Thursday, June 27, 2013

Whiskey Beach by Nora Roberts

Summer seems to be the season for light reading.  For many – that means a good page-turner that can accompany one to the cabin or the beach.  One such book is recommended by our head librarian, Mary Toma.  With a title like Whiskey Beach, Nora Roberts’ latest offering, this book is just screaming to be taken to the lake.

Whiskey Beach (the book) is set in Bluff House located in the resort town of Whiskey Beach.  The original portion of the house is over 300 years hold.  The Landon family has always owned the house.  Grandma Landon was the only permanent resident until she fell and seriously injured herself.  Not wanting the house to remain vacant while she recovers, she convinces her grandson, Eli Landon, to take up residence.  Eli badly needs recuperation time.  His soon-to-be divorced ex-wife was murdered and Eli was a prime suspect.  At Bluff House, Eli meets Ara Walsh, current caretaker of the mansion.  Ara, while a master of many talents, has her own recovering to do. 

The story has many twists and turns and keeps the reader’s attention until the end.  This is only 1 of the thousands of choices available for light summer reading.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Mike Grandmaison's Prarie and Beyond

Many think of the prairie as boring flatland, but for those who take the time to really “see” it and appreciate it, our home is a wonderful, beautiful place.  This is obvious in Mike Grandmaison’s Prairie and beyond.  The book is a stunning, photographic accomplishment.

They say a good photograph tells a story, and in this book are found many stories.  The book is divided into 6 chapters, and these chapters show the diversity found on the prairie provinces: the grasslands;  drylands, forests, wetlands, mountains, and the subarctic.  Each photograph captures the beauty of an area and reminds us of how fragile our world is.

Everyone has a book they wish they had written.  This is my wish book.  Just as I did, Mike Grandmaison came to the prairie some 30 years ago from Northern Ontario.  In his introduction, he writes about those first impressions and the mark the prairies immediately made on his soul.  He is not alone in that reaction.

With thoughts beginning to turn to summer vacations and road trips, I thought it would be a good time to highlight a beautiful book, and find the inspiration to visit a part of Canada we have not always taken the time to really “see”.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

When a dad says "I Love You" by Douglas Wood, illustrated by Jennifer A. Bell

Father’s day is coming up this weekend so I’m going to suggest a new children’s picture book that speaks for all those dads who do not express love easily using words, but rather through their actions and character;  When a dad says “I love you” by Douglas Wood, and illustrated by Jennifer A. Bell.

The best way to describe this book is by giving you some of the text:
     When a dad says “I love you,”
     He doesn’t always say it
     In the plain old ordinary way.
     That would by just a little bit ... ordinary.
     Instead he might just say...
     “Rise and shine, Champ.  It’s a great day!”
     He might say “I love you” by making pancakes.

There are many ways that a dad says “I love you”, like racing you around the yard, or helping you learn to ride your bike.  He might carry you on his shoulders so you can see the parade, or sing your favourite song, or read your favourite bedtime story over and over again.  And sometimes a dad might say “I love you” in the plain old ordinary way.

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Silver screens on the prairie by Russ Gourluck

Recently CFAM carried a news item about the drive-in theatre in Morden.  It reminded me of a new book in the library, Silver screens on the prairie: an illustrated history of motion picture theatres in Manitoba by Russ Gourluck.  

This is a wonderful nostalgic look at the movie theatres across Manitoba.  As is also the case in Gourluck’s other books, it is thoroughly researched, and full of interesting personal stories and anecdotes.  Old photographs of the theatres, those who owned them and worked in them, and old posters announcing the iconic movies of the last century fill the pages.  Theatres ranged from the grand movie houses, community halls and drive-ins to today’s multiplex.

I don’t usually talk about a book’s shortcomings, but with this book I am making an exception.  The index lists theatres by their names, not their locations.  This is annoying if you know there was an old theatre in your town, but you don’t know what it was called.  The search can result in uncovering a lot of fascinating trivia, but is a bit frustrating none-the-less.  

 Before heading out to the Kenmore or the Stardust Drive-In in Morden, the newly refurbished Metropolitan in Winnipeg, or the Park Theatre in Wasagaming, check out this book.