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Library Blog

Information on events, library related happenings, and other deep thoughts from our library staff.

Coretta Scott King Awards: 50 Years Strong

2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Coretta Scott King Book Awards.  The awards commemorate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and honor his wife, Mrs. Coretta Scott King, for her courage and determination to continue the work for peace and world brotherhood.  The awards serve as a guide for parents, librarians and caregivers for the most outstanding books for youth by African American authors and illustrators that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and affirm universal human values.

The Hoover Public Library has compiled a list of all winning titles that are available on our shelves.  The list includes call numbers to make it easy to find the book you want to read.  You can pick up a physical copy on the octagonal display cart in the Kid Zone, or you can access the printable online copy by clicking here.

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Jory John Is a Good Egg

From the bestselling creators of The Bad Seed, a timely story about not having to be Grade A perfect!

The Good Egg by Jory John, illustrated by Pete Oswald (February 12, 2019)
Meet the good egg. He’s a verrrrrry good egg indeed.  But trying to be so good is hard when everyone else is plain ol’ rotten.  As the other eggs in the dozen behave badly, the good egg starts to crack from all the pressure of feeling like he has to be perfect.  So, he decides enough is enough! It’s time for him to make a change.

Watch the book trailer!

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Books for Young Inventors

This was another blog derailed by the flu.  It may no longer be National Inventors Day (February 10, 2019), but I bet there are still curious, hands-on kids in need of inspiration.

The Boo-Boos That Changed the World : A True Story About an Accidental Invention (Really!) by Barry Wittenstein
E  617.13  WIT
1920s cotton buyer Earle Dickson worked for Johnson & Johnson and had a klutzy wife who often cut herself. The son of a doctor, Earle set out to create an easier way for her to bandage her injuries. Band-Aids were born, but Earle's bosses at the pharmaceutical giant weren't convinced, and it wasn't until the Boy Scouts of America tested Earle's prototype that this ubiquitous household staple was made available to the public. Soon Band-Aids were selling like hotcakes, and the rest is boo-boo history.

Chilly da Vinci by J. Rutland (This author/illustrator used to work right here at Hoover Public Library!)
E  RUT  NEW BOOK
While others do “penguin” things, Chilly da Vinci—self-declared inventor penguin, builds machines that don’t work…yet!  When Chilly's latest invention, the Good Bird crashes into the penguins' home iceberg, it separates a chunk of ice and sends the penguins drifting out to sea. Can Chilly invent a machine to get them home before a hungry orca nibbles the ice away?

Ellie, Engineer by Jackson Pearce
J  PEA
Ellie is an engineer. With a tool belt strapped over her favorite skirt (who says you can't wear a dress and have two kinds of screwdrivers handy, just in case?), she invents and builds amazing creations in her backyard workshop. Together with her best friend Kit, Ellie can make anything. As Kit's birthday nears, Ellie doesn't know what gift to make until the girls overhear Kit's mom talking about her present--the dog Kit always wanted! Ellie plans to make an amazing doghouse, but her plans grow so elaborate that she has to enlist help from the neighbor boys and crafty girls, even though the two groups don't get along. Will Ellie be able to pull off her biggest project yet, all while keeping a secret from Kit?

Epic Fails: The Wright Brothers: Nose-diving Into History by Erik Slader & Ben Thompson
JB  WRI
Although Orville and Wilbur Wright are celebrated today as heroes for their revolutionary contributions to science and engineering—they are acknowledged as the first men to successfully achieve powered, piloted flight—their success was hard-earned. (Spoiler alert: there were a lot of nosedives involved.) In fact, it took the self-taught engineers years of work and dozens of crashes before they managed a single twelve-second flight!

Ethan Marcus Makes His Mark by Michele Weber Hurwitz
J  HUR  NEW BOOK
Ethan and Erin Marcus may only be eleven months apart age-wise, but they are a million miles apart in every other respect. Ethan’s laid back and takes things in stride. Erin’s a little more…intense and doesn’t really like to go with the flow. So when these two polar opposites are both invited to attend a prestigious invention/maker camp during winter break it seems almost impossible.

How to Build a Hug: Temple Gradin and Her Amazing Squeeze Machine by Amy Guglielmo & Jacqueline Tourville
JB  GRA
As a young girl, Temple Grandin loved folding paper kites, making obstacle courses, and building lean-tos. But she really didn’t like hugs. Temple wanted to be held—but to her, hugs felt like being stuffed inside the scratchiest sock in the world; like a tidal wave of dentist drills, sandpaper, and awful cologne, coming at her all at once. Would she ever get to enjoy the comfort of a hug?  Then one day, Temple had an idea. If she couldn’t receive a hug, she would make one…she would build a hug machine.

Inventions: A Visual Encyclopedia by John Farndon
J  609  FAR
From the humble wheel to electricity, computers to robots, Inventions: A Visual Encyclopedia covers a range of areas organized by theme: transportation (including cars and bicycles), communication (such as pens, TVs, phones, and cameras); home (from toilet paper to microwave ovens); work (the lathe and the microscope), health (including vaccinations and prosthetic limbs); and space (inventions that were made for astronauts and that are now used on Earth, such as smoke alarms and memory foam). 

Rosie Revere and the Raucous Riveters by Andrea Beaty
J  BEA  FIRST CHAPTER BOOK
You loved the bestselling picture books starring Rosie Revere, Ada Twist, and Iggy Peck. Now you can follow The Questioneers' further adventures in brand-new chapter books! The first installment, Rosie Revere and the Raucous Riveters, is a spirited story about the power of teamwork and the true meaning of home.

Up and Away!: How Two Brothers Invented the Hot Air Balloon by Jason Henry
JB  MON
Back in 1782, in Ardèche, France, lived Joseph Montgolfier, a dreamer and an inventor who liked to learn about how everything worked. When one day a gust of wind blew his papers into the fireplace, he noticed that something lifted the pieces into the air—and he realized that heat could make things rise.  With the help of his brother, Étienne, he began to experiment . . . and created a new kind of flying machine: a hot-air balloon! This beautifully illustrated picture book tells the story of how the balloon came to be, King Louis XVI’s visit to see it fly, and the three animals—a rooster, a duck, and a sheep—who became its very first passengers

 

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How to Eat Pizza

This blog was supposed to debut on February 9, 2019 -- National Pizza Day!  But today is my first day back from the flu, so it missed the mark.  The good news is that pizza cannot be contained to a single day!

Do you know what I think of when I think of pizza?  Is it the cheese?  Nope.  I don't like the stuff.  Is it the crust?  The sauce?  The endless choices of toppings?  No, no, and no.  I think of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, especially Michaelangelo.   And that lean mean green pizza-eating machine is no doubt celebrating today because it's National Pizza Day!  Whip up your own creation or pick up a pie from your favorite pizza place.  Then sit down and read this book.

How to Eat Pizza by Jon Burgerman (November 6, 2018)
E  BUR  NEW BOOK (also available as ebook)
How do you eat pizza? Do you pick the biggest slice? Add hot pepper flakes? Use your hands? Do you know how your pizza slice feels about that? He thinks it's disgusting. There are so many other things you could eat -- that aren't him. Listen up. He's got ideas.  Bright, bold artwork and real-kid humor create a recipe for laugh-out-loud, finger-licking fun.

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Black History Bios

February is Black History Month.  It's an opportunity to explore the trials and achievments of our African-American brothers and sisters.  Unfortunately, it falls in the shortest month of the year.  There may not be enough days to read all the books you want.  But -- good news! -- there is no need to limit your reading to February.  After all, Black history is American history and should be part of our entire year . . . every year.  There are so many books available here at Hoover Public Library, but here are some of the newest biographies.  I suggest starting with one of these.

Black Women Who Dared by Naomi M. Moyer (2018)
Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13 by Helaine Becker (2018)
Game Changers: The Story of Venus and Serena Williams by Lesa Cline-Ransome (2018)
George Washington Carver for Kids: His Life and Discoveries, with 21 Activities by Peggy Thomas (2019)
Harriet Tubman: Freedom Fighter by Nadia L. Hohn (2019)
Little People, Big Dreams: Josephine Baker by Isabel Sánchez Vegara (2018) [in a series]
Never Caught, the Story of Ona Judge: George and Martha Washington's Courageous Slave Who Dared to Run Away by Erica Armstrong Dunbar (2019)
No Small Potatoes: Junius G. Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas by Tonya Bolden (2018)
Pies from Nowhere: How Georgia Gilmore Sustained the Montgomery Bus Boycott by Dee Romito (2018)
Starstruck: The Cosmic Journey of Neil Tyson DeGrasse by Kathleen Krull (2018)
The Vast Wonder of the World: Biologist Ernest Everett Just by Mélina Mangal (2018)
What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?: The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan by Chris Barton (2018)
Who Were the Tuskegee Airmen? by Sherri L. Smith (2018)

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If You Love The Hate U Give

Angie Thomas, the award-winning author of The Hate U Give, has a new novel.  On the Come Up is an ode to hip hop from one of the most influential literary voices of a generation. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; and about how, especially for young black people, freedom of speech isn’t always free.

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least win her first battle. As the daughter of an underground hip hop legend who died right before he hit big, Bri’s got massive shoes to fill.  But it’s hard to get your come up when you’re labeled a hoodlum at school, and your fridge at home is empty after your mom loses her job. So Bri pours her anger and frustration into her first song, which goes viral…for all the wrong reasons.  Bri soon finds herself at the center of a controversy, portrayed by the media as more menace than MC. But with an eviction notice staring her family down, Bri doesn’t just want to make it—she has to. Even if it means becoming the very thing the public has made her out to be.  

Read Time Magazine's interview with the author.  The New York Times also has an interview.  Watch a CBS interview with her, too.  Man, everybody wants a chance to catch up with Angie!
 

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The Giver Gets Graphic

Lois Lowry's Newbery Medal-winning classic, The Giver, is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a graphic novel adaptation by Eisner and Harve Award winner P. Craig Russell.  This adaptation also features a series of questions posed to Lowry and Russell both.  The author and illustrator have interesting things to say about art and the necessity of the story, even though it is likely to face challenges again.  Kirkus Reviews praises the adaptation as "a first-rate visual reframing: sensitive, artistically brilliant, and as charged as its enigmatic predecessor with profound challenges to mind and heart."  And School Library Journal claims "this stunning work will introduce The Giver to a brand-new audience and will also delight longtime fans."  I know I'll be reading it.  How about you?

The Giver: The Graphic Novel (02/05/19)
Jonas lives in a colorless world where everyone is content and conformity is the key to serenity. At the age of 12, in a ceremony that determines Life Assignments for each citizen, he's chosen to be the community's "Receiver of Memories." He begins training with the Giver, an old man who is the sole guardian of the community's dark and concealed history. Jonas learns not only of sunshine, color, and love but also of pain, war, and death. Confronted with this reality, he faces difficult choices and discovers that the wisdom he now holds could determine the fate of his entire civilization. This striking retelling of the modern classic blends words and images to create a brilliant new representation of Lowry's dystopian conflict between the ideals of free will and security. The artwork, rendered in blue pencil and grayscale, perfectly depicts Jonas's stark, dysfunctional society, and the measured introduction and brief glimpses of color keep readers hopeful for a brighter future. The characters are distinct, and the action flows well, evoking the feeling of the original work. Dialogue is pulled directly from the source material and heightens the story line and Jonas's emotions.

 

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Valentine's Day Is On the Way!

Don't miss these opportunities to celebrate with the library you love most -- Hoover Public Library!

February 6-13, 2019
Drop by the Kid Zone anytime to make a Valentine heart wreath.  We are partnering with Hoover Senior Center to distribute the wreaths to local seniors.

Saturday, February 9, 2019 at 10:30 a.m.
Join us for We Love LEGOs, a valentine-⁠infused Lego event for all ages.  Make a Lego friendship bracelet and a Lego Valentine card.  Meet Lego Batman and complete his Lego Gotham training course.  Release your inner villain at the Lego-⁠heart wrecking ball challenge.  And, of course, take some time to build something Awesome at our open Lego building tables.  Lego-⁠esque and Valentinese snacks will be also served.  No registration required.  Simply follow the stars.

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Black History + Sloss Furnace = Homeschool Hub

Sloss Furnaces operated from 1882 to 1971, serving as Birmingham's longest continuously running blast furnace.  Many people drive over the First Avenue Viaduct, see the old furnaces, and remember a time when Birmingham was the industrial center of the South.  While it is easy to remember the iron and steel production in our city's history, it is equally important to remember the men who worked the furnaces.  More than half of the workforce was African-American, and our February Homeschool Hub will tell the story of iron production in Birmingham as well as the story of that African-American workforce that helped build the city.  Ty Malugani, the Education Coordinator with Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark, will be at Hoover Library on Wednesday, February 13, 2019 at 2 p.m. with artifacts and tons of cool information about this local history.  Make it part of your Black History Month!  Register online or by phone (444-7830) today.

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Happy Galentine's Day!

No, today isn't Galentine's Day.  But it IS the day you can start signing up to be part of our Happy Galentine's Day event.  The official day is February 13th, but we're going to leave that day open for you to celebrate with your friends.  Instead, our party will be Tuesday, February 12, 2019 at 6:30 p.m.  Galentine's Day is all about celebrating your gal pals, the amazing ladies who stick by you through thick and thin.  So, naturally, we'll be working on a friendship craft together.  And there will definitely be a waffle bar.  That's right.  A.  Waffle.  Bar.  Bring on the syrup, and let the good times roll.  Sign up online or by phone (444-7826).

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