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Top Ten of 2013 December 20, 2013

Posted by Steve in Book List, Fiction, Non-Fiction, Top Ten, Uncategorized.
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Here’s my top 10, heavy on historical non-fiction titles, but there are a couple from other genres for good measure.

Killing Lincoln: the shocking assassination that changed America forever,  by Bill O’Reilly. Balanced account of the end of the Civil War, Lincoln’s assassination and the hunt for the killers.

The Civil War: a concise history, by Louis P. Masur. Brush up on your Civil War knowledge with this little gem.

Killing Kennedy: the end of Camelot, by Bill O’Reilly.  Lots of Kennedy family history, warts and all, leading up to the sad end.

Destiny of the Republic: a tale of madness, medicine and the murder of a president, by Candice Millard. A fascinating look into Garfield’s life, and life in the late 1800’s.

Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the opening of the American West, by Stephen Ambrose.  Ultimately a bio of Lewis, but you will feel like you were along for the adventure in this detailed book.

Francona: the Red Sox years, by Terry Francona. Nice insight into the Tribe’s manager, and the workings of a major market team.

Not Taco Bell material, by Adam Carolla. Very funny biography, not for the easily offended.

11/22/63: a novel, by Stephen King.  Time travel, suspense and alternate history abound in this monster sized book.

Donnybrook, by Bill Frank. Follow  underworld methheads and bareknuckle fighters in this adrenaline packed story.

Defending Jacob: a novel, by William Landay. Suspenseful, twisting, but very bleak.

- Steve

Thirteen for 2013 December 18, 2013

Posted by Ann in Fiction, Non-Fiction, Top Ten, Uncategorized.
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Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver  The butterflies are warning us!

Pictures of You by Caroline Leavitt     Bittersweet with memorable characters


Learning to Swim by Sara J. Henry  Wonderful first novel

Void Moon by Michael Connelly        Has you rooting for Cassie, the ex-con

A Cold and Lonely Place by Sara J. Henry   Almost as good as the first one

A Dying Fall by Elly Griffiths   Another featuring the very cool Ruth Galloway

Suspect by Robert Crais       A wounded war dog and wounded police officer save each other. I loved this one!

The Draining Lake by Arnaldur Indriðason   There’s a skeleton in a lake in Iceland

The Darkest Evening of the Year by Dean Koontz   Koontz honors his beloved golden retriever, Trixie in this novel that is a blend of horror, thriller, and the supernatural


Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed  A thrilling true story

Lost Cat: A True Story of Love, Desperation, and GPS Technology by Caroline Paul   Clever with cool illustrations

A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life by James Bowen   Love that Bob!


Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo   Winn Dixie will steal your heart


Tuesday at the Movies November 19, 2013

Posted by Dori in Uncategorized.
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imagesHi strangers! Yes, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted, but I’m back with a new collection of recently released DVDs available here at the library. Here’s the list from today, November 19th:

PlanesDVD and Blu-Ray: a Disney animated film about, you guessed it, planes!
We’re the MillersDVD and Blu-Ray: a comedy about a drug dealer who needs a fake family to smuggle drugs from Mexico to the US. Stars Jenifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis.
The To Do ListDVD and Blu-Ray: Aubrey Plaza of Parks and Rec fame stars as a high school valedictorian who wants to shed her uptight image before graduation.
ParanoiaDVD and Blu-Ray: techno-thriller starring Liam Hemsworth and Harrison Ford about an entry level employee who is asked to spy on the competition for his boss.
Hannah ArendtDVD: a German/English biographical drama about the writer, her coverage of the Eichmann trial and her subsequent exploration of the ‘banality of evil’.
ThereseDVD: a French film about a woman who marries into a traditional family but yearns to escape. Stars Audrey Tatou.
InformantDVD: a documentary about Brandon Darby, an activist who founded a left-wing group after Hurricane Katrina and then began working as an FBI informant.
Treme, Complete 3rd SeasonDVD

Happy Watching!

~ Dori

Happy Birthday T.R. October 27, 2013

Posted by Steve in Adventure, Non-Fiction, Uncategorized.
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Theodore Roosevelt, our 26th President, was born October 27th, 1858.  In college I recall taking a class entitled “The World of Theodore Roosevelt,” and what a class that was.  T.R. lived a remarkable life.  One of his timeless achievements is his preservation of lands for the expansion of the nation’s beautiful national parks.  An interesting fact that most people probably know is that the “Teddy” bear is named after him, but an even more unbelievable fact is that while campaigning for the presidency in 1912 as the Progressive Party candidate, he was shot by an out of work saloonkeeper, yet saw to it that he gave his 90 minute speech before going to the hospital!  The speech did not help the campaign win, as he ultimately lost the election, but after this loss Roosevelt decided on a trek into Brazil along the Amazon.  Candice Millard wrote a fantastic book that chronicles this journey. Grab your copy of The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey, and enjoy the adventure!

- Steve

Commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War October 23, 2013

Posted by Steve in Uncategorized.
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If you haven’t made your way over to the Rocky River High School to see the traveling exhibit “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War,” plan to do so tomorrow night, Thursday, October 24th, at 7:00pm.  In addition to the open viewing of the exhibit, you will be able to enjoy authentic Civil War music, performed by Steve Ball.  And your sense of hearing won’t be the only sense to be delighted.  Wild Flour Bakery will be providing your taste-buds a Civil War era treat.

The traveling exhibit is organized by the National Constitution Center and the American Library Association’s Public Programs Office. If you can’t make tomorrow’s session, you can still see the exhibit during open viewing hours on Oct 30, Nov 7 and Nov 13, from 6-8 pm.


Have you tried Indieflix yet? October 9, 2013

Posted by Steve in Movies, Uncategorized.
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Ever have that annoying 5 or 10 minutes when you’re waiting for someone or waiting somewhere, maybe for your plane to arrive at the airport, or waiting for a friend at the coffee shop, and you’re sick of surfing the internet for something free and interesting?  Well, I have the perfect solution for you, just hop over to rrpl.org and sign up for our free independent streaming movie service, Indieflix.  Have your RRPL library card and your email handy.  Once signed up, you can search for movies that are as short as 1 minute, or as long as a full length feature.  If you are looking for scary movies for your Halloween fix, just use the “Channel” option and take a look at the offerings under the “Horror” or “Zombie” channels.  If safe and simple is more your speed, begin with a quirky short called “Signs.”  The 11 minute Australian Romance is liked by 92% of viewers, see if you agree. It was one of the first shorts that I watched on there and I’m still impressed by its simplicity.   Happy streaming!


GO TRIBE! October 2, 2013

Posted by Steve in Non-Fiction, Uncategorized.
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It’s been a great weekend for Cleveland sports!  So Clevelanders, throw on some red and root on the sizzling-hot Indians.  I know just watching the games isn’t enough for you, so here are a few gems from Terry Pluto to help you increase your sports enjoyment, be it the Indians, Browns or Cavs.

  • Dealing: The Cleveland Indians’ New Ballgame: How a Small-Market Team Reinvented Itself as a Major League Contender
  • False Start: How the New Browns Were Set Up to Fail
  • Joe Tait: It’s Been a Real Ball: Stories from a Hall-of-Fame Sports Broadcasting Career

And if you want some preparation for tonight’s big game, try Watching Baseball Smarter: A Professional Fan’s Guide for Beginners, Semi-experts, and Deeply Serious Geeks, by Zack Hample.

And two final words, GO TRIBE!

- Steve

Celebrate National Coffee Day on September 29! September 26, 2013

Posted by carol in Uncategorized.
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I don’t usually need an excuse to drink coffee but as Sunday is National Coffee Day, I’ll use it as one. Did you know that coffee came to the United States in the mid-1600s, when coffee was brought to New Amsterdam (now called New York) by the British? And while coffee houses rapidly began to appear, tea continued to be the favored drink in the here until 1773 when colonists revolted against a heavy tax on tea imposed by King George. The revolt, known as the Boston Tea Party, would forever change the American drinking preference to coffee.


It’s true, Americans drink plenty of coffee. According to the National Coffee Association, this past year Coffee consumption jumped by 5% and 83% of Americans Say they drink coffee!

Learn more about the history of coffee here: http://www.ncausa.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=68

Until next time, enjoy your Cup of Tar, Java, Brain Juice, Mud, Mojo or Cup O’ Joe!


Soup warms the soul and belly! September 17, 2013

Posted by carol in Uncategorized.
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Even though Autumn doesn’t actually begin until this weekend with the Autumnal Equinox on September 22, we’ve already experiencing temperature drops and shorter days. That, combined with an abundance of veggies from the garden has got me thinking about one of my favorite foods: SOUP!

I love that soup can be made with just about any vegetables. It can be a restorative healthy broth or a light appetizer. Add cream or cheese and use your immersion blender to make it a creamy, decadent dish. Generally, I don’t follow recipes. Usually, I make my Mom’s version of vegetable soup using cabbage, carrot, onion, spices and a can of stewed tomatoes. It’s simple but delicious! Tonight, though, I think I’ll be making a tomato soup using just tomatoes from our garden, garlic, and onion.

Feeling hungry for some soup inspiration of your own?

Stop into the library and check out one of our cookbooks to get started. One I like is Love soup : 160 all-new vegetarian recipes by Anna Thomas. I also get find inspiration from the Vegetarian Times’ website at: http://www.vegetariantimes.com/recipe/soups-and-stews/

So, go ahead, put some soup on, grab a throw and cozy up with a good book! The weather demands it!


Books and the Afterlife September 10, 2013

Posted by carol in First Novel, Movies, Thoughtful Ramblings, Uncategorized.
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I just finished reading Jason Mott’s brand-new debut novel, The Returned. In this book, Jacob Hargrave, who died on his eighth birthday in 1966, arrives on his parent’s doorstep fifty years later, unaged, and very much alive! Now elderly, his parents, Harold and Lucille Hargrave, aren’t sure what to believe about the return of their young son. As people’s loved ones all around the world begin to come back from the “beyond,” the reemergence of these “Returned” brings out both the best and the worst in the living.

I just cannot stop thinking about this novel. Isn’t that the sign of a good book? Apparently, Brad Pitt’s production company was impressed as well. The Returned has already been optioned to be made into a film! Now is your chance to read it before you see it!


Want more books that speculate on the afterlife? Here are some others I’ve enjoyed:

A Brief History of the Dead by Kevin Brockmeier

The Mercy of Thin Air by Ronlyn Domingue

This Body by Laurel Doud

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

Hope you find one of these to your liking! I for one think that finding a good book is just heavenly!



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