Saturday, August 31, 2013

Library Closed Monday

Though we understand libraries should never take a holiday, (and if you think about our online resource availability we really don't), the physical building is closed Monday, September 2. We re-open on Tuesday, September 3 at 10:00 a.m. as usual. Have a safe and happy Labor Day.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Settle In With A Good Book This Fall and Join the Novel T's

The Novel T’s Book Club meets at the Monrovia Public Library every 4th Tuesday at 6:45 p.m. to discuss literary works selected by the members, with a representation of both fiction and non-fiction.  “And the Mountains Echoed” by Khaled Hosseini was our August selection. While there were many plot threads to follow, all of us felt that this book was a literary gem. For students of literature, there are numerous topics of discussion and analysis. This title was one of great depth and as a group, we were barely able to touch the surface in 1 hour of discussion.

“Little Big Man” by Thomas Berger is our September 24th selection. Written in the 1960s, this masterpiece of historical fiction is told through the eyes of Jack Crabb, a white man brought up by Cheyenne Indians. As a Cheyenne, Jack dressed in skins, feasted on dog, loved four wives and saw his people butchered by the horse soldiers of General Custer, the man he had sworn to kill. As a white man, he hunted buffalo, tangled with Wyatt Earp, cheated Wild Bill Hickok and survived the Battle of Little Bighorn. Some have called “Little Big Man” one of the best books about the American West.

In October we will discuss “Flight Behavior” by Barbara Kingsolver. For selections for upcoming months, please visit the Adult Reference desk. All are welcome to join the Novel T’s in the Library Community Room. The book talk begins at 6:45 p.m. Light refreshments are served, based on the theme of book we are discussing.

Friday, August 23, 2013

More Beach Reads from Library Staff - This Time for Teens and Kids

May B. by Caroline Starr Rose can be found in the Juvenile Fiction section. Living in the 1870’s on the Kansas prairie, twelve year old May is asked by her parents to help out on a neighboring homestead. When the neighbors leave May is abandoned and by herself in an isolated sod house in winter. But, May has the will to survive and the determination to find her way home.  Staff critique:  So far I love this story because it is entirely written in verse. Something different but easy for kids to read. May is a character who is honorable, strong and easy to love.


 Teen readers often are attracted to the unusual.  Rotters by Daniel Kraus is about Joey, a middle school student, whose mother dies and he is sent to live with the father he doesn't know in rural Iowa. There's no Internet, no TV and no telephone. Joey can’t figure out what his father does for a living or where he goes when he leaves for days at a time, but soon discovers the truth about his father’s macabre profession. Look in the Young Adult section for this title.

Many books by author Jacqueline Woodson can be found in the Children’s collection.  Locomotion is about Lonnie, whose life changed forever when he was seven. Now he is eleven and has discovered that through poetry he can express the thoughts and emotions that have been bottled up inside him these past four years. Through free verse he reveals his inner journey from sorrow and pain to healing and love. Staff critique: This is worthy of both the read and the listen.

Chrissie Wellington’s A Life Without Limits: A World Champion’s Journey can be found on Monrovia’s New Book shelves.  It is by and about the four-time World Ironman Champion. Staff critique: This is a great book from page one! I couldn’t put it down!  Her story will inspire and empower you from the beginning. It will teach you to believe that everything is possible and you are able to accomplish any goal as long as you believe in yourself.


While library patrons have been enjoying the delights of summer reading, the staff members have been enjoying books—on their own time and in their own tastes. The themes vary, there is fiction and non-fiction and we hope the staff critiques will catch your eyes for these recommended books.

Cutting for Stone, is a book about an Indian nurse and an American doctor practicing medicine in Ethiopia. Their love results in twins who grow up in unusual circumstances. It is a sweeping saga and a very personal novel that has found a huge audience of readers.  Staff critique: I enjoyed this book. It was moving, elegantly told, very gripping, had multi-layered characters and was very insightful.  The story shows different perspectives of cultural diversity and moves from India to Ethiopia to New York City. I found it compelling how the love of these doctors helped find treatments and cures for poverty-stricken patients.
Sophie Kinsella is the author of the well-liked Shopaholic series.  Her newest humorous title is Wedding Night, about a young woman who is disappointed by her boyfriend’s proposal to go on a trip, rather than to get married.  She impulsively decides instead to wed an old friend. Staff critique: ...loved this amusing romantic comedy because it is light, cute and the perfect beach companion.

A Torrance resident and war hero who endured great deprivation gained greater admiration after the publication of Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand. Staff critique: It is an interesting read and very inspirational story of how Louis Zamperini stayed unbroken despite the unbelievable hardships, suffering and challenges he faced. He is a perfect example of perseverance, courage and optimism.
Erik Larson is the author of the very popular Devil in the White City.  He returns with In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin which is about the college professor who surprisingly becomes the American ambassador to Germany when Nazism is rising. The story is about how the ambassador and his family react to living in such a moral and political whirlpool. Staff critique: I had never heard of Ambassador Dodd so reading about him was like learning a bit of forgotten history.  Larson is a very powerful and dramatic writer.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Introduction to Professional Networking to Land Jobs - LinkedIn Basics

First of two workshops in the Brown Bag Series on LinkedIn.  
Click HERE on Library Calendar and sign up to reserve your seat.  
Join us!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


Born in Queensland, Australia and a current resident of Brisbane, author Kate Morton has taken the literary world by storm. Her novels have been translated into 26 languages and have sold almost 8 million copies.  

Morton’s fans particularly love her imaginative and suspenseful plots and the way she paces her stories. Three books by Kate Morton can be found on the shelves at the Monrovia Public Library.

In Forgotten Garden a four-year-old child is abandoned on board a ship on its way to Australia and the only clues to her identity are the clothes and fairy tale book packed in a small suitcase. Years later her search for a past leads to England where generations of family secrets act like a jigsaw puzzle that needs to be assembled. Readers have compared this story to Frances Hodgson Burnett’s much-loved classic The Secret Garden. 

Hidden secrets again are an element in The Distant Hours. London publisher Edie loses her way to a meeting and accidentally finds the aging Milderhurst Castle where her mother stayed during World War II. Edie meets the three sisters who live there and tries to find answers to the mysteries that surround her mother.

The prologue of The Secret Keeper will hook readers immediately. It is the 1960s and sixteen-year-old Laurel secretly witnesses a confrontation between her mother and a stranger.
 Flash forward to 2011 and Laurel is a well-known actress who cannot forget that summer day fifty years ago and is determined to find out what happened and why.

Monday, August 19, 2013

August 21 -- City Career Fair At Sheraton Gateway L.A. Hotel

Interested in a job fair with emphasis in those with a diverse background?

According to City Career Fair

The primary focus of the DED Career Fair is to provide an opportunity for nationally recognized and Top Local employers to meet and interview qualified candidates from the multicultural and diverse communities of their city.


While the cost of admission is FREE, the drive, to park, or using public transit to get there are not. But, you get access to networking, informational interviewing and social media for your career search.  

For more information and to view the list of employers, click here.

 Monrovia Public Library continues to provide job and career related information and resources!

What Do Astronauts' Wives and Comedians Have in Common? Biographies of Course.

What new biographies and autobiographies are on the New Book Shelves at the Monrovia Public Library this summer?  One of the great joys for biography readers is browsing these shelves and finding terrific and unusual stories of peoples’ lives. 
Here are two new biographies sure to please.

When the Mercury 7 astronauts were chosen in 1959 to be launched into space they were on the cover of every magazine and on the lips of everyone at the water cooler.  But what about their wives, the women they left on earth and the women the world soon forgot?  The Astronaut Wives Club: A True Story is a wonderful cultural behind-the-scenes history, telling how the wives were perceived, how they dressed and what they cooked.  It is also a touching book of home lives and personal issues in an age when women did not have the power or presence they do today.

Much loved comedian Carol Burnett tells the tragic, but triumphant story of her daughter in Carrie and Me: A Mother Daughter Love Story.  Although Carrie Hamilton lived the charmed life as the child of a television star, she becomes immersed in drug addiction, which she beats only to soon die of cancer.  Burnett, who has written other memoirs, writes a book that avoids many clich├ęs and touches the reader with heartfelt moments.