Saturday, October 30, 2010

The story of a house

Reading Inheritance: the Story of Knole and the Sackvilles is a fascinating way to review British history through generations of the Sackville family living at Knole. Robert Sackville-West, the author and current resident of the house now owned by the National Trust, researched his topic very carefully and provides the facts starting in 1604. The book moves quickly from the 1st through 6th Earl of Dorset to the 1st through 3rd Duke of Dorset to the Dowager Duchess and her Descendants "The very name of Sackville. . . near extinction" (1799-1888). Knole was taken over by the National Trust in 1946 with family living in apartments or separate wings. Many inhabitants suffered depression, sometimes the result of dealing with primogeniture. It was very difficult for the wives to give their lives to a house that would never be theirs. The author had to make the decision of whether to move from a cottage to the "big house" (and its lack of privacy with 80,000 visitors a year) when he took over. Since I have not visited Knole, I especially enjoyed the photos of furniture, paintings and even the marble tomb in the family chapel.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Little Wine

For those of us who are not yet wine connoisseurs, Let Me Tell You About Wine has enough information to get you started. Oz Clarke is an international expert on the subject and breaks it down into three sections: identifying flavors and grape varieties, enjoying the drink, and exploring the world of wine. The highly readable book is great for beginners and probably has new information for the experienced, too.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wii This Wednesday!

Wednesday Nov. 3
@ 2 p.m.
Have fun, stay active, and test the accuracy of your throwing arm with Wii Bowling Wednesday, November 3 @ OPL. Bring a friend or family member and be ready to "pin" down some fun--without the hassle of having to rent a pair of those uncomfortable billing ally shoes. Not a bowler? Try a game of Tennis, Baseball, or Golf. Browse new books and magazines while you wait your turn to play. Wii Wednesdays are held at 2 p.m. in the Community Room. Drop-ins are welcome!
p.s. Even more exciting Wii games and activities are on tap for next year! Stay tuned for more information.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

France, Oui!

One pleasure of reading is that it can take you away, far away,without the hassle of plane travel! The mystery The Dark Vineyard by Martin Walker takes us to the peaceful village of St-Denis, France. Bruno Courreges is the town's only policeman,and must investigate when a research field of genetically modified crops is burned. Full of the pleasures of France, a dinner of truffle omelette and a community grape crushing, the novel provides the background for romance, rivalry and murder.
Deadly Slipper, written by Michelle Wan is the first of another mystery series set in France. This mystery about a woman's search for her long-missing sister takes readers to the ruggedly beautiful Dordogne region of France and into the exotic world of orchid hunting.
Peter Mayle has written many fiction and nonfiction books featuring the south of France. Chasing Cezanne is a lighthearted and fast paced mystery about the complications that ensue when a photographer who is taking pictures of houses happens to spot a Cezanne being loaded onto a plumbing truck! So Bon Appetit, and enjoy!

Monday, October 18, 2010

da Buck Stops Here

Escanaba in da Moonlight is an hilarious film that celebrates one of Michigan's three seasons: Winter, Construction, and Hunting.

At the age of 43, Ruben Soady is dangerously close to being the oldest member of his family to never hang a buck on da buck pole. That status may be fine for the average Troll (someone who lives south of the Mackinaw Bridge) coming to the Upper Peninsula on an annual hunting pilgrimage, but for a Soady... Well, it's enough to bring the highest level of shame to Ruben and his family. No longer content to endure being called "Buckless Yooper" by friends and neighbors, Ruben is determined that this year will be different. In a last-ditch effort to change his luck for the better, Ruben convinces his fellow hunting buddies to participate in an ancient Native American ritual guaranteed to draw every buck in the state to the front door of their rustic backwoods cabin. What happens instead is a series of strange, terrifying, and unexplainable events, including: An exploding Chevy, UFO sightings, haunted Euchre cards, and a surprise visit from the most dreaded of dreadful visitors, a DNR officer. Will this night before Opening Day ever end? And, when the sun finally rises, will Ruben be prepared to face the inevitable?
Written by and starring Jeff Daniels and featuring Harve Presnell, Joey Albright, Wayne David Parker, and Randall Godwin, Escanaba in da Moonlight is a regional comedy that can be enjoyed by both "Yoopers" and "Trolls", deer hunters and their "widows".
Rated: PG-13 for some crude humor.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

More New Magazines

Three more new subscriptions have broadened the scope of our magazine collection. We now have current issues of Crochet World, Dwell, and Whole Living on display. Stop in and see what they're all about!

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Film With "Universal" Appeal

It's The Beatles as you've never experienced them! Set in the United States during the height of the Vietnam War and narrated through gorgeously unique re-arrangements of favorite Beatles hits, Across the Universe centers on the tumultuous relationship between Lucy, a sheltered New Jersey teen, and Jude, a dockworker from Liverpool who has traveled to American to locate his estranged father. When Lucy's older brother, Max, is drafted and shipped overseas, everything suddenly hits too close to home for her. Lucy becomes deeply involved with a radical organization opposing the war. At the same time, Jude deals with the stress of war in his own more passive way. This places a strain on their relationship. Also struggling with how to deal with the war (as well as their own inner turmoils) are Sadie, a middle-aged nightclub singer trying to make it big, Jo-Jo, a guitarist from Detroit trying to escape a tragic past, and Prudence, a confused runaway from rural Ohio who is going through a very big identity crisis. Across the Universe is the story of how these six strangers come together to form a bond of friendship that helps each of them deal with their individual struggles and, by the time the credits roll, prove to the audience that "all you need is love." The music, combined with gorgeous costumes, detailed choreography, and cool special effects provide a truly unique cinematic experience. Rated: PG-13 for mature content. Soundtrack also available at Oxford Public Library.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

It's been 30 years since the Official Preppy Handbook

True Prep: It's a Whole New Old World by Lisa Birnbach is the update you have been waiting for of The Official Preppy Handbook by the same author. Be prepared to laugh outloud at sections titled: "Daddy's New Girlfriend: just like Mummy only twenty-three years younger", "Your Personal Trainer: a Cautionary Tale", "Your Driver, Formerly known as the chauffeur". There are wardrobe details with a list of vintage stores (two in Michigan, guess where?), another list of "The 42 Preppiest Places to Have a Summer House" (think the coasts, nothing up north in Michigan, although "lakes are preppier than pools"). This book will amuse you with staged photos and country club rules (no spandex bicycle wear). Near the end is a "Do-it-yourself True Prep Eulogy". That is just what we will need when we die laughing.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Change the way you do business

Be brave and read Hacking Work: Breaking Stupid Rules for Smart Results. There is a new world of work out there and times are changing faster than companies make rules. Irrational rules are killing productivity and morale. This is a wake-up call for executives to remove limitations in the way of innovation.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

LWV Guides are Here!

The print versions of the League of Women Voters Voter Guides have arrived. They are packed with information about the candidates and issues for the General Election on November 2. Included: Governor and Lieutenant Governor, State Senate, State Representative, Michigan Supreme Court, and more. Stop in and pick yours up today.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Carved Masterpieces

This past Saturday we had the pleasure of watching John Bradshaw make works of art as he carved pumpkins and gourds here at the library. If you're inspired to do more than triangle eyes and square teeth, you should check out Extreme Pumpkin Carving and try your hand at advanced carving.

(photo by Cristan)