Thursday, January 31, 2013

Science Corner: Staff Picks

Here are some of the favorite science reads of library staff.  Feel free to let us know your recommendations in the comments!

The Eerie Silence: Renewing Our Search for Alien Intelligence by Paul Davies               
The Goldilocks Enigma: Why is the Universe Just Right for Life? by Paul Davies        [eBook only in our catalog]
The Quantum Man: Richard Feynman's Life in Science by Lawrence Krauss          

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

A Love of Jewelry

I can't quite put into words why I love jewelry.  I love looking at the expensive pieces I could never afford.  I love shopping for the costume jewelry I can afford.  I even love the cheap plastic stuff for kids.  (Although it doesn't fit me, I still like to look at it.)  Much of the jewelry I own I don't see it as a status symbol, but as sentimental tokens, often given to me by close friends and family.  No matter what the cost, most of my pieces of jewelry mean a lot to me.

In many cultures, jewelry is a symbol of independence, history, and status.  In Egypt and China royal families were buried with their jewelry.  In ancient India a woman was allowed to own nothing except her jewelry, which was hers to keep.  The crown jewels have been passed down the royal family in England for hundreds of years as a way for them to trace their history.  During the French revolution the monarchy's jewels were taken, and several pieces were lost forever.   

Today revolutionaries don't run off with priceless jewels and women can own a lot more than jewelry, yet the importance of it has not faded.  It counts as many people's most treasured possesions.  It has become a way to pass on family history, to ensure that your ancestors will be remembered through their pieces of jewelry.  Jewelry is an heirloom that many people have a hard time parting with.  The loss of it is devastating, because with it goes the story behind it and the tangible memory of the people and events you associate with that piece. 

Hopefully, someone in your life will help give you happy memories with new jewelry this year.  If not, at least the library has plenty of beautiful books about jewelry, including ones with gorgeous pictures of jewels to lust over.

Books with beautiful pictures of jewelry:

Jewelry in America, 1600 - 1900 by Martha Gandy Fales
The Necklace: From Antiquity to the Present by Daniela Mascetti and Amanda Triossi
Jewels and Jewelry by Clare Phillips
Bejeweled: Great Designers, Celebrity Style by Penny Proddow and Marion Fasel
Louis Comfort Tiffany at Tiffany & Co. by John Loring
Traditional Jewelry of India by Oppi Untract
The Nature of Diamonds edited by George E. Harlow

Here in New Mexico we are very lucky to be surrounded by beautiful and unique Indian jewelry.  Walking through Old Town in Albuquerque, the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, the Palace of the Governers in Santa Fe, or any Indian pueblo during their feast days lets you gawk at more beautiful jewelry than you can imagine.  Here is a short list of books about southwestern jewelry:

Fine Indian Jewelry of the Southwest: The Millicent Rogers Museum Collection by Shelby J. Tisdale
Navajo Jewelry: A Legacy of Silver and Stone by Lois Essary Jacka
The Beauty of Hopi Jewelry by Theda Bassman
Indian Jewelry of the American Southwest by William A. Turnbaugh and Sarah Peabody Turnbaugh
Silver and Stone: Profiles of American Indian Jewelers by Mark Bahti

There are lots of interesting books about jewelry and gemstones.  Here is a list of some that are carried here at the library:

Jewels: A Secret History by Victoria Finlay
Gems: The World's Greatest Treasures and Their Stories by Bernhard Graf
Collecting Gems and Minerals: Hold the Treasures of the Earth in the Palm of Your Hand by Chris Pellant
Gemstones of the World by Walter Schumann
Rock and Gem by Ronald Louis Bonewitz
The Jeweler's Directory of Gemstones: A Complete Guide to Appraising and Using Precious Stones From Cut and Color to Shape and Settings by Judith Crowe
New Mexico Rocks and Minerals: The Collecting Guide (Including Maps) by Frank S. Kimbler and Robert J. Narsavage, Jr.

Books about the secrets of gems, and the lengths people will go obtain them:

The Great Pearl Heist: London't Greatest Thief and Scotland Yard's Hunt for the World's Most Valuble Necklace by Molly Caldwell Crosby
The Heartless Stone: A Journey Through the World of Diamonds, Deceit, and Desire by Tom Zoellner
Blood Diamonds: Tracing the Deadly Path of the World's Most Precious Stones by Greg Campbell
Confessions of a Master Jewel Thief by Bill Mason with Lee Gruenfeld

If that isn't enough to whet your appetite for jewels of all kinds, here are a few jewelry websites, recommended to me by a good friend who loves beautiful jewelry.
A beautiful website, featuring Santa Fe jewelers and their work.  You may be inspired to visit the store on West San Francisco Street, in downtown Santa Fe.
This site shows some of the most beautiful vintage and antique jewelry on the market today.  There are pages and pages of jewelry from all styles of art.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

2013 Speakers Program @ Special Collections

To follow up on our 2012 Centennial Speakers Program, the Special Collections Library has assembled a new series of presentations on historic Spanish neighborhoods for 2013. Presentations are scheduled on the second Saturday of the month in Botts Hall, 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

We are pleased to partner with Oasis-Albuquerque to bring these events to a wider audience.  We are also indebted to the Bureau of Reclamation, Upper Colorado Region, Albuquerque Area Office, for the tremendous maps and graphics. 

 The year-long series describes the settlers, history, culture, and identity of the original Spanish settlements from North to South along the Rio Grande and how those local identities differ from and complement our contemporary notion of “Albuquerque”. Each speaker will offer a brief history of the neighborhood, its geography, genealogy,land grants, and culture. Presenters are familiar with their specific neighborhoods, and some are descendants of Alburquerque founders.

Brian Luna Lucero, the Digital Repository Assistant at the Center for Digital Research and Scholarship at Columbia University, gave the first presentation on January 12th. While he was compiling oral histories, Luna Lucero noticed different ways people from the area now thought of as Albuquerque identified their hometown. His interested culminated in an article, "Old Towns Challenged by the Boom Town: The Villages of the Middle Rio Grande Valley and the Albuquerque Tricentennial,"[ New Mexico Historical Review 82, no.1 (Winter 2007): 37-69].

Luna Lucero’s thesis is that the New Town of Albuquerque that developed as a result of the railroad’s arrival in 1880 is not identical to the Villa de Alburquerque that was founded in 1706. The evidence he finds in baptismal records, census records, post office records, histories, and interviews makes a compelling argument that Albuquerque’s New Town boom initially had little impact on Alburquerque’s Old Town tradition, population, and economy or its linguistic and cultural identity. “Old Town” wasn’t annexed to “New Town” until 1949, arguably the birth of the political and geographic entity celebrated in the 2006 Tricentennial. 

Mary Davis continues the series at Special Collections on February 9th with her presentation on Corrales. Future topics include: Ranchos de Alburquerque; Alburquerque 1540-1846; Barelas; and Los Padillas y Pajarito.  For a complete program listing, visit the schedule guide. A printable version of the schedule is included, as well as some fascinating maps.

You can find more items about Alburquerque in the library catalog. Special Collections also has vertical files about many Albuquerque neighborhoods, such as South Valley, Los Griegos, Martineztown, and Huning Highlands, for use within the library. Vertical files include miscellaneous clippings, photos, and brochures.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Friends for the Public Library

Who are the Friends for the Public Library and what is their mission?  From their website:

"Established in 1969, the Friends for the Public Library is a nonprofit, 501(c)3 organization supporting the Albuquerque/Bernalillo County Library System.Our mission is to maintain a charitable and educational organization to support the library, to increase the library's resources, to advocate for the public library, to recycle donated materials, to stimulate use of the library's resources, and to encourage and support educational and literacy programs through the library."

You could become a Friend!  The Friends are always looking for volunteers - they need the help of hundreds of volunteers each year for advocacy, outreach, to staff the monthly used book sales, and more! Pick up a volunteer application at your local branch library, or call Melissa Carlisle, Administrative Coordinator, at 505-768-5167 (TTY users call 800-659-8331).

The Friends primary fund-raising activity is  book sales, which raise approximately $150,000 annually. Your donations to the library of gently used books and more make up most of what is for sale by the Friends. The Friends maintain the Main Library Bookshop and run the monthly used book sales at Main Library - the 2013 schedule is featured below!  In addition, ten branches have a Fiction to Go display - check out your branch's website to see if they are one of the ten! 

Book Sales

January 12
February 9
March 9
April 13
May 11
June 8
July 13
August 10
September 14
October 12
November 9
December 14


May 12
November 10

If you wish to donate items to the library, please view the Friends' Donation Guidelines. Small donations (a couple bags or less) can be dropped off during regular hours at any branch library except Ernie Pyle, Special Collections, or Westgate. The Friends recommend that larger donations be delivered to Main Library, and suggest calling (505)768-5167 to make an appointment for donations of 10 or more boxes.  Don't forget to get an Acknowledgement of Donation at the time of drop-off - your donation is  tax-deductible, though library staff are are unable to assign a dollar value to your donation.  We thank you for donating!

For more information about the Friends, try:

Friends for the Public Library website 

About the Friends


Book Sales info

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Passion for Words

"Use your words!" If you're a parent, you've probably said that to your kids, or maybe your parents said it to you. We all use words every day to communicate without a thought as to the origins of language. Many famous folks have shared their thoughts about word usage, such as:

"Action speaks louder than words but not nearly as often."
~Mark Twain

"We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out."
~Winston Churchill

Shakespeare said "What's in a name? that which we call a rose/By any other name would smell as sweet" but the names we call things, the words we use to express ourselves, do have meanings and history that may have been forgotten.  Etymology is the study of the history of words, their origins, and their development over time. Do you have a passion for words?  Do you enjoy reading about the history of everyday things?  If you would like to say what you mean and mean what you say, it might behoove you to check out some of the library catalog's offerings on etymology, which include:

Dying Words: Endangered Languages and What They Have to Tell Us by Nicholas Evans

What Language Is: And What It Isn't and What It Could Be by John McWhorter

The Story of English in 100 Hundred Words by David Crystal

Txtng: The Gr8 Db8 by David Crystal

OK: The Improbable Story of America's Greatest Word by Allan Metcalf

Words to Eat By: Five Foods and the Culinary History of the English Language by Ina Lipkowitz

The History of the English Language [3 part audiobook]

Reading the OED: One Man, One Year, 21,730 Pages by Ammon Shea

Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold History of English by John McWhorter

The Dord, the Diglot, and an Avocado or Two: The Hidden Lives and Strange Origins of Words by Anu Garg

Inventing English: A Portable History of the Language by Seth Lerer

Casual Lex: An Informal Assemblage of Why We Say What We Say by Webb Garrison

The Real McCoy: The True Stories Behind Our Everyday Phrases by Georgia Hole

Chinese Calligraphy: From Pictograph to Ideogram - The History of 214 Essential Chinese/Japanese Characters by Edoardo Fazzioli

A Dictionary of New Mexico and Southern Colorado Spanish by Rubén Cobos

The Word Detective by Evan Morris

The Secret Lives of Words by Paul West

The World in So Many Words: A Country-by-Country Tour of Words that Have Shaped Our Language by Allan Metcalf

Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths of Language Usage [DVD]

The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester

You can find more items on this topic in the catalog with a subject search using the word "Etymology". Some of these titles may be available in eBook format - simply use the drop-down menu at the top of the library catalog to change "View Entire Collection" to "eBooks", click on search, and you can easily find which ones!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Public Transport: Your Ticket to Adventure

Consider, if you will, travel by public transport - buses, trains, subway. There used to be a kind of romance attached even to these most prosaic, everyday types of travel - think of Claudette Colbert and Clark Gable in It Happened One Night or Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint in North by Northwest, or Duke Ellington's signature tune "Take the 'A' Train".  Let's take a trip through the library catalog and attempt to rediscover some of the glamour of public transit, or at least find some interesting transport-related titles.


The Subway Chronicles: Scenes from Life in New York edited by Jacquelin Cangro

The Subway Pictures by Peter Peter

Subway Style: 100 Years of Architecture & Design in the New York City Subway by New York Transit Museum

Underground, Overground: A Passenger's History of the Tube by Andrew Martin [eBook only in our catalog]

Straphanger: Saving Our Cities and Ourselves from the Automobile by Taras Grescoe

Paris by Metro: An Underground History by Arnold Delaney

Métro Stop Paris: An Underground History of the City of Light by Gregor Dallas

London Under: The Secret History Beneath the Streets by Peter Ackroyd

Also consider the movie Kontroll: "The Budapest subway system, the world's second oldest, is a dark, labyrinthine netherworld as vast and various as the city above it. The beleaguered ticket inspectors or 'controllers', assigned in teams to various sections of the system, have the thankless job to ensure that no passengers ride without paying. This is their story."


Riding the Bus With My Sister: A True Life Journey by Rachel Simon

The Wayward Bus by John Steinbeck

A Bus of My Own by Jim Lehrer

The Lilac Bus by Maeve Binchy

Angry Wind: Through Muslim Black Africa by Truck, Bus, Boat, and Camel by Jeffrey Tayler

Lox, Stocks, and Backstage Broadway: Iconic Trades of New York City by Nancy Groce

Fiveways by Ian Commins [eBook only in our catalog]

Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice by Raymond Arsenault

Also consider the movies Bus Stop with Marilyn Monroe and Exils: "A young couple, both of Arabic descent, leave Paris with no money, jobs, or connections, and travel to their ancestral home of Algeria. In search of re-connecting to their roots, they cross three countries by foot, bus, train, and hitched rides."


A Memory of Trains: The Boll Weevil and Others text and photographs by Louis D. Rubin, Jr.

Blood, Iron, & Gold: How the Railroads Transformed the World by Christian Wolmar

Trains of the Old West by Brian Solomon

A Field Guide to Trains of North America by Gerald L. Foster

Luxury Trains: From the Orient Express to the TGV by George Behrend

The Lunatic Express by Carl Hoffman

Ghost Train to the Eastern Star: On the Tracks of the Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux

Mr. Pullman's Elegant Palace Car: The Railway Carriage that Established a New Dimension of Luxury and Entered the National Lexicon as a Symbol of Splendor by Lucius Beebe

Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of the Railroad that Crossed the Ocean by Les Standiford

Train Time: Railroads and the Imminent Reshaping of the United States Landscape by John R. Stilgoe

The Blackpool Highflyer by Andrew Martin

Don't miss the DVD Great Trains of America:  Eastern Railroading & Western Railroading  and the Great American Scenic Railroads and Colorado Steam DVD sets.  Also consider Tickets - "An elderly businessman finds solace and a new insight into life when he meets a younger woman, who then arranges his train ticket after his flight is canceled. A young man is torn between an older woman who controls him and a younger one that attracts him. And three Scottish youths on their way to the football match of their dreams are forced to open their eyes and see the bigger picture. In each case, the train journey changes the course of the all their lives" - and I Wish: "Twelve-year-old Koichi, separated from his brother Ryunosuke due to his parents' divorce, begins to believe that Japan's new bullet train service will create a miracle when the first trains pass each other at top speed, and enlists a group of friends on an improbable mission."

Links of Interest

Criterion Collection: Road Trip Movies

10 Things You May Not Know about London's Underground

Saturday, January 19, 2013

January's Featured eResource

If you have been on the library's homepage recently, you may know already that each month we highlight one of our most popular eResources.  If not, this post is for you!

eResources, in case you hadn't encountered the term before, are some handy research and learning features available to any customer with a valid library card and a computer. Whether you need help with auto repair or plumbing, are looking for a biography or journal article, have a legal question, want to look at a map, or are just looking for information about personal finance and investing, we have eResources for you. Very helpful since these are available 24/7 - if you put off that research paper until the last minute, this may help! You can find our full list of eResources here.

This month's featured eResource is the Gale Virtual Reference Library. The Virtual Reference Library is a collection of full-text encyclopedias, almanacs, and specialized reference sources for multidisciplinary research. It includes: Encyclopedia of Small Business, Beacham's Guide to the Endangered Species of North America, Gale Encyclopedia of U.S. Economic History, St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture, Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America, Biology, and World of Earth Science.

Check back to the library homepage each month for a new featured eResource!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Gizmo Garage

Did you get a new eReader as a gift?  Are you finding it tricky to use?  Would you like some help with downloading eBooks from our catalog?  Never fear, we are here to help.   Visit our Gizmo Garage for hands-on experience with the Kindle, Nook, Sony eReader, and iPod Touch.  If you didn't get a eReader but want one, our staff also has some eReaders you can take a look at - but make sure to call ahead to see if the Gizmo Garage will have the device you are interested in available for hands-on use.  There are still nine Gizmo Garage sessions being held before the end of January, at a various library branches, and more to come in February.  Find the class for you at the Gizmo Garage Guide!

For more assistance, you can also visit our Downloading Digital Media Guide.  It includes a section on where to find free eBooks to practice with and some quick tips from library staff!  If you have an eReader checked out from the library, also try our eReaders at the Library Guide.

Watch a short video about Gizmo Garage at New Mexico Style on!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Books for Writers

We all know a good story when we hear one.  If a story is amazing then we can't stop thinking about it, we stay up late reading it, we tell everyone we know that they have to read it too.  Many people who love to read good stories, or hear good stories also like to write them too.  However, the discipline of writing can be difficult.  To those who love books and stories, reading comes easy.  All you have to do is pick up the story and lose yourself in it, but getting started writing a story to lose yourself in can be tricky.  There are so many books to help you with writing that it can be hard to pick just one to focus on.  Here is a list of my favorite books on writing:

Wired for Story: The Writer's Guide to Using Brain Science to Hook Readers from the Very First Sentence by Lisa Cron
I happened to find myself leafing through this book, and when a fellow library worker saw me with it he praised it so much I knew I had to read it.  This book shows the neuroscience behind our reaction to storytelling to help you write the best story you can.  The science is fascinating, and the tips are helpful.

You Can't Make this Stuff Up: The Complete Guide to Writing Creative Nonfiction -- From Memoir to Literary Journalism and Everything in Between by Lee Gutkind
This book helped define "creative non-fiction" for me by showing me that non-fiction can be as exciting to read as fiction if you write it well.  This book also includes a list of great and not great creative non-fiction written over the past twenty years.

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
I was thrilled when someone recommended this book to me several years ago.  If there's any writer who should write a book on writing it's King, who has published novels, short stories, non-fiction, and screenplays over the past forty years.  This book is part memoir, part reminiscing about writing his books, and part giving advice to those who wish to write their own.  It's a great book no matter how you read it. 

Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within by Natalie Goldberg
This book was first published in 1986, and has become a favorite among writing workshops, with its combination of Zen wisdom and tips to get the creative juices flowing.  Goldberg (who lives in Northern New Mexico, where she often gives writing workshops) has published other books on writing, including one due to come out this spring, The True Secret of Writing: Connecting Life With Language. 

Only As Good As Your Word by Susan Shapiro
Shapiro tells the story about her formation and education as a writer with lessons from her writing mentors.  This is an interesting book because it is the memoir of a struggling writer, with advice from old writing professionals. 

The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White
You can't be a good writer without at least thinking of grammar and references.  This is classic book to answer the little questions about errors that plague you while writing.

There are many more books about writing, so many that I'm sure I haven't even heard of something that might be your favorite.  There are websites with prompts to get you started, there are writing groups to help you through the rough patches, but the best writing education is a love of reading and a passion for telling a good story.  Happy storytelling!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

New Year, New You: Learn Something New!

For last year's words belong to last year's language
And next year's words await another voice.
― T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

In the past couple of blog posts, we've tried to address some of the most common New Year's resolutions.  But we know that some of you may have very different goals and aspirations for 2013! Some of you might literally be learning a new language - in which case, please check out our Pimsleur language program or our Learning a Language LibGuide - or learning about your family's genealogy, or going back to school (we have a Test Prep LibGuide!) Whether you are an elementary school student or a lifelong learner, ABC Library has a plethora of eResources at your disposal, in addition to the items from our catalog!

What are some of your resolutions? If you'd like to share your New Year's resolutions with us, please leave us a comment!

And finally, just a couple more book suggestions for helping your stay on target for all of 2013:

52 Small Changes: One Year to a Happier, Healthier You by Brett Blumenthal

Changeology: 5 Steps to Realizing Your Goals and Resolutions by John C. Norcross, with Kristin Loberg and Jonathon Norcross


Huffington Post's "The New Year's Resolutions Everyone Should Make"

5 Apps for Keeping New Year's Resolutions [Mashable]

"Get Smarter About Your New Year's Resolutions" from Psychology Today

"How to Make Realistic New Year's Resolutions (And Keep Them)" from Beliefnet

Read popular New Year's resolutions at!

I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're Doing Something.

So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever. 
― Neil Gaiman

Friday, January 11, 2013

Upcoming Events at Special Collections

Special Collections opened again last year after its long closure for renovations, and this branch is ready to start the new year with a bang!

A Pueblo-style building at the northwest corner of Edith Boulevard and Central Avenue, the Special Collections branch is a research library.  Its holdings include books, maps, magazines, newspapers, reports, pamphlets, and archives that illuminate the history and culture of the city of Albuquerque and the state of New Mexico.  It is also home to the Center for the Book,  a hands-on learning center that presents programs on the history of books and printing to area school children and interested groups (pre-arranged tours are available - contact the library for more information).  Although the collections at Special Collections are for in-library use only, it is a holds pickup location, and there are 6 internet computers available for use by the public, with a valid library card.  There are even 3 meeting rooms available for public use, when not in use by the library system.

In addition to these regularly offered services, Special Collections features a number of events!  On January 12th, the monthly 2013 Speakers Program, sponsored by the Special Collections Library, kicks off with Brian Lucero's talk about "From Corrales to Pajarito: The Original Spanish Neighborhoods Along the Rio Grande". Special Collections also hosts our Gizmo Garage program on January 17th, for those needing help checking out, downloading, and transferring to devices eBooks and eAudiobooks from our digital library.

Additionally, Special Collections Library is hosting the last film in ABC Library's Books to the Big Screen filmfest, Vertigo, on January 26th, and on February 5th the library will feature the music of the Portland Cello Project, presented by AMP Concerts.

So why not make a stop at Special Collections soon?  The Genealogy Center has moved to the second floor of Main Library, but there is still plenty to see and do at Special Collections.  For information about collections (including books, archives, maps, and vertical files), Albuquerque Historical Postcards, hours, and much more, visit the branch website!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

New Year, New You: Clearing Up the Clutter

In the new year many of us like to think of getting rid of all the stuff that has accumulated in the house over the year.  Some people hate to see clutter in their house, some people don't mind it. Going through all the old stuff and clearing it out to create space comes easily to some.  Others however, have a much harder time letting go of old things and prefer to keep them around, even if they aren't sure if they have a use for them anymore.  A few of these people even have a compulsion to keep things the rest of us would easily throw away. 

In the last few years the term hoarding has been in the mainstream of our culture, thanks to reality shows and documentaries that feature people that hoard everything they come in contact with.  Hoarding is a major problem that makes the living situation of some individuals very difficult.

You may be interested in clearing out your house to prevent yourself from becoming a hoarder in the new year.  The library has many titles to give you a push in the right direction, as well as several titles on the condition of compulsive hoarding. 

Books on clearing up clutter in your life:
The Hoarder in You: How to Live a Happier, Healthier, Uncluttered Life by Robin Zasio
Clutter Busting Your Life: Clearing Physical and Emotional Clutter to Reconnect With Yourself and Others by Brooks Palmer
Kick the Clutter: Clear Out Excess Stuff Without Losing What You Love by Ellen Phillips
Cleaning Up the Clutter by Emilie Barnes
10 Minute Clutter Control: Easy Feng Shui Tips for Getting Organized by Skye Alexander
Soulspace: Creating a Home that is Free of Clutter, Full of Beauty, and Inspired by You by Xoren Balbes
Organized Simplicity: The Clutter Free Approach to Intentional Living by Tsh Oxenreider

For futher reading about compulsive hoarding:
Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things by Randy O. Frost and Gail Steketee
Dirty Secret: A Daughter Comes Clean About Her Mother's Compulsive Hoarding by Jessie Sholl
Ghosty Men: The Strange but True Story of the Collyer Brothers, New York's Greatest Hoarders by Franz Lidz

Fiction about hoarding:
The Objects of My Affection by Jill Smolinski
Dirty Little Secrets by C.J. Omololu
Homer and Langley: A Novel by E.L. Doctorow

Monday, January 7, 2013

New Year, New You: Books to Inspire You

Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

It's all very well for Emerson to make the suggestion, but sometimes we mere mortals need a little reminder, a little coaching, a little inspiration to get (or keep) our little light shining!  Here are some books that could make the difference for you during the new year.

Wishes Fulfilled: Mastering the Art of Manifesting by Wayne W. Dyer

Make Miracles in Forty Days: Turning What You Have into What You Want by Melody Beattie

Finding Your Way in a Wild New World: Reclaim Your True Nature to Create the Life You Want by Martha Beck

Oneness with All Life: Inspirational Selections from A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

Women, Food and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything by Geneen Roth

The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It For Life - A Practical Guide by Twyla Tharp

Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon

The Paper Garden: An Artist {Begins Her Life's Work} at 72 by Molly Peacock

Following the Path: The Search for a Life of Passion, Purpose, and Joy by Joan Chittister

Flying Lessons: How to be the Pilot of Your Own Life by Pamela Hale

The Dance of Fear: Rising Above Anxiety, Fear and Shame to Be Your Best and Bravest Self by Harriet Lerner

I Got This: How I Changed My Ways and Lost What Weighed Me Down by Jennifer Hudson

QuickieChick's Cheat Sheet to Life, Love, Food, Fitness, Fashion, and Finance on a Less-Than-Fabulous Budget by Laurel House

Snap: Seizing Your Aha! Moments by Katherine Ramsland

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott

A Jane Austen Education: How Six Novels Taught Me About Love, Friendship, and the Things That Really Matter by William Deresiewicz

My Year With Eleanor: A Memoir by Noelle Hancock

For more inspirational titles, try a subject search using "Self-actualization" or "Inspiration".

Saturday, January 5, 2013

New Year, New You: Diet & Fitness

My New Year's Resolution List usually starts with the desire to lose between ten and three thousand pounds.
~Nia Vardalos

The New Year rings in, and the average person's resolutions tend to include getting in better shape, whether that means losing weight or working out or some combination of the two.. Well, there are a lot of diet and fitness books out there, and here at abcreads we can't claim any grand nutritional or exercise knowledge apart from "eat right and exercise" and "don't start a new exercise program without checking with your doctor" as recommendations.  However, here are some of the newest items from the library catalog for your perusal!


Shred: The Revolutionary Diet - 6 Weeks, 4 Inches, 2 Sizes by Ian K. Smith

Fabulous Raw Food: Detox, Lose Weight, and Feel Great in Just Three Weeks by Erica Palmcrantz Aziz

The Belly Melt Diet: The 6-Week Plan to Harness Your Body's Natural Rhythms to Lose Weight for Good! by Bridget Doherty

Six Weeks to Skinny Jeans: Blast Fat, Firm Your Butt, and Lose Two Jean Sizes by Amy Cotta

Chubster: A Hipster's Guide to Losing Weight While Staying Cool by Martin Cizmar

Life is Your Best Medicine: A Woman's Guide to Health, Healing, and Wholeness at Every Age by Tieraona Low Dog

Paleoista: Gain Energy, Get Lean and Feel Fabulous with the Diet You Were Born to Eat by Nell Stephenson

The Diet Detective's All American Diet: Lose Weight with the Foods You Already Love to Eat from Your Favorite Supermarket and Restaurant Choices by Charles Platkin

Hungry for Change: Ditch the Diets, Conquer the Cravings, and Eat Your Way to Lifelong Health  by James Colquhoun

Try also a subject search under "Weight Loss" or "Nutrition" for more titles.


The Physique 57 Solution: The Groundbreaking 2-Week Plan for a Lean, Beautiful Body by Tanya Becker and Jennifer Maanavi

The First 20 minutes: Surprising Science Reveals How We Can Exercise Better, Train Smarter, Live Longer by Gretchen Reynolds

Get a Bangin' Body: The City Gym Boys' Ultimate Body Weight Workout for Men & Women by Charles LaSalle and Peter Richmond

Tone Every Inch: The Fastest Way to Sculpt Your Belly, Butt & Thighs by Natalie Gingerich Mackenzie with the editors of Prevention magazine

Witness to Fitness: Pumped Up, Powered Up, All Things Are Possible by Donna Richardson Joyner

You Are Your Own Gym: The Bible of Bodyweight Exercises by Mark Lauren with Joshua Clark

Tracy Anderson's 30 Day Method: The Weight-Loss Kick-Start tTat Makes Perfection Possible by Tracy Anderson

For more items, try a subject search under "Physical fitness" or "Exercise".  Looking for workout videos?  Try the same searches, but instead of viewing the entire collection, use the drop-down menu to limit to DVDs!  Or try a keyword search by exercise type, such as "yoga" or "marathon" for a variety of items related to those topics.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Books to the Big Screen

Fan of film adaptations of novels?  Just want to see Vertigo on the big screen again? Join ABC Library every weekend in January for a celebration of book to film adaptations, Books to the Big Screen! This series is presented in partnership with the Guild Cinema, KiMo Theatre, and South Broadway Cultural Center.  You can find a list of films and showtimes (and a plot summary for each film) in our Books to the Big Screen LibGuide.  Most movies will be shown free of charge.

On Saturday January 19 @ 4pm, join us for a fundraiser for the Friends for the Public Library! The film Doctor Zhivago will be shown at the KiMo Theatre. Tickets are $7 and available at

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year, New You: Personal Finance

I work all night, I work all day, to pay the bills I have to pay
Ain't it sad

And still there never seems to be a single penny left for me
That's too bad

All the things I could do
If I had a little money

~Abba, "Money Money"

In this current credit crunch, many of us are bemoaning the parlous state of our personal finances. The New Year is always a good time to revisit the state of one's pocketbook, and ABC Library has some resources available for just that purpose!

Of course, you can always check out books by financial gurus such as Suze Orman, Jean Chatzsky, and Robert Kiyosaki (Rich Dad, Poor Dad), but here are some of the library system's latest acquisitions.

The Debt-Free Spending Plan: An Amazingly Simple Way to Take Control of Your Finances Once and For All by JoAnneh Nagler

The Secret Life of Money: A Kid's Guide to Cash by Kira Vermond

The Heart of Money: A Couple's Guide to Creating True Financial Intimacy by Deborah L. Price

Conscious Money: Living, Creating, and Investing with Your Values for a Sustainable New Prosperity by Patricia Aburdene

The Seven Pearls of Financial Wisdom: A Woman's Guide to Enjoying Wealth and Power by Carol Pepper and Camilla Webster

The Retirement Savings Time Bomb--And How to Defuse It: A Five-Step Action Plan for Protecting Your IRAs, 401(k)s, and Other Retirement Plans from Near Annihilation by the Taxman by Ed Slott

Protecting Your Parents' Money: The Essential Guide to Helping Mom and Dad Navigate the Finances of Retirement by Jeff D. Opdyke

The Budget Kit: The Common Cents Money Management Workbook by Judy Lawrence

Credit Repair by Robin Leonard and attorney Margaret Reiter

Buy High, Sell Higher: Why Buy-and-Hold Is Dead and Other Investing Lessons from CNBC's "The Liquidator" by Joe Terranova

Nolo's Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home by Ilona Bray, Alayna Schroeder & Marcia Stewart

Girl, Get Your Credit Straight!: A Sister's Guide to Ditching Your Debt, Mending Your Credit, and Building a Strong Financial Future by Glinda Bridgforth

If reading about personal finance sounds boring, why not try a DVD?

Suze Orman's Money Class

Money Mammals: Saving Money is Fun

You can also find eBooks and audiobooks about personal finance in our catalog.

Still looking for financial advice? Try also a subject search of "Finance, Personal" or "Budgets, Personal".  And don't forget to take a look at our Business and Financial Resources LibGuide!