Category Archives: Book Suggestions

Digital Books are here!

Your wait is over!  You can now check out and download e-books and e-audiobooks to your device from the Moore Free Library website:  http://moorefreelibrary.wordpress.com.  Simply, click on the GMLC logo located halfway down our homepage.

You will then be asked for your patron bar code.  This site needs a 14 digit access code so we’ve  adapted our patron bar codes to this new format:

2V6SD00000 + your current bar code to equal 14 digits in all.

On the next page, choose a category and at Show Me, choose Only titles with copies available.  Scroll through the choices offered and “borrow” the items you wish – there is a limit of 3 checkouts at a time.

If you have any questions at all, please email Louise at newfanemoore@vals.state.vt.us or call 802-365-7948.  Have fun!

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What Kids Are Reading, In School And Out by Lynn Neary

What Kids Are Reading, In School And Out

by LYNN NEARY

June 11, 2013 4:51 PM

 

Walk into any bookstore or library, and you’ll find shelves and shelves of hugely popular novels and book series for kids. But research shows that as young readers get older, they are not moving to more complex books. High-schoolers are reading books written for younger kids, and teachers aren’t assigning difficult classics as much as they once did.

At Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, D.C., the 11th-grade honors English students are reading The Kite Runner. And students like Megan Bell are reading some heavy-duty books in their spare time. “I like a lot of like old-fashioned historical dramas,” Bell says. “Like I just read Anna Karenina … I plowed through it, and it was a really good book.”

But most teens are not forging their way through Russian literature, says Walter Dean Myers, who is currently serving as National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. A popular author of young-adult novels that are often set in the inner city, Myers wants his readers to see themselves in his books. But sometimes, he’s surprised by his own fan mail.

“I’m glad they wrote,” he says, “but it is not very heartening to see what they are reading as juniors and seniors.” Asked what exactly is discouraging, Myers says that these juniors and seniors are reading books that he wrote with fifth- and sixth-graders in mind.

And a lot of the kids who like to read in their spare time are more likely to be reading the latest vampire novel than the classics, says Anita Silvey, author of 500 Great Books for Teens. Silvey teaches graduate students in a children’s literature program, and at the beginning of the class, she asked her students — who grew up in the age of Harry Potter — about the books they like.

“Every single person in the class said, ‘I don’t like realism, I don’t like historical fiction. What I like is fantasy, science fiction, horror and fairy tales.’ “

Those anecdotal observations are reflected in a study of kids’ reading habits by Renaissance Learning. For the fifth year in a row, the educational company used its Accelerated Reader program to track what kids are reading in grades one through 12.

“Last year, we had more than 8.6 million students from across the country who read a total of 283 million books,” says Eric Stickney, the educational research director for Renaissance Learning. Students participate in the Accelerated Reader program through their schools. When they read a book, they take a brief comprehension quiz, and the book is then recorded in the system. The books are assigned a grade level based on vocabulary and sentence complexity.

And Stickney says that after the late part of middle school, students generally don’t continue to increase the difficulty levels of the books they read.

Last year, almost all of the top 40 books read in grades nine through 12 were well below grade level. The most popular books, the three books in The Hunger Games series, were assessed to be at the fifth-grade level.

Last year, for the first time, Renaissance did a separate study to find out what books were being assigned to high school students. “The complexity of texts students are being assigned to read,” Stickney says, “has declined by about three grade levels over the past 100 years. A century ago, students were being assigned books with the complexity of around the ninth- or 10th-grade level. But in 2012, the average was around the sixth-grade level.”

Most of the assigned books are novels, like To Kill a MockingbirdOf Mice and Men or Animal Farm. Students even read recent works like The Help and The Notebook. But in 1989, high school students were being assigned works by Sophocles, Shakespeare, Dickens, George Bernard Shaw, Emily Bronte and Edith Wharton.

Now, with the exception of Shakespeare, most classics have dropped off the list.

Back at Woodrow Wilson High School, at a 10th-grade English class — regular, not honors — students say they don’t read much outside of school. But Tyler Jefferson and Adriel Miller are eager to talk. Adriel likes books about sports; Tyler likes history. Both say their teachers have assigned books they would not have chosen on their own. “I read The Odyssey, Tyler says. “I read Romeo and Juliet. I didn’t read Hamlet. Asked what he thought of the books, Tyler acknowledges some challenges. “It was very different, because how the language was back then, the dialogue that they had.

Adriel agrees that books like that are tougher to read. “That’s why we have great teachers that actually make us understand,” he says. “It’s a harder challenge of our brain, you know; it’s a challenge.”

But a challenge with its rewards, as Tyler says. “It gives us a new view on things.”

Sandra Stotsky would be heartened to hear that. Professor emerita of education at the University of Arkansas, Stotsky firmly believes that high school students should be reading challenging fiction to get ready for the reading they’ll do in college. “You wouldn’t find words like ‘malevolent,’ ‘malicious’ or ‘incorrigible’ in science or history materials,” she says, stressing the importance of literature. Stotsky says in the ’60s and ’70s, schools began introducing more accessible books in order to motivate kids to read. That trend has continued, and the result is that kids get stuck at a low level of reading.

“Kids were never pulled out of that particular mode in order to realize that in order to read more difficult works, you really have to work at it a little bit more,” she says. “You’ve got to broaden your vocabulary. You may have to use a dictionary occasionally. You’ve got to do a lot more reading altogether.”

“There’s something wonderful about the language, the thinking, the intelligence of the classics,” says Anita Silvey. She acknowledges that schools and parents may need to work a little harder to get kids to read the classics these days, but that doesn’t mean kids shouldn’t continue to read the popular contemporary novels they love. Both have value: “There’s an emotional, psychological attraction to books for readers. And I think some of, particularly, these dark, dystopic novels that predict a future where in fact the teenager is going to have to find the answers, I think these are very compelling reads for these young people right now.”

Reading leads to reading, says Silvey. It’s when kids stop reading, or never get started in the first place, that there’s no chance of ever getting them hooked on more complex books.

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New in the Library this month -

New Titles at Moore Free Library  2013

“The Yellow Birds

A novel written by a veteran of the war in Iraq, The Yellow Birds is
the harrowing story of two young soldiers trying to stay alive. With
profound emotional insight, especially into the effects of a hidden
war on mothers and families at home, The Yellow Birds is a
groundbreaking novel that is destined to become a classic.

“Ancient Light”
The Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea gives us a brilliant,
profoundly moving new novel about an actor in the twilight of his life
and his career: a meditation on love and loss, and on the inscrutable
immediacy of the past in our present lives.

” Jefferson: The Art of Power”
From the Pulitzer Prize-winning, bestselling author of American Lion
and Franklin and Winston comes a rich, unprecedented biography of
Thomas Jefferson, an original thinker and a master politician, who
helped create and sustain the American republic

“Wild”
One of Ann’s best books of 2012, this is he story of an
eleven-hundred-mile solo hike taken by a grief-stricken young woman
who was supremely unprepared for the rigors of the trail. That journey
was life-changing for Cheryl, and she shares it with us. through this
candid memoir that will appeal to even those who shy away from memoir.

“The Round House”
The revered author returns to the territory of her bestselling,
Pulitzer Prize finalist The Plague of Doves with this riveting,
exquisitely told story of a boy on the cusp of manhood who seeks
justice and understanding in the wake of a terrible crime that upends
and forever transforms his family. National Book Award Winner.

DOWNTON  ABBY Season 3  DVD
As the long-awaited third season of the addictive Peabody– and Emmy
Award–winning series begins, the war may be over, but the battles at
Downton Abbey continue amidst social change, romantic intrigue, and
personal crises. As other great houses throughout Britain are
crippled, both psychologically and economically, in the wake of the
Great War, Robert, Earl of Grantham firmly defends his duty to
maintain the majestic English country estate, but in the changing
social and political landscape, nothing is assured. Must the Crawleys
now fight to safeguard their beloved Downton? Will Anna find evidence
that helps to free John Bates? Will Robert accept his former
chauffeur—now Sybil’s husband—into the family? And what sort of
mischief will Thomas cause?  DVD  on order. We have Season 1 & 2.

Counterfeiters DVD
Winning the Academy Award for the Best Foreign Language Film of 2007,
this film is based on the true story of Salomon Sorowitsch, a forger
who made a name for himself as Berlin’s “King of the Counterfeiters.”
Arrested by the Nazis for forging baptism certificates for Jews,
Sorowitsch (Karl Markovics) is first sent to a concentration camp, but
finds himself drafted into Operation Bernard, the Nazi effort to
finance the war and destabilize their enemies’ economies by forging
British and American money. Sorowitsch and his fellow counterfeiters
find themselves in a delicate balancing act, succeeding just enough to
live another day, but not enough to truly help their captors. In
German and French, with English subtitles.

Endeavor  DVD
On the 25th anniversary of the first episode of the long-running
detective series Inspector Morse, Shaun Evans steps into John Thaw’s
shoes to play the younger version of Colin Dexter’s iconic character,
famed for his love of crosswords, classical music, real ale, and
vintage cars. Set in 1965, the story follows the hunt for a missing
schoolgirl, which draws Detective Constable Endeavour Morse back to
the place that will ultimately shape and define his destiny: Oxford.
Facing down small-time thugs, big-time politicians, and the demons of
his past, Morse begins his own quest for justice as he edges ever
closer to uncovering a truth that will haunt him for the rest of his
days.

Five Children DVD
What would you wish for if you were granted a new wish every day?
That’s the delightful situation five children face when they’re
evacuated during World War I and sent to live with an eccentric uncle
and his very odd son in a moldering mansion by the sea. There they
discover It (voiced by Eddie Izzard), an obliging but cranky sand
fairy who makes their wishes come true. This 2004 adaptation of E.
Nesbit’s beloved classic features Freddie Highmore, Kenneth Branagh,
and Zoë Wanamaker, as well as the film wizardry of the Jim Henson
Creature Shop.

Secret  Ballot  DVD
Iranian filmmaker Babak Payami’s gently humorous examination of the
voting process and gender differences was a consistent winner at
international film festivals in 2001 and 2002. On election day at a
remote island off the coast of Iran, a ballot box parachutes to shore,
followed by a female election official. A reluctant soldier is
assigned to accompany her and gather votes. Sometimes helpful,
sometimes a hindrance, he helps her overcome language barriers, gender
prejudices, and mechanical breakdowns, while she struggles to maintain
her faith in democratic processes. In Farsi with English subtitles.

CUT UP   DVD
Animator, documentarian, actor, dancer, editor, cinematographer, and
provocateur, Grant Munro has brought his talent, humor, passion, and
all-out goofiness to world cinema for more than 50 years. He has
collaborated with legendary animator Norman McLaren on some of his
best work, including their pixilated masterpiece Neighbours, a
viciously funny Cold War parable on arms escalation that won the Best
Short Film Oscar in 1952. This two-disc collection also includes the
animated classics Three Blind Mice, Two Bagatelles, Christmas Cracker,
Canon, Toys, and The Animal Movie, as well as Munro’s live-action
films Ballot-o-Maniac, Ashes of Doom, and Boo Hoo.

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Book Group for December

Book – “An American Childhood” by Annie Dillard

Discussion Date – Friday, December 21st, noon

Free Copies are available for borrowing at the library

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Some Reccomendations

A Few Recommendations from Our Trustees and Volunteers

Judy Acampora: “The Seamstress by Frances de Pontes Peebles is set in a rare time and place (1930s backcountry Brazil) and combines historical incidents with the story of two sisters who follow divergent paths.”

Robert Doyle: “Capital by John Lanchester. Fun, gripping and a great read.”

Apple Gifford: “I really loved Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. It’s told in a unique way and it weaves historical fiction, sci-fi, and suspense thriller into one overarching narrative. It also gives the reader a lot to think about by revisiting the same themes in different stories and settings. It’s unlike any book I’ve ever read, and I am still thinking about it months after finishing it!”

Julie Lavorgna: “In The Great Northern Express: A Writer’s Journey Home Howard Frank Mosher intersperses descriptions of his recent book tour across the United States with reminiscences of his first years as a teacher in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. Delightful.”

Bobbe Ragouzeos: “Any book on CD by David Sedaris. I have had to pull over to the side of the road because I was laughing too much to drive.”

Steve Squires: “Rent is one of only two movies (the other being Mama Mia!) that I had to see twice before returning to the Library. Adapted from a Broadway musical, Rent has absolutely great music, energy, and superb performances. And be sure to watch the bonus DVD. This is no ordinary musical, and the story behind it makes it even more compelling. (Not suitable for children.)”

Teddi Tucci: “The Watch by Joydeep Roy-Bhattacharya and The Good Son by Michael Gruber are novels for anyone who is interested in understanding Muslim culture and world view.”

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