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Updated: 2 hours 45 min ago

Books in Translation: Bring the World to Your Book Club!

Sun, 08/12/2018 - 18:25
Translating books from one language to another is an art and the translators of these six books are exceptionally talented artists. Of course, the original authors are incredible writers and storytellers too, so these novels deliver a one-two punch to invigorate your book club. [More]
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Creative Writing & Storytelling for the Family

Sun, 08/12/2018 - 10:36
There is a lot of debate as to whether creative writing can be taught or not. Clearly a lot of people think it can be given the growth in creative writing courses. As with most interesting arguments, the truth is probably to be found somewhere in the middle, in that gray area between a polarizing 'yes' or 'no'. Certain elements like voice probably can't be 'taught' as such but they can be refined, given enough time, and the same goes for other aspects of storytelling. In which case, it would seem to make sense to give aspiring writers the fundamental tools they need so that they can learn to use them effectively to improve their writing craft.
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What's the Difference Between a Romance Novel and a Love Story?

Sun, 07/29/2018 - 14:02
In literary terms, the distinction between a romance and a love story is arguably subjective and open for interpretation--perhaps rooted in literary snobbery--but as someone who appreciates both genres, this is how I discern the two. Characters As in many types of stories, characters are central to both love stories and romances. We need to be intrigued by and invested in them in order to fully appreciate their relationship. Characters in a romance may feel idealized in some way. They might have some type of flaw--but even this flaw is likely to be a strength in disguise. Love stories tend to have more deeply and authentically flawed characters. Regardless of the setting and time period they're placed in, they're un...
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Six Debut Novels About Families for Book Clubs

Mon, 07/09/2018 - 13:03
From ancient Rome to 20th century Middle East to contemporary USA, these debut novels will inspire lively conversation about family from vastly different angles. The Resurrection of Joan Ashby, The Confusion of Languages and George and Lizzie take a close look at marriage and parenthood; Salt Houses takes us into a Palestinian family caught between present and past, displacement and home; Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine focuses on how to open your heart to create family; and Feast of Sorrow shows how disregarding family can ultimately destroy you. While all six books are quite different from one another, they are all reminders that the foundations of life are relationships--and family, whether the one you're born into or the one ... [More]
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Six Books for Adults that Spark Empathy

Thu, 07/05/2018 - 20:14

Empathy seems to have taken a bit of a hit recently. There's rarely a week when blatant hate or some form of intolerance isn't at the forefront of the news; and there can be few of us who haven't felt the need to disconnect from the media at times unable to take anymore. It would seem we could do with more empathy in our lives. With this in mind, here are six books for adults that have helped me see empathy – and its importance. Books can't solve everything but perhaps reading can be one kind of spark to creating more kindness in our world.
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Six Thrillers to Chill Your Book Club in the Heat of Summer

Sun, 06/10/2018 - 18:40

Rules for summer: Get outside. Sit down. Breathe deep. Grab a great book. Read.

We've got the last two covered! Here are six books that are page-turning, heart-racing, nail-biting thrillers sure to keep you riveted. Read them in blissful solitude or find a few extra chairs and invite your book club to read and discuss with you. Then you'll be following one last summer rule: Spend time with friends.

All six books are recently published in paperback and come with discussion guides; they are also available in hardcover and ebook.

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Young Adult Novels Exploring Depression

Tue, 05/29/2018 - 11:28
According to Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (SAVE), suicide is the second leading cause of death in people 15-24 years of age, and ranks tenth when considering all ages. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that in the United States, eight percent of all people over the age of twelve suffer from depression in any two-week period. Although females are more likely to experience a major bout, males' related suicide attempts are more likely to end in death.

In addition to The Memory of Light by Francisco X. Stork, several recently published books for teens explore the issues of depression and suicide in teens.
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Ways to Maximize Your Library's Welcome Kit

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 10:44

Dean Baumeister at Memorial Hall Library in Andover, Massachusetts talks about ways to maximize a library's welcome kit.

Hello Dean! Please tell us about Memorial Hall Library's welcome kit; I'm curious to hear what you include.
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Contemporary YA Novels about 9/11

Tue, 05/15/2018 - 17:08
Over 3,000 people died on September 11, 2001. With the impact of that catastrophe being so far-reaching, it's no surprise that there have been a plethora of films and books released that recall 9/11. Oliver Stone's World Trade Center and Paul Greengrass' United 93 are two of the most popular movies to recreate that day. Jonathan Safran Foer's Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, an outstanding novel about an eccentric nine-year-old boy trying to piece together a puzzle his father left behind after being killed in the World Trade Center, is another title that might be familiar to those who seek out art related to America's contemporary history. But these well-known works aren't aimed specifically at younger readers, and there was certainly ...
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Books About North & South Korea for Book Clubs

Mon, 05/07/2018 - 10:35
One narrative can never fully represent any cultural experience but becoming aware of singular stories helps us find empathy for a wide range of the world. Here we have gathered a variety of stories that together explore a diverse representation of Korean perspectives, history and life situations. [More]
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