Goodbye Freegal Movies/TV! Hello Hoopla!

Thu, 08/28/2014 - 3:48pm

In mid-September, we'll are saying "goodbye" to Freegal Movies and Television. What? Don't worry, we've got Hoopla!

Have you heard what all the Hoopla was about? It's about movies and television, music and audiobooks! 

With Hoopla, access an extensive movie/tv catalog of educational materials, children's titles, foreign films, and other hard-to-find content not offered anywhere else with unlimited number of copies, so there are never any waiting lists.

Start streaming movies/tv immediately, or download a title to a phone or tablet for offline viewing later. It’s returned for you at the end of the lending period (3 days), so there are never any late fees.

Have you seen the categories? Browse titles within Recently Released, Film Festival Flix, Action, French Films, Drama, Featured Spanish, Featured Children’s, Homeschool and Classics (90’s, 80’s, 70’s, 60’s, 50’s and 40’s/before. And the list goes on and on.

Are you new to Hoopla? Get the Scoop!

FYI....this is only the movie and television option from Freegal. You may continue to enjoy the music collection from Freegal music!

 

Where there is life, there is hope.

Thu, 08/28/2014 - 10:53am

Fly Away (2013) by Kristin Hannah

Library Copies

Once, a long time ago, I walked down a night-darkened road called Firefly Lane, all alone, on the worst night of my life, and I found a kindred spirit. That was our beginning. More than thirty years ago. TullyandKate. You and me against the world. Best friends forever. But stories end, don’t they? You lose the people you love and you have to find a way to go on. . . .

Tully Hart has always been larger than life, a woman fueled by big dreams and driven by memories of a painful past. She thinks she can overcome anything until her best friend, Kate Ryan, dies. Tully tries to fulfill her deathbed promise to Kate---to be there for Kate’s children---but Tully knows nothing about family or motherhood or taking care of people.

Sixteen-year-old Marah Ryan is devastated by her mother’s death. Her father, Johnny, strives to hold the family together, but even with his best efforts, Marah becomes unreachable in her grief. Nothing and no one seems to matter to her . . . until she falls in love with a young man who makes her smile again and leads her into his dangerous, shadowy world.

Dorothy Hart---the woman who once called herself Cloud---is at the center of Tully’s tragic past. She repeatedly abandoned her daughter, Tully, as a child, but now she comes back, drawn to her daughter’s side at a time when Tully is most alone. At long last, Dorothy must face her darkest fear: Only by revealing the ugly secrets of her past can she hope to become the mother her daughter needs.

A single, tragic choice and a middle-of-the-night phone call will bring these women together and set them on a poignant, powerful journey of redemption. Each has lost her way, and they will need each one another---and maybe a miracle---to transform their lives.

An emotionally complex, heart-wrenching novel about love, motherhood, loss, and new beginnings, Fly Away reminds us that where there is life, there is hope, and where there is love, there is forgiveness. Told with her trademark powerful storytelling and illuminating prose, Kristin Hannah reveals why she is one of the most beloved writers of our day. --Amazon

Other titles by this author:

  • Home Front (2012), Night Road (2011), Winter Garden (2010) and True Colors (2009)

Do You Know a Student with a BIG Idea? YEA is the answer!

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 3:13pm

Attention middle and high school students!
Do you someday hope to start and run your own REAL business? Get a jump on the know-how at The Young Entrepreneurs Academy!

For more information, check out this link http://allianceswla.org/entrepreneurial-training

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) is ready to teach middle and high school students the ropes when it comes to starting and running their very own legal and real businesses!

Classes starting this fall! 

Event Details

  • What: YEA! Information Night
  • When: 6PM Monday, September 8, 2014
  • Where: SEED Center (located behind the McDonalds) located at 4310 Ryan St., Lake Charles, La
  • Who: Middle and high school students and their families; business professionals.
    The event is free and open to the public.

RSVP to Adrian Wallace at awallace@allianceswla.org

For more information on how to nominate a student, please contact Adrian L. Wallace at (337) 433-0977 or awallace@allianceswla.org. For interested students, download the the local YEA! application

It's coming! The movie release of "Gone Girl"

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 9:54am

It's coming soon to a theater near you! The new trailer for Gone Girl debuted during Monday night's Emmys broadcast and showed more footage of Amy (Rosamund Pike) and Nick (Ben Affleck) loving each other, hating each other and everything in between.

Introducing New Chelsea Cain Characters

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 8:06am

One Kick by Chelsea Cain

Library Copies

Suspense writer Chelsea Cain has set aside her stories about Gretchen Lowell and Archie Sheridan in order to create a new set of characters. In her latest novel she introduces her readers to Kick Lannigan and John Bishop, two characters who are guaranteed to hold your interest. They are both pursuers of justice, hunting for abducted children. They are not exactly partners in their actions but they have an alliance of sorts.

Kick Lannigan was herself abducted as a child and this traumatic occurrence has shaped the rest of her life. Now in her early twenties the person she has become is the result of her imprisonment and miraculous rescue. She keeps herself in top physical condition and has a running knowledge of "missing children" cases across the country. When John Bishop drops into her life she is cautious but willing to help him in his pursuit of information about a child abduction case.

Bishop is a man of mystery, possibly wealthy and possibly working with the government. He does not give answers freely and it is up to Kick and her innate perception to figure out who and what he is. Sometimes she figures right and sometimes she figures wrong.

Cain's previous novels all were part of the Lowell/Sheridan stories. They are required reading for anyone who loves a good, solid mystery. The new story about Lannigan/Bishop is not as comfortable reading as those stories were. With the Lowell/Sheridan series you just opened the pages and you were hooked. ONE KICK takes a little bit more of an effort.

Kick Lannigan isn't an easy character to get to know or to get to like. She is a mess psychologically and is all rough edges and sharp corners. And that is how I would describe the read. It isn't a smooth slide over the pages but rather is a read where you careen from one incident to the next, never feeling steady on your feet as you move. Along the way you pick up a detail here and a detail there, like building blocks offered in order to understand the completed project or in this case person.

Still, though it is a different kind of ride than those offered in the past, it is an interesting one and one that stands in testimony to the generous talents of Chelsea Cain. The lady can tell a story and do it differently than anyone else. She is a distinctive writer who never holds back on her inventiveness, brilliant character development, and ability to surprise.

As you can tell I am hooked on her talent. I miss Gretchen Lowell and Archie Sheridan and definitely want more stories about them in the future, but the same can be said of Kick Lannigan and John Bishop.

reviewed by Jackie K Cooper for the Huffington Post

How To Be Your Own Superhero

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 8:00am

The news is filled with inspiring stories of heroes and altruists among us, like truck driver David Frederickson, who helped save a woman and her baby from a flaming car in Mississippi. But can ordinary people follow in the footsteps of such moral giants? Yes -- and here are some practical ways to get started.

Question your automatic thoughts. When you think about helping someone in a risky situation, your brain's first reaction will often be, "Stop! Don't do it!" That's your automatic fear response kicking in, and while it might be smart to heed it some of the time (self-preservation is important, after all), take a moment to think about your decision logically. Is intervening really as dangerous as you think -- and even if you do run some risk, are you willing to accept it in order to do what's right?

Draw on past pain to serve others. It might seem hard to fathom when you're in the midst of a rough patch, but your struggles can motivate you to help people going through something similar. Psychologist Ervin Staub calls this "altruism born of suffering": People who have endured tragedy, such as a natural disaster, more often express desire to help those in trouble. If you survived an abusive relationship, for instance, you know how devastating it can be -- and that knowledge might inspire you to start a support group for battered women escaping their exes.

Set aside self-focus. As kids, a lot of us want to be heroes because we imagine the admiration we'll get from people around us. But mature heroism isn't about putting yourself on a pedestal; it's about standing up for the greater good, often at personal cost. Take Georgia school clerk Antoinette Tuff, who put her life at risk to have a deep, personal chat with an intruder who wanted to shoot kids. She talked him into dropping his gun, and because of her courageous actions, every student left school that day alive.

Love others -- all of them. Political scientist Kristen Monroe wanted to find out what made the difference between those who sheltered Jewish people during the Holocaust and those who stood by or even participated in the Nazi crimes. She found that heroic rescuers tended to see themselves as connected to all human beings, regardless of their background. When we truly identify with someone, we often want to help them, even at personal cost.

Help a kid crossing the street. Psychologist Phil Zimbardo, founder of the Heroic Imagination Project, advises would-be "heroes in training" to do small-scale good deeds -- the kind they might not get recognition for, but that are worthwhile nonetheless. He believes that when you learn to look at what you can do for people around you, you'll be better primed for future capital-H heroism.

Be a deviant for a day. Heroes must be willing to go against the grain and do things not many others would. (Take advocate Erin Brockovich, who famously worked up the courage to call out Pacific Gas & Electric for putting toxins in the water supply.) So from time to time, Zimbardo has asked students to do something purposely wacky, like painting on a mustache or wearing pajamas in public. The takeaway lesson: The wisdom of the crowd isn't all that matters -- you can flout it and get through the day just fine.

Seek out like-minded people. Just as it's easier to convince yourself to go to yoga class when you know a buddy plans to join you, it's easier to concentrate on serving others when your friends are doing the same. Groups of "real-life super heroes" throughout the country show us all how good friends can support each other in helping those in need.

Sign up for a lifesaving class. You never know when you're going to be called on to perform CPR or the Heimlich maneuver, and you might be the only person in the room who knows how. Research shows that people who've had some kind of rescue training are more likely to intervene when others are in danger. If you have the basic knowledge to resolve a high-stakes situation, you'll be able to act much more effectively.

Get involved in the community. It's not every day you get the chance to save someone from a burning building. Sometimes low-key "everyday heroism" is the most practical path--volunteering for a mentoring program, for example, or a nonprofit that helps people prepare for job interviews. The upside is that helping others makes you feel better, too: Overall, devoted volunteers are healthier and more satisfied with life than non-helpers.

Learn about real-life heroes, and let their stories move you. According to University of Southern California brain-imaging research, hearing stories of people who do inspiring things activates brain areas that help us feel empathy. When such stories truly become a part of you, they can help motivate you on your own heroic journey.

written by Elizabeth Svoboda, author of What Makes a Hero?: The Surprising Science of Selflessness for the Huffington Post

Your Library's Digital Newstand just got better!

Mon, 08/25/2014 - 11:54am

 

Did you know that you can share articles via email with friends using the iPad Zinio app? Here’s how! 

Patrons can now link to their previously checked-out magazines without checking out an additional magazine by clicking the "start reading" link in the upper-right corner of the Library's eMagazine collection page.

Patrons may now "keep browsing" and check out multiple magazine issues before going to their personal Zinio.com account to read them. 

Start browsing today and enjoy the new features.

Are you new to the Library's eMagazine collection? Learn how to start enjoying this resource.

FUN at the Iowa Arts & Crafts Fest

Tue, 08/19/2014 - 6:36pm

Join us on August 23rd from 9a to 2p for a day of FUN! 
 
It's the Iowa Arts & Crafts Fest! We're celebrating various artisans around our communities.
 
This marks the 6th incarnation of an annual festival that has always been completely free and open to the public thanks in part to CPPL, the Town of Iowa, Capital One Bank and Coca Cola Bottling.
 
Join us at the Iowa Multi-purpose Center (207 Hwy 90 E.) 
 
Oh yeah, while there, why not make a colorful marble vase. Please register!
 
 

It is the truth or just a way of forcing someone to play “the game”?

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 1:42pm

Doll Bones by Holly Black (2013)

Available in standard print children’s book.

Zach and his friends, Poppy and Alice have been inseparable companions their whole lives.  Alice is an orphan, who lives with a controlling Grandmother; Poppy lives with a family that ignores her completely; and Zach is dealing with an estranged father, who has just moved back into his home. To escape the stresses of their daily lives, the trio had invented a make believe world of pirates and thieves, ruled by a ruthlessly powerful Queen, who must be obeyed, despite the fact she is imprisoned in a distant tower. This ever changing adventure had been going on for years, with Poppy coming up with new story lines, and the children acting out the adventures, using dolls and action figures as props. Even “the Queen” is played by a bone-china doll that is shut up in a glass cabinet at Poppy’s house. For each of these children, playing “the game” was almost as important as eating, but everything changes when Zach’s father does the unthinkable. In an effort to force Zach to grow up, Zach’s father throws out all of Zach’s action figures. Angry and heartbroken, Zach cannot bring himself to tell his friends that, for all intense and purposes, his beloved characters are all dead, so he lies to them and tells them that he doesn’t want to play anymore. The girls are crushed, especially Poppy, but Zach’s little white lie sets in motion a whole new adventure, when Poppy insists that the doll they call “the Queen” is haunted by the ghost of a girl named Eleanor, whom they must lay to rest… or else! Despite his misgivings, Zach agrees to join the girls on a very real “quest” to help Eleanor, but is Poppy telling the truth, or is this just her way of forcing him to play “the game”? Read Doll Bones and find out. Here are other titles by Holly Black.

Praise for Holly Black and Doll Bones:

  • "Nobody does spooky like Holly Black. Doll Bones is a book that will make you sleep with the lights on." (Jeff Kinney, author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series)
  • "Every encounter redraws the blurry lines between childishness and maturity, truth and lies, secrecy and honesty, magic and madness. Spooky, melancholy, elegiac and ultimately hopeful; a small gem." (Kirkus Reviews, starred review)

Post written by C. Ford, staff member in the Collection Services Division of the CPPL System.

 

A 19th Century Arctic Shipwreck and the 21st Century's Most Wicked Problem

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 1:34pm

Hampton Sides has written one hell of an Arctic adventure story. In the Kingdom of Ice is the tale of Lieutenant George Washington De Long and his crew aboard the USS Jeannette who, in 1879, attempted to find the Northwest Passage through the Arctic. Their ship left from San Francisco, backed by a notorious New York playboy and staked to the idea that a warm northern current would take them through the Bering Strait. They hoped to reach what was then thought of as the"Open Polar Sea," warm waters made for easy sailing to Asia.

Things didn't go according to plan.

De Long and his crew spent two years locked in a churning mass of sea ice that pushed their increasingly crumbling vessel further into frozen ocean. It was a disaster that killed any hope for an expedient current, the Open Polar Sea, and (SPOILER ALERT) a prolonged future for most of the crew and its sled dogs. Sides tells the story through first person accounts from De Long, ship engineer George Melville (distant relation of Herman), and De Long's wife Emma, who wrote the lieutenant heartbreaking letters throughout the Jeannette's journey.

The story is riveting, a non-fiction page-turner on the level of Devil in the White City and Lost City of Z, and when I read it ravenously on a red eye flight from Anchorage to Atlanta I couldn't help but wonder what it had to teach us about the current Arctic crisis. When I talked with Sides after I returned, and he told me the story didn't end in the 19th century, I was thrilled.

Sides told me that the meticulous records De Long and his crew took throughout their time in the Arctic are now being used by Old Weather, a group of citizen scientists who are working the with National Archives to digitize and analyze the Jeannette's log books.

The story of how the log books survived is nearly as compelling as the story of the Jeannette itself. The massive volumes had to be hauled with Herculean effort through the ice and tundra by the starving crew, then carried through Siberia to St. Petersburg and finally by ship to Washington D.C., where they gathered dust for a century.

Sides was astonished when he picked them up.

"I found about these log books by virtue, really, of sitting down at the National Archives and requesting everything they had on the Jeanette," Sides said. "They wheeled these massive books out on a cart and I didn't really know what they were at first, just that they were really heavy, some of them folio-sized, just massive volumes, you know, and I started thinking, 'How did these get here?' And then I thought, 'Why did these get here?'

"Most of these volumes are truly just log books, just measurements of things in ledgers--specific gravity, salinity, water temperature, Barometric pressure readings taken hourly, a lot of stuff I don't really understand or care about as a writer. I looked at all of them and I thought, 'Wow. That was a lot of work that was probably useless.'

"So it was with great surprise and a sense of satisfaction to learn that NOAA and Kevin Wood and his group at Old Weather are using them on their research."

Wood and Old Weather are digitizing log books and journals from the Age of Exploration to find out what they can tell us about how the world -- in this case, the Arctic -- has changed in the past 150 years. And they want to see what these changes can tell us about what's happening to our climate.

What they've been able to see through De Long and his crew's data is scientific proof of just how massive the sea ice loss has been over the past century and a half, something environmentalists have known in theory for years. Now they have primary documentation.

"The value of a single ship's observations is limited," Wood wrote in an email. "Though it does give us a good sense of what the state of the was like at a particular time and place in the past. If it's very different from today, that is a clue to what the scale of change and variability could reasonably be like."

On September 9, 1879 the Jeannette became trapped in sea ice 7-15 feet thick near Herald Island in the Chukchi Sea.

"This area is often ice-free now," Wood said.

He sent a satellite view of the area from a recent day in July, and you can see that it looks chilly, but not deathly.

"This is a month before the date of ice minimum nowadays" Wood wrote,"so I expect there will be far less ice to see on Sept 9, 2014."

Being a scientist, Wood takes a cautious approach to his description of what's happening in the Arctic, careful not to put a dramatic spin on it. Sides takes a more narrative approach.

"The crazy irony is that the Jeannette was designed to test the theory of the Open Polar Sea," he said, "They set out North to find it and didn't, but now, the climate folks are telling us that there will be an open polar sea in some summer soon. There's a deep irony that this mythic thing that's been talked for centuries and centuries might actually happen now."

The irony will be a killer, not only for the indigenous communities who live in the Arctic, the polar bears, walruses, narwhals, and snowy owls who call it home, but the rest of us around the world too. Less sea ice means more climate disruption globally -- more super storms, more droughts, more resource-based conflict. The ice also reflects the suns rays, as opposed to an open sea which absorbs it. Less ice means a warmer Arctic and a warmer climate, which of course means even less sea ice at a faster rate.

"The Arctic explorers, especially the ones who kept going back, were entranced by it, and what they wrote about the ice in particular was poetically and beautifully," Sides said. "Before I wrote this book, I had this idea of the ice as one thing, but it's alive. It's constantly moving and changing, there's pressure ridges, old ice, new ice, fresh water, salt water, all constantly in flux and flow, subject to weather and wind and current. You start to realize it's this living breathing force, not just this slab of stuff that's just sitting there."

It's a living, breathing force that is rapidly dying. De Long and his crew would hardly recognize the Arctic ocean as it exists now. They were a few of the first, and a few of the last, to see the ancient Arctic as it was before fossil fuels. The overwhelming scientific consensus says that the sea ice's disappearance since the Industrial Revolution is due to anthropogenic global warming. The more fossil fuels we burn, the less sea ice we'll have. The late summer sea ice is nearly gone in the Chukchi, and global oil giants like Shell and Gazprom are hoping to exploit its demise. They plan to drill for more of the oil that's causing the sea ice to disappear in the first place. It's enough to make a person renounce the Jeannette's motto: nil desperandum, "never despair.

But there is hope, it will just take some of that 19th century courage to put it in motion.

"De Long took applications from across the country, hundreds if not thousands of people wanted to do go to the Arctic, to see it," Sides said. "There was patriotism, valor, and personal pride in that journey. It seemed like a glorious adventure to huge numbers of people."

The Arctic adventure is different today. We no longer need De Long's 19th century courage of exploration -- we need a 21st century courage of salvation. It's a kind of courage millions of people around the world have already shown by signing up to Save the Arctic. You can join them easily today, and you can also join the Old Weather team as they transcribe data and document events of all sorts found in the logbooks.

"When De Long was making his retreat across the ice and the tundra," Sides said, "he was constantly asking himself, 'Should I be lugging these volumes?' and a lot of his crew were asking that same question. They felt they weren't necessary. But the narrative you hold in your hands with this book was made possible by that decision to keep the books. Who knows what else we can learn from them." 

article from Huffington Post; written by Travis Nichols

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