June 29, 2017 - Waffles
Today, June 29th, besides being the “eve” of my mother’s 105th birthday (May she rest in peace.) also has a number of national celebration days associated with. This is National Almond Buttercrunch Day – think of toffee covered with chocolate then sprinkled with almonds. It is also National Bomb Pop Day. Bomb pops are those red, white, and blue popsicles which were purportedly invented in Kansas City, Missouri in 1955. It is also National Waffle Iron Day which celebrates the means to create waffles. Apparently waffle irons were used in the 14th Century in the Low Countries. Cooking waffles over an open fire sounds very challenging to a person who just mastered the automated waffle maker used at various motel/hotel chains. Early waffle irons had coats of arms and religious symbols. In 1918 the electric waffle iron was available. There’s a story about the Nike trainer and a waffle iron. Bill Bowerman, was looking for a shoe surface that would be light weight and grip a surface well. He was eating waffles for breakfast one morning and it dawned on him that the waffle pattern would be perfect. And the rest, they say is history. My first pair of running shoes was Nike’s waffle trainers. Who knew their inspiration came from the humble waffle iron? (Good thing the Bowerman’s had the grid pattern waffle iron and not hearts, or Mickey Mouse or the Death Star.) The final national day celebrated today is National Handshake Day, which is pretty self-explanatory. So, eat some almond butter crunch, have a Bomb pop, make and eat a waffle, and shake somebody’s hand. Not necessarily in that order. You can always celebrate any national day, or really any day, by reading a good book. Below are a few samples for you to peruse. Enjoy!
- “Cartel Wives: A True Story of Deadly Decisions, Steadfast Love, and Bringing Down El Chapo” Mia Flores. A redemptive memoir from two anonymous women who escaped the international drug trade share never-before-revealed details about El Chapo, the Sinaloa Cartel and the dangerous world of illicit drugs.
- “Democracy: Stories from the Long Road to Freedom” by Condoleezza Rice. The controversial former Secretary of State traces her witness to key events throughout the past half century while assessing the evolution of global democracy and how it is under attack in all world regions.
- “Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Reveal About Who We Really Are” by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz. The New York Times op-ed columnist and former Google data scientist presents an insider's look at what today's vast, instantly available amounts of information can reveal about our world.
- “Murder in the Bowery, No. 19 (Gaslight Mysteries)” by Victoria Thompson. A latest entry in the series by the best-selling author of Murder in Morningside Height investigates the murder of a newsboy against the backdrop of the victim's brother's account of a young society woman whose penchant for risky behaviors implicates several suspects in and out of her family.
- “Party Girls die in Pearls, No.1 (Oxford Girl Mysteries)” by Plum Skyes. The best-selling author of Bergdorf Blondes presents a first installment in a comic mystery series set in the fashionable world of Oxford University of the 1980s and follows the experiences of a studious country girl who in her first term is catapulted into the mystery of a glamorous classmate's murder.
- “Robert B. Parker’s Little White Lies, No. 20(Spenser)” by Ace Atkins. Boston private eye Spenser and his sidekick, Hawk, follow a con man's schemes on cable news shows and within police precincts in the wake of an elaborate double cross that has victimized a smitten woman as well as a cache of investors, cops and paramilitary contractors.
- “Sidney Chambers and the Persistence of Love, No.1 (Grantchester)” by James Runcie. Discovering the body of a man in the Cambridgeshire woods, priest and detective Sidney Chambers immerses himself in the 1970s counterculture of psychedelic plants; while his longtime friend, Detective Inspector Geordie Keating, investigates the disappearance of a historic religious text.
- “Sticks and Bones, No. 17 (Sarah Booth Delaney)” by Carolyn Haines. Clashing with an arrogant local writer whose best-selling memoir is being turned into a documentary, private investigator Sarah Booth Delaney is hired by the film crew to discern the truth about the writer's story only to find herself targeted by someone who would kill to protect a long-held secret.
- “The Thirst, No. 11 (Harry Hole)” by Jo Nesbo. Harry Hole is inextricably drawn back into the Oslo police force by a serial murderer who has been targeting Tinder daters using methods reminiscent of a nemesis from Harry's past. By the award-winning author of “The Snowman”.
- “Walking on My Grave, No. 16 (Death on Demand)” by Carolyn Hart. When a wealthy shop owner who has written several cash-strapped locals into her will suffers a suspicious accident, Annie and her husband, Max, race to identify a calculating killer from among several suspects. By the Agatha Award-winning author of “Letter from Home”.
- “Against All Odds” by Danielle Steele. A Soho widow struggles with her grown children's plans to gamble their futures in their determination to pursue their hearts, from her attorney daughter's illicit romance with a client to her struggling writer's son's decision to have children before he can afford to support them.
- “The Girl Who Knew Too Much” by Amanda Quick. Discovering the body of a beautiful actress at the bottom of a pool at an exclusive California hotel, rookie reporter Irene Glasson investigates the victim's secret about an up-and-coming man and becomes drawn to a once-famous master magician whose career was mysteriously cut short.
June 22, 2017 - DAPL Portal
One of the problems with writing this weekly column is that I am writing it days before the publication date and sometimes, when I’m putting exciting and interesting information in this part of this, well, I fail to look far enough ahead. I fail to turn the page on the weekly calendar as it were or scroll ahead if you’re digitally inclined. So today, the things I will be reporting on shall have already happened. The summer solstice occurred on June 20th at 11:24 p.m. which means among other things that the days will begin getting incrementally shorter and summer is about to heat up. It was also the date we choose to launch the library’s app. Yes. We are firmly entrenched in the digital age now. This app (available for Android and Apple) lets you check the catalog with a powerful search engine, place holds, renew items, see what events are happening at the library, and use our databases (such as Mango so now you can learn a foreign language on your phone). You can connect to Overdrive through this app as well, read magazines, and even connect to the Summer Reading Program, or with us on FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. It is so cool and right on your phone! On June 20th we launched our app by inviting people to come in for an app (appetizer) and to learn about our app – DAPL Portal. Imagine if you will that you are noshing on an appetizer (think cheese and crackers) and go to Google Play or Apple and search for “DAPL Portal” – you’ll know you’ve found the correct app because it has our library dragon on it. Download (It’s free!) it and try it out. Why, you might even try putting holds on some of the tittles listed below. Enjoy!
- “Runnin’ With the Devil: A Backstage Pass to the Wild Times, Loud Rock, and the Down and Dirty Truth Behind the Rise of Van Halen” by Noel Monk. The rock-and-roll veteran best known for his work with the Sex Pistols and Van Halen shares behind-the-scenes, previously untold stories about David Lee Roth, Eddie Van Halen and the legendary band that strongly influenced 1980s rock music.
- “Cattle Kingdom: The Hidden History of the Cowboy West” by Christopher Knowlton. A revolutionary appraisal of the Old West and its role in shaping post-Civil War America retraces the pivotal evolutions of open-range cattle, the boom-and-bust cycle, the Depression, the invention of the assembly line and the dawn of the conservation movement.
- “Theft by Finding: Diaries 1977-2002” by David Sedaris. An anthology of personal favorite diary entries by the best-selling author of Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls features excerpts that have inspired his famed autobiographical essays and shares insights into the intimate arenas of his life.
- “Anatomy of Terror: From the Death of Bin Laden to the Rise of the Islamic State” by Ali Soufan. The New York Times best-selling author of The Black Banners provides an account of how and why Osama bin Laden’s radical ideology keeps rising from the dead.
- “Becoming Bonnie” by Jenni Walsh. A young woman determined to escape poverty secretly takes a night job in a 1927 speakeasy while maintaining her wholesome-girl identity by day, an endeavor that reveals her fiancé's licentious nature and introduces her to convicted felon Clyde Barrow, who entices her to become his partner in crime.
- “House of Names” by Com Toibin. A retelling of the story of Clytemnestra and her children in the legendary Greek city of Mycenae, describes how at the side of her lover she plots to murder her long-absent husband for his betrayals and infidelities. By the award-winning author of “The Master”.
- “Anne Boleyn, a King’s Obsession, No. 2 (Six Tudor Queens)” by Alison Weir. A follow-up to Katherine of Aragon finds Henry VIII risking his marriage and the political strategies of Cardinal Wolsey in his obsession to marry Anne Boleyn, who does not welcome the king's advances and loathes the cardinal for breaking her betrothal to Harry Percy.
- “Mr. Rochester” by Sarah Shoemaker. A literary retelling of Charlotte Bronte's beloved classic, Jane Eyre , is presented from the perspective of the dashing and mysterious Mr. Rochester.
- “Aunt Dimity and the Widow’s Curse, No. 22 (Aunt Dimity)” by Nancy Atherton. Staying happily at home with Bess while her husband and sons go camping during spring break, Lori joins a local widow's quilting bee and learns a startling secret about the woman's first husband's death.
- “Heat Storm, No. 9 (Nikki Heat)” by Richard Castle. Nikki Heat and Derrick Storm team up for the first time to save Nikki's mother, Cynthia, who has been in hiding and presumed dead for 17 years, a cold case that is challenged by a nefarious group of Chinese businessmen.
- “A Hiss Before Dying, No.25 (Mrs. Murphy)”b by Rita Mae Brown. The popular characters from Tail Gait and Tall Tail return in a contemporary mystery that explores the dangers of a wild animal poaching ring with historical ties to America's post-revolutionary past. By the award-winning author of the "Sister" Jane Arnold Outfoxed series.
- “Less Than Treason, No. 21 ( Kate Shugak)” by Dana Stabenow. Native Aleut private investigator Kate Shugak finds her and her trusty half-wolf, half-husky dog Mutt in trouble in the Alaskan wilds when they both wind up shot.