Meet Maria Nhambu

Last fall I wrote about Maria Nhambu’s memoir, Africa’s Child. You can read my blog about it here. It tells the story of how she grew up as an orphaned, mixed-race child in Tanzania. The first book in the Dancing Soul Trilogy, Africa’s Child is as heartbreaking as it is inspiring. It leaves you wondering where she went from there.

I am thrilled to share that the second book, called America’s Daughter, has been published. In it, Nhambu chronicles what it was like for her leaving Africa. She was eighteen years old with a newly-adoptive mother who was barely four years older than her. She found a vastly different culture in America and began building a new life in it.

Laugh and cry with her as she recalls the many differences between Tanzania and Minnesota. She reveres education as her key to escaping a life of poverty and oppression. It is no surprise that she chose a career as an educator (at one point, she taught a soon-to-be famous musician named Prince Rogers Nelson.) Nhambu has a love for music, especially African music. She went on to create a program called Aerobics With Soul. It incorporates African dance into a fitness workout.

Nhambu still spends summers in Minnesota, but lives in Delray Beach, Florida during the winter. Thanks to family ties she has to the Quad Cities, she will be visiting us at Eastern on Saturday, Sept 9 at 10:30am to share her story with us in person. Joining her will be her adoptive mother and sister. Refreshments and copies of her books will be available. If we are lucky, there will be dancing. 😉

Nhambu is a gifted storyteller whose candor has made me cry, then cheer for her. Come meet a fascinating woman whose indomitable spirit has proven that love truly does conquer all.

Happy Trails

We’re going to interrupt our regular blogging for a moment and wish our good friend Lynn a fond farewell.

After 33 years with the Davenport Public Library, Lynn is retiring and moving on to new adventures. Lynn has filled many different roles here at the library. She started as the “Sunday Librarian” (a position that no longer exists), worked with the Southeast Regional Library system, at various times in Customer Service, Special Collections, Technical Services and lastly, as a Reference Librarian after earning her Master’s Degree in Library Science from the University of Iowa. These past few years she’s worked in Reference selecting fiction and magazines and newspapers for the library as well as working on many other projects including writing for the Info Cafe blog since its beginning.

Many of you may remember Lynn from the old Annie Wittenmyer branch library (which predates Fairmount) That’s where I started and where I first met Lynn. We were jacks-of-all trades there, doing check-in and check-out, emptying the bookdrop, coaxing bats and birds out of the ancient building, providing reader’s advisory and reference, calling reserves and helping out on the bookmobile. Lynn also did story times for preschoolers. We went from hand stamping the due date in each book to computer checkout and watched the children of our patrons grow up to adults. It was the kind of neighborhood library that doesn’t really exist anymore and, while the current branches offer so much more (and with a happy lack of bats!), those were good times too. You forge a bond with someone working in a small setting like that and you really get to know the other person, good and bad.

I’m happy to report that Lynn is good through and through, not just as a reference librarian (at which she is excellent) but as a friend. She doesn’t flinch when things go bad and will laugh with you through thick and thin. It is bittersweet to say good-bye – sad to see her go, but so happy for her well-earned retirement! Here’s to getting lots more sleep, lots more time to read and lots of traveling!

Happy Trails.

Stay With Us!

The staff here at the Davenport Public Library have been working incredibly hard behind the scenes lately, frantically getting ready for some super exciting news! It’s coming together beautifully – better than we imagined! We are so excited and just can’t wait any longer for the big announcement, so today is the day:

The Davenport Library at Main is now a registered Airbnb host!

We will be welcoming guests from all over the world, helping them enjoy a unique and unforgettable experience in beautiful downtown Davenport! And you don’t have to be a traveler to book with us – locals can enjoy a staycation right here with us as well! As you might imagine, the Main library can accommodate quite a few people – think of the family reunions and wedding receptions you can host here!

Of course, it’s not a free-for-all – while we want you to enjoy your visit, there are some rules that need to followed, rules such as – no food in the library – only covered drinks – no alcohol – no sleeping – two hour limit on the computers – and, of course – please keep your voices down.

This gem is sure to book up fast – call the library today to reserve your stay with us!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy April Fool’s Day!

Library Closed for In-Service

The Davenport Public Library will be closed on Thursday, March 16th for In-Service. The library does this once a year in order to train staff on new technology and policies, all with the purpose of providing the best possible service for the community.

Remember, our website is open 24 hours a day with access to the library catalog, your account information and a wealth of online databases to help meet your immediate information questions.

All three of our locations will reopen on Friday March 17th with their regular business hours of 9:00am to 5:30pm.

 

Library Closed for President’s Day

The Davenport Library will be closed on Monday February 20th in observance of President’s Day. All three buildings will reopen on Tuesday with their regular hours – 9am to 5:30pm at Main and Eastern, noon to 8pm at Fairmount.

Be sure to enjoy some cherry pie (for George Washington who could not lie about chopping down the cherry tree) or Lincoln Log Cake (for Abraham Lincoln, who grew up in a log cabin) and have a fun, safe holiday!

Don’t know what a Lincoln Log Cake is? Check out this recipe from Taste of Home. They’re delicious!