Hello from waaaay up on the fourth floor of the Millennium Library! The one constant in any library is change – from the streams of different people coming to our desk, to the new titles finding their way to our shelves (and eBook platforms), to the displays our staff put together to help you find your next great read.
Recently our Information Services (adult non-fiction) staff at Millennium Library put together a display called “A Year in the Life.” The concept pulled together a wide range of titles detailing life experiments of various individuals undertaken for a year – sort of like New Year’s resolutions on steroids. Titles were snapped up quickly – a testament to how much people like to live vicariously through others. Here’s a taste of what piqued our customer’s curiosity:
A Year Without “MADE IN CHINA”: One Family’s True Life Adventure in the Global Economy by Sara Bongiorni is an account of one family’s attempt to live outside the reach of part of the global economy and not buy anything “made in China” for a whole year. Take a look around your house – or even on the tags of the clothes you’re wearing – and imagine that.
The Big Year : A Tale of Man, Nature, and Fowl Obsession by Mark Obmascik proves there’s a fine line between hobbies and obsessions. The Big Year recounts the adventures of three men who took part in a year-long birdwatching marathon in 1998 . How many bird species is it possible to identify in an avian version of The Amazing Race? Find out in Mark Obmascik’s book, which was also made into a movie starring John Cleese, Owen Wilson and Rosamund Pike.
Operating Instructions : A Journal of My Son’s First Year by Anna Lamott points out the journey travelled by each parent or caregiver during the first year of their child’s life is unique and Anne Lamott’s story is no exception. Formatted as a diary, Lamott provides readers with an intimate view into the joys and fears associated with her first year as a single mother.
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle : A Year of Food Life by acclaimed novelist Barbara Kingsolver (check out titles like The Poisonwood Bible or The Lacuna) chronicled her family’s transition to a rural life where their goal was to only eat what they would grow themselves. Packed with wit (see a chapter titled “Zucchini Larceny”), recipes, and an examination of the industrial nature of the American food supply, this is a well-rounded read. You’ll also find this title with us in eBook, audio book CD and audiobook MP3 CD formats.
And last but not least, The Year of Living Biblically : One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs, who has made a career of putting himself through entertaining (for us!) personal experiments. (Be sure to check out his other titles The Know-it All, The Guinea Pig Diaries and Drop Dead Healthy.) In The Year of Living Biblically, Jacobs attempts to do just that – live literally by the myriad rules found in the Bible. Not surprisingly, awkwardness and enlightenment abound. You can watch a video of Jacobs talking about his experience here.
2015 is about one-sixth done. What are your plans for the rest of the year?