March Madness has descended upon us. For those of you not familiar with this, March Madness refers to the NCAA college men’s basketball tournament or the NCAA college women’s basketball tournament that both happen every spring. If your house is anything like mine, basketball has now taken over every television and computer screen. Videogame basketball is even happening!
One of the favorites to be played in my house is NBA 2K12. The NBA 2K series lets you utilize real player rankings and press conferences to talk up the rankings of your player(ie. get more endorsements, money, and a better draft spot), learn who the famous players were that year and in previous years, and even learn more about how basketball statistics work. The 2K12 version of this game allows you to pick from the greatest NBA teams of all time and even lets you see the rosters, which show the players who were actually playing during that time. If you’re more interested in the current players, the previous years’ rosters have all been included as well.
Don’t have a Wii and are looking for this game in a different platform? Or maybe you’re looking for a more up-to-date version of this game with more current players? If yes, then head to the library catalog and search “nba 2k*” and that will pull up results for the other versions of this game, (for example: NBA 2K13, NBA 2K14, and NBA 2K15), as well as different platforms: Wii, Playstation 3, Xbox 360, and Playstation 4. Any questions? Visit or call the library and our reference librarians call help you.
Did you know that March 20th is National Proposal Day? The date, March 20th, was chosen as it was said to signify the beginning of spring(it is the first day of spring!) and is also the vernal/spring equinox. If you missed the March 20th proposal day, don’t worry! There is another “National Proposal Day” on September 23rd, the autumnal equinox or the first day of fall. Both the vernal equinox and the autumnal equinox were chosen as National Proposal Days as the length of both night and day are equal, so proposing on this day is seen to put both people on a balanced scale and to symbolize their equality as they enter into marriage (I personally love the idea of linking it to the first day of a season!).
Once the proposal is over though, the fun part begins. The couple chooses venues, finds dresses and tuxes, picks flowers, and decides just who is going to be in their wedding party. If you’re lucky enough to be closely related to the engaged couple or even in the wedding party, you may find yourself on the receiving end of having to give a speech at the reception. I don’t know about you, but I simultaneously DREAD and LOVE the speech portion of wedding receptions! I can usually tell within the first couple of sentences whether that speech is going to make me laugh or cringe.
In order to help prepare said speech-giving people, I have found some toast-giving books to make designing your speech a little easier. First up let’s try something humorous like the book Irish Toasts, illustrated by Karen Bailey. *DISCLAIMER – Please make sure you know the couple REALLY WELL before decided to go a little crazy in your toast. If they’re okay with it, YOU. ARE. GOLDEN!* While some of these may be uniquely set to Ireland, note that they can also be changed to fit your specific circumstances. These are meant to give you ideas. Read these classic and witty Irish toasts and find the one that will fit your toast.
Perhaps the couple is more along the traditional sense and you are as well. Maybe you’re looking for the right quotes and toasts about love to add to your speech or need some inspiration. If so, check out Wedding Toasts & Speeches: Finding the Perfect Words by Jo Packham. In this book, Packham has compiled a wide variety of quotes that can easily be slipped into any wedding toast. Whether you’re looking for something long/short, funny/romantic, or well-known/by a nobody, this book has gathered something for you. It even offers you advice on how to be a good speaker in front of a crowd. Extra Bonus.
If you’re still looking for inspiration to create that perfect wedding toast, head to the library and we can help you find something that will help you wish that lucky couple the very best in their new life!
Love, of a Kind is the seventh book of poetry put together by Felix Dennis. Dennis was diagnosed with throat cancer in January 2012. As a result of that diagnosis, he began bringing together and revising poems for what he believed to be his last book. The poems here run along the themes of pain, life, death, and love.
The author lived a fairly loud and extravagant life after a humble beginning. Dennis was born and lived a life of poverty in a south London suburb where he dealt with his father moving to Australia, his mother choosing not to follow, and their subsequent divorce in a time where divorces just did not happen. As a consequence of their divorce, Dennis’ mother chose to not let her previous failed marriage be a reason for her or her children to not succeed in life. Dennis’ career spanned from publisher to poet to spoken word performer to philanthropist. Never one to stray from the limelight, various interviews with Dennis can be found online.
After his diagnosis in 2012, Dennis created Love, of a Kind as a way to cope. Dennis pairs his poems with woodcut engravings that help pull readers more completely into his world. Read along and feel Dennis as he pours his feelings about love into the words that he chose to be his memory after his death in 2014.
I must admit that I love any kind of adaptations of books and movies. Find me a funny book about one random character in a famous movie or even a graphic novel about a classic book that I could never make it through in school and I will be a happy camper. Imagine my happiness when I discovered movies that had been made into videogames! SCORE!
Having just been to see the new Hobbit movie (and succumbing to my deep love of anything Lego-related,) I decided to check out Lego: The Hobbit on Xbox 360. (Want to check out this game, but don’t have an Xbox 360? No problem! The library also has it in Wii U, Playstation 3, and Nintendo 3DS.) From the creators of Lego: The Lord of the Rings (also available in different platforms – just search the catalog by the videogame name), came Lego: The Hobbit, a game inspired by the first two films in the Hobbit trilogy, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug. This game allows players to follow and play along with Bilbo Baggins as he leaves the Shire and rambles through Middle Earth in order to help the dwarves in Lonely Mountain. Traipse around with Thorin Oakenshield, Gandalf, Bilbo, trolls, orcs, and dwarves as you encounter different quests set up to challenge your abilities to conquer the dwarves’ powers.
You Don’t Sweat Much for a Fat Girl: Observations on Life from the Shallow End of the Pool is a collection of essays by author Celia Rivenbark in which she talks about everyday situations that she either finds charming or have succeeded in getting her all riled up.
Rivenbark has written books previous to this one, all applying her signature Southern style and wit. Read along as she writes witty, humorous, and sometimes sarcastic essays talking about how she read a study that people with twiggy legs are at twice the risk for heart disease compared to *normal* women(she swears it’s true, people!), how yoga is supposedly good for you(beware the farting..), and that she never really understands why and how people get so excited for elementary school science fairs(it shouldn’t be called a FAIR since there aren’t any RIDES). Heavily employing satire, Rivenbark discusses Snuggies, how she’s not opposed to TSA profiling at airports, the explosion of social media, her dreaded friend: Menopause, and many other relatable topics.
Enjoyed this book? The library owns other titles by Rivenbark: We’re Just Like You, Only Prettier, Stop Dressing Your Six-Year Old Like a Skank, Rude Bitches Make Me Tired, Belle Weather, Bless Your Heart, Tramp, and You Can’t Drink All Day if You Don’t Start in the Morning (which is only available in an audiobook).
Season 5 of Downton Abbey is over. Season 6 is in production, but doesn’t have a release date. What are we supposed to dooo?? If you’re wondering just what you should read next or watch next so you keep the Downton spirit, never fear! One of our librarians has created a guide to help you find something similar called “If You Like Downton Abbey…”. Click through to explore.
If you’re new to Downton Abbey, this guide lists all the seasons available within the library, as well as books about the show and music from the different seasons. Downton Abbey on TV lists the seasons and other related materials the library owns.
Maybe you’re interested in finding out more about the history of Downton Abbey and other English homes in general. Did you know that the Downton Abbey estate is an actual place called Highclere Castle? Lady Cora is also based upon the Lady Almina, the Countess of Carnarvon, who lived at Highclere Castle. Check out the Downton History and Castles portion of the guide to learn more!
This guide also features a nonfiction section about downstairs and upstairs lives, another section with novels similar to Downton Abbey(this page also lists parodies and a graphic novel version!), as well as other related television shows and movies. Stroll through this guide and find something to tide you over until Downton Abbey season 6 comes back on the air.
Are you looking for a break from a traditional fiction book? Are you looking for a shorter read or something that you won’t feel guilty for only reading a section of and then skipping the rest? If yes, take a look at True Stories, Well Told: From the First 20 Years of Creative Nonfiction Magazine.
This is an anthology of essays taken from Creative Nonfiction. I enjoy reading collections of essays as they allow me to just read short snippets of a book without having to commit to the whole book. Lee Gutkind and Hattie Fletcher edited this collection and brought together twenty essays from the first twenty years of this magazine. Creative Nonfiction is a magazine that was founded in 1993 with Lee Gutkind as the founding editor.
Confused about what creative nonfiction is? In the introduction, Susan Orlean talks about how people know what creative nonfiction is, but they just don’t realize it. Let Gutkind describe the history of creative nonfiction, as well as his founding of the magazine, in his closing essay. Creative Nonfiction was formed as a way for the contributors to alert readers about the wide variety of topics and writing styles that could be included under the genre of creative nonfiction. All the essays selected for this anthology cover relatable topics that readers themselves may have come into contact with during their lives.
Ranging from humorous to inspiring, follow along as these select twenty essays delve into topics like butterflies, being a mother, dealing with death, abuse, history, healthcare, and discovering who you really are.
Are you getting a little tired of the cold weather and looking for some new entertainment? Sometimes bundling up to go outside when it’s cold is just too much. I’d much rather stay home where it’s warm and have fun. Video games are my boredom/winter weather answer!
One of my new favorites is Game Party. Game Party is a collection of classic skill games ranging from trivia, shuffle board, table hockey, and darts to skii ball, ping cup, and hoop shoot. Because Game Party was released through the Wii platform, the Wii’s unique controls allow you to play those seven games just like you would in real life: flick your wrists to shoot a dart, extend your arms to shot a basketball, and practice your bowling motion to play skii ball. If competition is what you enjoy, never fear! Game Party allows you to participate in multi-player games, either by yourself or on a team, and even keep track of your progress on the leaderboard. Design your own player or pick from the ones Game Party offers.
Break out Game Party and enjoy playing these seven classic games in their own natural settings from arcades, gymnasiums, traditional English pubs, and more. Game Party will allow you, your family, and friends the ability to compete and play without having to leave your house!
Happy National Read Across America Day! Read Across America is a program put together by the National Education Association that encourages children and teens to read by partnering with various community organizations, doing events across the country, and by providing reading resources. One of their more publicized events throughout the year is National Read Across America Day, which is March 2nd AND is also Dr. Seuss’ birthday. As a tribute to Dr. Seuss this year, the National Education Association has chosen Oh, The Places You’ll Go as the book to be read across the country.
If you’re looking for ways to set up your own Read Across America event, the NEA has you covered! Check out their Plan a Reading Event page to find materials, certificates, banners, and more! Still need more event ideas or are you curious if there are already any Read Across America Day events planned in your local community? Visit their events page to check out the events happening across the country(and the world!) and also take the Read Across America pledge.
Come to the library and check out what other wonderful Dr. Seuss materials are available! If Dr. Seuss isn’t your cup of tea, don’t worry! Our librarians can help you find other materials to help you enjoy Read Across America Day!
Have you ever watched a television show and wished you could be on it? I have many times! Whether it’s a game show or talent competition or agility race, I have always wanted to at least try. But alas, I know I’m not coordinated enough and that I do not have a dancing bone anywhere in my body. Lucky for me, videogames let me try my hand at reality television without the possibility of failure on a national public level. It’s a win!
Wipeout: The Game is one such game that I recently discovered. Wipeout is a game show on ABC that features contestants competing against each other in what the show calls “the world’s biggest obstacle course”. I believe it. Contestants flip through the air, flop into puddles of mud and water, and generally get beat-up as they compete to win the game. Wipeout: The Game lets you experience all the elements of the television show with no danger of injuring yourself. Don’t worry, the competition is still there as you try to hit the button at the end of the course as quick as you can. Play with up to four of your friends as you battle over 50 crazy obstacles, including the most famous and recognizable ones from the television show: The Sweeper, Sucker Punch, Big Balls, and even more. As you’re racing, listen to the commentators give you advice and generally cringe for your well-being as you bounce from obstacle to obstacle. This game has slow motion replays just like the television show that highlight all the bone-jarring wipeouts that happen. If you still manage to be losing to your friends, don’t worry! You can throw objects at the other competitors when it’s not your turn.
Pick up this game and live out your dream to compete in a game show with no worries of actually injuring yourself!