FDL Reads: The Little Moose Who Couldn’t Go to Sleep

Cover image for The little moose who couldn't go to sleep : a Maynard Moose taleThe Little Moose Who Couldn’t Go to Sleep by Willy Claflin

Reviewed by: Saydy Odom, Children’s Department

Genre: Picture Book

Suggested Age: Kids

What is the book about?: The Little Moose Who Couldn’t Go to Sleep provides the back story for the Maynard Moose tales. It is the fourth book in the series. This story is about Little Moose, Maynard’s cousin, struggling with going to sleep each night. You will get to meet the sheep that saves the night and learn the legend of Mother Moose and her kitchen. You’ll also visit Moose Academy where young moose go to learn proper posture, woodland skills and counting to three over and over again. Imagine the counting of sheep! This illustrated story also includes a CD along with a Moose to English dictionary. You will definitely need it!

My Review: If you haven’t read any of the Maynard Moose Tales, my son and I highly recommend that you do. This book is great for children and adults alike. I guarantee you will be laughing throughout the whole book. The CD that accompanies the book is a must listen! Willy Claflin does all his own reading, and he’s hilarious. Each of the Maynard Moose Tale books are fine examples of fractured fairy tales. My 9 year old son will tell you that you absolutely have to read Rapunzel and the Seven Dwarfs. That one was his funniest, by far. Visit http://www.willyclaflin.com and check out videos of him reading his stories and putting on puppet shows. This mom and her son are big fans.

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: A Murder in Time

Cover image for A Murder in time : a novelA Murder in Time by Julie McElwain

Reviewed by: Susie Rivera, Adult and Reference Services

Genre: Science Fiction, Suspense

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: In the 21st century, FBI agent Kendra Donovan hunts serial killers and high profile criminals.  While in the middle of dodging an attacker, she finds herself suddenly transported to 19th century England only to find another serial killer on the loose.  Kendra’s expertise in forensics and psychology come in very handy in an era where there is no formal police force, though she must try disguise the fact that she is from the future.

My Review: This novel is a genre bender with elements of mystery, suspense, science fiction, and a little romance.  I am a big fan of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander and thought that this novel might have a similar feel.  The beginning included quite of bit of exposition, but as soon as the main plot was set in motion I didn’t want to put this novel down.  You will enjoy this novel if you are a fan of historical mystery, Regency-era fiction, or Downton Abby.   A Murder in Time also features a little Jane Austen-style romance as well.   My only criticism of McElwain’s novel is her sometimes awkwardly written British dialect. Overall I really enjoyed this novel and did not want to stop reading it the more I got in to the story.  This book does have some grisly content related to examining cadavers, some POV chapters from the murderer’s perspective, as well as coarse language, so it is not for the faint of heart.

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!

Sign up for the Bowling Party!

13576897_10157049917870307_5396221569321516872_oSign up today!

Participants (of all ages!) in this year’s summer reading program can sign up for the bowling party on July 30 at Landmark Lanes! Please register and prepay at the library before the party. The cost is $1 per person and up to $5 per family. Choose to bowl at 6 or 7 p.m. We hope to see you there!

FDL Reads: The American Heiress

Cover image for The American heiressThe American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin

Reviewed by: Diane Soffietti, Adult and Reference Services

Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: For all Downtown Abbey fans! This historical fiction is a perfect example of Anglophile set in the era before the First World War when English aristocracy went looking for American money to help with their impoverished estates. In America, the era was known as the Gilded Age, with the elite Four Hundred promoting their exclusive society in Newport and New York City. Our heroine, Cora Cash, is the daughter of extremely wealthy parents, who dream of their daughter’s marriage to an English lord. When Cora falls off her horse while riding in a prominent hunt on a duke’s land, she is the fortunate recipient of a marriage proposal by that Duke! Cora’s lady’s maid, Bertha, is an African woman from South Carolina, who has accompanied Cora to England, and who also finds romance there. So similarly to Downtown Abbey, we read about both upstairs and downstairs lives and situations while the romances unfold.

My Review: I have read many historical romances set during this era of America and England. I have also enjoyed watching the PBS series that deals with these historical fiction (such as Downton Abbey, Mr. Selfridge, Upstairs Downstairs, The Duchess of Duke Street, The Paradise, Indian Summer, Crimson Field, Home Fires, and Grantchester Mysteries.) Some of these PBS series are on DVD and can be checked out or asked to be placed on hold from other libraries. I personally enjoy reading books that have likeable characters who are realistic. Cora and her maid are very different people with totally different backgrounds, but I liked them both very much. Cora’s and the Duke’s mothers were both women of their age, with ambitions and the strong will to see their hopes realized. The men of the novel could have been drawn more fully, but this flaw only helped with the mystery of the conclusion. If you enjoy this type of fiction, I think you will not be disappointed in reading The American Heiress. The Fortune Hunter is another recent novel with characters including Earl Spencer by this author and might be worth the read, as well. This novel has clean language that is true to its historical era.

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 Reads: Ghostlight

Cover image for GhostlightGhostlight by Sonia Gensler

Reviewed by: Sharon Crawford, Children’s Department

Genre: Horror, Adventure

Suggested Age: Teens, Tweens

What is the book about?: Things that go bump in the night are just the beginning when a summer film project becomes a real-life ghost story! Avery is looking forward to another summer at Grandma’s farm, at least until her brother says he’s too old for “Kingdom,” the imaginary world they’d spent years creating. Lucky for her, there’s a new kid staying in the cottage down the road: a city boy with a famous dad. Julian’s more than a little full of himself, but he’s also a storyteller like Avery. So when he announces his plan to film a ghost story, Avery is eager to join in. Unfortunately, Julian wants to film at Hilliard House, a looming, empty mansion that Grandma has absolutely forbidden her to enter. As terrified as Avery is of Grandma’s wrath, the allure of film-making is impossible to resist. As the kids explore the secrets of Hilliard house, eerie things begin to happen, and the “imaginary” dangers in their movie threaten to become very real. Have Avery and Julian awakened a menacing presence? Can they turn back before they go too far?

My Review: Avery and Julian are filming a ghost story at Hilliard House a place Avery has been forbidden to go.  When strange, weird things start happening (a doll moves, flicks flicker, doors open and close) Avery makes it her mission to find out the secrets that have haunted Hilliard House for too long. An exciting well-paced ghost story that has spooky atmosphere and happenings, yet it isn’t so scary that you’ll have nightmares. It has mystery, intrigue, and history. This story shows the ups and downs of family and forming new friendships and the complicated mess of growing up.

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!

3D Printing Workshop for Teens

3d Print

Learn how to 3D print at Fondulac District Library! This workshop for teens takes place on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 6 p.m. from July 19-28. Receive guidance for choosing, modifying, and designing your own three dimensional objects using tools online. Finished products will be printed from plastic filament and displayed at an exhibition open to the public on August 11. Register early due to limited space available. Bring a laptop or tablet, or use one provided by the library. Don’t miss this opportunity to use cutting edge technology!

Register now!

FDL Reads: The Great Hunt: The Wheel of Time Book 2

Cover image for The great huntThe Great Hunt by Robert Jordan (audio)

Reviewed by: Sarah Baker, Circulation

Genre: Fantasy

Suggested Age: Adults, Teens

What is the book about?: The events of book 1 ended on several major plotpoints – Rand al’Thor might just be the Dragon Reborn (which is something to be feared – the reappearance of the Dragon means the end of the age, and the coming of Tarmon Gai’don, the last battle against the Dark One).  He and his band of friends had also found the Horn of Valere, which will summon dead heroes to fight in that last battle.  But the Horn is stolen from under them in a shocking manner, and now they must get it back before it can be used by the forces of evil.  Mat, Perrin and Rand ride to find the Horn, while Egwene and Nynaeve travel to Tar Valon to begin their training as Aes Sedai.  But they aren’t as safe in the White Tower as they think. Old enemies pursue them still, and new enemies appear – grohlm, domani, Seanchan, Aiel, dark friends, and even the Black Ajah.  The fight is only beginning…

My Review: I had read this book about 6 years ago, but I remembered almost none of it.  So this run through the audio version was almost like a new book to me.  Unlike the last one, this book leaps out of the gate and never lets up.  Our characters are in nearly constant danger, and are often pitted against things they cannot understand.  Though they rise to meet every challenge, it takes its toll on them.  Because you are outside of the narrative, you get to see where their stories are touching each other, and the bigger implications.  And when we meet back up with a character we thought was dead, I cried a little.

A great mix of intrigue, action, suspense, and a few touches of romance.  And again, Michael Kramer and Kate Reading do a fantastic job of breathing life and emotion into the story (although I wasn’t a fan of their Seanchan accents since I’ve been told it was supposed to be more of a Texas drawl).  Well worth the 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 Reads: The Sculptor

Cover image for The sculptorThe Sculptor by Scott McCloud

Reviewed by: Dave Gibbons, Library Volunteer

Genre: Graphic Novel, Speculative Fiction

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: If someone offered you the choice of a quiet but long life of pleasant banality or a flashy life were anything is possible but you will die after a mere 200 days, what would you choose? Sculptor David Smith is given just such a Faustian bargain and he acquires the ability to sculpt anything he wants which leads him straight down a path of emotional extremes. Struggling with the mercurial nature of the fine art world, David’s success is not as instant as he would prefer. He also has to deal with developing rivalries and straining friendships. Ultimately, his shallow nature is laid raw as he falls for Meg, a woman who initially appears to him as an angel. His life become something of a surreal roller-coaster after turning from the fine art world to the shadowy world of street art, focusing less on the external and more toward his relationship with Meg, which only makes the closing date of his bargain more eminent. Like all roller-coaster rides. David’s has to end, but not before an astounding climax that will make even the most jaded cynic pause and reflect.

My Review: Scott McCloud has literally written the book on comics (Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art), so I had no doubt this graphic novel would be astounding, but the storytelling mastery that he demonstrates with a simple palate of black white and blue are staggering.  Even the way McCloud lays out panels serve to heighten story, drawing readers into David’s chaotic world, speeding up and slowing down the narrative with nothing more than the turn of a page. This is one of the few books that whole classes should be taught on.  I read many graphic novels, most of which are simple escapist entertainment, but every now and again one makes you think a little. The Sculptor changed the way I saw art in a way that will stick with me for quite some time.

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: The Rook

Cover image for The rook : a novelThe Rook by Daniel O’Malley

Reviewed by: Carey Gibbons, Adult Services

Genre: Science Fiction

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: Myfanwy (pronounced Miffany) Thomas wakes up in a park in the rain with no memory, surrounded by dead people, and with a letter that begins, “Dear You, The body you are wearing used to be mine.” This is only the beginning of Myfanwy’s strange journey as she navigates this new life while attempting to maintain the illusion that nothing has changed. Because someone is trying to kill her, and not even the old Myfanwy Thomas knew who. New Myfanwy needs to find out who wants her dead before they find out that Old Myfanwy is no longer in residence. New Myfanwy has help in the form of letters from Old Myfanwy, but not even those are enough to prepare her for the reality of her new life as a super secret and also high ranking officer of the Checquy, England’s first and last line of defense against the supernatural. And to complicate things further, it turns out that New Myfanwy has strange powers of her own that are far superior to those of Old Myfanwy. The Rook goes back and forth between the life experiences of New Myfanwy and the instructional letters left behind by Old Myfanwy, both of whom need to find out who wants them dead.

My Review: This book was so much fun! I was torn between wanting to read it as fast as possible and reading a little bit at a time to make the book last as long as I could. Luckily for me, and anyone else who has enjoyed The Rook, the sequel, Stiletto, was released on June 14th. I liked this book because it hit all of the major buttons that I like in genre fiction. Super powered people – yes; super powered forces of evil – yes; an all consuming mystery – yes; a clever sense of humor – yes. This book was both fun and funny. It felt like a mix of television shows like Orphan Black and The X-Files, with bits of movies like Kingsman and comics like X-Men thrown in. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes any of those things. O’Malley does a great job of keeping readers curious and engaged, and he writes excellent heroes and villains.

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: A Meal in Winter

18469743A Meal in Winter by Hubert Mingarelli

Reviewed by: Genna Buhr, Director

Genre: Historical Fiction

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: Rather than participating in the daily executions carried out at their base, three German soldiers choose to go on a day-long expedition to find at least one of the many Jews still hiding from the Nazi troops. Carrying their orders and anxieties across the frozen Polish countryside during World War II, the men contemplate their decision, confront the harshness of their situation, and consider decisions to which there are no clear or good answers.

My Review: This novella may look like a typical wartime story, touching on Antisemitism and the Holocaust as so many do, but I found it unique in that it is from the point of view of a German soldier and more unique in that it allows the reader to see him as something more than what is portrayed in history. It’s a very quick, straight-forward read, that doesn’t proselytize. While plain spoken, there are layers of complexity to the story and the characters that were intriguing to discover. In some ways, it reminded me of the Alfred Hitchcock movie, Lifeboat, which also takes place in mostly a single location and deals with survival, prejudices, and moral decisions.

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!

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