Sunday, 29 September 2013

Sunday September 29th, 2013 Books to Television

Frequently we talk about books being turned into movies, which often leads to vigorous debate over which is better.  At times like this a friend’s favourite J.W. Eagan quotation “never judge a book by its movie”, springs to mind.  Today I’d like to turn our attention to books which have made the leap to the smaller screen.  Many popular television series and miniseries started their lives as books.  Some may be based on a short story while others are based on a series.  We also have series that have inspired books, however let’s focus on the former.

With season premieres starting up, my household is eagerly awaiting the return of several programs that started out as books.  We’ve already enjoyed our return to Bones and are anticipating the return of The Walking Dead.  So which books to television can you find at your library?  Check out the following both in print and on DVD:

Bones is loosely based on Kathy Reichs’ series featuring the forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperance Brennan.  You can find the books starting with Deja Dead published in 1997 right up to 2013’s Bones of the Lost.  We also have the show starting with season one up to season seven

The Walking Dead debuts its fourth season on October 13th, if you’re not familiar with the series prepare yourself for a world of zombies.  Vampires were cool but zombies are giving them a run for their money.  To prepare you can borrow seasons one and two or take out the graphic novels.  If the eighteen volumes of graphic novels aren’t enough to keep you going there are also young adult novels to meet your reading needs.

Speaking of vampires I know a lot of people who were sad to hear that season seven will be the last for True Blood.  While you’re waiting for the last season why don’t you start at the beginning?  We have seasons one through five on DVD plus all of Charlaine Harris’ books.    After Dead will be coming out soon and we’re already taking holds, so act fast!

For those seeking epic fantasy look no further than Game of Thrones.  This series has been extremely popular both on DVD and in the books that spawned it.  We have copies of seasons one and two for your viewing pleasure.  The books are available both in hard copy and as eBooks through Overdrive.

Space is running short so I’ll only briefly mention a few more books and series to check out.  We’re going to head back to my childhood for one of my favourites.  You may think you can guess it, but it’s probably not what you think.  The Flame Trees of Thika starring Hayley Mills was what I begged to watch.   I also recommend checking out Pride and Prejudice, the BBC miniseries for a six hour escape from modern concerns.  I would be remiss if I missed mentioning Dexter, especially as the series finale played just last Sunday.  If you’re an Elmore Leonard fan I hope you’ve caught Justified based on some of his novels.   Season five doesn’t start until January so there’s some time to catch up. 

If you think of some great ones I’ve missed please share them here on our Library Detective blog, we love to hear from you!
Ruth Hamlin-Douglas

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Sunday September 22 A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

I've been reflecting recently on the profound truth of this simple saying. We are all experts of everything these days – a quick Internet search makes it easy to feel well-informed. However, a superficial understanding that leads to false conclusions is oftentimes worse than no understanding at all. Where can one find the information to remedy this perilous state of mind? At the public library! TBPL has an incredible wealth of resources on a multitude of topics and the expert staff to help you on the journey to a more informed perspective. Following is a list of some materials available at TBPL on one specific topic. As the youth librarian, I've focused on resources aimed at a youth audience, but each of these items is also a great choice for adults embarking on a quest for knowledge.

Feeling Wrong in Your Own Body: understanding what it means to be transgendered is an essential resource from the Gallup's Guide to Modern Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Life series. Each of the titles from this extremely well-reviewed series provide answers to the questions LGBTQ teens are asking themselves while also acting as a window into the challenges faced by this community. Smashing the Stereotypes: what does it mean to be gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered; Being Gay, Staying Healthy; and Gay Believers: Homosexuality and Religion are also available.

GLBTQ: the survival guide for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning teens by Kelly Huegel and Queer: the ultimate guide for teens by Kathy Belge and Marke Bieschke include loads of information, practical advice, and suggestions of further resources.

Author and advice columnist Dan Savage and his partner Terry Miller created the It Gets Better Project in response to a number of queer youth taking their own lives after being bullied in school. The project has a twofold goal: communicating to LGTB teens around the world that it gets better and to create and inspire the changes needed to make it better for them. The companion non-fiction book of the same name includes essays and testimonials intended to show LGBT youth the kind of happiness, potential, and satisfaction their lives can hold.

The Letter Q: queer writers’ notes to their younger selves is an anthology edited by Sarah Moon. Over sixty queer authors tell their younger selves what they would have liked to know then about their lives as Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual or Transgendered people in a text that BookList describes in a starred review as "lovely, often funny, and always heartfelt."

In addition to these and other nonfiction resources, the library has an ever-expanding collection of LGBTQ fiction. Find classics like Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan as well as new and exciting titles like Beautiful Music for Ugly Children by Kirstin Cronn-Mills about an aspiring disc jockey boy named Gabe who was born in a girl's body and Benjamin Alire Saenz's recent book Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, winner of the Printz Honor Award, Stonewall Book Award, Lambda Literary Award and a YALSA best fiction for Young Adults pick. There are also some great graphic novels worth checking out, like Drama by Raina Telgemeier and a + e 4ever by I. Merey. Visit Read This Next for more queer fiction reading suggestions.

TBPL is ready to help you start on your journey from the treacherous state of possessing just “a little knowledge.” Visit us to learn more!

Laura Prinselaar

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Sunday September 15th, 2013 Dealing with Depression

Starting this fall, Lakehead University is holding lectures on a variety of topics here at the Thunder Bay Public Library. The first one, “Dealing with Depression: A Family Perspective,” will be held in the Waverley Auditorium on October 5. This lecture is presented by Dr. Josephine Tan, a clinical psychologist at Lakehead University who studies depression, women’s health and multicultural psychology. Dr. Tan’s lecture will focus on recognizing and helping your loved ones cope with depression.  But if you are eager to delve into the subject right now, why not stop by the library? Particularly helpful are the books written by people sharing their own stories of depression. These books show that you are not alone when dealing with either your own or a loved one’s depression.

For most of us looking in, the world of celebrities can appear glamorous. But many celebrities hide their bleak inner world behind their smiles, much like Amanda Beard confesses in her book, In the Water They Can’t See You Cry: a Memoir. Beard is an Olympic gold medalist and model who suffered clinical depression; her memoir is a very frank, personal look at her fame. Another athlete who conquered addiction and depression is Margo Talbot, who talks about her journey through depression in All That Glitters: a Climber’s Journey through Addiction and Depression. Joe Pantoliano recounts his own struggles in Asylum: Hollywood Tales from My Great Depression: Brain Dis-Ease, Recovery, and Being My Mother’s Son. His book is rather different than the other two because he tackles the subject with humour.

There are many options if you would rather read about non-celebrities instead. Will’s Choice: a Suicidal Teen, a Desperate Mother, and a Chronicle of Recovery by Gail Griffith is all about Griffith’s struggle after her son, Will, attempted suicide. An excellent read is Jan Wong’s Out of the Blue: a Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness. Wong was a journalist who became depressed after a backlash to one of her stories. Her book takes a look at workplace stress, something that many of us can relate to.

If you don’t want to read a book focussed on just one person, the library has several options. On the Edge of Darkness: Conversations About Conquering Depression by Kathy Cronkite is a book filled with storied from celebrities who have suffered through depression. You Are Not Alone: Words of Experience and Hope for the Journey Through Depression by Julia Thorne is similar, but made up of the advice and experiences of a variety of people who have experienced depression, not just celebrities. My Kind of Sad: What It’s Like to Be Young and Depressed by Kate Scowen is the same type of book, but written for teens. It has a lot of information on depression, but is interspersed with teens sharing their stories. These books are great for helping you understand what your depressed loved one is going through. As an added bonus, these books can also help people currently experiencing depression find the words to express themselves to their families, opening communication for all.

The library has many other books on depression, including books that give a general overview of depression and ones that cover postpartum depression. But please keep in mind that these books should never be used in place of a health care professional’s advice. Please refer to the list below for a listing of therapy and counselling services in Thunder Bay should you or a loved one require some help.

If you’re free on October 5, be sure to stop by the Waverley library to listen to Dr. Tan’s “Dealing with Depression: A Family Perspective” lecture. It starts at 2pm in the auditorium.

Shauna Kosoris 

Here is a listing of therapy and counselling services available in Thunder Bay:

·         Mental Health Assessment Team – emergency services available from the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre
·         A family physician or walk-in clinic physician can be consulted for a referral to a mental health resource in the hospitals
·         Doctor referral to Mental Health Outpatient Programs, St. Joseph Care Group
·         Student Health and Counseling Centre – free counseling for all LU students: located at UC 1007, (807) 343-8361
·         Thunder Bay Counseling Centre: counseling for individuals, couples, and families: (807) 684-1880 – fee for service
·         Thunder Bay Crisis Response Service: (807) 346-8282
·         Self-referral to any mental health professional in private practice (look up the Yellow Pages under Psychologists and Psychological Associates; Psychotherapy; or Marriage, Family & individual Counselors) – fee for service
·         More information is available at Thunder Bay Canadian Mental Health Association: (807) 345-5564

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Sunday September 8, 2013 Time Well Spent at the Library

William Shakespeare said, “Make use of time, let not advantage slip.”  How true. So often we hear, there just aren’t enough hours in a day.  As it turns out there just may be, it’s a matter of how you spend them. Time is a very valuable thing. Perishable and irreplaceable, we cannot save it but we can build on it. We can reallocate time from activities of lower value to activities of higher value. In fact, the very act of taking a moment to think about our time before we spend it improves our management of it. Calculators and cell phones are great tools, but time management is actually more of a skill. It all begins with establishing what is most important to us and then making time for it. “The bad news is time flies. The good news is you are the pilot.” Most of us would agree that managing our time effectively is a great way to make the most of each day. TBPL has many resources on this very topic.    

Personal Productivity Secrets: Do What You Never Thought Possible with your Time and Attention and Gain Control of Your Life. Maura Nevel Thomas covers topics all the way from how to use an online calendar, address book or e-mail, online storage, capture tools and to-do lists. All of this will assist in regaining control and bringing peace of mind and success at the same time.

Zero Waste Home: The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Your Life by Reducing Your Waste by Bea Johnson shares how-to advice and easy tips for sustainable living such as packing kids’ lunches without plastic, making your own condiments and canceling your junk mail. What has that got to do with time management you may say.  All of these are ideas that could ultimately save you time as well as inspire a healthier lifestyle. 

Short of time and unable to make it to the library? With a smart phone or tablet, you can get several Apps, including AccessMyLibrary, Historypin, NAXOS Music Library and OverDrive Media Console and access your Library on the go. Go to the Apps and Mobility page at to find out more.

Once you have the software downloaded from Overdrive you can easily access audiobooks and ebooks such as Creating a Time Management System that Works for you: Paper, Electronic or Hybrid? Laura Stack, a pro in productivity, guides you in creating a system that will help you stay organized wherever you are.

Take advantage of some of these great resources that the library has to offer and you may be pleasantly surprised. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.” 

Caron E. Naysmith