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Updated: 2 hours 13 min ago

Beyond the Book: Traditional Cambodian Music

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 19:25
Traditional Cambodian music plays a key role in Music of the Ghosts. Hearing it triggers memories for both of the story's main characters, and three hand-made instruments—a single-stringed lute, an oboe, and a drum—set the plot in motion.

Music and Buddhism have a strong connection; music is sometimes seen as a ceremonial offering to the Buddha. An estimated 95% of Cambodians are Buddhist today, and the roots of Buddhism date back to the 5th century. Over that long history, Buddhist songs have been adapted for use in ceremonies such as weddings and funerals, playing an integral role in common cultural practices.
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7 Books on The Civil War for Book Clubs

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 13:00
Historical fiction lovers have it good: they can travel to distant places and times, and learn by immersion. The American Civil War is one piece of history that is filled with treats for fans of the form -- high drama, hazy battle lines between good and bad, black and white; and the sights and sounds of a nascent America still struggling to forge its identity. There are plenty of good books in this category, March by Geraldine Brooks and Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier being two classics. Here are some others worth checking out. Please fee free to add your own suggestions at the bottom. The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers Hardcover Jan 2017; Paperback Nov 2...
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Page-Turners to Pack - and to Discuss in Your Book Club!

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 17:15
Dear BookBrowsers,

It's a booklover's midsummer dream: to spend a whole day at the beach or in your backyard hammock, reading. Summer's necessary indulgences include chugging through a fast-paced novel or two, so we have included an entire lineup of gripping books that you simply won't be able to put down. Even better, they make for great discussion and come with reading guides, so you can be confident recommending them to your book club as well. Make sure to pack a couple of these in your beach bag. After all, every lazy day deserves page-turning action! [More]
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5 Ways Librarians Can Tell Patrons About Library Resources

Mon, 07/10/2017 - 11:23
Your library works hard to procure the very best resources possible. But do your patrons utilize them? Do they even know what's available? Here are five suggestions for ways to connect your patrons to all the information, education and entertainment that your library provides, with a particular eye to the electronic resources available through your website: Highlight one or two different resources each month and feature them in the library, on the website and in newsletters so that patrons get used to checking for (and using) different resources each month. Use this regular feature as a way to continuously remind patrons of all of the other resources you have. Add a footnote that hints at the range of resources available, ...
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Middle East Must-Reads

Mon, 06/12/2017 - 09:09
Summer might not seem like the time to visit desert sands, and sure, there's more than just desert in the Middle East. But the subject is always topical.

To make sense of the geopolitics, it helps to be steeped in a place, to try to understand the people and their motivations. These books won't make you an expert but maybe they will clarify the murk somewhat, allowing you to see varying parts of the Middle East through the eyes of people who live there.

Best of all, they are great to read for their own sake and also well suited for discussion. If you're ready for some armchair travel to a region of the world that's often terribly misunderstood, buckle your seat-belts and join us for the ride! [More]
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Celebrating Diversity! Eight New & Notable LGBTQ Books for Young Adults

Mon, 05/22/2017 - 15:08
In celebration of LGBTQ Pride Month, and in an effort to promote diversity in kids' literature, we've put together a list of eight highly praised LGBTQ books for young adults, all of which published (or will publish) in 2017. Why is diversity in kids' literature so important? According to Rudine Sims Bishop, Professor Emerita of Education at The Ohio State University, and former selection committee member for both the Caldecott and Newbery awards, in her essay "Mirrors, Windows, and Sliding Glass Doors": When children cannot find themselves reflected in the books they read, or when the images they see are distorted, negative, or laughable, they learn a powerful lesson about how they are devalued in the society of which they are ... [More]
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You've Got a Friend In Me: Celebrating Women's Friendships

Sat, 05/06/2017 - 10:03
There has been much talk in recent years about why women need friendships with other women. According to a much referenced 2000 UCLA study, friendships between women not only "soothe our tumultuous inner world, fill the emotional gaps in our marriage, and help us remember who we really are," they're also good for women's health. These nine books explore the various aspects of women's friendships in all their complexities. [More]
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