The Force is Strong with This One….

Are you feeling The Force today? Me too! Who wouldn’t on May the 4th (aka May the Fourth Be With You Day?!)

As many interesting ideas, projects, books, and other films ‘inspired by’ Star Wars, I still find it surprising when I see something like this article about Star Wars: Philosophy & Entertainment. And then I feel a little bad I haven’t taken his class -yet! I equally enjoyed these inspirational words. Maybe you’d like to focus on more entertainment oriented options? Well then, check out these suggestions by Buzzfeed or Mashable!

But I have no time to contemplate -I’ve gotta go! It’s time to celebrate with my fellow fans! Check out how you can join the fun -and I’ll see you there!


Viktor Schreckengost

Is the name Viktor Schreckengost familiar to you? It should be!  Schreckengost (1906-2008) was one of Cleveland’s most prized artists and industrial designers and his work is still celebrated all over the world.  Cowan Pottery Museum at Rocky River Public Library is home to a number of works by Viktor Schreckengost, including his most famous ceramic work, the Jazz Bowl from 1931.  It’s arguably one of the most important examples of American art pottery ever (for sure, if you ask me).

25.)Schreckengost-Jazz Bowl 3

There have been a lot of Schreckengost items in the local news lately.  A couple of his works are being restored and reinstalled in Cleveland institutions (hooray!) and now that the dream of a Schreckengost museum has been abandoned, a huge collection of work that was in the possession of his family is being auctioned off as well as donated to a few local museums (bittersweet!).


Here are some links to catch up on your Viktor-buzz…have a look and you will be sure to wow friends at your next cocktail party!

Schreckengost’s pachyderms at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History

City of Cleveland restoring Schreckengost’s “Time & Space”

Schreckengost heirs drop museum idea and plan to auction and donate artworks, designs

NYT- A Designer’s Sale of Memorabilia


Happy International Women’s Day!

It’s International Women’s Day! March 8th is a worldwide celebration of women and their achievements and a call for gender equality.  Take today to celebrate being YOU or any of the special ladies in your life!  Last night I started reading Gloria Steinem’s latest, My Life on the Road, which feels pretty appropriate for this week.  (My signed copy was a Christmas gift!)  I tried to jot down a quick list of some of my favorite women authors and I kept thinking of writers of children’s books.  It turns out I grew up reading some pretty great women, so I mixed those in with other classics.  What women have shaped your bookshelves over the years?

jane eyre

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë


Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

handmaid's tale

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

little house

Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder

murder on the orient

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

julie wolves

Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George

harriet the spy

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

stepping cracks.jpg

Stepping on the Cracks by Mary Downing Hahn

from the mixed up files

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L Konigsburg


From the Page to the Silver Screen

Did you watch the Oscars on Sunday night? The Academy Awards are hands-down my favorite awards show.  In the months leading up to the big night I get out and see as many of the nominated films as possible and obsessively cross them off my list before finally marking my own ballot in the days leading up to Oscar Sunday.  There were lots of great movies this year and it was nice to see some major categories spread around to different films.  The Revenant took home Best Director and Best Actor for Leonardo DiCaprio (15-year-old me was THRILLED about this ;)….), Mad Max: Fury Road nearly cleaned up all the technical categories, and Spotlight won for its screenplay and the ultimate prize—Best Picture.

There are always great movies that started out as great books—and this year was no exception!  I loved Room by Emma Donoghue and was not disappointed by the film adaptation.  Here are the books that inspired a number of this year’s Oscar nominees—check them out!

big short

The Big Short by Michael Lewis


Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín

price of salt

The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith (later republished under the title Carol)

the martian

The Martian by Andy Weir


Room by Emma Donoghue


The Revenant: a Novel of Revenge by Michael Punke

danish girl

The Danish Girl by David Ebershoff

100 year old man

The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson


Latest Additions

Hate me all you want, but since this has never happened and likely will never happen again, I would just like to take a small piece of this public forum to announce: My Christmas Shopping Is Already Done. I can’t explain how this has been accomplished (aliens swapped out my brain with that of someone way more proactive about this stuff???), but there are presents–wrapped–under my Christmas tree.  If you’re like me, take some time to relax in these usually  crazy weeks leading up to the holidays and curl up with a book.  Go for it even if you’re not! That’s what typical-me would certainly do.


A Gift from Bob by James Bowen


The Great Christmas Knit-Off by Alexandra Brown


The Borden Murders: LIzzie Borden and the Trial of the Century by Sarah Miller


The Great Forgetting by James Renner


The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins


Who doesn’t love a quiz?

It’s a beautiful day outside -so I’m hoping you’re not reading this right away… Instead, I’m hoping you’re out there gallivanting around in the sunshine -the quizzes will wait! I’ve only taken two of them -so far. I wouldn’t argue with my results on Which Bennett Sister are You? -no, I didn’t get the coveted Elizabeth. On the other hand, Who’s Your Book Sidekick gave me a sidekick I’ve never heard of… I guess I just added a book to my reading list?

Any kind of online quizzes can get addictive -and so here’s a list of 25 Fun Bookish Quizzes to keep the good times going! (In fact, I think I have to try that one where you guess the book by it’s closing line…right now!)


Cheers to Library history!

I attended the Ohio Museums Association’s annual conference on behalf of the Cowan Pottery Museum this past weekend.  This year’s conference took place right here in Cleveland and both Sunday’s museum tours and Monday’s conference sessions were wonderful.  I am excited to have returned chock full of some new ideas to bring to the Museum!

We capped our conference experience with a special treat—a private tour of the Great Lakes Brewing Company facilities in Ohio City.  Though they were much appreciated, my enthusiasm to go on the tour did not rest solely upon the promise of free samples of beer.  Additionally, I was excited to visit a place with an important connection to Rocky River Public Library’s history.  The building that now houses GLBC once housed the operations of the Schlather Brewing Company.  Leonard Schlather did business in Ohio City, but he relaxed at the lavish country estate he built in Rocky River (originally on Wooster Road).  It is because of the bequest of Leonard and Sophia Schlather that the library was able to complete its first major expansion in the 1956 (familiar to you as the “Schlather Room”).  Much of the fine art collection that graces the Library’s walls (given in 1954) is also part of the bequest that Sophia Schlather made in honor of her husband.

GLBC 3         GLBC 2

It was very neat to see that GLBC has some artifacts of Schlather Brewing in their building.  They even have a large piece of the building’s old parapet bearing the Schlather name that was unearthed during construction work years ago and put on display in their tap room.  What a great slice of local history to be enjoyed by museum professionals and beer drinkers alike!