Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Teens' Top Ten: Vote Now!

Want to vote for the best books you read last year? Just like there are Teen Choice Awards for music, film, and TV (and more), there is a Teens' Top Ten for books and, now through October 14th, you can cast your ballot for your favorites.

26 nominees have been named. Which ones do you think deserve to make the top ten?


To see an annotated list of the 2017 nominees, winning books from previous years, click here.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Words on Bathroom Walls




Every Friday we give a new book away. To get the book, it's simple: just fill out the form at the bottom of the page and you'll be entered into a drawing. The drawing will run from Friday through Sunday and winners are announced on Mondays. (Note: you must be a Fresno County resident to be eligible for Free Fridays.)


Words on Bathroom Walls by Julia Walton

Adam has just been diagnosed with schizophrenia. He sees and hears people who aren’t there: Rebecca, a beautiful girl who understands him; the Mob Boss, who harasses him; and Jason, the naked guy who’s unfailingly polite. It should be easy to separate the real from the not real, but Adam can't.

Still, there’s hope. As Adam starts fresh at a new school, he begins a drug trial that helps him ignore his visions. Suddenly everything seems possible, even love. When he meets Maya, a fiercely intelligent girl, he desperately wants to be the great guy that she thinks he is. But then the miracle drug begins to fail, and Adam will do anything to keep Maya from discovering his secret.

Update: Congratulations, Julie M.! The book will soon be on its way to your address.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

A Librarian has the Best Summer Ever with the FCPL Summer Challenge: Part 8

by Fae Giffen, Community Librarian 

Hi! My name is Fae and I’m a Community Librarian for Fresno County Public Library. I’m determined to have the best summer ever by doing the Fresno County Public Library Summer Challenge and sharing my experiences with you on this blog.

#39 Volunteer in your community.


Volunteering isn’t as simple as you might think. Lots of bigger charities and non-profits have an application process they ask you to go through before becoming involved. It’s important to remember that if you’re completing volunteer hours for a work or school assignment and to be sure to give yourself plenty of time to get started. Services like Volunteer Match can help you find the right volunteer opportunity. However, volunteering can start closer to home. Offer to help your family, friends, or neighbors. Everyone needs a little assistance from time to time and it’s a good way to show your appreciation for all the help you receive. This week, I volunteered to drive my niece to a birthday party so my sister in law could catch up on her studies. She got a head start on her paper and I got to spend some quality time with one of my favorite people.

#5 Play a board game.

What do librarians do on our time off? We get together and play board games! On Saturday night there was a rousing game of 1990s Trivial Pursuit to be had and we didn’t even cheat by looking up the answers! We did, however, tell some pretty good stories of our own adventures during the decade of grunge. For instance, I wore knock off Dr Martens to my High School graduation, because...well it was the 90s.



#23 Play a board game.

There was also an epic game of Candyland. We ran out of pieces so we had to steal some from Trivial Pursuit. I was Kurt Cobain. We lost out to the green Candy person.


 
#35 Attend a community event.


The next time you’re sitting around thinking that there isn’t anything to do in Fresno, give Art Hop a try. It’s a completely free way to check out the art scene in Fresno. Once a month, different areas of town host events that showcase local talent. They're fun, free, and there's food! I’m lucky enough to live right next to the Downtown Art Hop so it’s easy for me to enjoy. Whichever Art Hop you choose, I highly recommend getting out and seeing what the art community of Fresno has to offer.



#4 Visit a park.

What’s the best way to enjoy your neighborhood park when it’s unreasonably hot outside? With a giant snow cone. And I ate it all.


#26 Participate in a library program.

As a librarian I participate in programs all the time, and sometimes I even get to run them. There are so many fabulous events going on that it can be hard to keep up with each and every one. Luckily we’ve put together a handy calendar to help you out. You can search by program type, branch location, or age group to find the right events for you. Don’t forget that pre-registering helps us gauge interest in each event and make sure we have enough supplies. See you there!

#7 Visit the library with a friend.

They’re my niece and nephew, but they’re also my buddies and they came to visit me at the library.

#9 Get crafty…Make something.

Remember last week when I said I’m not artistic? Well, I’m still not. Spray painting furniture is about crafty as I get. I do like how it turned out though, and I really like not having to pay for new patio furniture.
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That's all, Fresno County! We hope you enjoyed following along with Fae's adventures and creating some memories of your own during this year's Summer Challenge!

Friday, August 4, 2017

Brave New Girl




Every Friday we give a new book away. To get the book, it's simple: just fill out the form at the bottom of the page and you'll be entered into a drawing. The drawing will run from Friday through Sunday and winners are announced on Mondays. (Note: you must be a Fresno County resident to be eligible for Free Fridays.)


Brave New Girl by Rachel Vincent

Dahlia 16 sees her face in every crowd. She's nothing special--just one of five thousand girls created from a single genome to work for the greater good of the city.

Meeting Trigger 17 changes everything. He thinks she's interesting. Beautiful. Unique. Which means he must be flawed. When Dahlia can't stop thinking about him--when she can't resist looking for him, even though that means breaking the rules--she realizes she's flawed, too. But if she's flawed, then so are all her identicals. And any genome found to be flawed will be recalled.

Destroyed.

Getting caught with Trigger would seal not only Dahlia's fate, but that of all five thousand girls who share her face. But what if Trigger is right? What if Dahlia is different?

Suddenly the girl who always follows the rules is breaking them, one by one. . . .

Update: Congratulations, Kelsey L.! Your new book should arrive at your street address in the next few days.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

A Librarian has the Best Summer Ever with the FCPL Summer Challenge: Part 7

by Fae Giffen, Community Librarian 

Hi! My name is Fae and I’m a Community Librarian for Fresno County Public Library. I’m determined to have the best summer ever by doing the Fresno County Public Library Summer Challenge and sharing my experiences with you on this blog.


#24 Try a new food.

This one was actually a challenge for me. I’m a notoriously adventurous eater. If its food, I’ll pretty much eat it. Sure I have my weird exceptions (mayonnaise makes me gag), but for the most part I like food. I like food a lot. Normally this is a good thing, because I never worry that I won’t find anything I want to eat at a restaurant or that I won’t like any of the food at a party. In this case, that sort of caused some problems. The entire WOW office actually had a brainstorming session about this. It went something like this:

Alligator?
Best friend’s birthday party. Good, a little chewy.

Eel?
Dinner with friends a couple of years ago.

Sardines?
Last night on toast, with cheese. You should try it.

Liver.
Yum, so good. Why? Do you have any?

I was beginning to become a little concerned this challenge might best me and I would have to report on my sad failure. It turns out the answer was a trip to San Francisco--and bugs. I was wandering the pier at the right time and stumbled across a booth selling snacks made of bugs.
This one was my favorite. 

Chocolate covered crickets taste a little like a Krackle bar.

I followed up with a spicy cricket.


Then, a spicy worm. So this one--well, this one took me a minute to work up to. It looked a little off-putting, but was actually pretty good.

#10 Design a personal logo.

I’ll admit this was not my favorite challenge. I’m not artistic at all. Not even the tiniest bit. I can’t draw a straight line. My stick figures are unrecognizable. I color outside the lines. Not on purpose to be rebellious or anything, but just because I can’t color inside the lines. I sat down and tried to design a personal logo several times and just came up blank. I finally ended up googling “create a personal logo” out of frustration. The search results directed me to a website where you put in your name, choose a font, and out pops a logo. Cheating? You bet! Here’s what they came up with. What do you think? Yeah, I’m not crazy about it either.



#25 Read or write a poem.

September 24, 2009
by James Tyner

Four hours of work paid for this.
A lady sits to my left, hair like plastic,
coifed with hours of hairspray, hours
of time.  I hear her whispering
about our clothes, words like ratty
and poor.  I rip cubes of beef
with my fingers, let cooked juices
and pepper roll down my fingers
to the edges of my wife’s lips.
If she hears, I can’t tell.  But she tears
shrimp from kabobs, pulls the looped flesh
over to me, shares what is on her plate.
We don’t know what merlot means,
or cabernet, but we have the dark one,
a glass of the blood-colored wine
for each of us.  There is just this
moment, the black decor of the restaurant,
the angled stares of people, the group
of teens to our left flipping through blackberrys,
through photos stored on cell phones,
plates heavy with uneaten food.  I let it all go.
I keep only the crunch of grilled vegetables,
the tang of the wine, spoons dipping
into dessert, my wife kissing
off a spot I missed with my napkin.

#22 Read something by a local author.

You just did. James Tyner is not only a local author, but he is also the first Poet Laureate of Fresno and a FCPL staff member, who has generously agreed to allow some of this work to be shared in this blog. Thank you, James.

#8 Mail a letter to a friend.

It was really more of a Thank You note, but I’m a big believer in the Thank You note. It takes about five minutes to let someone know you appreciate them and everyone likes getting something nice in the mail. Now that the post office has Disney villain stamps, note writing is better than ever.