Sunday, 26 July 2015

Sunday July 26, 2015 Taking the Library on Vacation

Picture this: you are on vacation and having a wonderful time, until you run out of books to read...or suddenly face a rainy day and children in need of something to do...or that DIY project at camp takes a wrong turn. Have no fear; the Library can be right there with you to save the day (insert superhero anthem here)! In addition to the thousands of books, dvds, and other materials that we offer in physical formats there are just as many available in online formats as well.

The Overdrive collection currently has more than 61,000 eBooks and eAudiobooks available for borrowing. These can be accessed anywhere and anytime you have an internet enabled device, an internet connection, and your Library card number and PIN. The Overdrive app is easy to download and use with almost any device. Long drives or even longer road trips are a great time to have a couple of eAudiobooks at the ready to choose from along the way. If you are just browsing the collection and want to see what is immediately available for reading, go to the advanced search screen and select “available now” from the ‘Show me...’ menu.

Tumblebooks is a free site that can be used by anyone – this is a great tool to have in your back pocket for impromptu story times, games, educational videos and more. Books are read aloud through your device and the visual components help young ones follow along with the story.

Hoopla provides online access to thousands of movies, television, music and eAudiobook titles, free to you with a Thunder Bay Public Library card. You need to have an email address and set a PIN on your library card. Download the free hoopla digital mobile app on your Android or IOS device or visit on your PC, set up your account and away you go.

Other easy apps to download and use include Naxos Music Library (NML) and Access My Library (AML). The NML app lets you stream classical, jazz and world music anywhere and anytime. The AML app isn’t proprietary to Thunder Bay Public Library and is a free tool to use to do things like: research on the road, settle a bet by looking up correct information, and generally get fast access to topics from health and wellness to car repair, business, and more.  Both of these apps can be downloaded for free through the app store. More information on Naxos Music Library is available through the Thunder Bay Public Library’s website (

Last but not least is that beautiful website itself – connects you to everything the library has to offer. Free public events that are happening at the four library locations and in the community throughout the year; dozens of databases to help with home improvement, local history, genealogy, biographies, general reference, and more; access to books, eBooks, audio, DVDs, newspapers, reviews and blogs, etc. Check it all out before or during your summer plans this year and happy travels!

Jesse Roberts 

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Sunday July 19, 2015 Summer Fun at Your Library

Some fine weather is upon us.  Are you looking for some activities to add to your already fun packed time? Look no further than the Thunder Bay Public Library.  There are many great programs that will add to an already delightful summer.

To keep holiday reading enjoyable join this year’s TD Summer Reading Club for ages 3- 14. Children receive an activity booklet that will help them track their reading. When they check in weekly at the Library they will receive a special prize such as coupons from Boston Pizza, Mario's Bowl and Border Cats games.

The Big Boreal Adventure is happening again. A city-wide, nature-based quest, you can register at any branch of the Library where you will receive a map and guidebook to get started. You can also sign out a nature kit to go along with them (complete with nature book, magnifying glass, binoculars, compass, and activity sheets).

Join us for a Community Picnic on Thursday July 23 at Mary J.L. Black Branch in the parking lot, Wednesday August 12 at Waverley Resource Library in the Parkette across the street, and Saturday September 12 at the new County Park Branch.  This free neighbourhood fun features entertainment, food, crafts and Zoose the Moose. In the event of rain, picnics will be moved inside. Each picnic in July and August will start at 1:00 p.m. and will be followed at 2:30 by a fun and entertaining puppet show.   The County Park Community Picnic will also include a Grand Opening in the hallway in front of the new Library location, in the same mall just down the hall!

Readers are Leaders in July and August is already underway at the Brodie and Waverley Resource Libraries but it is never too late to call and find out about this great program which runs year round. Children from grades one to three are matched with volunteer partners from the community. If you are 13 or over we encourage and welcome you to volunteer as a Leader. Your hours can be put toward your high school volunteer hour requirements.

Every Tuesday evening during the month of August, there will be free financial planning information sessions at the Brodie Resource Library in the fireside reading room. These short sessions will cover a variety of topics suitable for any financial situation. Go to for more information.

How about downloading eBooks for free through Overdrive? Simply go to to find eBooks and eAudiobooks that you can download for free. Once on that page, click on the download button to explore, browse, search for, sign out and download eBooks and more online. There are eBooks for children and teens as well as adults.

Other activities offered this summer include ice painting at Mary J.L. Black outside in the enclosed garden, with popsicles and lemonade being served. Favourite puppet shows are happening at each branch: Rumpelstiltskin, Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig, and Charlie the Caterpillar to name a few. How about a candy pizza party on July 28 at the Waverley Library, or a magic show on July 29.  Super heroes, cartooning, healthy snacks and’s all happening at TBPL this summer. Just go to for a complete listing, and have a great time!

Caron E Naysmith

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Sunday July 5th, 2015 How to Hire a Ghost

Ghost writing can often be a ghoulish way to make a living. A ghostwriter is someone who writes under a pseudonym or another author’s name without taking credit. Ghostwriting, or also known simply as “ghosting”, can be found in all sorts of mediums. Examples of ghosting can be found in fiction and non-fiction writing, religious or political texts, as well as even musical ghostwriting.
Specifically, one can find countless examples of ghostwriting in the Thunder Bay Public Library’s fiction collection. You may be surprised to learn that many beloved writers did not actually write the piece of literature in question. As a result of circumstance, a ghostwriter has succeeded writers ranging from V.C. Andrews, Tom Clancy, Arthur Conan Doyle and most recently Stieg Larsson.

Did you know that ghostwriters wrote the adventures of beloved children’s characters Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys? Under the names Carolyn Keene and Franklin Dixon came the titles The House on the Cliff and The Hidden Staircase written in 1927 and 1930 respectively. To this day, Keene and Dixon are still “writing” new adventures for our young sleuths. Similarly, the Warriors series by Erin Hunter is another example of a pseudonym used by a trio of writers.

In other cases a ghostwriter may take over from a previous writer, often times due to the original writer’s passing. V.C. Andrews is well known for the Dollanganger series that began with the much read, Flowers in the Attic. The conclusion to the Dollanganger series ends with Garden of Shadows written by her ghostwriter Andrew Neiderman. Neiderman has continued to write under Andrews’ name since her death, using similar story telling structure.

Tom Clancy and his globetrotting Jack Ryan have become synonymous with the military and espionage genre. Jack Ryan first appears in the 1984 novel The Hunt for Red October, a thrilling story about a former marine turned C.I.A analyst who must track a Russian submarine. Jack Ryan and his stories turned out to be a great success for Clancy, who continued to write about his stories for the remainder of his career. After Clancy’s death, ghostwriter Mark Greaney took over writing duty and continued Jack Ryan’s story in Support and Defend and Full Force and Effect.

It can be hard to imagine a modern hero such as Jack Ryan to exist if it were not for Sherlock Holmes. The most well known name in crime solving comes from the great mind Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Detective Holmes first appeared in A Study in Scarlet and since has appeared in countless spinoffs. Recent Sherlock Holmes incarnations include A Slight Trick of theMind, which follows the detective in his older years revisiting an unsolved case.

As Sherlock Holmes, Lisbeth Salander, the antihero of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, similarly uses cold logic to solve crime. Most recently, the late Stieg Larsson’s epic Millennium trilogy will be soon gaining a fourth edition in its saga. The fate of the brilliant computer hacker will soon be revealed in the upcoming The Girl In the Spider’s Web. With a release date in September 2015, readers will have to wait to see whether this ghostwriter’s newest addition will live up to Larsson’s name.  

While you wait for the latest Lisbeth Salander mystery or whether you wish to find a new Sherlock Holmes’ adventure, TBPL’s fiction collection will be sure to satisfy your curiosity. In addition, the online reader’s advisory is a great tool that can help you find other popular titles written by ghostwriters. So you can be sure you will find a ghost or two lurking at your library.

Petar Vidjen