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#FDL: High School Study Night

High School Study Night

One of the really cool things that happens at FDL is our lock-in study night program for students in grades 9 through 12. Twice a year, in May and December, the library opens its doors to high school students only for a few hours on the Sunday night before their midterm or final exams. This December, study night will be on the 17th. The library’s doors close to the public at 5pm and open back up to students at 5:30. Study night usually ends around 8pm. Although we hope students actually get studying done in the time they’re here, there are a couple of other reasons to come to study night.

  1. You get the library all to yourselves. Study night is a time for high school students to come to FDL and check it out without adults taking up all the space and shushing them. FDL has a dedicated Teen Area, but study night is a time for high school students to sit wherever they want and be themselves.
  2. Food. FDL knows that your brain needs fuel. That’s why we provide a wide variety of snacks and drinks for study night. Cookies, candy, chips, crackers, pretzels, soda, and water – it’s all there for you to much on while studying.
  3. Free books. Throughout the year, FDL gets books that are called ARCs. ARC stands for Advance Reader Copy. What that means is the book is not available yet for the general public to buy but will be soon. We get these books to promote them. A number of these books that we get are for teens. FDL holds onto those books for study night and gives them away to the students who show up. They’re pretty good books too.
  4. Gift cards. Before everyone leaves for the night, we do a drawing for gift cards to Barnes & Noble (sometimes Target). Anyone who comes to study night and stays until the end is automatically entered into the drawing.
  5. Extra credit. A lot of high school teachers offer extra credit to students who attend study night and stay for the duration of the event. You’ll have to check to see which teachers offer this, but the extra credit it totally worth it if your grade needs that extra bump.

So, FDL goes all out for study night. Signing up ahead of time is voluntary (you can also sign up at the event) and no ID is required to attend. Just bring your books and your brains – we hope to see you there!

Post by Carey Gibbons, Reference Specialist

About #FDL

Welcome to #FDL! #FDL is a twice weekly update on all things Fondulac District Library and East Peoria. Twice a week, library staff will make posts that highlight some aspect of library life and relate it to you – our readers. Have you ever wanted to know which Dewey number represented a certain topic? Are you looking for book recommendations based on your favorite television show or television recommendations based on your favorite book? Have you ever wondered about the secret details of librarian life? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then #FDL is for you. We look forward to writing posts that are informative and entertaining and hope that you enjoy getting better acquainted with Fondulac District Library.

Seasonal Activities at FDL

Fondulac District Library is hosting a variety of events and activities to welcome the winter season!

Snow Day at the Library • November 21 • 10 a.m.
Friends of the Library Holiday Sale • December 7 • 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m. & December 8 • 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Gingerbread House Decorating Workshop • December 9 • 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
Music with Tracy: Holiday Edition • December 13 • 10 a.m.
Celebrations Around the World • December 17 • 1 p.m.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas • December 20 • 6-8 p.m.
Nitsch Theatre Arts: NFP Rising Stars • December 28 • 2 p.m.

Please visit or call the library at (309) 699-3917 with questions.

FDL Reads: Mort

386372Mort by Terry Pratchett

Reviewed by: Dave Gibbons, Library Volunteer

Genre: Fantasy

Suggested Age: Adults, Teens

What is the book about?: It’s tough being an apprentice in Discworld – learning a new trade, getting along with co-workers, growing into your place in the world. Mort’s apprenticeship is not made any easier by the simple fact that he has been apprenticed to Death. On the surface an apprenticeship to Death seems like it would be all smiting the enemies of the world and learning the finer points of scythe sharpening. The grim reality is that it is a lot of hard work. This is a fact that will become apparent to all the first time Mort is sent out on his own only to bungle the death of a princess. Now it is up to Mort, with the help of Death’s daughter and maybe even some wizards to try to put everything right lest it wipe out all of reality. No pressure.

My Review: If you don’t like humor and fantasy to mix then this book is absolutely the wrong one for you. Terry Pratchett uses a very “real world” approach to the fantasy genre taking care to point out the weird little quirks of life and making the story feel real. Though this does take place on the magical land of Discworld, the characters, whether human or forces of the very nature of life itself, are the sort that you feel could meet in real life. This is the fifth of the Discworld novels, but a new reader would have no problem jumping right in. This story does not answer the bigger questions of death and reality – rather it takes them out and dances around them, but in a comfortably relatable way that is very down to earth… well as down to earth as Death himself can be.

Three Words That Describe This Book: Humor, Epic, Magical

Give This a Try if You Like… The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Squirrelgirl by Ryan North and Erica Henderson

 

Rating: 4/5

Find it at the library!

About FDL Reads

FDL ReadsWelcome to FDL Reads, weekly book reviews from Fondulac District Library.  Librarians (and possibly some other guest reviewers) review all types of books, from children’s picture books, young adult favorites, to the latest adult thriller, and share their thoughts each week at fondulaclibrary.org. If the book is owned by Fondulac District Library (or another local library), you’ll see a direct link to the catalog entry and whether or not it is available.  If it is checked out or at another local library, you will be able to place a hold as long as you have your library card and PIN numbers. As with any book review, these are our opinions…we disagree amongst ourselves about books frequently.  We all have different likes and dislikes, which is what makes the world an interesting place. Please enjoy, and keep on reading!

#FDL: November is NaNoWriMo

National Novel Writing Month starts tomorrow…

For some, November 1st is simply the day after Halloween – a day when you can go out to the store and get some seriously discounted candy. For others, it’s the beginning of a month long rush to get 50,000 coherent words onto paper for National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo (as the cool kids call it). A lot of people participate in this challenge to crank out the first draft of a novel every year. If you are one of those, here are a couple of the ways that FDL can help you get on the path to that NaNoWriMo badge:

  1. Quiet space. FDL has a couple of study rooms for patron use that are available in two hour increments either be appointment or walk-in. If your two hours are up and no one else is waiting for the room, you can request a third hour. While the rooms aren’t totally sound-proof, you can sit in them to work relatively undisturbed by the rest of the library’s going-ons.
  2. Wi-fi. This might seem like an obvious perk of the library, and maybe you have wi-fi at home, but home is too distracting. Come on over to the library and find yourself a quiet corner. Our wi-fi connection is also password free so you don’t even have to talk to anyone to connect if you’re already in the writing zone.
  3. Inexpensive coffee. Starbucks can be great, but if you’re just looking for a caffeine fix without all the fixings, FDL has you covered. At the circulation desk downstairs, you can get a plain old cup of brain fuel for $1. You also don’t have to wait very long to get it.
  4.  Socialization. Maybe you’ve been typing away at your manuscript alone for too long and it’s time you saw another person for the first time in three days. Come on over to FDL, talk to the librarians, and maybe meet someone else who is also doing NaNoWriMo this year.
  5. Inspiration. NaNoWriMo can be the start of something really great. A ton of authors have turned their NaNo projects into polished, published material. A few went on to become bestsellers. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, Wool by Hugh Howey, and Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell all started off as NaNo projects. And they probably weren’t as polished as they are now at the end of the NaNo month. So, get your butt in a seat and get to writing!

Post by Carey Gibbons, Reference Specialist

About #FDL

Welcome to #FDL! #FDL is a twice weekly update on all things Fondulac District Library and East Peoria. Twice a week, library staff will make posts that highlight some aspect of library life and relate it to you – our readers. Have you ever wanted to know which Dewey number represented a certain topic? Are you looking for book recommendations based on your favorite television show or television recommendations based on your favorite book? Have you ever wondered about the secret details of librarian life? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then #FDL is for you. We look forward to writing posts that are informative and entertaining and hope that you enjoy getting better acquainted with Fondulac District Library.

#FDL: Turtles and Dust

Turtles and Dust

If you’re a fan of YA literature, chances are you got really excited about a couple of books last week. Two big name authors published books after fairly lengthy absences. John Green made his much awaited return to writing with Turtles All the Way Down. His last book, the mega famous book-movie blockbuster that caused readers/viewers everywhere to cry their eyes out, was The Fault in Our Stars. FDL still can’t keep that book on the shelf. Turtles is about Aza, a teen who is trying to live her best life while dealing with OCD and also searching for a fugitive billionaire. Green says that part of the inspiration for this book came from his own struggles with OCD and the ridiculous pressures of super fame after The Fault in Our Stars.

The second book is the first volume of The Book of Dust, La Belle Sauvage, by Philip Pullman. Pullman is best known for the His Dark Materials trilogy, the last book of which was published in 2000. Pullman’s return to YA literature is a little more complicated. The fans that loved His Dark Materials have all grown up. La Belle Sauvage revisits a minor character from His Dark Materials – Malcolm Polstead and begins with the birth of a very major character – Lyra Belacqua. Pullman has said that this book isn’t a prequel or a sequel but an equal. It takes place at the same time as the events of His Dark Materials but focuses on different characters.

Both books are available to place on hold and there’s a copy of La Belle Sauvage sitting on the YA new shelf at FDL right this very second.

Post by Carey Gibbons, Reference Specialist

About #FDL

Welcome to #FDL! #FDL is a twice weekly update on all things Fondulac District Library and East Peoria. Twice a week, library staff will make posts that highlight some aspect of library life and relate it to you – our readers. Have you ever wanted to know which Dewey number represented a certain topic? Are you looking for book recommendations based on your favorite television show or television recommendations based on your favorite book? Have you ever wondered about the secret details of librarian life? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then #FDL is for you. We look forward to writing posts that are informative and entertaining and hope that you enjoy getting better acquainted with Fondulac District Library.

FDL Reads: Taming of the Queen

Cover image for Taming of the Queen by Philippa Gregory

Reviewed by: Dawn Dickey, Reference Specialist

Genre: Historical Fiction

Suggested Age: Adults, Teens

What is the book about?: English King Henry VIII (1491-1547) is infamous for his six wives. During his more than 30 year reign, he annulled two marriages, beheaded two wives, and was widowed once. His last wife, Catherine Parr (the central character in this book), survived the marriage. This was a remarkable feat considering the King’s prior marital history and the tumultuous period in which Catherine lived. Kateryn (note that Gregory uses an alternate spelling for Catherine) was twice widowed before she married Henry VIII, and there is evidence that she was in love with another man before Henry proposed. She dared not refuse the King. Much of Kateryn’s inner and interpersonal dialogue involves not betraying her love for another man and navigating a relationship with a King that she finds unpredictable and unattractive. During her reign as Queen, Kateryn becomes increasingly friendly toward the growing Protestant movement. This causes tension and concerns for Kateryn’s safety as Henry shows alternating favor between the Catholic-leaning members of his royal court and the Protestant-leaning members of the Court.

My Review: One of the things I like about Philippa Gregory’s writing is that her historical fiction is always well based in fact (check out the book’s bibliography for sources as well as further reading). Gregory has a talent for storytelling, bringing to life both pragmatic Kateryn and capricious Henry. Gregory brings out in readers a depth of sympathy for Kateryn, caught between love for another man, hiding that love, and trying to please the highly unpredictable King. Her depiction of the King is as interesting as Kateryn:  Thoroughly assured of his divine right to rule, Henry apparently liked pitting factions of his court against each other and enjoyed being the master manipulator with everyone, in the end, having to bow to his will. With its superb characterization and rich historical details, this is a page-turning read, even when you know from history that Kateryn survives her marriage to Henry VIII.

Three Words That Describe This Book: Enthralling, Egocentric, Monarch

Give This a Try if You Like… The Tudors, Wolf Hall, Reign, or The White Queen

Rating: 5/5

Find it at the library!

About FDL Reads

FDL ReadsWelcome to FDL Reads, weekly book reviews from Fondulac District Library.  Librarians (and possibly some other guest reviewers) review all types of books, from children’s picture books, young adult favorites, to the latest adult thriller, and share their thoughts each week at fondulaclibrary.org. If the book is owned by Fondulac District Library (or another local library), you’ll see a direct link to the catalog entry and whether or not it is available.  If it is checked out or at another local library, you will be able to place a hold as long as you have your library card and PIN numbers. As with any book review, these are our opinions…we disagree amongst ourselves about books frequently.  We all have different likes and dislikes, which is what makes the world an interesting place. Please enjoy, and keep on reading!

FDL Reads: World Trigger Volume 1

Cover image for World Trigger Volume 1 by Daisuke Ashihara

Reviewed by: Sarah Baker, Youth Services

Genre: Science Fiction, Manga

Suggested Age: Teens

What is the book about?: Four years ago, a mysterious gate opened over Mikado City. Strange beings, eventually named “Neighbors” came through and caused massive destruction. The weapons of Earth could not harm them. An agency called Border also mysteriously appears, but are able to fight the Neighbors. Flash forward to present day. A new student, Yuma Kuga, is starting at a school in Mikado City. He becomes friends with Osamu Mikumo – secretly a trainee agent of Border! But Yuma has a secret too – he’s actually a Neighbor, and a powerful one at that. When a gate opens over the school, Osamu springs into action to stop the Neighbor and save his classmates, but he’s not strong enough. Yuma borrows his trigger and obliterates the beast. Will Osamu keep  Yuma’s secret from Border? And will he survive Border’s questions about how the Neighbor at the school was really defeated?

 

My Review: I enjoy manga, and am always looking for a new series. I’d just finished up Gundam: Origins and wanted another sci fi romp. This popped up just in time! The story moves at a rapid pace; there’s a background character that gives us most of the exposition (by explaining it to Yuma); and I’ve already found a character I don’t like. I’m worried about the whole “high school drama” aspect that this series may have, but I’m hoping that as the threats increase, we will be spending less time in the school and more time in the field.​ I have additional questions about how triggers work, and how one is selected to join Border, but I’m hoping they will be answered in following volumes.

 

Three Words That Describe This Book: Action, Intrigue, Drama

Give This a Try if You Like… Transdimensional stories, sci-fi, “the power is in you”

Rating: 3.5/5

Find it at the library!

About FDL Reads

FDL ReadsWelcome to FDL Reads, weekly book reviews from Fondulac District Library.  Librarians (and possibly some other guest reviewers) review all types of books, from children’s picture books, young adult favorites, to the latest adult thriller, and share their thoughts each week at fondulaclibrary.org. If the book is owned by Fondulac District Library (or another local library), you’ll see a direct link to the catalog entry and whether or not it is available.  If it is checked out or at another local library, you will be able to place a hold as long as you have your library card and PIN numbers. As with any book review, these are our opinions…we disagree amongst ourselves about books frequently.  We all have different likes and dislikes, which is what makes the world an interesting place. Please enjoy, and keep on reading!

Audiobooks at the Library

Fondulac District Library offers audiobooks on CD, Playaway portable devices, and in digital formats for streaming or download.

  • Search the library’s collection of audiobooks on CD and Playaways here.
  • Explore the library’s collection of streaming audiobooks. (You will need to enter your FDL card number.)
  • Browse audiobooks (and eBooks!) from the Overdrive and Axis360 apps. (Be sure to sign in with your library card number.)
  • If you need assistance with installing and utilizing library apps, please visit or call the library at (309) 699-3917. Instructions for Overdrive also available here, and instructions for Axis360 can be viewed here.

FDL Reads: The Waking Land

Cover image for The waking landThe Waking Land by Callie Bates

Reviewed by: Joscelyn Lockwood, Youth Services

Genre: Fantasy

Suggested Age: Adults, Teens

What is the book about?: 

Elianna Valtai was kidnapped at the age of five years old. Raised in a rival kingdom by a King she began to care for more than her own father, her world is ripped apart when she’s accused of regicide and forced to flee. As she is brought back to the country and family of her birth, she begins to learn the truth hidden from her all these years. The neighboring kingdom that had taken her had also tried to stamp out the very soul of her people. Lands that they treated as sacred ground were trampled and scraped dry of resources. People used as slaves and their innate magic ruled forbidden, until the magic users were hunted down to near extinction by witch hunters.

But acceptance doesn’t come easy for Elianna. The kingdom she was raised in is all she really knows, even though they branded her birth father a traitor and her people nothing more than mud-covered savages. She will have to come to terms with what she learns, and the magic that she’s long hidden, in order to help save the people of her homeland.

My Review:  

Elianna is spoiled, annoying, naïve… almost everything you’d expect a teen girl with Stockholm syndrome to be. When the first part of the book unfolds and she gets accused of regicide, I, as the reader, just had the uncontrollable urge to shake some sense into her. Now that I have that off my chest, I can gush about how much I loved the story. Ms. Bates just really hooked me in from the minute I read the summary on Goodreads. The world she creates is incredibly detailed, well thought out, and definitely something I want to read more stories in. Even minor characters play big parts in this story, as small happenings always seem to have a ripple effect into something bigger later on.

To be fair, I will admit that there are some dull parts. It’s so detailed that it can’t help but be a tad bit boring here and there. However, those are far between and you get back into the action fairly quickly. 

Three Words That Describe This Book: Immersive, Long, Engrossing

Give This a Try if You Like… Druids, Earth magic, Humming along to Carole King’s “I Feel the Earth Move” as you Read.

Rating: 4/5

Find it at the library!

About FDL Reads

FDL ReadsWelcome to FDL Reads, weekly book reviews from Fondulac District Library.  Librarians (and possibly some other guest reviewers) review all types of books, from children’s picture books, young adult favorites, to the latest adult thriller, and share their thoughts each week at fondulaclibrary.org. If the book is owned by Fondulac District Library (or another local library), you’ll see a direct link to the catalog entry and whether or not it is available.  If it is checked out or at another local library, you will be able to place a hold as long as you have your library card and PIN numbers. As with any book review, these are our opinions…we disagree amongst ourselves about books frequently.  We all have different likes and dislikes, which is what makes the world an interesting place. Please enjoy, and keep on reading!

FDL Matinee Marathon

Fondulac District Library is excited to announce its first “Matinee Marathon!” This program celebrates the excitement of cinema and gives patrons of all ages a chance to win a prize drawing for watching movies they check out from the library. Pick up a Matinee Marathon participation log at any service desk and return the completed log to the Second Floor Information Desk by November 30 for a chance to win! Participants may complete and submit more than one log during the program for multiple chances to win, so grab your library card, pop some popcorn, and press play! Please visit or call the library at (309) 699-3917 with questions.

imagine, inform, inspire