Monthly Archives: August 2011

Book Review: Harry Truman’s Excellent Adventure

Harry Truman’s Excellent Adventure

by Matthew Algeo

Adult Non-fiction

I bet you didn’t know this about Harry Truman: In 1953, after the end of his presidency,  he and  his wife Bess  took a road trip. No entourage, no secret service, no press – just a former president and his wife in a shiny new Chrysler, with 2,500 miles of road to cover.

During their three week roadtrip, they visited friends, celebrated their wedding anniversary, went to a Broadway play, ate at roadside diners … everything that an average couple in the 1950s might do. What they didn’t count on was the attention. Clifton Truman Daniel, President Truman’s grandson, said, “The thing that always amazed me was that my grandfather, having run the country, thought he could just get in his car and drive across it.”

In this engaging history, the author retraces the Truman’s footsteps, gathering anecdotes and memories along the way. It was picked as one of the Washington Post’s “Best Books of the Year” and after reading it, I can see why.

 

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Book Review: Twelve Little Cakes

Twelve Little Cakes

by Dominika Dery

Adult Nonfiction

Dominika Dery has a surprisingly charming way of writing about the difficult subject of growing up in communist Czechoslovakia. Life wasn’t easy under the oppressive government  – especially if your parents were dissidents – but each tale of Dery’s childhood is presented with such love and humor that her book escapes the gloom and despair of other books about the time period.

From her father’s misadventures in construction to her debut with the Czech ballet, Dery provides a unique view of life behind the Iron Curtain.

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Got homework? We’ve got help for that.

School’s back in session … and that means homework. Whether it’s 2nd grade reading, 6th grade science, or 10th grade math (geometry, ugh), HomeworkHelpOklahoma has tutors available to provide live one-on-one assistance. And it’s easy to use – just select your grade, subject, how much help you need, and in minutes you’ll be connected to a tutor who can help you through those tricky math problems or explain the nuances of grammar rules.

But that’s not all. HomeworkHelpOklahoma isn’t just for K-12 students. In college? Check out the College Center, with tutors ready to help with everything from physics to trigonometry. Studying for the GED, Citizenship Test, or going back to school after time away? There’s the Adult Education Center ready and waiting. Need a job? The Career Center can help you organize a resume, search for jobs, and or prepare for an interview.

So contact the library for login details and head on over. There’s something for everyone at HomeworkHelpOklahoma!

HomeworkHelpOklahoma is provided by the Oklahoma department of Libraries and is powered by Tutor.com.

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Book Review: Tooth and Claw

Tooth and Claw

By Jo Walton

Adult Fiction

What do you get when you take a Jane Austen-style Victorian novel of manners … and make the characters anthropomorphic dragons?

The only book I know that fits that description is Jo Walton’s inventive Tooth and Claw, where ladies of questionable reputation struggle to make their way in the world, fathers die leaving their children to fight over their inheritance, and sanctimonious parsons seek blushing brides.

Jo Walton has proven adept at many different genres – alternate history, fantasy, sci-fi, mystery – many times blending genres together in new and inventive ways. But no matter what type of book it is, her engaging writing style and way of turning something familiar on its head make her books well worth reading.

Also by Jo Walton: Among Others.

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Book Review: My Year With Eleanor

My Year With Eleanor

by Noelle Hancock

Adult Non-fiction

When entertainment blogger Noelle Hancock was abruptly laid off, she had to face her fears in a very real way. She quickly realized that she’d traded in her confidence for anxiety and her ambition for passiveness. Then a quote chalked on a blackboard in a coffee shop changed everything:

“Do one thing every day that scares you.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

With the help of her boyfriend and a few close friends (real friends are the ones who will go skydiving with you!) Noelle embarks on a project: a vow to do at least one thing that scares her every day for a year.

Weaving in plenty of facts about Eleanor’s life and a lot of inspiration, Noelle faces her fears, including those of flying, falling, karaoke, and stand up comedy. Along the way she finds her fearless self again, even finding that she enjoys some of the things she feared most.

Luckily for her readers, it’s a ride that’s easy to enjoy – and definitely not a book to be afraid of!

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Book Review: Neverwhere

Neverwhere

By Neil Gaiman

Audiobook

Richard Mayhew has a problem. He had a steady, if unremarkable job, an ambitious fiancée, and a perfectly adequate flat in London. His life was uneventful, safe, and normal.

Then he stopped to help a girl he found bleeding on the sidewalk, and everything changed.

Suddenly he’s plunged into a nightmarish world of London Below –  a place of magic and mystery and terror, of angels and tricksters and assassins. If Richard is ever going to return to his life in London Above, he’ll first have to learn to survive in London Below.

The audio book is read by the author.

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