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Volume 28, No. 7
“It’s Showtime at Your Library,” the Summer Reading program for all ages at Peoria Public Library, continues through Saturday, July 20. Those who signed up and continued to log in during June will earn their pass to the Summer Reading Party at the end of week six. This year we also have a party just for the 18 and over crowd! Check at the Information Desk for more details on both parties. Everyone, including new participants, will continue to earn weekly prizes as they log their three hours per week of reading.
We have a great lineup of programs for all ages continuing into July. And you don’t have to be a summer reading program participant to attend these programs – they are open to everyone! On July 1, Learn Something at the Library will teach us how to do Stage Makeup. Monday Music at Main continues on July 8 with Adam Larson and July 22 with Barry Cloyd. Abe Lincoln will visit North Branch on July 18. We have the Hanson Family entertainers wrapping up our Summer Reading programming on July 21 at North Branch --- they will ride unicycles and juggle and spin plates and more! For more information about all of our programs, including locations and times, please see the July Calendar.
Thanks for joining us for another great summer full of reading and fun!
By Randall Yelverton
Libraries are a tremendous community resource offering information, enrichment, access to technology, entertainment, and free public gathering space where people can learn and work together. We are proud at Peoria Public Library of the invaluable resources we offer and the sterling service of our staff at our five locations and bookmobile. In my first year at the helm of Peoria Public Library, I have been impressed with the commitment of our staff to provide excellent service and of our institution’s continued good stewardship of public funding.
It has been another very busy year at our bustling institution. We averaged 1,800 visitors a day at our multiple locations, issued over 8,000 new library cards and had over 1,300 programs for people of all ages. We also hosted over 30,000 people in our free public meeting spaces. We received grants from multiple sources that allowed us to host STEAM programming for kids at our Lincoln Branch and library-wide programming in collaboration with PBS for The Great American Read series. We also were able to offer greater comfort to our Main Library visitors when we undertook a large scale updating of that building’s HVAC system.
We pledge to continue to be a premier central Illinois institution offering you the best information and resources. I am proud to serve as the library’s Executive Director and excited for our bright future.
By Amber Lowery
Summer is here and the pace of life changes, making time for vacations, research trips and family reunions. Many of us remember going to these events in our younger years with family but they were always a bit awkward for me and I suspect for most young people dragged along by adults intent on exposing the next generation to the wider family. I did not know most of the people at these events, and frankly, I was there because I didn’t have a choice. Sometimes I would play with other kids who were there, especially if my cousins, who I did know, had come from out of town. Now, as a genealogist, I realize those were actually opportunities to learn more about my family history when there were older generations there who could tell me stories.
Family reunions are exciting events for genealogists. They are a chance to meet and speak to far-flung family members and learn more about your ancestors. Or maybe they are an occasion to share your knowledge of the family history with others. But are you prepared for such an event?
From the perspective of a genealogist, you may benefit greatly from bringing a few “tools of the trade” to any family gathering you are able to attend this summer. This may be the opportunity to ask Great Aunt Muriel to help you fill out some information on her family group sheet, or sit down with Grandpa Henry and ask him to identify people in some old photos. Or maybe YOU have the information to pass on to newly interested people. Be prepared for any genealogical adventure that may be presented to you.
Remember to take the time to come by Peoria Public Library to see what materials we may have to help you with your family history. Bring your out-of-town relatives to see where you research and show them some of the unique materials you have found among our resources. Our staff is here to help with your next steps in your genealogy journey.
By Robin Helenthal
Under Currents by Nora Roberts is about Zane Bigelow and his sister Britt who grew up in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina in a beautiful and perfectly kept house . To the town they were the perfect family but behind closed doors, they were not. Their father was an abuser who beat his wife and also Zane, his son, as he got older. After one particularly violent night, the truth comes out and the parents end up in jail. Twenty years later, Zane moves back home and trades in the big city to become a small town lawyer. Here he meets Darcy McCray, a landscaper, who has recently relocated and is starting over after leaving an abusive husband in Baltimore. Zane and Darcy have begun a new life, but their abusers have not and come back looking for revenge. As their relationship grows stronger, the two will face their pasts and stand up for the ones they love.
The Second-Worst Restaurant in France: A Paul Stuart Novel by Alexander McCall Smith is the sequel to his earlier novel, My Italian Bulldozer. Scottish cookbook writer Paul Stuart is working on his latest book, The Philosophy of Food, but is having a difficult time getting it done. His cousin Chloe has rented a house in the French countryside and has invited him to stay there. As they make friends with the locals, including their twin-sister landladies, they find that these ladies also own the local restaurant which is known as “the second worst eatery in France.” With McCall Smith’s usual comedic style, Stuart becomes involved in the assorted escapades happening in the local restaurant. There is the owner who has no cooking skills, the only waitress is hiding from her boyfriend and gives birth during mid-dinner service, and Paul is drafted into trying to improve the fare offered in the restaurant. With all this drama, Paul is still having a hard time focusing on his writing but as he faces the challenges with the food and the people of the town, he learns something about himself and what family means along the way.
Bark of Night by David Rosenfelt features lawyer Andy Carpenter and his golden retriever, Tara. When Andy takes Tara in for her yearly checkup, his veterinarian asks to speak to him privately. A tiny, healthy French bulldog named Buster was dropped at the vet’s office with instructions to be euthanized by a man who they thought was the owner. Andy offers to take the dog to the Tara Foundation, the dog-rescue organization that he founded to find him a home. When the vet checks the dog’s chip, it is discovered his name is Truman and the man who dropped him off was not his owner and that his true owner had recently been murdered. In total there were 26 oddly similar deaths across the country which leads to a widespread criminal conspiracy. Andy and his investigative team find answers that solve the murder and a home for Truman.
By Teri Miller
Beach Reads for July 2019
Large print books are for anyone who enjoys the ease and convenience of reading larger type. Enjoy these Beach Read titles appearing soon on a Large Print Shelf at your favorite branch!
Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews: Out of a job and down on her luck, things aren’t getting any better for Drue Campbell when her estranged father shows up at her mother’s funeral after a twenty-year absence. Worse, he’s remarried – to Drue’s eighth grade frenemy, now his office manager. And they’re offering her a job. (Lakeview and North)
The Summer of Sunshine and Margo by Susan Mallery: The Baxter Sisters come from a long line of women with disastrous luck in love. But this summer, Sunshine and Margot will turn disasters into destiny. (Main, Lakeview, Lincoln and North)
The Summer Guests by Mary Alice Monroe: Monroe’s heartwarming and evocative new novel is about the bonds and beginnings born from natural disasters, and how in the worst of circumstances we discover what is important in life. (Main, Lakeview, Lincoln and North)
My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing: We look like a normal couple. We’re your neighbors, the parents of your kid’s friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with. We all have our secrets to keeping a marriage alive. Ours just happens to be getting away with murder. (Main, Lakeview, Lincoln and North)
Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams: Bridget Jones' Diary meets Americana in a disarmingly honest, boldly political, and truly inclusive novel that will speak to anyone who has looked for love and found something very different in its place. Remarkably relatable, Queenie explores what it means to be a woman searching for meaning in today’s world. (Main and Lincoln)
The Mother-In-Law by Sally Hepworth: In a twisty, captivating new novel about one woman’s complicated relationship with her mother-in-law – that ends in a suspicious death – fractured relationships and deep family secrets grow more compelling with every page. (Main)
The Friends We Keep by Jane Green: Evvie, Maggie, and Topher have known one another since college. They swore their friendship would last forever. By their thirtieth reunion, they’ve lost touch with each other and with the people they dreamed of becoming. The Friends We Keep is about how, despite everything, it’s never too late to find a place to call home. (Main, Lakeview and North)
The Bride Test by Helen Hoang: Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny, but not big, important emotions — like grief. And love. He thinks he’s defective. His family knows better — that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride. (Lakeview and North)
The Bibliophiles Book Club will meet Tuesday, August 6 at 1:30 p.m. at Lakeview Branch to discuss The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels by Jon Meacham. Pulitzer Prize–winning author Jon Meacham helps us understand the present moment in American politics and life by looking back at critical times in our history when hope overcame division and fear.
The Biography and Non-Fiction Book Club will meet on Sunday, August 11 at 3:00 p.m. at North Branch to discuss Perfect Weapon: War, Sabotage, and Fear in the Cyber Age by David Sanger. The Perfect Weapon is the startling inside story of how the rise of cyberweapons transformed geopolitics like nothing since the invention of the atomic bomb. Cheap to acquire, easy to deny, and usable for a variety of malicious purposes, cyber is now the weapon of choice for democracies, dictators, and terrorists. Two presidents—Bush and Obama—drew first blood with Operation Olympic Games, which used malicious code to blow up Iran’s nuclear centrifuges, and yet America proved remarkably unprepared when its own weapons were stolen from its arsenal and, during President Trump’s first year, turned back on the US and its allies. Moving from the White House Situation Room to the dens of Chinese government hackers to the boardrooms of Silicon Valley, New York Times national security correspondent David Sanger reveals a world coming face-to-face with the perils of technological revolution. The Perfect Weapon is the dramatic story of how great and small powers alike slipped into a new era of constant sabotage, misinformation, and fear, in which everyone is a target.
The Book ‘Em Mystery Book Club will meet on Sunday, August 18 at 2:00 p.m. at Lakeview Branch to discuss IQ by Joe Ide. A resident of one of LA’s toughest neighborhoods uses his blistering intellect to solve the crimes the LAPD can’t, or won’t, solve. From murders to missing children he charges his clients only what they can afford. They call him IQ.
The Sci-Fi Fantasy Book Club will meet on Monday, August 12 at Lakeview Branch at 6:30 p.m. to discuss The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss . Mary Jekyll, alone and penniless following her parents’ death, is curious about the secrets of her father’s mysterious past. One clue in particular hints that Edward Hyde, her father’s former friend and a murderer, may be nearby, and there is a reward for information leading to his capture - a reward that would solve all of her immediate financial woes. But her hunt leads her to Hyde’s daughter, Diana, a feral child left to be raised by nuns. With the assistance of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, Mary continues her search for the elusive Hyde, and soon befriends more women, all of whom have been created through terrifying experimentation: Beatrice Rappaccini, Catherine Moreau, and Justine Frankenstein. When their investigations lead them to the discovery of a secret society of immoral and power-crazed scientists, the horrors of their past return. Now it is up to the monsters to finally triumph over the monstrous.
The YA Book Club for Adults will meet on Tuesday, August 20 at 6:30 p.m. at Lakeview Branch to discuss The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo. A young girl in Harlem discovers slam poetry as a way to understand her mother’s religion and her own relationship to the world. Debut novel of renowned slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo. Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking. But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers—especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman. With Mami’s determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself. So when she is invited to join her school’s slam poetry club, she doesn’t know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out, much less speak her words out loud. But still, she can’t stop thinking about performing her poems. Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent.
The Read on Book Club will meet at Lincoln Branch on Tuesday, August 27 at 5:30 p.m. to discuss The Safe House by Kiki Swinson. It was supposed to be easy money. A few exchanges for cash, one big payoff, and then life would be better than ever with bills paid and money in her pocket. But the plan fell apart and now she’s made an enemy. He’s a drug cartel leader out to destroy any competition and get payback by any means necessary. Packed with “high suspense” and “memorable choices and consequences” (Booklist) Kiki Swinson’s novel sizzles with brutally unpredictable characters, breakneck plotting and a uniquely gritty portrait of Southern life. Now she breaks all the rules as a young woman with two targets on her back who tries to keep those she loves and herself alive.
The Sherlock Holmes Story Society will meet at North Branch at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 22 to discuss “The Adventure of the Six Napoleons” The titular emperors are actually just plaster busts and all signs point to their destruction being .the work of a mentally disturbed immigrant. Holmes suspects the madness of the destruction is a cover for something far more rational and calculated. Needless to say, Holmes is correct.
Friends of Clonmel Intercontinental Readers will meet on Tuesday, September 10 at 1:00 p.m. at Main Library on LL1 to hold a Skype discussion with the group in Clonmel, Ireland about A Painted House by John Grisham. Until that September of 1952, Luke Chandler had never kept a secret or told a single lie. But in the long, hot summer of his seventh year, two groups of migrant workers — and two very dangerous men — came through the Arkansas Delta to work the Chandler cotton farm. And suddenly mysteries are flooding Luke’s world.
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