Welcome to this latest attempt to connect librarians from west-central Wisconsin with each other! Please send in content (booklists, ideas, photos, etc.), and comment on posts so we can help each other. If you were using feedmyinbox to get new posts sent to you before, you'll need to switch to another service (blogtrottr works like feedmyinbox, googlereader is a good blog-reader to try).

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Thursday, May 3, 2012

Hugs for Spot, High-Fives for Frog

Fans of Spot are ecstatic to greet him!

L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library in Eau Claire helped create a lot of joy at the 3rd annual Hugh’s Event in April.  The money for this event comes from donations that have been made to the Hugh Ernst Memorial Fund. Hugh was a 13-month old who loved reading and stories, and his family, in collaboration with the library,  created this wonderful event to celebrate his life.

Shelly, the Youth Services manager, says:  "The family takes care of getting all of the volunteer--and there are a lot of them!  We had 9 people dressed as book characters this year, so we someone for each of those, plus a reader for each of the 8 stories.  Craft helpers, refreshment, people movers, musicians and we even had yoga for kids this year.  I’m guessing there are about 40 volunteers all together... It is one of the most time-consuming yet worthwhile programs I plan each year.  It would not be possible without all the volunteers and they come every year with huge smiles on their faces and interact with the kids in such a positive way.  Despite how it all came to be, it is a joyful family event that, in the family’s words 'keeps the legacy of Hugh Kozbial Ernst alive and vibrant.'"  

Frog gets a high-five, while Toad thinks about his list

What has been your experience with book character costumes?  I'll never forget taking my 18-month old to an event and finding Clifford there, in all his big and red-ness.  She nearly climbed over the top of my husband, trying to get away, and for months afterwards we heard about Kiffug and his foppy ears.  Part of processing the experience meant checking out every single Clifford book from the library, so it definitely promoted reading.  It's really great to see the kids in these photos having a lot less angst and a terrific amount of enthusiasm!  How exciting to see your favorite book characters coming right off the page! Amazing to get to greet them, hug them, lend them your sunglasses... For more delightful photos, see the slideshow posted by the library.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Child Has Heart Again!

Many of you have fond memories of regular contact with Rob Reid, the smart, witty and talented person who used to wear some of the same hats I do at IFLS.  Rob is now a full time instructor at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, having regular contact with university students instead. You'll be glad to know there is now a way to keep track of what Rob is thinking about literature and music for young people.  He has started blogging!

For your regular dose of Rob Reid's insight, take a peek at his blog, named after his IFLS newsletter from days of yore:  The Heart of a Child.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Drink, Slay, Love review

Thanks to IFLS intern Raechel Schink for this review!

Durst, Sarah Beth.  Drink, Slay, Love.  Simon and Schuster, Margaret K. McElderry Books (978-144-242-3732).  Ages 14 and up.

If you have any young adult readers who enjoy books about vampires or unicorns--or better yet unicorns who hunt vampires, then Drink Slay Love is the perfect book for them to read! Other readers who will enjoy this book will most likely enjoy witty humor, feisty heroines, and a book that isn’t all that serious.

The main character of the book is a young vampire named Pearl. She is the only true born daughter of Mother and Daddy, the heads of their vampire Family, kind of like a clan or pack. The Family needs to beware of the common enemies of vampires in all the legends out there about them. They will fry to a crisp in the sunlight. They will burn horribly with even a single drop of holy water. Stakes through the heart or beheading will kill them. Garlic and other religious paraphernalia will slow them down quite a bit and annoy them. 

One night Pearl pushes her luck by being rebellious and cutting it close to a vampire’s curfew – just before dawn – for a before-bed snack from her favorite boy juice box. As she and the snack are out back of the Dairy Hut, she sees a unicorn, a real life unicorn! As she tries to confront the pretty sparkly horse, as Pearl names it, the unicorn stabs Pearl through the heart. Amazingly instead of ending up dead, she is still alive, even after being left by the front door of the Family’s house! Her family thinks that she has gone crazy as she rants about unicorns being real. 

Slowly over the next few days, Pearl changes – mainly, she can stand in the sunlight without being burned to a crisp! Daddy and Mother decide to use her as the Family hunter for a big event. The Family has been given the honor of hosting the Fealty Ceremony which the vampire King only throws once every century to welcome the younger vampires into the vampire court. With this ceremony comes the responsibility of the Family finding enough human snacks to feed the king and his entourage. Thus she is enrolled and attends the local high school to hopefully find entrance into the students’ homes to capture enough humans for the feast. Human experiences and difficulties ensue, all of which leads Pearl to realize that humans are not only meals, but they have the potential to be friends with vampires.

Follow Pearl on her journey through discovering what exactly it means to have a conscience, what it means to really have friends, and to care about the welfare of others. Durst includes a lot of twists, a bit of drama, and a whole lot of humor. There is a high possibility that some Twilight fans may be offended at some of the jokes that are cracked about Stephenie Meyer’s vampire series, yet the jokes are minimal and nonthreatening. Drink Slay Love is a must read for any who find themselves in need of a fast paced, humorous book about the hilarity of unicorns hunting vampires and vampires growing a conscience.