Monday, September 15, 2014

BookFLIX: where fact and fiction go hand in hand

Did you know that at your fingertips is an online literary resource to help your young child (preK-3rd Grade) discover how the joys of fiction can be paired with fun facts?

BookFLIX has paired award-winning fiction with engaging nonfiction to help students become fluent, confident, and independent readers. The pairing of fiction and nonfiction has been shown to be an effective way to develop critical reading and comprehension skills. Fiction, with its narrative "story" structure, is often more accessible for beginning readers. It can be used to introduce a topic and provide a bridge to the informational text.

Pairing fiction and nonfiction texts enhances readers' comprehension of a particular topic, exposes them to a wider range of vocabulary, and builds background knowledge—and therefore interest.

Categories include: Animals and Nature, ABCs and 123s, People and Places, Adventure, and Music and Rhyme.

To access this FREE resource, have your library card ready and click Online Books For Kids


Friday, June 27, 2014

Divergent is checked out! Whatever shall I read?

We all know what it’s like to have to wait for the hottest books of the summer.  But it’s a perfect opportunity to try out new series that are not on everyone’s radar yet, but are, in some of our opinions, just as good.

Take Ally Condie’s Matched trilogy.  You have your dystopian society where disease has been all but eliminated thanks to genetic engineering.  Never mind that everyone is euthanized at age 80 at a “birthday party,” or that at age 17 youth attend a banquet where they are matched to the perfect genetic partner (no need for sappy romance here).

What happens when a glitch shows up on your match screen, showing you a glimpse of someone, and then it disappears to be replaced by another match?  This is exactly what happens to Cassia, and what she does with this information is the basis of three exciting books in which we see her grow, define, and exercise her own opinions and beliefs.

So while you’re waiting for Divergent, why not give Matched, Crossed, and Reached a try?  You may even find you like this series more than Divergent—I did!

by PO

Friday, May 2, 2014

The Shadow Children Series by Margaret Peterson Haddix

There are seven books in this children's series written between 1998 and 2006. They are set in a futuristic time when no family is allowed to have more than two children.  Luke is introduced in the first book of the series, Among the Hidden, as a thirteen-year-old who has been hidden away all his life. In the first book, he meets another third child, Jen, whose dedication and sacrifice show him that one person can make a difference. For more information on the other books in the series, see the author's website.

Monday, March 24, 2014

National Book Critics Circle Awards


Americanah, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is winner of the National Book Critics Circle fiction prize.  This novel tells the story of a young Nigerian woman in the United States on a university scholarship. Adichie's previous works are Half of a Yellow Sun, The Thing Around Your Neck, and Purple Hibiscus.  Santa Clara City Library readers have given her books high ratings.

Other fiction nominated:  Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch, Ruth Ozeki's A Tale for the Time Being, Alice McDermott's Someone and a work in translation, Javier Marias' The Infatuations.  Find these books following the links but also check other formats like Audio, Large Print, and books from our Browsing collections.  Ask for help at (408) 615-2900.

Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-ravaged Hospital by Sheri Fink won the nonfiction award.

Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World by Leo Damrosch won the biography prize.

Farewell, Fred Voodoo: A Letter from Haiti was the autobiography winner.

Metaphysical Dog by Frank Bidart won the poetry award.

Distant Reading by Franco Moretti won in the criticism category.  Get this academic book through our Link+ service for free.

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra won the inaugural John Leonard for a debut book in any genre.

Join us for a discussion of three of these award-winning books at 10:30 a.m. in the Margie Edinger Room:
Americanah on Tuesday, May 27
A Constellation of Vital Phenomena on Tuesday, July 22
A Tale for the Time Being on Tuesday, November 25

posted by mb