Saturday, October 10, 2015

Page Turners: A Book Club for Grades 3-5

Page Turners, a book club for grades 3-5 featuring STEAM crafts and activities based around a selected book will meet at the Cumming Library on October 22 at 4:00 p.m.  

The featured book for October is I Survived: True Stories by Lauren Tarshis. It is part of her I Survived series in which each book tells a terrifying and thrilling story from history, through the eyes of a boy who lived to tell the tale.

At the heart of each story is a nonfiction article about a fascinating and exciting topic from history or science.  I Survived: True Stories tells these tales of natural and man- made disasters from both historical and contemporary times, including:

  • The Children's Blizzard of 1888
  • The Titanic, 1912
  • The Great Boston Molasses Flood, 1919
  • The Japanese Tsunami, 2011
  • The Henryville Tornado, 2012  
The Page Turners book club will be discussing the stories and performing sink or float experiments, making a tornado in a bottle, and learning tornado safety tips.  Registration is recommended.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Cumming Library to Host National Digital Bookmobile Tour

The OverDrive, Inc. Digital Bookmobile National Tour will showcase the digital content services available through the Forsyth County Public Library when it visits the Cumming Library on Tuesday, October 20 from 12:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

At this free event, readers of all ages will learn how to access eBooks from the library through interactive demonstrations and high-definition instructional videos. The Gadget Gallery featuring Kindle® Fire, iPad® Mini,  Android™ Galaxy Tablet, NOOK™ HD+, Creative® Zen, Kindle® Paperwhite, and Windows® Phone 8 will help visitors discover portable devices that are compatible with the library’s OverDrive digital lending services.

“We’re so excited to bring the Digital Bookmobile to the Cumming Library and give our patrons an opportunity to surround themselves with books and technology,” says Laura Bradley, Program Manager. “This is a 74-feet-long community outreach vehicle equipped with hands-on digital displays and eReaders. It’s a big change from the traditional bookmobiles of the past and we think all our patrons – young and not-so-young – will enjoying taking a tour through this really unique vehicle.”

In addition to the mobile devices available for use in the Gadget Gallery, the Digital Bookmobile also houses computers, high definition monitors, premium sound systems, and a variety of portable media players, all of which help visitors explore Forsyth County Public Library’s digital service. Interactive learning stations give visitors an opportunity to search the library’s digital media collection, use supported mobile devices, and sample eBooks, audiobooks, and video.

Forsyth County Public Library cardholders can take advantage of the OverDrive digital collection 24 hours a day, seven days a week to browse the growing collection of bestselling, new release, and classic titles, and check out a digital title with a valid library card.

Once the digital titles have been checked out, patrons can enjoy them in the browser or transfer them to their computer or a supported mobile device. At the end of the lending period, titles will automatically expire and are returned to the digital collection. There are never any late fees or damaged items.

The Digital Bookmobile is a service of Forsyth County Public Library and is operated by OverDrive, Inc. To check out digital books or learn more about this Digital Bookmobile event, visit

Thursday, October 8, 2015

2015 National Book Award for Fiction Longlist Announced!

National Book Foundation, Presenter of the National Book Awards

Established in 1950, the National Book Award is an American literary prize administered by the National Book Foundation, a nonprofit organization. In order to be eligible for the Award, a book must be written by an American citizen and published by an American publisher between December 1 of the previous year and November 30 of the current year. 

2015 Longlist 

Finalists will be announced October 14, 2015 

Winner will be announced November 18, 2015

A Cure for Suicide by Jesse Ball

A woman "examiner" and a man, her "claimant," move into a small house where the examiner teaches the claimant the most simple functions and monitors his progress, until an encounter at a party raises doubts about everything he has learned.
Refund: Stories by Karen E. Bender

We think about it every day, sometimes every hour: Money. Who has it. Who doesn't. How you get it. How you don't. In Refund, Bender creates an award-winning collection of stories that deeply explore the ways in which money and the estimation of value affect the lives of her characters. The stories in Refund reflect our contemporary world-swindlers, reality show creators, desperate artists, siblings, parents—who try to answer the question: What is the real definition of worth? In "Theft," an eighty-year-old swindler, accustomed to tricking people for their money, boards a cruise ship to see if she can find something of true value—a human connection. In "Anything for Money," the creator of a reality show is thrown into the real world when his estranged granddaughter reenters his life in need of a new heart; and in the title story, young artist parents in downtown Manhattan escape the attack on 9/11 only to face a battle over their subletted apartment with a stranger who might have lost more than only her deposit. Set in contemporary America, these stories herald a work of singular literary merit by an important writer at the height of her power.

Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Clegg

On the eve of her daughter's wedding, June Reid's life is completely devastated when a shocking disaster takes the lives of her daughter, her daughter's fiancé, her ex-husband, and her boyfriend, Luke--her entire family, all gone in a moment. And June is the only survivor. Alone and directionless, June drives across the country, away from her small Connecticut town. In her wake, a community emerges, weaving a beautiful and surprising web of connections through shared heartbreak. From the couple running a motel on the Pacific Ocean where June eventually settles into a quiet half-life, to the wedding's caterer whose bill has been forgotten, to Luke's mother, the shattered outcast of the town--everyone touched by the tragedy is changed as truths about their near and far histories finally come to light.

The Turner House by Angela Flournoy

A powerful, timely debut, The Turner House marks a major new contribution to the story of the American family. The Turners have lived on Yarrow Street for over fifty years. Their house has seen thirteen children grown and gone--and some returned; it has seen the arrival of grandchildren, the fall of Detroit's East Side, and the loss of a father. The house still stands despite abandoned lots, an embattled city, and the inevitable shift outward to the suburbs. But now, as ailing matriarch Viola finds herself forced to leave her home and move in with her eldest son, the family discovers that the house is worth just a tenth of its mortgage. The Turner children are called home to decide its fate and to reckon with how each of their pasts haunts--and shapes--their family's future. Already praised by Ayana Mathis as "utterly moving" and "un-putdownable," The Turner House brings us a colorful, complicated brood full of love and pride, sacrifice and unlikely inheritances. It's a striking examination of the price we pay for our dreams and futures, and the ways in which our families bring us home.

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff

From the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of The Monsters of Templeton and Arcadia, an exhilarating novel about marriage, creativity, art, and perception. Fates and Furies is a literary masterpiece that defies expectation. A dazzling examination of a marriage, it is also a portrait of creative partnership written by one of the best writers of her generation. Every story has two sides. Every relationship has two perspectives. And sometimes, it turns out, the key to a great marriage is not its truths but its secrets. At the core of this rich, expansive, layered novel, Lauren Groff presents the story of one such marriage over the course of twenty-four years. At age twenty-two, Lotto and Mathilde are tall, glamorous, madly in love, and destined for greatness. A decade later, their marriage is still the envy of their friends, but with an electric thrill we understand that things are even more complicated and remarkable than they have seemed. With stunning revelations and multiple threads, and in prose that is vibrantly alive and original, Groff delivers a deeply satisfying novel about love, art, creativity, and power that is unlike anything that has come before it. Profound, surprising, propulsive, and emotionally riveting, it stirs both the mind and the heart.

Fortune Smiles: Stories by Adam Johnson

In six masterly stories, Johnson delves deep into love and loss, natural disasters, the influence of technology, and how the political shapes the personal. "George Orwell Was a Friend of Mine" follows a former warden of a Stasi prison in East Germany who vehemently denies his past, even as pieces of it are delivered in packages to his door. "Nirvana," portrays a programmer whose wife has a rare disease finding solace in a digital simulacrum of the president of the United States. In "Hurricanes Anonymous" a young man searches for the mother of his son in a Louisiana devastated by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. And in the unforgettable title story, Johnson returns to his signature subject, North Korea, depicting two defectors from Pyongyang who are trying to adapt to their new lives in Seoul, while one cannot forget the woman he left behind.

Welcome to Braggsville by T. Geronimo Johnson

From the PEN/Faulkner finalist and critically acclaimed author of Hold it 'Til it Hurts comes a dark and socially provocative southern-fried comedy about four liberal UC Berkeley students who stage a mock lynching during a Civil War reenactment--a fierce, funny, tragic work from a bold new writer.

Honeydew by Edith Pearlman

A collection of short stories full of teenage drug use, anorexia, cruise-ship stowaways, and a widowed nail tech who finds herself falling for a client.

A Little Life by Hanya Yanaghara

When four classmates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition ... Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realize, is their center of gravity, Jude, ... by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he'll not only be unable to overcome--but that will define his life forever.

Mislaid by Nell Zink

A sharply observed, mordantly funny, and startlingly original debut from an exciting, unconventional new voice, about the making and unmaking of the American family, which lays bare all of our assumptions about race and racism, sexuality and desire.

All book synopses provided by

Beth Moore
Information Specialist

Library Limelight: Aimee Brown, HR Representative, Headquarters

Library Limelight is intended to be a quick read to help FCPL patrons get to know our librarians and staff.  We hope you enjoy learning about the people who make our libraries great!

Aimee Brown
HR Representative

Where is your hometown?
Manchester, Connecticut
How long have you been at FCPL?
10½ years
What other jobs have you had at FCPL?
Materials Processor and  Cataloging Assistant
Why did you choose to work in a library?
Libraries have always been a part of my life.  My grandmother was a librarian and always spoke fondly of her work.  Before my family relocated to Georgia, I owned and operated a small daycare.  I would take the kids to the library several times each week. 
After moving to Georgia, I decided to take a different career path. When I saw the part-time job for Materials Processor, I jumped at the chance to work at the library.  And 10+ years later, I’m still very happy to be here!
Describe your job in five words or less.
Benefits, paperwork, reports, deadlines, multi-tasking
What is unique about your job?
Every day has a new priority; there’s always something that needs to be taken care of.  I enjoy using my problem solving skills to assist staff with benefit issues, compiling data for reports, assisting our department with various projects, meeting people, and conducting research on a wide variety of topics.  
What is your favorite part of your job?
I like the multi-tasking aspect of my work and the satisfaction of getting things done. 
What’s the most interesting place you’ve lived or traveled?
I am not well traveled (yet), however, I’d have to say that New England is absolutely breathtaking to visit in the fall.  I don’t miss the cold, snowy winters up north, but I definitely miss the gorgeous fall foliage – there’s nothing like it.  Maine is particularly beautiful.
What are your hobbies?
Photography, gardening, walking.
What are you reading right now?
I just finished Cemetery Girl by David Bell and am currently reading You by Caroline Kepnes.  
Paper books or eBooks?
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I love my work at the library and I love this community!  Cumming, Georgia is definitely where I call home.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Man Booker Prize for Fiction - 2015 Shortlist Announced!

The Man Booker Prize aims to promote the finest in fiction by rewarding the best novel of the year written in English and published in the United Kingdom.


                    Winner will be announced October 13, 2015

On 3 December 1976, just weeks before the general election and two days before Bob Marley was to play the Smile Jamaica concert to ease political tensions, seven men from West Kingston stormed his house with machine guns. Marley survived and went on to perform at the free concert. But the next day he left the country and didn’t return for two years.

Satin Island by Tom McCarthy

A story about U. - a ‘corporate anthropologist’ working for an elite consultancy.  U.’s employers have set him two tasks. First, he must assist in the launching of a great, epoch-defining project which no one, least of all its own architects, fully understands. Second, he has been asked to compose the seemingly impossible: the Great Report – an ethnographic document to sum up our age. Instead, procrastinating, meandering, drifting through endless buffer-zones of information, U. grows obsessed with the images with which the world bombards him on a daily basis: oil spills, African traffic jams, roller-blade processions, zombie parades. Is there a secret logic holding all these things together – a codex that, once cracked, will unlock the master-meaning of our times? Might it have something to do with South Pacific Cargo Cults, or the dead parachutists in the news? Perhaps; perhaps not.

The Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma

The Fishermen is set in a small town in Nigeria in the mid-1990s. Four brothers, the youngest is nine, use their strict father's absence from home to go fishing in a forbidden river and encounter a dangerous local madman, Abulu, whose mystic prophecy of violence threatens the very core of their close-knit family. He predicts that one of the brothers – a fisherman – will kill another. This evil prophecy of violence causes a deep rift between the brothers and starts to break the deep fraternal bonds, unleashing a tragic chain of events.Told by shy nine-year-old Benjamin, The Fishermen combines classic African storytelling with contemporary fiction, and illuminates Nigeria in all its historical, political and cultural complexity.

The Year of the Runaways by Sunjeev Sahota
(available March, 2016)

Thirteen young men live in a house in Sheffield, each in flight from India and in desperate search of a new life. Tarlochan, a former rickshaw driver, will say nothing about his past in Bihar; and Avtar has a secret that binds him to protect the choatic Randeep. Randeep, in turn, has a visa-wife in a flat on the other side of town: a clever, devout woman whose cupboards are full of her husband's clothes, in case the immigration men surprise her with a call. Sweeping between India and England, and between childhood and the present day The Year of the Runaways is a story of an unlikely family thrown together by circumstance.

A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler

‘It was a beautiful, breezy, yellow-and-green afternoon…’ This is the way Abby Whitshank always begins the story of how she and Red fell in love that day in July 1959. The whole family on the porch, relaxed, half-listening as their mother tells the same tale they have heard so many times before. And yet this gathering is different. Abby and Red are getting older, and decisions must be made about how best to look after them and their beloved family home. They’ve all come, even Denny, who can usually be relied on only to please himself.From that porch we spool back through three generations of the Whitshanks, witnessing the events, secrets and unguarded moments that have come to define who and what they are. And while all families like to believe they are special, round that kitchen table over all those years we see played out the hopes and fears, the rivalries and tensions of families everywhere – the essential nature of family life.

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

A Little Life is a depiction of heartbreak, and a dark examination of the tyranny of memory and the limits of human endurance. When four graduates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their centre of gravity. Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realize, is Jude himself, by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he'll not only be unable to overcome - but that will define his life forever.

Beth Moore
Information Specialist