#FDL: Nobel Prize in Literature 2017

Kazuo Ishiguro

British novelist Kazuo Ishiguro has won the Nobel Prize in Literature for 2017.  He has written seven critically acclaimed novels. The following are his most notable:

The Remains of the Day

Stevens, a retired butler in 1956, reflects on his life serving Lord Darlington.  During his thirty year career, he saw many changes in England from the beginning of World War I to the rise of Nazism and the Second World War.  Stevens is rather oblivious to certain facts about his employer and his devotion to service causes him to ignore Darlington’s dangerous political affiliations as well as the housekeeper’s love for him.  This novel was made into the 1993 film starring Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson.

Never Let Me Go

Never Let Me Go is a dystopian love story told from the perspective of Kathy.  Kathy lived at Hailsham, a secluded English private school where the students were told they were special. The reader is taken back in time to Kathy’s childhood at the school and her friendship with fellow classmates, Ruth and Tommy. Though the narrative never overtly states the reason why the children are special, the reader is able to figure it out as the story unfolds. This novel was made into the 2010 film starring Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightly, and Andrew Garfield.

Buried Giant

A historical novel set after the death of King Arthur, Buried Giant is a about a couple who go looking for their long lost son.  A strange mist has caused them to have amnesia, making difficult to remember many things that have happened. There are other people on a journey as well, including a knight, a warrior, and an orphan. They begin to travel along side the couple and eventually start to recall the memories of the past.

When We Were Orphans

Christopher Banks is a English boy who was born in Shanghai when it was still controlled by the British. Both of his parents go missing when he is still very young and Christopher is sent to live in London.  Now a renowned investigator twenty years later, Christopher returns to Shanghai to unravel the truth behind his parents’ mysterious disappearance.

 

 

 

Post by: Susie Rivera, 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: 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: To Boldly Go…

First Officer Michael Burnham

To Boldly Go…

How many of you reading this have been watching the new Star Trek series, Discovery? Only four episodes have aired so far, but it is so cool! Discovery takes place ten years before the original Star Trek series with Kirk and Spock. It follows former first officer Michael Burnham on the slightly mysterious science vessel Discovery. The rest of the crew is also intriguing, but I can’t say much without giving away some things for those of you who haven’t seen it. But I can say that Discovery looks like it’s going to be an incredible ensemble show, like many of the other Star Trek series. Discovery also has a lot of firsts going for it, including a first female person of color lead, and Star Trek’s first openly gay character. This series is so far boldly going in some new directions but also very much staying true to the spirit of Star Trek through the ages. Discovery embraces diversity, intrigue, rich character development, and multi-layered plot developments. I mean, these new Klingons, you guys!!

With Discovery airing, and a number of staff members being pretty excited about it, I thought I would put together a short list of books and multimedia that you all might like if you also enjoy Star Trek of any kind.

  1. The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers. A lot of people refer to this book as feel good science fiction. I’m not sure if that counts as a spoiler. It has the feel of original series Star Trek camaraderie, with Discovery Trek technology (even though Discovery comes before the OS in the Trek timeline – bear with me). This book is a mostly closed ship narrative about a tight knit crew who explore their differences among themselves in addition to wide open outer space. There’s also fungus fuel for the ship in both. And a warlike species bent on causing trouble for their small part of the universe.
  2. Firefly. This show is probably an obvious choice, but in case you haven’t seen it, give it a shot. It’s another closed ship narrative about a crew with a lot of differences but the ability to get along with each other. Mostly. I would suggest this one to fans of Enterprise or again, the original series.
  3. Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty. The premise of this is a bit dark. Six astronauts run a generation-type ship through space. But instead of reproducing, they clone themselves at the end of every life-cycle and keep all of their knowledge and experience. However, someone has murdered them all, forcing their clones to regenerate with no knowledge of their many years on the ship. And then destroyed the cloning devices. It could only be one of the six. But who? And will they strike again?
  4. Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer. This one is for those who like the world building of Star Trek. An abundance of technology has created a universal utopia built on a complex system of castes and houses and the outlawing of religion. This book, the beginning of a series, follows two misfits in this seemingly perfect but complex world along with a child who might bring ruin to all of it.
  5. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil DeGrasse Tyson. This slim non-fiction volume may not be as completely outlandish as Star Trek but it really makes you think about humanity and our place in the wider universe. Will Vulcans find us some day? Will we ever develop warp speed technology? Does the Mirror Universe really exist? This book gives hope that we aren’t completely alone in the universe and that someday, we’ll develop the technology to find out for sure.

In addition to these titles, check with library staff about the Star Trek titles we have in television, movies, and books.

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: 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: Scary Movies for Big Babies

October = Spooky Time

For a lot of people, the month of October means a month long Halloween celebration. It’s generally the spookiest month of the year. All of the most important horror movies and books come out around this time and it’s also a great time to dust off old favorites. Some people really enjoy the horror aspect of Halloween. Other people, not so much. Personally, I fall somewhere in the middle. I can read horror books just fine, but horror movies make me cry and sleep with the lights on. However, I thought I would share with you a few horror movies that are pretty good, even if they were frightening (to me). If you’re reading this on our social media sites, feel free to chime in with horror moves that you like.

  1. The Ring. So, I saw this one in the movie theater when it came out. The basic plot is about some teens who find a mysterious video tape and watch it. If they don’t pass it on to someone else to watch within seven days, a creepy kid crawls out of the television and kills them. I haven’t been this afraid of television static since Poltergeist. I know I’m easily scared but I thought this movie was well done and the fear factor comes from a lack of control. How do you make someone else watch this movie? And how do you live with the responsibility of putting a potential death sentence onto someone else to save your own life? I still don’t trust video tapes because of this movie and I don’t think I turned on my television for weeks after I saw it.
  2. Saw. I really like this movie despite the fact that it’s gory as all get out. The gore doesn’t bother me as much as the premise. This movie asks what you would do to save your own life. Like The Ring, Saw puts its characters into tricky moral situations. The gore is like a bonus. Saw is about a serial killer who doesn’t actually do any killing. He forces his victims to commit crimes against others or themselves to force them to value the lives they have. I like this and The Ring because of their psychological aspects.
  3. Pan’s Labyrinth. This movie is only kind of horror. Parts of it are definitely scary, but it’s very much a character based story and it’s a total tearjerker. Pan’s Labyrinth is about a little girl who is sent to live with her new step-father who is a captain in Spain’s army in 1944. Her life is… not that great. But she has a fantastical world that she can enter. She is told that if she completes three gruesome tasks within this world, she will be declared a princess. Do not watch this movie without tissues.
  4. 10 Cloverfield Lane. This movie is plenty scary without relying on gore or jump shots or other major staples of horror films. It’s a slow burn with this air of menace that you can never really be sure you should be feeling. This is the story of Michelle, who gets into a car accident and is rescued by John Goodman (his character’s name is Howard). Michelle wakes up in a room, chained to a bed. The situation only gets more bizarre from here as John Goodman/Howard explains that she’s in a bunker with him for her own safety as an alien attack is currently going on above-ground.
  5. Get Out. This is another movie that I saw in the theater and I loved it so much. What makes this movie so terrifying both in real and existential terms is that there are a lot of moments that are almost funny. This movie tries to trick you into laughing at it. This movie wants you to feel like you’re watching one type of movie but then switches things up. It works, too. Get Out was written and directed by Jordan Peele, a modern king of comedy. It follows Chris, a black man, who travels with his white girlfriend to meet her family for the first time. Chris gets to his girlfriend’s parent’s house and things seem a little off. Or do they? Is he being paranoid? All these little weird things happening can be laughed off later, right? Nope.All of these movies are available for checkout or hold – so enjoy!

    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: Ray and Joan

29430060Ray and Joan by Lisa Napoli

Reviewed by: Genna Buhr, Library Director

Genre: Biography

Suggested Age: Adults

What is the book about?: Ray & Joan is the story of the Krocs, the couple that grew the global brand of McDonald’s. The book covers their lives before they were a couple, the story of their somewhat tumultuous relationship, and how their fortunes were made and used. While the book does speak some to the business, its focus shines a light on the private lives of the couple, their relationship with each other, and their relationship with money.

My Review:  This book goes beyond Robin Leach and the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous treatment. It gives an intriguing, investigative look into the lives that built an icon of American life and reminds us that money doesn’t equal perfection or happiness and that it can both help and complicate matters. In reading the book, I found the drama in the lives of both of these strong personalities to be palpable at times. Napoli depicts their lives with an even brush, neither villainizing or deifying.

Three Words That Describe This Book: Interesting, Encompassing, Golden (like the arches or the fries)

Give This a Try if You Like… Empty Mansions, Biography (television show), Big Macs

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.

Online Learning at the Library (For Kids!)

electronic-education-resourceswebFondulac District Library offers a variety of online learning resources for children.

Tumblebooks are collections of eBooks, audiobooks, and read-along picture books that can be accessed in the library or remotely with your Fondulac District Library card. Educational games, puzzles, and comprehension quizzes are also included. The library offers Tumblebooks for all ages and reading levels!

ABCmouse.com is an early learning curriculum website available on the computers in the Youth Services Department at Fondulac District Library. ABC Mouse is tailored to children in preschool, kindergarten, and early elementary school. The site contains more than 5,000 learning activities and 650 lessons. Library staff members are happy to show you and your child how to get started.

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

#FDL – Happy Banned Books Week!

Happy Banned Books Week!

Hi everyone, and happy Banned Books Week! This week is like librarian Christmas. But instead of getting presents, we all talk about our most excellent freedom to read whatever we want, the books that have been targeted the most in the past year, and how we can open up dialog with our varied communities on the importance of being free to read anything we like. While Banned Books Week is an excellent way to celebrate freedom of information and access to information, it’s a little bit of a misnomer.

When we think of a book being banned, we think of it has having been removed entirely from a library, school, or book shop. This actually rarely happens. Far more often, books get challenged. The ALA defines a challenge as “an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group.” Perhaps Banned Book Week has better alliteration than Challenged Book Week, or has a more dramatic flair. But the bottom line for either term in regard to our celebration of the week is that no one person or group has the right to decide what everyone should and should not be reading.

A lot of times, books that get challenged are books for children and teens. This makes sense as small children and even teens don’t always make their own reading choices. Parents and other supervising adults feel protective of their young people and that’s natural. Another type of book that gets challenged fairly regularly is the graphic novel, partly because young patrons check them out and partly because images convey ideas more clearly than words sometimes. But, we have to remember that one one person finds offensive, another is completely okay with. It’s up to us as individuals to make our own reading choices and when it comes to those who can’t yet do that, choose whether or not to use controversial material as a teaching moment or save it for another time. Banned Books Week is all about the celebration of these freedoms.

The American Library Association helps ensure our freedom to read year after year. For more information on the ALA and Banned Books Week, check out this link. For a look at the most challenged books by year, you can click here. Are there books on the yearly lists that you’ve read? Good job, you biblio-rebel!

 

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.

imagine, inform, inspire