#FDL: Five Questions

Welcome to #FDL’s feature column, Five Questions, where we ask library staff and other East Peoria residents roughly the same five questions. For our next Five Questions column, we’re interviewing Sarah Baker, one of FDL’s circulation assistants who helps get your library items from point A to point B.

1. Who are you?

I’m so many things – wife, mother, trivia hostess, gardener, herbalist, retired Irish dancer, aspiring writer, kitty rescuer, cook – really, the list goes on and on! And I’m a regular face at the checkout desk.

2. What is your favorite part of working at FDL?

I love knowing that every day I’m at work, I’ve helped at least one person. It might be something simple, but it can make a difference in how the rest of your day plays out. I enjoy helping people find their answers.

3. What are you reading/watching/listening to right now?

I’m watching my way through the first season of Elementary (love it!). I’ve usually got one book and one audiobook going – I’m reading The Serpent and The Rainbow by Wade Davis, The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven by Sherman Alexie and listening to White Night by Jim Butcher. I’m also super jazzed because I’ve got a stack of Attack on Titan: Before the Fall AND Gundam ORIGINS waiting for me (and I’ll probably finish those first).

4. If you didn’t already have your dream job, what would you be doing?

I would love to homestead! I do a fair amount of gardening and canning, but it’s not been a big enough scale to go beyond my home and my family. I’d want to have fresh produce, canned jelly, jam, preserves and chutneys, shrubs and sodas, wine and cider, and baked goods to take to farmer’s markets.

5. What is the best use of a towel in case of dire emergency?

My Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy training says that covering your head will protect you from the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (it is the stupidest creature in the entire universe – so profoundly unintelligent that, if you can’t see it, it assumes it can’t see you).

Interviewed 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: Ink and Bone

Cover image for Ink and boneInk and Bone by Rachel Caine

Reviewed by: Joscelyn Lockwood, Youth Services

Genre: Fantasy

Suggested Age: Teens, Adults

What is the book about?: Imagine a future where the Great Library of Alexandria never burned down and all the books in the world are under the control of the Library. Personal ownership of books is illegal. Jess Brightwell is from a family of book smugglers, but he values the books more than most. Instead of taking his father’s place in the family business, he’s sent to go through the testing to become a Scholar within the Library. What Jess and his fellow Postulates soon discover, is that within knowledge is power, and the Library will do anything to keep a firm grip on their power.

My Review: This book captured me with a fascinating concept and by appealing to my love of dystopian fantasy. It had a bit of a slow start, but the latter half of the book had me totally hooked. Jess and his group of Postulates (aspiring Scholars of the Library) are diverse and interesting. It was especially fascinating to see them grow as people as they go through the trials and tribulations of their schooling and other unexpected situations. The climax and ending had me begging for more, with a twist that I really wasn’t expecting. I can’t wait to dive into the second book of what is definitely going to be a worthwhile series.

Three Words That Describe This Book: Adventure, Deception, Intrigue

Give This a Try if You Like… Harry Potter, Alternate History,  Dystopian Fantasy

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: Dead Until Dark

Cover image for Dead until darkDead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

Reviewed by: Carey Gibbons, Reference Specialist

Genre: Contemporary Fantasy/Supernatural/Mystery

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: Sookie Stackhouse is a waitress in the small Louisianna town of Bon Temps. Her life is fairly normal except for one thing – she’s a telepath and can read the thoughts of others. This makes life difficult for Sookie, so when a vampire walks into the bar she works in and she can’t hear a single thing he’s thinking, she feels relief. Vampires have “come out of the coffin” all over the world and Sookie is to drawn Bill (the vampire) for both his mental quietude and his exotic nature. However, as Sookie and Bill fall for each other, humans are getting murdered in Bon Temps and it appears that vampires are to blame. Is Bill’s appearance in Bon Temps a coincidence, or are he and his vampire friends killing humans and jeopardizing the lives of vampires who want to live mainstream lives?

My Review: I am a little late to the Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood party, but better late than never. I had a lot of fun reading this book. Charlaine Harris might not be the best, most literary writer, but this book was entertaining and presents a thought provoking alternative world. What would we all do if vampires and other supernatural beasties were real? Would we welcome them into mundane human life or push them away? I think Sookie and Bill (and eventually Eric) are fun characters. I enjoy them as individuals and I enjoy their romance. This book as a whole is surprisingly nuanced and overall good enough for me to keep going with the series. I’m currently on book 6 and plan on finishing them all.

Three Words That Describe This Book: Fun, Sexy, Toothy

Give This a Try if You Like… Bram Stoker’s Dracula, deadpan humor, Buffy the Vampire Slayer

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: What happens after you return a library item?

Demystifying Librarian Life – What happens after you return a library item?

Hello, and welcome to another installment of #FDL where we demystify library life and lingo. For this post I went downstairs to the circulation department to talk to one of our circulation and inter-library loan librarians, Theresa Johnston, about what happens to library items after you return them to the library either via circulation desk or drive through book depository. There’s an awful lot that goes into they way library items travel – much like a human body, a library needs a good circulatory system to stay healthy.

At FDL, you can return books inside the library or at a drive through book drop. How often do those depositories get emptied?
The inside book drop gets emptied pretty constantly all day. The drive through book drop gets emptied every hour or so and always first thing in the morning and last thing at night.

Why can’t I put some items in the book drops?
While you can put books, DVDs, and CDs into the book drop, other items have to be returned directly to a librarian, like Launch Pads, puzzles, board games, Rokus, and Speck devices. One of the reasons for this is because some of these things have multiple pieces that we have to count and that should all stay in the same container so nothing gets lost. If a patron puts those items in the book drop, pieces might get separated or broken especially if other items are being piled on top of them. Secondly, some of those items are expensive, and we want to make sure we’re giving the best patron service possible by checking those items back in while you’re in front of this so you can be secure in the definitive knowledge that that item was returned.

How long does it take an item to get from the book drop back to the shelf?
This depends on the time of day and the day of the week in which an item is returned, but most likely within 24 hours. An item is going to get from book drop to shelf more quickly if one of our invaluable pages is on duty to shelve items. But, there are two important things to know in regard to this process:

What happens to items that belong to different libraries? Or items that belong to FDL that I return elsewhere?
One of the great things about the libraries that are part of RAILS is that you can return items to any library within RAILS even if you did not check it out from that same library. For example, if you have an item that belongs to the library in Dunlap, you can return it to FDL. First, the good folks in circulation will check that item in so it is no longer checked out on your library card. Then, they fill out a return label, telling a delivery driver where the item needs go home to. The delivery driver then picks up all items that need to go back to their home libraries and takes them to a delivery hub (the one that serves central IL is conveniently in East Peoria). From there, items are sorted based on where they need to be delivered to. A second delivery driver then takes these sorted items back to their home libraries. While an item is travelling, it is no longer attached to anyone’s library card and considered “in transit.”

What happens if I return an item after the library closes or before the library opens?
People might need to return something at 11:59 on the day it’s due, but unfortunately, FDL isn’t open 24/7. Items that are returned between 9pm and 9am the next day are backdated on a person’s library card to avoid fining them for returning an item when no one is at the library – which isn’t their fault. What that means is, if you return an item at 10pm on say August 1st, the circulation worker who checks it in on August 2nd, still uses the check in date of August 1st.

What happens to items that come back to the library a little worse for wear?
Sometimes, people can be a bit careless with items. Occasionally, libraries have to charge patrons to replace damaged items. However, in the case of easy fixes, like a lightly cracked book spine or a gently scratched DVD, we have repair services. You’d be surprised at how much help tape and glue can be in book repair. If you have a library item that got accidentally damaged, it never hurts to give us a call and ask if it can be fixed.

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.

Eclipse Information

UPDATE: As of 1 p.m. on August 14, the library has distributed all of the glasses received through the grant and does not have any more free eclipse glasses to give away. Although the library has no more glasses to distribute, we did want to share this link that provides several sets of instructions for making eclipse viewers from boxes and other household supplies. We wish everyone a safe and enjoyable eclipse on Monday! 

eclipse glassesIn planning for the Total Eclipse of the Sun on August 21, Fondulac District Library applied for and was fortunate to receive a grant from the STAR Library Network (STAR_Net), with support from the Moore Foundation, Google, NASA, the Research Corporation, and National Science Foundation.  The library has received a limited amount of solar eclipse viewing glasses through the StarNet grant to support the library’s related programs. Participants in any of the library’s astronomy and eclipse related programming through August 10 will receive a pair. (Please see our event calendar at http://fondulaclibrary.evanced.info/signup/calendar for more information about library programming.)

Starting August 11, individuals may come to the Youth Services department at the library to receive a pair while supplies last. Because of the limited availability, the library is unable to fulfill requests from groups or other large requests.

The Riverfront Museum in Peoria is selling safe viewing glasses in the Museum Store (www.peoriariverfrontmuseum.org). Additionally, the National Science Foundation’s American Astronomical Society’s Reputable Vendors page also provide links to resellers who may still have eclipse glasses in stock for purchase. (The library has heard from several sources that many vendors are sold out.)

More eclipse information:

How to View the 2017 Solar Eclipse Safely

Total Eclipse 2017 from NASA

NASA’s Live Stream of the Eclipse

Library Services by Text Message

Shoutbomb PromoWebsiteWith the library’s Shoutbomb text messaging service, you can use your mobile phone to:

  • Receive text notices about holds and reserved items that are available for pickup, items that are due soon, overdue items, and fines.
  • Send a text to request renewal of an item.
  • Easily manage your family’s library accounts by associating multiple cards with a single phone number.

To get started, text the message SIGNUP to rsacat@shoutbomb.com, then reply to the messages from Shoutbomb asking for your library card number and PIN. If you don’t know your PIN, have questions, or would like to learn more about the service, please visit or call the library at (309) 699-3917. Additional information can also be found here.

FDL Reads: Phoebe and her Unicorn

Cover image for Phoebe and Her UnicornPhoebe and her Unicorn by Dana Simpson

Reviewed by: Sylvia Shults, Circulation

Genre: Fantasy (Graphic Novel)

Suggested Age: Tweens, Teens

What is the book about?: This fun, energetic graphic novel series takes a different look at childhood. Phoebe goes to her thinking spot to escape the latest unfairness of being a kid, and skips a rock as she sulks. The rock hits a unicorn who’s been gazing at her own loveliness in the pond. Granted a wish, Phoebe wishes for the unicorn, Marigold Heavenly Nostrils, to be her best friend. What happens next is a Calvin-and-Hobbes style friendship, reinvented for the 21st century.

My Review: Just as the adventures of Calvin and his stuffed tiger transcended cartoons and appealed to adults too, this series isn’t just for kids to enjoy. I found it interesting that although comparisons to the older cartoon are inevitable, there are significant differences — for example, Phoebe’s parents are perfectly capable of seeing Marigold and having conversations with her. Marigold interacts with every other character – not just Phoebe. (And Phoebe is much less of a holy terror than Calvin was.) A nifty addition to the books can be found in the back pages, where the author puts extra fun stuff, like drawing lessons and recipes. I fully intend to make Unicorn Poop Cookies for my next birthday party. Why should ten-year-olds have all the fun? I binge-read all five of the books in this series one Friday afternoon, sitting on the porch swing with a glass of juice. Every once in a while, it’s fun to lose yourself in a book, pretend you’re ten, and have a unicorn for a best friend.

Three Words That Describe This Book: Funny, light-hearted, sly

Give This a Try if You Like… Calvin and Hobbes

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: Spill Zone

Cover image for Spill zone. 01Spill Zone by Scott Westerfeld and Alex Puvilland

Reviewed by: Dave Gibbons, Library Volunteer

Genre: Science Fiction (Graphic Novel)

Suggested Age: Tweens, Teens, Adults

What is the book about?: Collectors are paying top dollar for Addison’s photography, and for good reason. The photos she takes are of the reality warped weirdness of the Spill Zone – an area devastated during the cataclysmic event that claimed her parents and struck her sister mute. She has successfully skirted the law so far but when she is tasked by an eccentric millionaire to acquire something from within the Zone she will have to break the rules for survival one last time, but at what cost?

My Review: This is a graphic novel that really takes advantage of the medium. Using a seemingly simple technique of “coloring outside the lines” Puvilland’s skillful color use contrasts the “real” world with the Spill Zone, providing a quasi-abstract feeling that heightened my sense of unease in a way that can only be done in a comic. The stunning art enhances bestselling author Scott Westerfeld’s masterful storytelling in which he weaves a tale that in less skilled hands could quickly fall back on genre tropes and become forgettable. If there is any downside, it would be that this book feels more like the first chapter of a longer epic then a standalone book. Though the critique of “I want more” is not a bad problem to have.

Three Words That Describe This Book: color theory, mysterious, intense

Give This a Try if You Like… Stranger Things, Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan, original X-Files

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: Five Facts About 3D Printing

This part of the printer is called a hot-end-assembly. FDL blogger and 3D printer repair woman, Carey Gibbons, replaced the part on the left, which had seen 600 hours of work, with the shiny new part on the right this week.

Did you know that FDL has a 3D printer?

Now you do! Our website has information on how to access our 3D printer related services here. At that link, you can find a general FAQ and another link to our 3D printing request form. But, 3D printing in general is pretty amazing on both small and large scales. Since our own 3D printer just underwent some in-house repairs, I thought it would be a good time to share some 3D printing facts.

  1. Some printers can print with weird materials like chocolate, metal, or wood. Most 3D printers, including the one at FDL, print with two kind of plastic filament – ABS or PLA. While our printer is capable of using ABS, we only use PLA because ABS filament emits toxic fumes. However, some printers are capable of printing with chocolate. Others use metal, mostly for the purpose of casting parts, but uses for metal printing have increased. Popular tech site AdaFruit even has info and tutorials on printing with wood based filament.
  2. The medical community has embraced 3D printing technology. 3D printing has been used in medical technology for everything from creating custom braces for people with broken limbs to models of an individual patient’s brain from MRI scans. And before you think that this technology is only available in the biggest, wealthiest cities of the world, our very own OSF has a model heart library for use in treating patients and saving lives.
  3. 3D printing can take a really long time. Even though FDL’s 3D printer looks like a microwave, 3D printing is not like popping a frozen dinner in one and waiting for it to come out in a couple of minutes. 3D printing takes time – sometimes a lot of time. While 3D printing might seem like magic, it’s slow magic, and patience is key. The longest print job we’ve ever done at FDL took 22 hours. But this guy worked on a model motorcycle for over a year, using plastic filament very similar to what we use at FDL.
  4. 3D printing a gun is highly unrealistic. When the library got a 3D printer, a few people brought up the idea of the 3D printed gun, either because it had been mentioned in the news or was the subject of a popular crime drama. Most 3D printers in commercial areas for public use have a system of checks to prevent weapons of any kind from being printed. For example, at FDL, print requests are reviewed very carefully and any that are deemed dangerous are denied. Both of the 3D print specialists at FDL are well versed in print files and how certain items can be used. For more information, All3DP has a super informative article about the idea of the 3D printed firearm.
  5. But 3D printing in space is not. In 2014, the International Space Station 3D printed its first object – a ratchet wrench. Many more items have been printed since. In fact, the company BeeHex, funded by a grant from NASA, has developed a 3D printer for the sole purpose of printing pizzas for use in space. The future is now, right?

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.

Free GED Classes this Fall

Fondulac District Library is pleased to announce it has again partnered with the East Peoria Chamber of Commerce and the City of East Peoria to offer a free GED preparation class this fall. The class, materials, and required tests will be FREE to qualified participants. Individuals must meet participation requirements to earn free GED test vouchers.

Registration and testing are required for the classes and will be held Thursday, August 24 OR Thursday, August 31, 2017. People interested in the classes must register and take the eligibility tests on one of the two dates being offered. Register in-person between 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM. The test will begin promptly at 6 PM.

Classes will be held Thursdays, September 7 to December 21, 2017, from 5:30 to 8:30 PM. Students must attend all class sessions to get the most from this program.

Please read the additional important information located at:
https://www.fondulaclibrary.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/GED-Flier-and-FAQ-Fall-2017.pdf

Please contact epged2017@gmail.com or (309) 431-1341 with questions.

imagine, inform, inspire