Thursday, January 12, 2012

Deliverance from boredom

I do not like to admit to boredom, especially in regard to books, my boon companions all these long, long years. But, in fact, I have lately been bored, undiverted and unentertained by my reading choices. The fault, I am sure, is mine; nevertheless, it has been a trying period. When I picked up The Sisters Brothers, by Patrick de Witt, it was a happy day indeed. Set in the lawless days of the gold rush, it follows the violent travels of Charles and Eli Sisters, brothers widely recognized for their murderous capabilities. Their employer, the Commodore, has sent them on a mission to find and kill the elusive Herman Kermit Warm. The tone is sometimes sprightly and comic, as when the pensive Eli spars with his coarse, bellowing brother; or melancholy, when Eli ponders his bloodied career with regret. When the brothers find Mr. Warm, they are distracted from their goal by his wondrous gold-finding solution, which, when dumped into the prospector's stream, glows brightly to reveal the gold. Wondrous, yes, but with unforeseen and horrible consequences that leave the Sisters brothers changed forever.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Tales of an Intergalactic Princess

You probably already know her as Star Wars's Princess Leia, but if that's all you know of Carrie Fisher, you're in for a treat. The actress/writer/daughter of famous duo, Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, has crafted a pair of dryly hilarious memoirs in Wishful Drinking (2008) and Shockaholic (2011). In them, she recounts her career, romances, addiction, and mental illness, which sounds like kind of a drag, but, instead, is a page turning riot.

Fisher has also penned four novels, beginning with her debut, Postcards from the Edge, a semi-autobiographical work that was adapted in to the 1990 film, of the same name.

Aside from the original Star Wars trilogy, Fisher has also appeared in a few other films worth checking out: The Blues Brothers (1980), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), and When Harry Met Sally (1989).

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

New Website Launching Soon!

(note, this is a re-post from our website re-design blog)

Hi everyone,
We've been pretty busy since we first announced a site redesign last December...the survey and forum were very helpful to us in deciding how to proceed and we thank those who took the time to participate.

In April, we put out a Request for Proposals for our site redesign, and ended up choosing Wick Creative out of Denver.  They're super talented folks who have worked with the Colorado State Library on their What's Next?! campaign.  Based on feedback from the public, we chose a simple, clean design full of new features that will hopefully make it much easier for you to find all the useful things we have to offer on our website.  We hope to launch the new site in the first half of January, 2012.

Some of the new features are highlighted below. After looking at the screenshots, please take a minute to fill out a brief opinion survey at the bottom of the post--your input is always welcome and appreciated!

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

The top-half of the new home page has the following features:

1. Single page sign-on and search: Now you'll be able to sign in to your account right from the home page.  Also, look for materials in our catalog, search our site, or search for articles from one easy place.  You'll also notice some of the main navigation labels have changed.  In addition to getting rid of the hard-to-use drop-down menus, our new eResources page replaces much of what was in our 'Research' section before, and includes our premium subscription databases as well as other online resources, like downloadable ebooks.

2. New material slider: Highlights new fiction by default--choose non-fiction, dvd's and audiobooks/music from the drop-down arrow.

3. Stay informed with the latest updates front and center.

4. Prominent 'Ask Us' button one every page, so help is always just a click away.

Further down our home page you'll find the following new features:

5. Recent blog posts from all three blogs (adult, teen and kids): Now you won't miss all the great reviews, programming, and library highlights for all ages that were hard to find in our old site.

6. New event calendar: See what's going on without ever leaving the page, or go right to the monthly calendar.

7. How Do I? menu:  Quick links to frequently asked questions.

8. New footer: Easy-to-navigate footer with clearly organized categories and access to our social media pages.

Now that you've seen a preview, what do you think?  We want this site to be the best it can be, so please share your feedback!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Catching Up with David Fincher

On December 21st, director, David Fincher, will unveil his take on the worldwide phenomenon that is The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. In the meantime, get up-to-date with this meticulous and skillful filmmaker.

Se7en (1995): This grim depiction of two cops (Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt) on the trail of a serial killer, who patterns his crimes off of the seven deadly sins, remains one of Fincher's greatest triumphs.

Fight Club (1999): Fincher succeeds in bringing the seemingly unfilmable Chuck Palahniuk novel to the screen, with punch and panache.

Zodiac (2007): Fincher's trademark perfectionism pays off in spades, with an underrated gem, that succeeds on every level. This true tale of the never-caught serial killer serves as both a gritty detective drama and a display of superior artistry.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008): This slightly overrated adaptation of the F. Scott Fitzgerald short story is notable for it's special effects, as well as bringing Mr. Fincher his first Oscar nomination for directing.

The Social Network (2010): Fincher scored financially and critically with this insinuating tale of the founding of Facebook. He garnered another Oscar nod, and, some might argue, was robbed by Tom Hooper, for The King's Speech (which also ran away with Best Picture).

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Keaton's Memoir as Unique as She Is

New to our catalog is Diane Keaton's exceptional and eccentric (I would expect nothing less from the quirky icon) memoir, Then Again. Here, for the very first time, she reveals her five year battle with bulimia. And, while she is obviously protective of those she speaks of, she also talks in gratifying detail about her high profile relationships with Woody Allen, Warren Beatty, and Al Pacino.

This is an absolute must for any Keaton fan, but the star's endearing neuroses, tenacity, and singularity might appeal to novices, as well. The book is also a love letter to Keaton's mother, and their enduring bond, as she weaves in her mom's letters and journal entries, to parallel her own life's journey.

If that wets your whistle, check out these essential Diane Keaton films:
Play It Again, Sam (1972)
The Godfather (1972)
Sleeper (1973)
Love and Death (1975)
Annie Hall (1977)
Looking For Mr. Goodbar (1977)
Manhattan (1979)
Reds (1981)
Baby Boom (1987)
Father of the Bride (1991)
Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993)
The First Wives Club (1996)
Marvin's Room (1996)
Something's Gotta Give

Monday, November 28, 2011

Notable Books of 2011

Just in time for your holiday book shopping, here is the New York Times list of the notable books of 2011. With fiction, poetry, and nonfiction selections, this list is swell for your own personal self, too. Check out our library catalog for all these great books.

image from

Monday, November 21, 2011

Macho man mysteries

You won't hear me maligning macho men, at least not too often, and now there's another reason to love the little dears: the macho man mystery, at its best when set in the great outdoors. Sure, macho men have always ruled in the mystery world: from the tough and semi-thuggish Spenser on back to smart-alecky Phillip Marlowe. But their world is urban, the old mean streets, fellow thugs and crumbs to pick on and all that. The macho man in the great outdoors, solving mysteries, protecting bears, and being tough but tender? Forget about it. They get my vote.
Here are some great ones to try:
The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson
The Poacher's Son by Paul Doiron
Iron Lake by William Kent Krueger
Open Season by C.J. Box
A Cold Day in Paradise by Steve Hamilton