Monday, December 31, 2012


The library's Book Club just finished reading Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights.  If you were are part of the discussion, or have read Wuthering Heights before, then you may be interested in reading something similar.

Wuthering Heights is the only novel by Emily Bronte.  It was first published under the name Ellis Bell.  Emily's sisters Anne and Charlotte were also published at this time, and they used the pen names Acton and Currer Bell.  After the deaths of both Anne and Emily, Charlotte had the books republished under the author's real names.  

The Bronte Sisters' Novels:
Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte
The Professor by Charlotte Bronte
Shirley by Charlotte Bronte
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Villette by Charlotte Bronte
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Looking for more?  Check out some of these titles:
A House Divided by Catherine Cookson
Kate Hannigan's Girl by Catherine Cookson
The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
Jazz by Toni Morrison
Here on Earth by Alice Hoffman
Charming Billy by Alice McDermott
Emily's Ghost by Denise Giardina
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
Daphne by Justine Picardie
The Minotaur by Barbara Vine
Middlemarch by George Eliot
The House of Dead Maids by Clare Dunkle
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Branwell: A Novel by Douglas A. Martin

Movies based on the Bronte novels:

For more information about Emily, Anne, and Charlotte:

Monday, December 17, 2012


Christmas is just around the corner, so I thought it would be fun to put a list together to help get you in the holiday spirit.  I have a little something for everyone: fiction, nonfiction, movies, children's materials, and young adult materials.

Adult Fiction:
A Cowboy Under My Christmas Tree by Janet Dailey
A Christmas Garland by Anne Perry
An Outlaw's Christmas by Linda Lael Miller
A Lone Star Christmas by William W. Johnstone
The Perfect Christmas by Debbie Macomber
Unwrapping Christmas by Lori Copeland
The Christmas Candle by Max Lucado
The Christmas Bus by Melody Carlson
The Christmas Quilt by Jennifer Chiaverini
The Christmas Thief by Mary Higgins Clark
The Christmas Train by David Baldacci
Skipping Christmas by John Grisham
A Highland Christmas by M.C. Beaton
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Adult Nonfiction:
I'm Dreaming of a Black Christmas by Lewis Black
Quick and Clever Christmas Cards by Elizabeth Moad
Christmas in Plains: Memories by Jimmy Carter
Christmas Ideas
The Christmas Box Miracle by Richard Paul Evans
I'll Be Home For Christmas: The Library of Congress Revisits the Spirit of Christmas During World War II
Christmas Remembered by Ben Logan
4000 Years of Christmas by Earl W. Count
Christmas Poems, Stories, and Carols 

Christmas in Mouseland by Katharine Holabird
A Charlie Brown Christmas by Charles Schulz
Little Porcupine's Christmas by Joseph Slate
Christmas in Camelot by Mary Pope Osborne
Pooh's Christmas Gifts by Isabel Gaines
Christmas Ornaments Kids Can Make by Kathy Ross
The Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore
The Case of the Christmas Snowman by James Preller
Rocking Horse Christmas by Mary Pope Osbourne
The Lump of Coal by Lemony Snicket
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
When Santa Fell to Earth by Cornelia Funke
Auntie Claus by Elise Primavera

Young Adult:
Christmas Classics (Graphic Novel)
Christmas After All by Kathryn Lasky
Truce: The Day the Soldiers Stopped Fighting by Jim Murphy
Mistletoe: Four Holiday Stories

A Christmas Carol
Christmas in New York
White Christmas: All Star Show
Christmas in South Africa
Christmas with Gumby
The Polar Express
Christmas in Boston
Miracle on 34th Street
It's a Wonderful Life
The Santa Clause

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Monday, December 10, 2012


Who doesn't like to read a good mystery?  And, what's better than one good mystery?  A whole series!

If you can find a character that you love or a writing style you enjoy, then why wouldn't you want to read more like it?

I just started reading the Hannah Swensen series by Joanne Fluke, and I am loving it!  Hannah Swensen is a Minnesota native who owns her own bakery, The Cookie Jar.  Interspersed between chapters, Fluke includes some of Hannah's recipes.  Try them out and get a taste of Hannah's world while enjoying a great read.

There a lot of mystery series out there, and here a few to get you started.

Hannah Swensen Series by Joanne Fluke:

1. Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder
2. Strawberry Shortcake Murder
3. Blueberry Muffin Murder
4. Lemon Meringue Pie Murder
5. Fudge Cupcake Murder
6. Sugar Cookie Murder
7. Peach Cobbler Murder
8. Cherry Cheesecake Murder
9. Key Lime Pie Murder
10. Carrot Cake Murder
11. Cream Puff Murder
12. Plum Pudding Murder
13. Apple Turnover Murder
14. Devil's Food Cake Murder
15. Cinnamon Roll Murder

Maisie Dobbs Series by Jacqueline Winspear:

1. Maisie Dobbs
2. Birds of a Feather
3. Pardonable Lies
4. Messenger of Truth
5. An Incomplete Revenge
6. Among the Mad
7. The Mapping of Love and Death
8. A Lesson in Secrets
9. Elegy for Eddie

Mary Russell & Sherlock Holmes Series by Laurie R. King

1. The Beekeeper's Apprentice
2. A Monstrous Regiment of Women
3. A Letter of Mary
4. The Moor
5. O Jerusalem
6. Justice Hall
7. The Game
8. Locked Rooms
9. The Language of Bees
10. The God of the Hive
11. Pirate King
12. Garment of Shadows

Stephanie Plum Series by Janet Evanovich:

1. One for the Money
2. Two for the Dough
3. Three to Get Deadly
4. Four to Score
5. High Five
6. Hot Six
7. Seven Up
8. Hard Eight
9. To the Nines
10. Ten Big Ones
11. Eleven on Top
12. Twelve Sharp
13. Lean Mean Thirteen
14. Fearless Fourteen
15. Finger Lickin' Fifteen
16. Sizzling Sixteen
17. Smokin' Seventeen
18. Explosive Eighteen
19. Notorious Nineteen

Some other series include:

Goldy Schulz Culinary Series by Diane Mott Davidson follows Goldy Schulz, a small town caterer, as she solves murder mysteries in her spare time.  These novels include recipes for the reader to try at home.

Kinsey Millhone Series by Sue Grafton: Kinsey Millhone is a private detective.  In the first novel in the series, A is for Alibi, Kinsey must find the killer of a hated divorce lawyer.

Women's Murder Club Series by James Patterson: A group of women solve crimes in their home city of San Francisco.  They often meet up to discuss clues and life over food and drinks.  In the first entry of the series (1st to Die), a serial killer is stalking and murdering newlyweds on their honeymoon.  Homicide Inspector Lindsay Boxer takes on the case and meets three other women along the way: a lawyer, a reporter, and the city medical examiner.  Together they solve the crime, and the Women's Murder Club begins.

The Alex Cross Series by James Patterson follows Alex Cross, the Deputy Chief of Detectives.  In the first book (Along Came a Spider), Alex works on a case involving a kidnapping and a $10,000,000 ransom.

Flavia de Luce Series by Alan Bradley takes place in an England in the 1950s.  A young girl, Flavia, lives in an ancient house and frequents a long abandoned Victorian chemistry lab.  In "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie," Flavia must prove her father did not commit a murder.  Along the way she is able to tie together two distant deaths and is led all the way to the King of England.

Tea Shop Mystery Series by Laura Childs: In "Death by Darjeeling," tea shop owner, Theodosia Browning caters an annual event in which one of the patrons turns up dead.  Her reputation is on the line and with the help of her friends and fellow tea shop owners, she sets out to unravel the mystery of the deadly tea.

Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen is a mystery series that takes place in 1930s London.  It features a young penniless member to the extended royal family as the heroine.  Check out the first book in the series: Her Royal Spyness.

Children's Mystery Series:

Nancy Drew by Carolyn Keene
Hardy Boys by Franklin W. Dixon
Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner
A-Z Mysteries by Ron Roy
Nate the Great by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat
Jigsaw Jones by James Preller
Chet Gecko by Bruce Hale
Cam Jansen by David A. Adler
Encyclopedia Brown by Donald J. Sobol

Monday, December 3, 2012


Hanukkah begins on the eve of the 25th of the Jewish month of Kislev which means that this year, Hanukkah begins at sundown on December 8th and ends on December 16th.

On each of the eight days of Hanukkah, we light the menorah, a nine-branched candelabra.  On the first night, one light plus the shamash (attendant candle used to light the other candles) is lit, on the second night we light two candles plus the shamash, and so on until the eighth night when all eight lights plus the shamash are lit.

To light the menorah:

On the first night of Hanukkah, set one candle to the far right of the menorah. On the following night, add a second light to the left of the first one, and then add one light each night of Hanukkah (moving from right to left). 
Each night, light the newest (leftmost) candle first,
and continue lighting from left to right. 
In other words, add lights to the menorah from
right to left, and light from left to right.

For more information on Hanukkah, take a look at these websites:

And, take a look at these children's books:

Caleb's Hanukkah by Lisa Bullard
The Eight Nights of Hanukkah by Judy Nayer
Hanukkah by Anne Clark
The Borrowed Hanukkah Latkes by Linda Glaser
The Stone Lamp by Karen Hesse
My Two Holidays by Danielle Novack

Adult Nonfiction:
Sacred Seasons by Ronald Issaacs
Chanukah: A Joyous Celebration by Daniel S. Wolk

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Monday, November 26, 2012


Interested in doing some local history research, or maybe some genealogy work?  Your local library has many resources that may be of use to you.  Not only do we have books that you may find useful, but we also provide access to internet resources.  And, we have a History Room in which we keep historical documents relating to the community.  You can find items such as photographs, old yearbooks, birth and death records, as well as old Evansville Review articles.

Not sure where to start?  Check out some of these resources:

Local History:

Evansville by Ruth Ann Montgomery
Images of America: Evansville by Ruth Ann Montgomery
Guide to Evansville
Evansville: Glimpses of the Grove by Ruth Ann Montgomery
An Analysis of the Evansville Review by William Bowes Antes
Pioneer Days of Evansville and Vicinity by Byron Campbell


The Online Genealogy Handbook by Brad Schepp
Genealogy for the First Time: Research Your Family History by Laura Best
Long-Distance Genealogy by Christine Crawford-Oppenheimer
House Histories: A Guide to Tracing the Genealogy of Your Home by Sally Light

Don't forget to check out these websites:

From our website, you can access, historic photos of Evansville, and BadgerLink.

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Monday, November 19, 2012


In the 1600s, the Plymouth colonists and the Wampanoag Indians shared a feast that we now cite as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the American colonies.  For years after, days of thanksgiving were celebrated by individual states, but it was not until the 1860s that a national day of thanksgiving was declared.  During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday to be celebrated every year in November.

For more information on the history of Thanksgiving visit the following websites:

For more information on Thanksgiving, check out these books:

Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War by Nathaniel Philbrick
Pilgrims by Garrison Keiller
Pilgrims by Mary Pope Osborne
1621: A New Look at Thanksgiving by Catherine O'Neill Grace
Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving by Eric Metaxas

For some fun, holiday reading, take a look at these titles:

The Triplets First Thanksgiving by Cathy Gillen Thacker
The Cat Who Talked Turkey by Lilian Jackson Braun

Children's Fiction:

Thanksgiving Mice! by Bethany Roberts
This Is Thanksgiving by Harriet Ziefert
Thanksgiving on Thursday by Mary Pope Osborne
An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving by Louisa May Alcott
The Littlest Pilgrim by Brandi Doherty

Thanksgiving Movies:

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
William Bradford
Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

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Monday, November 12, 2012


It's that time of year again, time for holiday cooking and family get togethers.  And, what do all the family gatherings revolve around?  Food!  Food brings people together around the table where they can share stories and laughs.  Cooking is more than creating something edible.  It is about creating a meal to be shared and enjoyed by your loved ones.

Whether you have staples that you make every time your family gets together, or if you like trying something new, the library has plenty of cookbooks to help you out.


Taste of Home 2012 Quick Cooking Annual Recipes
Cooking with Italian Grandmothers by Jessica Theroux
Great Gluten Free Baking by Louise Blair
Taste of Home Annual Recipes 2013
365 Foods Kids Love to Eat by Sheila Ellison and Judith Gray
Taste of Home Holiday and Celebrations 2012
An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler
The Food Matters Cookbook by Mark Bittman
Eat Fresh Food by Rozanne Gold
The Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook by Elizabeth Gordon
Deliciously G-Free by Elisabeth Hasselbeck
Everyday Food Light by Martha Stewart
Gluten-Free and Vegan Holidays by Jennifer Katzinger
Now Eat This by Rocco DiSpirito
Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook by Martha Stewart
The Disney Bakery by Adrienne Berofsky
Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook by Beth Hensperger

We also have fiction and movies!


The Recipe Club by Andrea Israel tells the story of Lilly and Val, two friends united by their differences as much as their similarities.  As children, the two write letters in which they share their hopes, fears, secrets, and recipes.  This Recipe Club sustains their bond across the decades as they face many challenges such as love, family relationships, personal identity, and more.

Chopping Spree by Diane Mott Davidson follows caterer Goldy Schulz when a luncheon at the mall turns into fight.  It is Goldy who finds the body of Barry Dean, the man who set up the event.  Barry left behind a trail of odd clues for Goldy to follow as she tries to find his murderer.

In Deep Dish by Mary Kay Andrews, the Cooking Channel is seeking its next big star, and Gina thinks she would be a perfect fit.  However, the executives have their sights set on Tate Moody. 

The Diva Runs Out of Thyme by Krista Davis: Sophie Winston's search for the perfect turkey is put on the back burner when she comes across a dead body.  The police find her name and picture inside the victims care, forcing Sophie to set aside her cooking in order to solve the murder.

Dying for Dinner by Miranda Bliss follows Annie as she leaves her job to become the manager at her boyfriend's restaurant.  What is meant to be the first day of her new career may be the last day of someone else's life.

In The Quilter's Kitchen by Jennifer Chiaverini, Anna explores the kitchens of Elm Creek Manor, past and present.  As she explores, she records recipes and creates original dishes as she rediscovers how food can gather friends and family closer.

The Pumpkin Muffin Murder by L.J. Washburn takes place during Thanksgiving.  Phyllis takes her grandson to the Harvest Festival in hopes of winning the baking contest, but when a decorative scarecrow turns out to be a corpse in disguise, Phyllis must change her course in order to solve the mystery.

The Rule of Three by Megan McDonald is a children's book in which three sisters - Alex, Stevie, and Joey - take turns telling about their lives including auditioning for the school musical, baking cupcakes, and Louisa May Alcott's Little Women.

In Small Damages by Beth Kephart, eighteen year old Kenzie is sent to Spain to deliver her baby and put the baby up for adoption.  While away, she discovers a new kind of family with the rancher who takes her in, his cook, and the man they have raised together.

Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel tells the story of Tita, the youngest of three daughters.  Tita falls in love with Pedro, but her mother will not allow them to marry as it is family tradition for the youngest daughter to remain at home to care for her mother.  Instead, Mama Elena sets up the marriage of Pedro to her oldest daughter, Rosaura, and forces Tita to prepare the wedding dinner.  This is a funny story of love, life, and food.

Julie and Julia
Paula's Home Cooking. BBQ
Quick Fix Meals with Robin Miller. Make Ahead Meals
Like Water for Chocolate

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Monday, November 5, 2012


I just finished reading Ken Follett's newest book Winter of the World, and I loved it!  I am really enjoying his Century Trilogy, and I can't wait to see what he does for the final book in the series.  Now, I have to find something else to read while I wait. 

The Century Trilogy spans the Twentieth century, and is seen through the eyes of five different families (American, English, German, Russian, and Welsh).  The first book, Fall of Giants, covered World War I and the Russian Revolution.  Winter of the World picks up where Fall of Giants ends, and takes the reader through the Spanish Civil War and World War II.  The third novel is set to be published in 2014 and will cover the Cold War and the end of the century.

Luckily for me, Follett has written many books that I have not yet read.  Here is a list of all of his works:

Century Trilogy:
1. Fall of Giants
2. Winter of the World

Hornet Flight
Code to Zero
The Hammer of Eden
The Third Twin
A Place Called Freedom
A Dangerous Fortune
Night Over Water
The Pillars of the Earth
World Without End
Lie Down with Lions
On Wings of Eagles
The Man from St. Petersburg
The Key to Rebecca
Eye of the Needle
Paper Money
The Modigliani Scandal

Read everything by Ken Follett?  Or, looking for something similar to his works?  Check out some of these titles:

Skeletons at the Feast by Chris Bohjalian follows a Prussian woman and her child as they flee away from the approaching Russian army during World War II.  On their way, they form an alliance with a Jewish man escaping from the concentration camps.

The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman by Ernest J. Gaines is the story of a black woman who started life as a slave and lived to take part in the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s.

The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje tells the story of four intersected lives in an Italian village at the end of World War II.  Three different people are haunted by the English patient, a nameless and injured man who rests in an upstairs room.

The Final Solution by Michael Chabon is a mystery that takes place in the English countryside during World War II.  The reader follows a detective on what will become his final case.

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini is a story that takes the reader from Afghanistan in the final days of the monarchy to the present day.  It is a story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father's servant.  A story of betrayal, redemption, family relationships.

The Hour I First Believed by Wally Lamb tells the story of a family moving to Connecticut after surviving the Columbine school shootings.  Caelum and Maureen discover family artifacts dating back five generations as well as unexpected truths about the past.

The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough is a tale of dreams, struggles, passions, and love in the Australian Outback.  The novel follows three generations of Clearys as they deal with bitterness, frailty, and secrets.

Mission to Paris by Alan Furst: Upon arriving in Paris, Frederic Stahl becomes entangled in the region's shifting politics when he discovers that his newest film is tied to the fate of fascists, German Nazis, and Hollywood publicists.

Enigma by Robert Harris: At the center of Britain's most sacred World War II secret, breaking the Germans' codes, lays a spy who could be tipping off the enemy.

In Night of the Fox by Jack Higgins, Colonel Hugh Kelso goes down in the English Channel while on a secret mission before D-Day.  He washes ashore in German-occupied territory, and panic spreads through the Allied forces as Kelso knows the time and place of the invasion.  He must be rescued...or silenced.

Up in Honey's Room by Elmore Leonard tells the story of Walter Schoen, born in Germany, but now living in Detroit.  He looks just like Heinrich Himmler, the head of the SS and the Gestapo, and they even have the same birthday.  Honey Deal, Walter's wife, does not know that Walter is a part of a spy ring that gives shelter to escaped German prisoners of war...

The Jester by James Patterson: When Hugh returns from the Crusades, he finds that his wife has been taken by relic-seeking knights.  He must pose as a court jester in order to enter the castle in which his wife is being held prisoner.

The Ravenscar Dynasty by Barbara Taylor Bradford tells the story of a young man who fights his cousin for control of a business empire that was taken from his branch of the family years earlier.

The Rule of Four by Ian Caldwell is a work of fiction that brings together suspense and scholarship, art and treachery.  This novel takes you from the streets of 15th century Rome to the realm of the Ivy League.  It is a tour of history that builds up to an almost unbearable suspense.

Garden of Beasts by Jeffrey Deaver follows Paul Schuman, a professional hit man, who is arrested by the U.S. government.  He is told that he can go to prison, or he can assassinate the man in control of Hitler's rearmament.  The story leads to an end filled with surprises.

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Monday, October 29, 2012


With the success of The Hunger Games Trilogy, dystopian novels are more popular than ever!

A dystopia is characterized as a hypothetical or imaginary society.  It is often a place where people live, often in fear, and are dehumanized.  Common aspects of dystopias include environmental, political, and/or social issues. 

Fictional dystopias often take place in a future that is not accessible in today's reality.  Therefore, dystopian fiction is often classified as science fiction or speculative fiction.  Many dystopian works exist, and it is not a new writing strategy.  Below you fill find a list of dystopian novels that you may be interested in reading.


The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins:
1. The Hunger Games
2. Catching Fire
3. Mockingjay

Chaos Walking Series by Patrick Ness:
1. The Knife of Never Letting Go
2. The Ask and the Answer
3. Monsters of Men

The Uglies Series by Scott Westerfeld:
1. Uglies
2. Pretties
3. Specials
4. Extras

Books of Ember Series by Jeanne DuPrau
1. The City of Ember
2. The People of Sparks
3. The Prophet of Yonwood
4. The Diamond of Darkhold

Stand-Alone Novels:

Birthmarked by Caragh O'Brien
Matched by Allyson Condie
Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer
Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix
The Giver by Lois Lowry
Delirium by Lauren Oliver
1984 by George Orwell
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

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