Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Carrie Fisher Collection

With the passing of Carrie Fisher, an icon, author, and mental health advocate, we wanted to share some ways to remember her.


Shockaholic. Infused with Carrie Fisher’s trademark incisive wit and on the heels of Wishful Drinking’s instant New York Times bestselling success, Shockaholic takes readers on another rollicking ride into her crazy life.

Wishful DrinkingBorn to celebrity parents, she was picked to play a princess in a little movie called Star Wars when only 19 years old. "But it isn't all sweetness and light sabres." Alas, aside from a demanding career and her role as a single mother (not to mention the hyperspace hairdo), Carrie also spends her free time battling addiction, weathering the wild ride of manic depression and lounging around various mental institutions. It's an incredible tale - from having Elizabeth Taylor as a stepmother, to marrying (and divorcing) Paul Simon, from having the father of her daughter leave her for a man, to ultimately waking up one morning and finding a friend dead beside her in bed. 

The Princess DiaristThe Princess Diarist is Carrie Fisher’s intimate, hilarious and revealing recollection of what happened behind the scenes on one of the most famous film sets of all time, the first Star Wars movie. 


Postcards from the EdgeFisher beautifully brings readers the inside of Hollywood through a web of humor, drugs, relationships, Hollywood Party Terror, and much more. The plot centers on a 30-year-old actress named Susan Vale, and follows her challenges as she overcomes her drug addiction, gets back into the swing of things, and falls in love, sort of.

The Best AwfulSuzanne Vale, the Hollywood actress whose drug addictions and rehab rigors were so brilliantly dissected by Carrie Fisher in "Postcards from the Edge," is back. And this time she has a new problem: She's had a child with someone who forgot to tell her he was gay. 

Surrender the PinkA study of metropolitan mating manners by the author of "Postcards from the Edge". Dinah Kaufman is attracted to unsuitable men, including her ex-husband, a successful playwright with whom she continues to be obsessed. And she has a tendency to merge real life and the soap opera scripts she writes.


Star Wars, A New Hope.

Empire Strikes Back.

Return of the Jedi.

When Harry Met Sally.


If Your Adolescent Has Depression or Bipolar Disorder by Dwight L. Evans and Wasmer Andrews.  This concise, readable book is the definitive guide to understanding and getting effective help for adolescents with depression or bipolar disorder, designed for parents and other adults in contact with afflicted teens. It combines the most current scientific expertise available today--including the newest treatments and medications and the latest research findings on mood disorders--with no-nonsense, hands-on advice from parents who have faced these disorders in their own children.

Adult Bipolar Disorders by Mitzi WaltzDescribes the range of bipolar disorders; Explains how to get a diagnosis, including descriptions of all diagnostic tests and checklists used by professionals; Dispels myths and misconceptions about this very misunderstood disease; Describes all medications, therapy, and other interventions, such as improving sleep patterns, preventing seasonal mood swings, diet, and supplements.

Depression: A Guide for the Newly Diagnosed by Lee H. ColemanThis book is a part of New Harbinger Publications' Guides for the Newly Diagnosed series.The series was created to help people who have recently been diagnosed with a mental health condition. Our goal is to offer user-friendly resources that provide answers to common questions readers may have after receiving a diagnosis, as well as evidence-based strategies to help them cope with and manage their condition, so that they can get back to living a more balanced life.

Monday, December 19, 2016

RA Monday: The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Even though The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up has been out since 2014, it was still the #4 best selling book on Amazon this year. If you loved this book and want to continue the journey of changing your life and your home, try one of these books next.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you'll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever. The KonMari Method, with its revolutionary category-by-category system, leads to lasting results. In fact, none of Kondo's clients have lapsed (and she still has a three-month waiting list).

With detailed guidance for determining which items in your house "spark joy" (and which don't), this international best seller featuring Tokyo's newest lifestyle phenomenon will help you clear your clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home - and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.

Lauded designer and architectural conservator Balbes created the eight-stage SoulSpace transformation process to help his clients. Through the stages--assess, release, cleanse, dream, discover, create, elevate, and celebrate--readers explore not only the design of their living spaces but also their own interiors: the ways they think, feel, and sense.

The Art of Happiness by Dalai Lama XIV & Howard Cutler
Nearly every time you see him, he's laughing, or at least smiling. And he makes everyone else around him feel like smiling. He's the Dalai Lama, the spiritual and temporal leader of Tibet, a Nobel Prize winner, and an increasingly popular speaker and statesman. What's more, he'll tell you that happiness is the purpose of life, and that "the very motion of our life is towards happiness." How to get there has always been the question. He's tried to answer it before, but he's never had the help of a psychiatrist to get the message across in a context we can easily understand. Through conversations, stories, and meditations, the Dalai Lama shows us how to defeat day-to-day anxiety, insecurity, anger, and discouragement. Together with Dr. Cutler, he explores many facets of everyday life, including relationships, loss, and the pursuit of wealth, to illustrate how to ride through life's obstacles on a deep and abiding source of inner peace. 

Have you ever found yourself stretched too thin? Do you simultaneously feel overworked and underutilized? Are you often busy but not productive? Do you feel like your time is constantly being hijacked by other people’s agendas? If you answered yes to any of these, the way out is the Way of the Essentialist.

The Way of the Essentialist isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s about getting only the right things done.  It is not  a time management strategy, or a productivity technique. It is a systematic discipline for discerning what is absolutely essential, then eliminating everything that is not, so we can make the highest possible contribution towards the things that really matter.  

By forcing us to apply a more selective criteria for what is Essential, the disciplined pursuit of less empowers us to reclaim control of our own choices about where to spend our precious time and energy – instead of giving others the implicit permission to choose for us.
Does your home tell the story of who you are? 
In The Things That Matter, Nate Berkus shares intimate stories from his life, introduces us to people who influenced him and helped him forge his sense of style, and opens up about the remarkable experiences that have left him forever changed, all of which find expression in how he lives today. From his most cherished flea market finds, to his beloved books and photos, to the many extraordinary mementos he’s collected in his travels, every piece defines who he’s become and what endures in his world.
The Things That Matter convincingly lays out Nate Berkus’s philosophy that things do matter. Our homes tell our stories, they reflect the places we’ve been and the people we’ve loved along the way—and there can be no more beautiful design for living than that.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Lake Forest Librarians Favorite Books of 2016

We had all the Adult Services librarians tell us their favorite book of 2016 and then compiled them in this list for you. We know what you are thinking- another best of 2016 reading list? really?  We think this one will be a little different though, a little more personal, and sprinkled with a little more variety then some of the other best of lists. Enjoy!

Why Chris Liked It: Absolutely riveting read. It walks the thin line between paranormal horror and psychological thriller. There is just enough “weird” going on in this book that you are constantly wondering if what is happening can be explained by reason or logic or if it really is the supernatural. The author had me wrapped around his finger the entire time.

About the Book: Late one summer night, Elizabeth Sanderson receives the devastating news that every mother fears: her fourteen-year-old son, Tommy, has vanished without a trace in the woods of a local park. The local and state police haven’t uncovered any leads. Josh and Luis, the friends who were with Tommy last, may not be telling the whole truth about that night in Borderland State Park, when they were supposedly hanging out at a landmark the local teens have renamed Devil’s Rock— rumored to be cursed. 

Living in an all-too-real nightmare, riddled with worry, pain, and guilt, Elizabeth is wholly unprepared for the strange series of events that follow. She believes a ghostly shadow of Tommy materializes in her bedroom, while Kate and other local residents claim to see a shadow peering through their own windows in the dead of night. Then, random pages torn from Tommy’s journal begin to mysteriously appear—entries that reveal an introverted teenager obsessed with the phantasmagoric; the loss of his father, killed in a drunk-driving accident a decade earlier; a folktale involving the devil and the woods of Borderland; and a horrific incident that Tommy believed connected them all and changes everything. As the search grows more desperate, and the implications of what happened becomes more haunting and sinister, no one is prepared for the shocking truth about that night and Tommy’s disappearance at Devil’s Rock.

Why Liz Liked It: Emma Cline does a great job of getting into the head of a thirteen year old girl and how they think in this novel. This book gives some insight into how people can become radicalized and brainwashed. Cline writes vivid descriptions about a fascinating subject. The book manages to be suspenseful even though you know what is going to happen.

About the Book: Northern California, during the violent end of the 1960s. At the start of summer, a lonely and thoughtful teenager, Evie Boyd, sees a group of girls in the park, and is immediately caught by their freedom, their careless dress, their dangerous aura of abandon. Soon, Evie is in thrall to Suzanne, a mesmerizing older girl, and is drawn into the circle of a soon-to-be infamous cult and the man who is its charismatic leader. Hidden in the hills, their sprawling ranch is eerie and run down, but to Evie, it is exotic, thrilling, charged—a place where she feels desperate to be accepted. As she spends more time away from her mother and the rhythms of her daily life, and as her obsession with Suzanne intensifies, Evie does not realize she is coming closer and closer to unthinkable violence, and to that moment in a girl’s life when everything can go horribly wrong.

Kristin's PickFaithful by Alice Hoffman

Why Kristin Liked It: As a visual artist, I enjoy the touches of whimsy (often referred to as "magical realism") and symbolism that Hoffman brings to her novels as well as her deep understanding of the human heart.​ "Faithful" is a the story of a damaged young woman who finds redemption and her place in the world after a tragedy that seems insurmountable. It is written with a deft hand that draws each character with sensitivity and a sense of pathos, no matter how complex or conflicted the character may be. Her stories and her characters–both human and animal–resonate with me long after the book is finished.

About the Book: Growing up on Long Island, Shelby Richmond is an ordinary girl until one night an extraordinary tragedy changes her fate. Her best friend’s future is destroyed in an accident, while Shelby walks away with the burden of guilt.

What happens when a life is turned inside out? When love is something so distant it may as well be a star in the sky? Faithful is the story of a survivor, filled with emotion—from dark suffering to true happiness—a moving portrait of a young woman finding her way in the modern world. A fan of Chinese food, dogs, bookstores, and men she should stay away from, Shelby has to fight her way back to her own future. In New York City she finds a circle of lost and found souls—including an angel who’s been watching over her ever since that fateful icy night.

Here is a character you will fall in love with, so believable and real and endearing, that she captures both the ache of loneliness and the joy of finding yourself at last. For anyone who’s ever been a hurt teenager, for every mother of a daughter who has lost her way, Faithful is a road map.

Trish's Pick: In Other Words by Jhumpa Lahiri

Why Trish Liked It: I have greatly enjoyed Lahiri's fictional works which prompted me to read her autobiography. This is a brilliant and deep portrayal of  identity seeking and self-discovery through language learning.

About the Book: In Other Words is at heart a love story—of a long and sometimes difficult courtship, and a passion that verges on obsession: that of a writer for another language. For Jhumpa Lahiri, that love was for Italian, which first captivated and capsized her during a trip to Florence after college. And although Lahiri studied Italian for many years afterward, true mastery had always eluded her. So in 2012, seeking full immersion, she decided to move to Rome with her family, for “a trial by fire, a sort of baptism” into a new language and world.   In Rome, Lahiri began to read, and to write—initially in her journal—solely in Italian. In Other Words, an autobiographical work written in Italian, investigates the process of learning to express oneself in another language, and describes the journey of a writer seeking a new voice. Presented in a dual-language format, it is a book about exile, linguistic and otherwise, written with an intensity and clarity not seen since Nabokov. A startling act of self-reflection and a provocative exploration of belonging and reinvention.

Why Judy Liked It: I liked this book because of the interesting subject matter. It’s WWII and the US has to approach Japan island by island.  They also talk about the dropping of the atom bombs and why we did it.  

About the Book: Autumn 1944. World War II is nearly over in Europe but is escalating in the Pacific, where American soldiers face an opponent who will go to any length to avoid defeat. The Japanese army follows the samurai code of Bushido, stipulating that surrender is a form of dishonor. Killing the Rising Sun takes readers to the bloody tropical-island battlefields of Peleliu and Iwo Jima and to the embattled Philippines, where General Douglas MacArthur has made a triumphant return and is plotting a full-scale invasion of Japan.

Across the globe in Los Alamos, New Mexico, Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer and his team of scientists are preparing to test the deadliest weapon known to mankind. In Washington, DC, FDR dies in office and Harry Truman ascends to the presidency, only to face the most important political decision in history: whether to use that weapon. And in Tokyo, Emperor Hirohito, who is considered a deity by his subjects, refuses to surrender, despite a massive and mounting death toll. 

Jake's Pick: Every Man a Menace by Patrick Hoffman

Why Jake Liked It: It's a pulpy crime thriller about crooks in way over their heads in the tradition of the late, great Elmore Leonard.  Patrick Hoffman thoroughly examines the supply chain of how the drug gets from its naturally occurring state in Burmese trees to getting snorted up noses in Miami clubs.  He used to be a public defender and a private eye, so I suspect he really knows his stuff.   

About the Book: San Francisco is about to receive the biggest delivery of MDMA to hit the West Coast in years. Raymond Gaspar, just out of prison, is sent to the city to check in on the increasingly erratic dealer expected to take care of distribution. In Miami, the man responsible for getting the drugs across the Pacific has just met the girl of his dreams—a woman who can't seem to keep her story straight. And thousands of miles away in Bangkok, someone farther up the supply chain is about to make a phone call that will put all their lives at risk. Stretching from the Golden Triangle of Southeast Asia to the Golden Gate of San Francisco, Every Man a Menace offers an unflinching account of the making, moving, and selling of the drug known as Molly—pure happiness sold by the brick, brought to market by bloodshed and betrayal.

Kate's Pick: A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

Why Kate Liked It: Towles manages to craft the most beautiful and unique sentences together. This was a brutal history lesson cloaked in velvet language. It was a joy to listen to in audio. 

About the Book: A Gentleman in Moscow immerses us in another elegantly drawn era with the story of Count Alexander Rostov. When, in 1922, he is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, the count is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him a doorway into a much larger world of emotional discovery.

Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count’s endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose.

Felicia's Pick: No Man's Land by David Baldacci

Why Felicia Liked It: This latest addition of John Puller Series does not disappoint. It has tight plots and fluid descriptions. It even touches on more of a humane side of John while he investigated his own mother’s disappearance 30 years ago.

About the Book: Two men. Thirty years. John Puller's mother, Jackie, vanished thirty years ago from Fort Monroe, Virginia, when Puller was just a boy. Paul Rogers has been in prison for ten years. But twenty years before that, he was at Fort Monroe. One night three decades ago, Puller's and Rogers' worlds collided with devastating results, and the truth has been buried ever since.
Until now. Military investigators, armed with a letter from a friend of Jackie's, arrive in the hospital room of Puller's father--a legendary three-star now sinking into dementia--and reveal that Puller Sr. has been accused of murdering Jackie.
Aided by his brother Robert Puller, an Air Force major, and Veronica Knox, who works for a shadowy U.S. intelligence organization, Puller begins a journey that will take him into his own past, to find the truth about his mother. Paul Rogers' time is running out. With the clock ticking, he begins his own journey, one that will take him across the country to the place where all his troubles began: a mysterious building on the grounds of Fort Monroe. There, thirty years ago, the man Rogers had once been vanished too, and was replaced with a monster. And now the monster wants revenge. And the only person standing in his way is John Puller.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Children's Winter/Spring Book Clubs

Getting ready to turn over a new leaf in 2017?  How about about some leaves from a great children’s book? In January, the Children’s Library will be continuing our monthly discussions of popular and award-winning books.  We’ve chosen a variety of genres from well-regarded authors, whose stories are sure to provide lively discussion.  Three book clubs meet monthly for school children ages 5-11.  We offer Books & Beyond for those in Kindergarten & grade 1, Junior Readers Book Club for children in grades 2&3, and Family Book Club for students in grades 4, 5 & 6.  Registration for each discussion is required here at the library.  Copies of the book to be discussed are available for check out upon registration.  Parents are highly encouraged to read the book and accompany their child to the discussion, especially with younger members.  Participation in the discussions is not required, although just about everyone has something to say!  Exposure to and participation in book discussions with related activities will enhance critical thinking skills in young readers and give them chances to express themselves in a positive, no-grades environment.  Please join us this winter and spring as we talk about the following books:

BOOKS & BEYOND (independent reading is NOT a requirement for this book group)
 3:30 pm

 January 4th    Snowflake Bentley 
     Wilson Bentley of Vermont was entranced with ephemeral creations in nature: spider webs, morning dew, but especially snowflakes.  In this award-winning picture book biography, we learn how this self-taught scientist photographed thousands of individual snowflakes in order to study their unique formations.  We’ll also be making snowflakes ourselves!

 February 1st  Dear Mr. Washington 
     There’s a reason the famous portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart was unfinished: the painter’s children kept interrupting the sittings. Well, not really, as author Lynn Cullen does present a finished portrait in this humorous tale.  However, she does imagine  Washington witnessing the shenanigans by the Stuart children and giving them his guide to proper behavior: Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation.  We’ll compare those rules (such as “Do not pick off your fleas or ticks in public”) with those of today.
March 1st   JamieO’Rourke and the Big Potato: an Irish Folktale
     No one can tell a  folk tale like Tomie DePaola, who regales us with a St. Patrick’s Day version of The Enormous Turnip, with a bit of Jack and the Beanstalk thrown in.  Bring your fork!

7 pm
 January 25th    Ranger in Time: Rescue on the Oregon Trail
     The first in a popular series about a golden retriever transported back in time when he digs up an unusual first aid kit.  In this opener, Ranger finds himself accompanying a family on the Oregon Trail as they encounter hardship and danger journeying West.

February 22nd   GooseberryPark & the Master Plan 
     Kona the dog and his animal friends from the original Gooseberry Park again use compassion, brains and teamwork to aid their drought-stricken friends at the Park with an incredible plan involving chewing gum, 200 owls and the local fire station.

 March 22nd   A Lion to Guard Us
      A suspenseful story of 3 children who lose first their father and then mother in 17th century London. The impoverished yet plucky children draw upon all their resources to stay together and make their way across the Atlantic to the Virginia colony of Jamestown in search of their father, who they hope is still alive.

 April 26th  The Magic Finger
     How does it feel to be the hunted instead of the hunter?  And to have the power to change things merely pointing at them?  Our heroine’s outrage at duck hunters results in comic and compassionate outcomes.

7 pm

  January 18th  The BFG  
     Roald Dahl’s Big Friendly Giant starred in a movie last summer.  We’ll be reading the original story of Sophie, kidsnatched from her orphanage by the benign behemoth and concocts with him a plan to save the world from nine other not-so-nice man-gobbling giants.

February 15th   Kensuke’s Kingdom  
     Swept off his family’s yacht and washing up on an island, Sam discovers that, like Robinson Crusoe, he is not alone.  But is Kensuke his savior or captor? 

 March 15th   The Adventures of Sir Lancelot theGreat
     Legends taken from King Arthur’s Round Table are retold in a breezy humorous style, depicting Sir Lancelot as brave, handsome, smart – and a bad singer.

 April 19th   Turtle in Paradise
     Set in the Depression, 11-year-old Turtle is sent to stay with relatives she has never met in faraway Key West, Florida.  Not the resort island we know today, there, she encounters rag-tag cousins, the Diaper Gang, and searches for pirate treasure.  A companion novel, Full of Beans, was published last fall, with further adventures of the inventive Diaper Gang.


Monday, December 5, 2016

Read-Alike Monday: Jack Reacher series

The Jack Reacher books by Lee Child are always popular at Lake Forest Library. The books feature former military police officer, Jack Reacher, who is now something of a drifter. Reacher finds trouble wherever he goes, but he always finds a way to make things right. The 21st book in the series just came out, Night School, which is actually a prequel to The Killing Floor. 

If you are a fan of the Jack Reacher series, try one of these first in a series next. 

Night School by Lee Child
It’s 1996, and Reacher is still in the army. In the morning they give him a medal, and in the afternoon they send him back to school. That night he’s off the grid. Out of sight, out of mind. Two other men are in the classroom—an FBI agent and a CIA analyst. Each is a first-rate operator, each is fresh off a big win, and each is wondering what the hell they are doing there.

Then they find out: A Jihadist sleeper cell in Hamburg, Germany, has received an unexpected visitor—a Saudi courier, seeking safe haven while waiting to rendezvous with persons unknown. A CIA asset, undercover inside the cell, has overheard the courier whisper a chilling message: “The American wants a hundred million dollars.”

For what? And who from? Reacher and his two new friends are told to find the American. Reacher recruits the best soldier he has ever worked with: Sergeant Frances Neagley. 

Series Read-Alikes:

Bob Lee Swagger series by Stephen Hunter
Point of Impact is the first in the series. 

In the jungles of Vietnam, Bob Lee Swagger was known as 'Bob the Nailer' for his high-scoring target rate at killing. Today the master sniper lives in a trailer in the Arkansas mountains, and just wants to be left alone. But he knows too much- about killing. The mission is top secret. Dangerous, patriotic, and rigged from the start. One thing goes wrong: double-crossed Bob has come out alive. Now he is on the run. His only allies: an FBI agent in disgrace and a beautiful woman. His only hope: find the elusive mastermind who set him up. Multi-layered with non-stop action, this hot-shot torcher of a thriller is addictive, exciting and right on target. A high-tech, high-ride reading experience.

John Rain series by Barry Eisler
A Clean Kill in Tokyo, previously called Rain Fall is the first in the series. 

Name: John Rain.
Vocation: Assassin.
Specialty: Natural Causes.
Base of operations: Tokyo.
Availability: Worldwide.

Half American, half Japanese, expert in both worlds but at home in neither, John Rain is the best killer money can buy. You tell him who. You tell him where. He doesn't care about why...

Until he gets involved with Midori Kawamura, a beautiful jazz pianist--and the daughter of his latest kill.

The Ranger is the first in the series.

Northeast Mississippi, hill country, rugged and notorious for outlaws since the Civil War, where killings are as commonplace as in the Old West. To Quinn Colson, it's home -- but not the home he left when he went to Afghanistan.

Now an Army Ranger, he returns to a place overrun by corruption, and finds his uncle, the county sheriff, dead -- a suicide, he's told, but others whisper murder. In the days that follow, it will be up to Colson to discover the truth, not only about his uncle, but about his family, his friends, his town, and not least about himself. And once the truth is discovered, there is no turning back.

The Dark Tide is the first in the series.

An explosion rips through New York City's Grand Central Station one morning, destroying the train Karen Friedman's husband, a successful hedge fund manager, is riding in to work. Days later, with many bodies still unidentifiable, Karen resigns herself to the awful truth: her husband of eighteen years is dead.
On that same day, a suspicious hit-and-run accident leaves a young man dead in Karen's hometown of Greenwich, Connecticut. Ty Hauck, a detective, becomes emotionally caught up in the case and finds a clue that shockingly connects the two seemingly unrelated events.
Months later, two men show up at Karen's home digging into Charles's business dealings. Hundreds of millions of dollars are missing—and the trail points squarely to Charles. With doubt suddenly cast on everything she has ever known, Karen, with Hauck, steps into a widening storm of hedge fund losses, international scams, and murder. And as the investigations converge, these two strangers touched by tragedy are pulled into a deepening relationship and unwittingly open the door to a twisted—and deadly—conspiracy.