Take Part In Bullying Prevention Month with Books

19 Oct

October is Bullying Prevention Month, which means it is important to revisit the damage bullying can cause, how we can stop it, and how we can help the people on all sides of the problem. One way to help ourselves understand, and help young adults deal with bullying related issues, is to read about it. Here are some young adult novels that deal with bullying and the aftermath of what pain it can cause on all sides.

If you or someone you know needs help now, or more solace than a great read can offer then please check out the official website StopBulling.gov, StompOutBullying.org, or the Nation Education Association’s Bully Free page for information, resources, and assistance.

The Bully by Paul Langan

A new life. An new school. A new bully. That’s what Darrell Mercer faces when he and his mother move from Philadelphia to California. After spending months living in fear, Darrell is faced with a big decision. He can either keep running from this bully–or find some way to fight back.

Brutal by Michael Harmon
After being left by her mother to live with a father she hardly knows in the middle of suburbia, Poe is happy to have found a few new friends at her new school, but when her new friends become the target of dangerous pranks by the popular jocks, Poe is determined to take down the group’s egomaniacal leader and put an end to his mean games.
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jane Asher
When high school student Clay Jenkins receives a box in the mail containing thirteen cassette tapes recorded by his classmate Hannah, who committed suicide, he spends a bewildering and heartbreaking night crisscrossing their town, listening to Hannah’s voice recounting the events leading up to her death.
By The Time You Read This I’ll Be Dead by Julie Annie Peters. High school student Daelyn Rice, who has been bullied throughout her school career and has more than once attempted suicide, again makes plans to kill herself, despite the persistent attempts of an unusual boy named Santana to draw her out.
Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers
Regina Afton, a high school senior in the popular–and feared–crowd, suddenly falls out of favor and becomes the object of the same sort of vicious bullying that she used to inflict on others, until she finds solace through Michael Hayden, one of her former victims.
Hate List by Jennifer Brown
After her boyfriend goes on a shooting rampage at school, Valerie is implicated because of her involvement in writing the list of names and so now must come to terms with what has happened, her feelings for the boy she once loved, and the part she played that resulted in such tragic events.


The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga
A fifteen-year-old “geek” who keeps a list of the high school jocks and others who torment him, and pours his energy into creating a great graphic novel, encounters Kyra, Goth Girl, who helps change his outlook on almost everything, including himself.

As usual, I cannot list all the great books in the post, or I would bored you all. But, I cannot help myself from adding a little bonus list at the end and asking you to comment with any books you would like to recommend. Here are my bonus books; The Misfits by James Howe, The Universe Versus Alex Woods by Gavin Extence, Before, After, and Somebody In Between by Jeannine Garsee, The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes, Indigo’s Star by Hilary McKay, Dear Life, You Suck by Scott Blagden,Diary Of A Witness by Catherine Ryan Hyde, The Fourth Stall by Chris Rylander, Freak by Marcella Fleischman Pixley, Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson,Darius & Twig by Walter Dean Myers,Cornered: 14 Stories of Bullying and Defiance edited by Rhoda Belleza, The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier, Drowning Anna by Sue Mayfield, and Eight Keys by Suzanne LaFleur.

For more books about bullying for all ages, and some non fiction resources, check out some of the books I mentions in these previous posts; 10 Picturebooks that Deal with Bullying, Powerful Fiction Focused on Bullying for Children and Young Adults, and Top 5 Non-Fiction Books about Bullying.

Linda Reads: In Your Dreams by Kristan Higgins

16 Oct

inIn Your Dreams by Kristan Higgins is book 4 of the Blue Heron Series, however, you do not have to read the books in order.

Publisher’s summary – Everyone loves Jack Holland, but Emmaline Neal needs him. Her ex-fiancé is getting married in Malibu and, obviously, she can’t go to the wedding alone. In Manningsport, New York, tall, blond and gorgeous Jack Holland is practically a cottage industry when it comes to rescuing desperate women. He knows the drill, Em figures, so he won’t get the wrong idea.

What Jack needs is an excuse to leave town. Ever since rescuing four teenagers from a car wreck, he’s been hailed as a hero and the attention is making him itchy, especially since his too-pretty ex-wife is back, angling for a reunion. He’s always liked Emmaline. She needs a weekend date? No problem.

So when they wind up in bed together, Em chalks it up to red wine and chocolate cake, just one impulsive night not to be repeated. But Jack’s pushing for more, and if she lets down her guard, either she’ll get her heart crushed again, or discover that Jack’s worth more than just dreaming about.

My take:  This may sound like the typical, happily ever after, sappy love story, but I was very pleasantly surprised to find it much more complex.  Ms. Higgins really goes deep down inside the heart and soul of Jack and Emmaline,  taking us on quite a ride through these imperfect characters’ lives.  Through well-placed flashbacks and snappy dialogue, we watch these two unlikely people go from acquaintances, to overcoming tremendous obstacles, to falling in love.  The story is tender and traumatic, emotional and funny, sweet and inspiring.

Ms. Higgins does a wonderful job covering the topics of childhood bullying and PTSD.  We normally associate PTSD with war time, but Jack’s PTSD stems from his rescue of town teenagers from a horrific car accident.

Throw in a puppy, wine making, hockey, small town police department, and a quirky, interesting supporting cast, and you’ve got the perfect must read romance!

This is, by far, my favorite book written by Kristan Higgins.

The other books in this series, in order, are:  The Best Man, The Perfect Match, Waiting on You.



The Tiger in the Library

14 Oct

2014-09-02 09.35.24I am often the first one into the library on Monday mornings. The lights are off and I have to walk through the darkened Children’s Room to get to the light switches. Normally, not a big deal, but lately… Well, there is a tiger in the library.

It is quite startling to see him sitting there in the dark. He is often perched on one of the sofas, watching me as I enter the room. The first time I encountered him, I jumped because I had not expected to see him there. He did not even blink.

He wanders all over the room. Sometimes he can be seen lounging in front of the picture book shelves. Other times, he will be sharing one of the two sofas in the room with the alligator. And once, I saw him hiding beneath the Lego table, as if waiting for prey, or, perhaps, getting out of the bright overhead lights.

He is well-loved. He endures hugs and wrestling with equanimity. He hides inside the block forts that eager children build around him and he listens with attention as those same kids read him books. Often, I will see him at the back of a group of children, listening, as Mom or Dad reads a story. The kids snuggle in close during the exciting parts of the story and then pat him affectionately when it all turns out okay. For his part, he seems to enjoy both the stories and the pats.

If you would like to see our tiger, he hangs out in the preschool area of our Children’s Room. Stop by and read him a story. He likes all kinds but is especially fond of books about tigers.

Mr. Tiger Goes Wild     Tigers by peter Murrary     Its a tiger     Tiger Sleep     Tiger's Story     Auntie Tiger




Beat Them at their Own Game!

12 Oct

Are you tired of feeling boggled when that internet meme comes around, pretending that it’s SOOOO impossible to think up a movie title without the letter “T” in it?  Beat them at their own game and look super-smart to all your friends: here’s 100 easy movie titles that never use the letter T – and there’s a lot more than that!  How many have you seen?  If you haven’t seen them all, check out our catalog and watch one today!

Apolarge_pPOc430Jm7lpJH6M4nqGbH2QBEhcalypse Now
Life of Pi
Black Swan
Blood Diamond
Million Dollar Baby
Donnie Darko
High Noon
Fanny and Alexander
Groundhog Day

Roman Holiday
Slumdog Millionaire
Die Hard                             large_zh9DXJhBdHVVaWiDURTipADamcK
Blade Runner

Cool Hand Luke
Kill Bill
Annie Hall
Wizard of Oz
Life of Brian
Django Unchained

x-men-dvdA Clockwork Orange
Lawrence of Arabia
X Men
2001: A Space Oddysey
Raging Bull
On Golden Pond

Ordinary People
Son of God
Dumb and Dumber
A Boy and his Dog

Iron Man
Pride and Prejudice
Eraser Head
Duck Soup

Princess Mononokeimages
King Kong
Bonnie and Clyde
Finding Nemo
Free Willy
Born Free
Space Jam
Mary Poppins

Seven Samurai
Hell Boy
Rear Window
Jurassic Park

Ocean’s Eleven
Jailhouse Rock
Speed Racer

imagesBeing John Malkovich
Spider Man
American Psycho
Jerry McGuire
Rain Man
Children of Men

Ghosts in the Library!

9 Oct

ghostsOctober brings to mind….ghosts!  Libraries are very popular resting places for ghosts to occupy.  Staff at the Cheshire Public Library are sure we have our own ghost – and our night-time cleaning service is positive we havMary Baldwine one.  One of the cleaning staff was vacuuming one night and the plug kept coming out of the wall socket.  When he looked around, he saw a ghostly image.  He was so spooked, he never returned to the library.  We assume it was Mary Baldwin, who served as the first Director of the Cheshire Public Library from 1892 to 1921.

Many libraries across the United States have reported paranormal activity.  The ten most haunted libraries in the United States are:

1.  The Willard Library in Evansville, Indiana – The library has been investigated by several paranormal organizations and they have ghost cams set up throughout the library so that at-home ghost hunters can see if they can spot The Grey Lady.

2.  The Saline County Library in Benton, Arkansas – Librarians began to suspect that the building was haunted after hearing phantom footsteps, seeing paperback carousels rotating by themselves, as well as books falling from the shelves.

3.  Peoria Public Library in Peoria, Illinois – This public library is said to have been cursed in 1847 by Mary Stevenson Gray (or Grey), who previously owned the land where the library now stands. The curse is rumored to have caused the untimely deaths of three library directors in the early 20th century who now haunt the library.

4.  Scottsdale Public Library in Scottsdale, Arizona - The Arabian and Civic Center branches of the Scottsdale (AZ) Public Library have been investigated by professional ghost hunters Sonoran Paranormal Investigations and have been found to be haunted. The investigation was done at the Library’s request after many reports of books and other objects moving by themselves, cold spots in the library and more.

5.  Ramona Convent Secondary School in Alhambra, California - A nun in a white habit has been seen by students roaming around the library.

6.  Houston Public Library in Houston, Texas - Ghostly music can be heard in the Julia Ideson Building of the Houston Public Library. It it said to be the ghost of Julius Frank Cramer, a night janitor who practiced playing a violin in the library after it was closed.

7.  Edgehill House Library in Fauquier County, Virginia – This private library in Fauquier County, Virginia is said to be haunted by the ghost of Civil War Col. William Chapman. His presence has been reported to make loud noises during the night and lock doors within the 1790 house.

8.  Murry and Leonie Guggenheim Memorial Library at Monmouth University in New Jersey - It is said that a lady in white walks down the staircase at midnight when the library closes.

9.  Parmly Billings Library in Billings, Montana – A dark-haired woman in the basement and a whistling ghost, and a ghostly man wearing jeans and work boots on the second floor are just some of the haunts at this library.

10.  Phoenixville Public Library in Pennsylvania – This library is haunted by three different ghosts that inhabit the recently renovated 1902 building. One is described by the library’s Executive Director John Kelley as a lady wearing a bustle dress who haunts the attic.

(Source: OEDb)

Screen Shot 2014-10-03 at 10.38.38 AMIf you’d like to cozy up with some great ghost movies, the Cheshire Library has a terrific selection.   Here’s a sampling:


City of Ghosts – An American swindler goes to Cambodia to search for his partner and his portion of a scam that has gone wrong.

Thir13en Ghosts – A man and his daughter inherit a house from their eccentric uncle and all the ghosts who reside there.

John Carpenter’s Ghosts of Mars – Mars has been colonized because of overpopulation on Earth. This displeases the ghosts of Mars, who rise to possess humans and turn them into maniacal zombies to take “vengeance on anyone who tries to lay claim to their planet.” This leads to a wary alliance between survivors, members of the Mars Police Force, and a criminal (Ice Cube).

The OthersGrace, a devoutly religious mother, has moved with her family to a mansion on the English coast, awaiting her husband’s return from the war. Her two children both suffer from a rare photosensitivity disease that renders them extremely vulnerable to sunlight, prompting the rule of having only one door open in the house at a time. When one of the children claims to see ghosts, Grace at first believes her newly-arrived family of eccentric servants to be responsible, but as events become stranger, she begins to wonder if something supernatural is indeed going on.

Ghost TownBertram Pincus is an irritable dentist whose people skills leave much to be desired. Pincus dies unexpectedly, but is miraculously revived after seven minutes, he wakes up to discover that he now has the annoying ability to see ghosts. Even worse, they all want something from him. Frank Herlihy, in particular, pesters him into breaking up the impending marriage of his widow Gwen. Now, Pincus is put squarely in the middle of a triangle with spirited result.

The Fog - A fog-enshrouded schooner from 1865 returns from the bottom of the sea to wreak vengeance on the locals of the island, and it’s up to local DJ Stevie Wayne (Blair), her charter-boat-captain lover, Nick (Welling), and his wayward girlfriend, Elizabeth (Grace), to save the day. All three are related to the town’s founding fathers, with whom the shipbound ghosts have an ancient score to settle. What that score is no one seems to know, but they need to find out, fast.

The ChangelingWorking-class suburb Los Angeles, 1928. Christine says goodbye to her son, Walter, and departs for work. Arriving home, Christine discovers that Walter is nowhere to be found. Christine launches a desperate a search for her son. Then, a boy claiming to be Christine’s son appears out of thin air. Knowing the boy is not hers, Christine invites the child to stay in her home.

Beetlejuice – A recently deceased Connecticut couple decide to use the maniacal bio-exorcist Betelgeuse to help rid them of the trendy New Yorkers who have moved into their home.

The Frighteners – A professional exorcist in a town where evil is afoot finds himself at the middle of a mystery when one ghost decides to go on a murder spree and the townsfolk suspect him of the crimes.

Ghostbusters – A group of parapsychologists start a ghost pest control.

Sixth Sense -A boy who communicates with spirits that don’t know they’re dead seeks the help of a disheartened child psychologist.

Paranormal Activity - Katie and Micah are a young middle class couple who are engaged to be married. After moving into a suburban ‘starter’ house in San Diego, California, they begin hearing noises while trying to sleep. Not knowing if the presence is demonic or not, they attempt communicating through a Ouija board, angering the spirit further. Now they may never sleep again, or they may never wake up!




The Children’s Department also has a large assortment of ghost movies suitable for younger viewers.  Stop in and take a look!








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