Thursday, February 11, 2016

Links and Stuff: February 11, 2016

Sunday, February 07, 2016

What I Read This Week: February 7, 2016

Today is the day I make far too much chili, have lots of friends over, and watch a football game I have no stake in. At least the Superbowl is preceeded by a Caps game?

Also, this list is short because I've been far too tired to do anything by lie about and empty my RSS reader.
  • Magazines
    • Washingtonian, January 2016 - This had two articles I enjoyed above all others. The first was advice from locals about how to do various things better in DC. The second was on reducing clutter... cause that is still my jam. There was also a nice piece about how Galludet is adapting architecture for the deaf.
  • Books
    • I sure hope you like reading about Shelters of Stone in this spot. It's a hefty book, which I'm enjoying, but it will take me several weeks (months?) to finish its many, many pages.
  • Other

Friday, February 05, 2016

The Friday Find: Pillow

Sometimes I'm stumped for what to post here. When that happens, I head to Etsy and type in something like "books" just to see what comes up. In this case, I found a fun throw pillow.

You can find this in MinnieandMaude's Etsy shop.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Links and Stuff: February 4, 2016

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Why I Love... Seeing Students Read

The weather did nothing but rain today. Sometimes the rain was light, sometimes it poured, but the whole day was gray and wet. If I had been home, I would have made tea and snuggled in with my current doorstopper of a book. Instead, I was at work.

I run our social media accounts, and today I wandered around the library looking for a good picture to post. In our lobby area, we have some relatively comfy chairs for patrons to take over. There were three students studying away, and I snapped a shot. Each student was plugged into their own little world, but they all had some sort of work to do and a hot beverage at hand. I was instantly jealous.

Seeming others read reminded me of the days I was one of those students. Closed off from the world, deep in whatever text I was tackling. Seeing these students read gave me a deep sense of nostalgia. Ah, to be a college student again, when reading was definitely a part of the job.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

What I Read This Week: January 31, 2016

This is going to auto-post while I'm (likely) eating Sunday brunch with friends during our annual ski weekend. I'm not the biggest fan of doing of cold weather sports, but I love hanging out with friends and eating lots of food and having an excuse to dress apres ski style. If I happen to end up snowboarding or tubing, all the better. (Cause snow tubing is a blast.) Besides, there's a hot tub at this house in which I soothed my aching muscles. Muscles that were put to work shoveling out our car over 6+ hours. I am so proud of the before and after that I've been sharing the pictures I took with everyone (see below the reading list).
  • Work
    • I finally managed to finish reading the January/February 2016 issue of American Libraries. I've been slowly working my way through it for about two weeks. The bulk of this issue was a year-in-review and midwinter conference preview, but I enjoyed the articles on digital humanities and the history of the library catalog.
  • Magazines
    • Savory, January/February 2016 - This was a nice little issue to kick off the year. There were a whole series of recipes showing examples of meals you can make following the latest diet trends, there were great food ideas for the Superbowl, and there were easy weeknight meals to peruse. I pulled a few recipes to try in the future.
  • Books
    • I finished Voracious. It was fantastic and delicious. I think I know which recipe I'm going to try to make first - the red wine, rosemary bread. We tend to have all the ingredients on hand, and the thought of kneading bread and the yeasty smell of it baking makes my mouth water.
    • Next up, the fifth book in the "Earth's Children" series by Jean M. Auel, Shelters of Stone. Why did I pick this book next? Because it struck my fancy and nothing says winter like a nearly 900 pages doorstopper.
  • Other
    • As someone who still takes longform notes and sends letters, I am a most definitely a fan of handwriting (CNN).
    • The Husband shared an article from The Huffington Post about black youth hockey in DC with me. It's fantastic.

Friday, January 29, 2016

The Friday Find: Cozy

The Husband and I are off on a ski trip with friends later today. As much I as enjoy ice skating and sledding (with an occasional round of bunny hill snow boarding), you're more apt to find me looking like this in winter.

The image was found on the tumblr Book Porn.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Variations on a Theme: Snowed In

As you might have noticed, a blizzard rolled through much of the east coast last weekend. It hit DC hard, and my muscles are still sore from digging our car out. At least all that snow offered inspiration for this month's Variations on a Theme. Here are some books that take place during snowy times.

Michael Northrup

The day the blizzard started, no one knew that it was going to keep snowing for a week. That for those in its path, it would become not just a matter of keeping warm, but of staying alive. Scotty and his friends Pete and Jason are among the last seven kids at their high school waiting to get picked up that day, and they soon realize that no one is coming for them. Still, it doesn't seem so bad to spend the night at school, especially when distractingly hot Krista and Julie are sleeping just down the hall. But then the power goes out, then the heat. The pipes freeze, and the roof shudders. As the days add up, the snow piles higher, and the empty halls grow colder and darker, the mounting pressure forces a devastating decision.

The Snow Queen
Hans Christen Anderson

When a boy is cursed with an inability to perceive goodness, a young girl must go on a lonely quest to restore his heart and vision and free him from captivity in the palace of the Snow Queen. Few works of children's literature have had as deep and lasting an impact as Hans Christian Andersen's The Snow Queen, which has won the hearts of young readers for almost two centuries, and inspired works as diverse as Disney's Frozen and C.S. Lewis's The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

The Snow Child
Eowyn Ivey

Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart—he breaking under the weight of the work of the farm; she crumbling from loneliness and despair. In a moment of levity during the season's first snowfall, they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone—but they glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees. This little girl, who calls herself Faina, seems to be a child of the woods. She hunts with a red fox at her side, skims lightly across the snow, and somehow survives alone in the Alaskan wilderness. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.

Snow Country

Yasunari Kawabata

Nobel Prize winner Yasunari Kawabata’s Snow Country is widely considered to be the writer’s masterpiece: a powerful tale of wasted love set amid the desolate beauty of western Japan. At an isolated mountain hot spring, with snow blanketing every surface, Shimamura, a wealthy dilettante meets Komako, a lowly geisha. She gives herself to him fully and without remorse, despite knowing that their passion cannot last and that the affair can have only one outcome. In chronicling the course of this doomed romance, Kawabata has created a story for the ages — a stunning novel dense in implication and exalting in its sadness.

A Cold and Lonely Place
Sara J. Henry

Ice harvesters are preparing for the Winter Carnival at Saranac Lake, NY, when they find a body frozen under the surface. Freelance journalist Troy Chance, who is on the scene taking photos, recognizes the dead man as her roommate’s boyfriend, Tobin Winslow. When the death is quickly assumed to be accidental, Troy disagrees. Convinced Tobin was murdered, Troy sets about meeting with Tobin’s family and friends, hoping to find some insight into this man who turns out to be from a wealthy family. When her editor asks her to write the story of Tobin’s life, it seems like the perfect way to gain information, along with providing the break Troy needs to establish her writing career.

The Miniaturist

Jessie Burton

On a brisk autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman arrives in Amsterdam to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt. But her splendid new home is not welcoming. Johannes is kind yet distant, and leaves Nella alone with his sister, the fearsome Marin. Nella's life unexpectedly changes when Johannes presents her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. To furnish it, she engages the services of a miniaturist–an elusive and enigmatic artist whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in eerie ways. Johannes's gift helps Nella pierce the closed world of the Brandt household. But as she uncovers its unusual secrets, she begins to understand–and fear–the escalating dangers around them. Only one person seems to see the fate that awaits them. Is the miniaturist the key to their salvation...or the architect of their destruction?

Other Snowy Titles
2 a.m. at the Cat's Pajamas - Marie-Helene Bertino
Arctic Dreams - Barry Lopez
Cover of Snow - Jenny Milchman
Ice - Linda Howard
The Ice Storm - Rick Moody
The Snow Leopard - Peter Matthiessen
The Snow Queen - Michael Cunningham
Stone Mattress - Margaret Atwood
White Out - Vella Munn
Winter Stroll - Elin Hilderbrand