Thursday, April 21, 2016

Staff Haiku

In celebration of National Poetry Month we invited staff members to write a haiku. There were no thematic restrictions. Please feel free to tell us what you think the next time you visit the library!

Pizza is so good
I had to write a haiku
Professing my love
- Terry

Not shaving my beard
It is playoff hockey time
Let's Go Blues, cup time!
- Matt

Tornado warning! 
Another meal eaten with
Toilet lid table
- Kyla

Spring season is here
Celebrate March, April, May
With rain and sunshine
- Theo

The kids are anxious
Two more months until summer
California bound
- Theo

There is nothing quite
Like the sound of ducks walking
Wet across thin ice
- Tara

Cheese is my main squeeze
It's the bees knees, you agree?
Get me some now, please!
- Stephanie

Ice cream is my friend
Oh how I love you, ice cream
Get in my belly!
- Ashley

Writing this haiku
Didn't seem like it would be
Quite so difficult 
- Megan

Who invented rules
For a poem that can only
Have three little lines?!
- Megan

Posted by Terry Pierson, Programming Technician

Monday, April 11, 2016

21 Underrated Books

GQ recently asked several authors to share their favorite "underrated" books--books that they adore and want everyone to read, but for whatever reason haven't gotten much attention.  Here are some of the suggestions (the full list can be found on GQ's website):

The Man Who Loved Children by Christina Stead
Recommended by Jonathan Franzen

"As in a dream where I’m shouting at the top of my lungs and nobody can hear me, I’ve been advocating for Christina Stead’s The Man Who Loved Children for 20 years, describing it as the greatest family novel ever written and one of the greatest 20th-century novels of any kind, and waiting for even one person to tell me I’m right. Only in Australia, where Stead was born and lived until she was 25, do I regularly encounter people who’ve even heard of it. But here, I’ll say it again: For psychological depth, for indelible characterizations, for savage humor, for muscular prose, for disciplined insanity, The Man Who Loved Children has very few peers in world literature. Please, will someone who is reading this get back to me and say I’m right?"

Random Acts of Senseless Violence by Jack Womack
Recommended by William Gibson

"Basically this book feels, today, like a novel set in the unending nightmare aftermath of a Trump presidency, and in the meantime, here in the real world, we have come to have the dystopian coming-of-age narrative as a hugely popular form. Random Acts is exactly that, but scripted in the mode of Cormac McCarthy, set in New York City, and narrated via the heartbreakingly convincing point of view of a young girl."

Buffalo Soldiers by Robert O'Connor
Recommended by Adam Johnson

"When it was published two dozen years ago, Buffalo Soldiers flashed neutron-bright into my literary vision. Its savage humor and scabrous story line follow Ray Elwood, a jaded U.S. soldier attempting to navigate the corrupt and carnivorous nature of America’s war machine in peacetime Germany. Heroin deals go bad, tanks are stolen, and a beautiful one-armed woman free-falls from the high dive. As timely as ever, this dark and blistering novel is an important antidote to all those feel-good tales of human triumph."

Good Morning, Midnight by Jean Rhys
Recommended by Lauren Groff

"Jean Rhys is most famous for her stunning Wide Sargasso Sea, a blistering retelling of Jane Eyre from the perspective of the Creole “madwoman in the attic,” but her penultimate novel, Good Morning, Midnight, is one of the most troubling, moving, nightmarish, and strange narratives I know, a modernist masterpiece that’s not nearly as celebrated as it should be. In an era when autofiction feels like a new discovery, it’s nice to remember that great prose stylists like Rhys mastered the form a very long time ago."

Happy reading!

Posted by Kyla Waltermire, Branch Manager-Collinsville

Friday, April 08, 2016

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

It’s the most wonderful time of the year for St. Louis sports, as both the Cardinals and the Blues are playing for the next couple of weeks. This overlap can only occur for a very limited period twice a year and is contingent on the teams making the playoffs. In April, the Cardinals season generally starts in the last week of the Blues’ NHL season, whereas in October the Cardinals will usually have to of already made it to the playoffs to coincide with the Blues’ opening night. These limited stretches are nirvana for the region’s sport fans and are enhanced by the friendly and active relationship between the two clubs. Sports is nearly a language of its own in this area and whether you’re just looking to pass the time between games or show off to your friends, the library has a litany of materials at your disposal.

St. Louis Cardinals items available through the library

The Matheny Manifesto - Mike Matheny
A young manager's old-school views on success in sports and life.

One Last Strike - Tony La Russa
Fifty years in baseball, ten and a half games back, and one final championship season.

Pitch by Pitch - Bob Gibson
A personal view of one unforgettable game.

St. Louis Cardinals Championship Collection
Official World Series films from the past eight decades.

St. Louis Cardinals Greatest Games of Busch Stadium 1966-2005
Filled with more than 17 hours of Cardinals passion, this collection includes the complete game broadcasts.

St. Louis Blues items available through the library

100 Things Blues Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die - Jeremy Rutherford
The definitive resource guide for both seasoned and new fans of the St. Louis Blues.

Tales from the St. Louis Blues Locker Room - Bob Plager
A collection of the greatest Blues stories ever told.

Gateway City Puckchasers - Darin Wernig
The history of hockey in St. Louis.

The St. Louis Arena Memories - Jeff Gordon, Patti Jackson
The history of the St. Louis Arena in chronological order, supplemented with pictures from conception to implosion.

The St. Louis Blues Note by Note - Jim Woodcock
The most comprehensive retrospective on the team's first 35 years.

Posted by Terry Pierson, Programming Technician

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

25 Escapist Novels

Needing to get away from reality for a while?  Flavorwire recently shared 25 great escapist novels for your reading enjoyment.  The list (which you can find here) includes:

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon

Welcome to Night Vale by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor


The Princess Bride by William Goldman (one of my favorites!)

The library has copies of these great choices available for you to take home with your library card.  Happy reading!

Posted by Kyla Waltermire, Branch Manager-Collinsville