Archive for January, 2012

Adding pleasure to your commute

No matter how far you have to go, unless you work from your home, you probably have a commute.  And even if you don’t have a commute, you undoubtedly travel in your car several times throughout the week–to go to work, school, shopping, visiting friends, or just to take a drive.  My commute to the Delaware County District Library is about a mile, less than 4 minutes, with 2 stop signs and a blinking light.  But in those 4 short minutes, I am always listening to a book!

The Library offers you many options for listening to a book.  You can check out a book on CD or cassette.  The Library owns nearly 9,000 books on cassette or CD, and you can check them out for 4 weeks.  I am currently listening to Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand on 14 discs and I will need all of those 4 weeks to complete it.

The Library also has books in MP3 format.  Similar to a book on CD, an audio book in MP3 is usually contained on only one CD, eliminating the need to change discs, a task that can sometimes be distracting when driving.  Most cars built after 2007 can play the MP3 format in their CD player, and if you’re not sure, check one out to test it.

Have you ever checked out a Playaway?   Unlike CDs, cassettes or MP3’s , Playaways do not need a separate player–they comes preloaded and ready to use with high definition audio content in a container about the size of a credit card.  You can listen to a Playaway with earbuds, or by connecting it to your car’s stereo system with a small, inexpensive cable.  They are also great for runners and walkers because Playaways are so small and compact.

And don’t forget downloading an audio book.  You can log onto the library’s web site and click on “EBooks” to connect to the Ohio EBook Project to access thousands of audio books that can  be downloaded to your laptop, Kindle, iPhone, iPad, MP3 player, iPod, tablet, and soon, to your Nook.  Instructions and software are available at the Ohio EBook site, and of course, Library staff can always help you download to whatever device you have.

If you haven’t listened to a book, you should give it a try.  The narrators of audio books are accomplished actors, and the production is quite theatrical, not at all a monotone voice reading in a dull fashion.  Many books have multiple narrators reading as different characters, and occasionally, the author may read his or her own work.  Listening to a book while driving is my favorite way, but many folks listen to a book while working, doing chores around the house, or instead of watching TV.

Having a book to listen to when I’m traveling makes the trip much more enjoyable for me, and frankly, I look forward to having to drive longer distances, because I know that I will be entertained (and maybe even educated) along with way!

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Looking for a good book to read…

Let me confess again…I am an AVID reader.  I turn pages in books, I listen to books, I read books on my NOOK and iPad. I subscribe to several magazines, newspapers, blogs, and RSS feeds.   I am the kid who read the back of the cereal box, TV Guide, and whatever else I could get my hands on.

It is typical for me to have 3-4 books going simultaneously, and I truly cannot fall asleep without reading at bedtime. I have been reading with pleasure and enthusiasm ever since I can remember, starting with “Dick and Jane” primers (anyone remember those?) to Bobbsey Twins to Little House on the Prairie to Nancy Drew to the “grownup” books that I read now.  I read fiction and nonfiction, adult and young adult, in practically any genre.  The only type of book that I don’t usually gravitate to is science fiction/fantasy.  While I have read Piers Anthony and Douglas Adams and Robert Heinlein, my tastes these days run to more character-based novels.  Some of my favorite authors are Anne Tyler, Alice Hoffman, David Baldacci, Anita Shreve, Ann Patchett, Stephen King, John Grisham, Sue Monk Kidd, just to name a few.

Working in a library, surrounded by books and knowledgeable librarians, I am never at a loss to find something good to read.  I am delighted when a library patron and friend pops his or her head into my office and starts off with, “Have you read…?”  I know that we are going to have a lively discussion about books, and I also know that I am going to learn about another book that I want to read.

I thought that this blog would be another wonderful way for us to share titles of books we have read and recommend.  I am inviting you to comment to this post with the title of a good book, and your impression of it.  Your comments can be as long or as short as you would like.

So, if you’ve read a good book lately, or you have long time favorites, please take this opportunity to share them with the readers of this blog.  I think we will all find something new and exciting to read next!

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A Word about Librarians

Librarian (laɪˈbrɛərɪən):  A professional person trained in library science and engaged in library services. That’s how Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines a librarian.  The Delaware County District Library currently employs 84 people, and 15 of them are professional librarians who have  Master’s Degrees in Library Science or Library and Information Science.  Their training encompasses all of the services and products that a public library has to offer, and all are engaged in continuing education to keep their skills sharp and their knowledge current. You will know who they are by “M.L.S.” or the ‘M.L.I.S” following their names on their nametags.

Why is this important information for you?  Because when you visit any of the Delaware Library’s branches, you will find a librarian on duty to help you find the answers to your questions, identify the perfect books for you and your children, or to read to your children, guide you through electronic resources including the online catalog, assist you in writing a resume or applying for a job, find the ideal story time for you, or simply provide insight into dozens of library services that you may not be aware of.

I am very proud of the caliber of the Library’s professional librarians, as I am of all of our staff.  But, the specialized training and customer service-oriented expertise that Delaware librarians bring to work with them every day is an invaluable asset to our community.  Let them put their knowledge and experience to work for you!

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