Pass It On

Tidbits and treats from the Sunnyvale Public Library Reference Division

Bob Balmanno, an Author Talk October 23, 2010

Filed under: Authors,Books — svref @ 12:57 pm

Local author Bob Balmanno discusses and reads from the second book in his Blessings of Gaia series, The Runes of Iona.  Books will be available for purchase and signing.


Creative Corner September 7, 2010

Filed under: Books,Crafts,felting — svref @ 8:55 am

The library has a wealth of craft books for both beginners and dedicated DIY-ers. Each month, we’ll highlight titles to whet your appetite for a little creativity.

Little Felted Animals, by Marie-Noelle Horvath. Amaze yourself with the lifelike creatures you can craft from a tuft of wool and felting needles. These step-by-step project layouts are easy to follow and good starter projects for those new to felting. The book includes 16 projects – familiar domestic, farm and wild animals that display a real charisma. Library staff thought the Turkish Vann Cat (shown on the book cover) very appealing. Because the projects require sharp felting needles and some patience in the “shaping” of the felted wool, they are more appropriate for teens and adults.


Mystery Book Group June 7, 2010

Filed under: Authors,Books,Fiction,reading — svref @ 11:49 am

Tuesday, June 8, 2010
7 p.m.
Program Room

At the initial meeting of the Mystery Book Group we’ll discuss The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  Stieg Larsson’s first book of a trilogy set in Norway combines a murder, a family saga, a financial intrigue, and a modern love story.


Face to Face: Children of the AIDS Crisis in Africa March 3, 2010

Filed under: Authors,Books,Uncategorized — svref @ 10:47 am

Copyright © 2009 Karen Ande and Ruthann Richter

Local authors Ruthann Richter and Karen Ande will come to the Sunnyvale Library on March 25 to discuss their book, Face to Face: Children of the AIDS Crisis in Africa. The book combines stories and photos to describe the plight of children in Africa affected by AIDS.  Ande and Richter met orphaned children raising their younger siblings, grandmothers caring for children left without parents, and children who themselves are coping with HIV. With their pictures and narratives, Richter and Ande tell the story of these families’ struggles and victories.

Come meet the authors and hear about their experiences.

March 25, 7 p.m., Sunnyvale Public Library, 665 W. Olive Ave. Online Books & Resources for Literacy & Reading for Everyone! January 8, 2010

Filed under: Books,Children's Books,PBS,reader's advisory,reading,Teens — svref @ 1:31 pm

The Center for the Book, in the Library of Congress, was established in the late 1970s to promote reading, literacy and libraries.  offers a great many “Resources” on the menu on the left side of  any  page,  including  “Author Webcasts”, “Booklists”, and “Local/Community Resources”. The “Author Webcasts” include videos of such authors as Tom Gjelten, Stephenie Meyer, Chinua Achebe, and Sara Paretsky. The “Books and Related Info For” menu on the left side of any page, has sections for “Kids”, “Teens”, “Adults”, and “Educators and Parents”. Within the “Kids” and “Teens” sections are classic books that have been digitized and put online to be read in all their original glory. Classics such as “A Apple Pie”, “Baseball ABC”, and “The Secret Garden” are beautifully captured.


In the “Educators and Parents” section visitors can find wonderful lesson plans, exhibitions, and online activities. Visitors should not miss checking out “Contests: Letters About Literature” on the left hand menu to learn about several writing contests for young children and teens.


Book Jacket Twins January 6, 2010

Filed under: Art,Books,Uncategorized — svref @ 10:00 am

Here at the library, we see hundreds of book covers every day. And once in a while, we get a little deja vu. Haven’t I seen this cover somewhere before? What does it remind me of? It’s all because, in the words of the Book Cover Archive’s blog, “this looks like that.” Here are some examples from recently published novels.


Close-ups of backs in old-fashioned dresses.


Moody, black and white, half a face, and some red flowers.


Girls in colorful dresses may be lying to you…


Same dress?


White horses in dark places…


Should any of these covers catch your eye, all of these books are available at the Sunnyvale Library. And check out these interesting posts for more book jacket look-alikes.

Cover Deja Vu []

Lookalike Book Covers: High on Grass! [Entertainment Weekly,]

And for more on book covers generally, the blog of the Book Cover Archive.


Christmas Tree Trivia December 15, 2009

Filed under: Books,Holidays — svref @ 5:42 pm
Tags: , , ,

Did you know that the commercial market for Christmas trees began over 150 years ago? In 1851, a farmer named Mark Carr cut down trees in New York’s Catskill Mountains, hauled them in sleds to New York City, and sold all of the trees. A small tree cost five or ten cents and a large tree cost a quarter!

During the Depression, nurseries were having a difficult time selling their evergreen trees to people for landscaping, so they sold them as Christmas trees. Customers liked the more evenly shaped nursery trees better than the wild forest trees, so Christmas tree farms started springing up around the country.

Now, the majority of real Christmas trees come from Christmas tree farms.  The industry has come a long way from Mark Carr cutting down a load of trees in the Catskill Mountains!

You can find this information and many more factoids on a wide variety of topics in the book Do Fish Drink Water? by Bill McLain

Happy Holidays and Happy Reading!