekends at the lake.  Yet, after a seemingly innocent sexual encounter she suddenly finds herself plagued by nightmarish visions; she can't shake the sensation that someone, or something, is following her.  As the threat closes in, Jay and her friends must somehow escape the horrors that are only a few steps behind. 

Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Starring: Maggie Smith
Summary: As the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel has only a single remaining vacancy - posing a rooming predicament for two fresh arrivals - Sonny pursues his expansionist dream of opening a second hotel. 

The Longest Ride
Starring: Scott Eastwood
Summary: The star-crossed love affair between Luke, a former champion full rider looking to make a comeback, and Sophia, a college student who is about to embark upon her dream job in NYC's art world.  As conflicting paths and ideals test their relationship, Sophia ad Luke make an unexpected and fateful connection with Ira, whose memories of his own decades-long romance with his beloved wife deeply inspire the young couple. 

Go Set a Watchmen
Author: Harper Lee
Summary: Grab a copy of the earliest work written by the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning classic "To Kill a Mockingbird."  Assumed to have been lost, the manuscript was discovered in late 2014.  This book features many of the characters from "To Kill a Mockingbird" some 20 years later.  Returning home to Maycomb to visit her father, Scout struggles with issues both personal and political, involving Atticus, society, and the small Alabama town that shaped her. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

Have You Checked Out Our New Website?

Under new direction from City Librarian Lori Grumet, many in the community have begun to notice a number of changes to the library system.  The second floor of the Main library is open to the public once again, new artwork is being featured as permanent installations at the library, additional furniture and decorations are sprucing up our branch libraries, and there's more on the horizon.

Another great update to the library has been a complete makeover for the library's website.  After expressing a desire for a site featuring our logo, our colors, and providing a new look and user experience online, we debuted the new site in June.  We encourage everyone to visit and take a look around to see the changes...plus, you'll find even more information about your Abilene Public Library than ever before.

Allow us to introduce you to a few new key areas on our website...
  • Director's Page: City Librarian Lori Grumet provides a welcome for Abilene residents and gives the community a look into what has been going on at the library.  Grumet has graciously provided access to monthly Director's Reports of library actions and activities so the public is able to read them too.  You will also find our annual report, and coming soon, you will find information on the Library Advisory Board and their reports too.
  • Make Purchase Requests: If you're looking for an item we don't carry in our collection,you're able to make a Purchase Request online.
  • Leave Us a Comment: If you want to leave us a comment, or provide feedback, we offer you a way to do so through our website now.  All feedback is appreciated.
  • Library News: If you've missed a story about your library that has been in the news, we'll provide you with access to those stories on our website.  We'll update these pages regularly to connect you with the latest news coverage concerning your library.
  • Locations/Hours: Not only will you easily find our hours of operation, you'll be able to view our 2015 Holiday Schedule to know when we'll be closed in the future.  Plus, if you need help finding a branch library locations, use our map feature to locate the facility most convenient to you.
  • Management Team: Access information on who the management team at the library are.  You'll find photos and contact information for each member of the management team if ever you need to contact us.
  • Library History: Learn about how your library system cam to be in its earliest forms to the present, including providing access to historical documents and photos too.
  • Bibliofiles: After 17 years of only being available in print form at the library, now you'll be able to access our monthly events newsletter online.  If you can't make it out to us, access a copy of the current month's issue online.
That's only a few of the new changes to our website.  You'll find even more to take advantage of, and hopefully provide you with more great information from your library than ever before.  Staff worked hard in compiling the information and getting it created, and we hope it provides you with a better experience when using our website.

If you have any comments or suggestions for the website, feel free to Email Me and let me know and we'll see what we can do.  Our website is meant to provide you with the information and services you need, and we'll do our best to make our site reflect your needs.