Monday, December 21, 2009

Don't forget!

...all Horry County libraries will be closed Thursday - Sunday, December 24-27 for Christmas. Socastee Library will reopen Monday, 12/28 at 10:00AM. All libraries will also close at 5:00PM until January 2, 2010.
Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

2009's Best Books

It's the most wonderful time of the year: that's right, time for year-end best-of lists. Here are a few titles that appeared on multiple "Best Books of the Year" lists. Links to the full lists are at the bottom of this post:
  • The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon by David Grann. Publishers Weekly says: "In this classic adventure tale, New Yorker writer Grann—who gets winded climbing the stairs of his New York City walkup—follows in the footsteps of early–20th-century Amazon jungle explorer Percy Fawcett, who disappeared along with his son on a 1925 expedition. Grann expertly and energetically weaves the story of Fawcett's explorations with that of his own."

  • Half-Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls. The New York Times says: "In her luminous memoir, “The Glass Castle,” Walls told of being raised by eccentric and unfit parents. Now, in a novel based on family lore, she has adopted the voice of her maternal grandmother, Lily Casey Smith — mustang breaker, schoolteacher, ranch wife, bootlegger, poker player, racehorse rider and bush pilot. The result re­animates a chapter of America’s frontier past."

  • The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson. Amazon editors said: "The Girl Who Played with Fire is a break-out-in-a-cold-sweat thriller that crackles with stunning twists and dismisses any talk of a sophomore slump. Fans of Larsson's prior work will find even more to love here, and readers who do not find their hearts racing within the first five pages may want to confirm they still have a pulse. Expect healthy doses of murder, betrayal, and deceit, as well as enough espresso drinks to fuel downtown Seattle for months."
Full lists:
NPR (a slew of lists, including best memoirs, best book club books, best mysteries and more)
Amazon's Editors' Picks and Customer Favorites

What about you? If you've read anything new this year that you think stands above the rest, leave a note in the comments section.


Friday, December 11, 2009

Local Holiday Events

A lovely thing about Christmas is that it's compulsory, like a thunderstorm, and we all go through it together. -Garrison Keillor

If you still have time after attending all of Socastee Library's programs, there's still a lot to do along the Grand Strand over the next few weeks:
  • The Sun News has a Christmas Countdown list here, with upcoming events.
  • If you feel like travelling, has a statewide list of events.
  • Check out WMBF's Holiday Helper, with all sorts of information about the season...
  • ...and WPDE has a list of holiday parades in the area.
  • There are also lists of events from the cities of Myrtle Beach and Conway.

For a full list of HCML's December programs, click here.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Holiday Book Clubs

Before the holidays kick into high gear, take a little time off to enjoy one of our fun and relaxing Holiday Book Clubs.

Monday, December 14, at 6:00PM, we will be discussing The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog by Dave Barry. The book is a nostalgic, insouciant crowd-pleaser describing a Christmas pageant gone awry in 1960.

Wednesday, December 16, at 1:30PM, we will be discussing The Stupidest Angel by Christopher Moore, which Publisher's Weekly says " is enough to make even the most cynical Scrooge guffaw."

Check at the Circulation Desk for copies of either book, and check our online calendar for more events!


Friday, November 13, 2009

Ralph, Walter, Marley, and the rest of the dog pack

While most of us still probably haven't even purchased our turkey and trimmings for Thanksgiving Day, myself included, the cooler weather and arrival of new holiday books has me humming "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas."

October through December has to be my favorite time of year! As any of my co-workers can tell you I absolutely welcome the cold weather. I know, I know...I am probably in the minority, but to me Autumn and early Winter always meant boots, turtlenecks, and long wool skirts. I love the nip in the air, the crunch of dried leaves under my feet, and hot apple cider. Ahh, sweet memories!

Anyway, while enjoying the Wednesday off I finally got the chance to begin my holiday reading. Angus (the very spoiled Schnauzer/Terrier mix) and I cuddled up on the couch together to read "The Christmas Dog" by Melody Carlson. While many of you have enjoyed reading about Marley and the infamous Walters (both Barry's and Kotzwinkle's) I would suggest you take a quiet afternoon to get acquainted with Ralph.

Although Ralph may be your ordinary stray dog, Carlson's heartwarming story reminds us of the extraordinary companionship between humans and their canine counterparts. This story is the perfect way to spend a few hours tucked under the covers of a wool blanket for a chilly November afternoon. I love Ralph and I'm sure Angus would enjoy sharing a biscuit or two with him as well. Carlson has delivered yet another classic Christmas story with enough cheer and good will to tide you over while you and your dog await Santa's visit.

Angus has some recommendations for other animal stories, plus you don't have to go barking mad waiting for a copy of these:

"Favorite Dog Stories" by James Herriot
"Rex and the City: A Memoir of a Woman, a Man, and a Dysfunctional Dog" by Lee Harrington
"Merle's Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog" by Ted Kerasote
"It's Okay to Miss the Bed on the First Jump: And Other Life Lessons I Learned from Dogs" by John O' Hurley
"Living a Dog's Life: Jazzy, Juicy, and Me" by Cindy Adams


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Food for Thought


I was asked if I would like to create a Blog about food. Apparently I am synonymous with the word otherwise why would I be the one chosen to write such a blog. I was actually having a hard time coming up with something to write about. I didn’t quite understand what it was that was asked of me. I am neither a writer nor food critic for that matter. I like food. I eat food. I enjoy cooking food. What else is there to say? So I tried to find a cookbook that I could write something about. I work in a Library how hard can it be but, I was actually having trouble finding the right book. Since I work in the Children’s Room part-time, I figured I should look there. Kids like food. Kids eat food. Kids enjoy playing with their food. So do I. I thought to myself – what is my favorite food??? (Too much to list) Then I found the book “Cookies – Bite Size Life Lesson” by Amy Rosenthal. I like cookies. I bake them. I eat them. The book didn’t come with a recipe for cookies. That was disappointing. Below is what I think of Cookies:

Chocolate, of course is my number 1 favorite

Oatmeal cookies are 2nd best

Open containers make them stale

Keep them in an airtight container

Icing is good!

Eat them day or night it doesn’t matter

Share them with your friends!!!


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Autumn at the Library

Though it's nearly eighty degrees as I write this, Autumn is here, believe it or not. Here are a few ways that your library can help you make the most of this too-short season between the scorching summer and the hectic holidays:


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Computers 101

If you or someone you know need a refresher course in computer basics, mark your calendar for one of our upcoming Computers 101 sessions:

  • Saturday, October 24, 1:00-2:00PM
  • Tuesday, November 17, 10:15-11:15AM

Each class lasts about an hour. We discuss the parts of the computer and the basics of how to use Windows. For Computers 101 only, there is no signup required, and the class is first-come, first-served.

If you have any questions, stop by or call 843-215-4700. Hope to see you there!


Tuesday Evening Book Club

The Tuesday Evening Book Club met on October 20th to discuss Anne Tyler’s “Digging to America.” The book is about two families, as different as day and night, who meet at an airport while there to pick up their adopted Korean baby daughters. A relationship develops between the families, and soon they are seeing one another almost on a daily basis. Through their interactions, Tyler is able to focus on the cultural differences between the two families. She exposes problems, misunderstandings, and the difficulties people often have while trying to acclimate to a new lifestyle in a another country, or a different environment.
The book raised a good many questions at our book club meeting. Sharing our individual interpretations of the author’s view and characterization allows us to bring our own life experiences to the table. Some of us like the books we read more than other members do, but one thing we all agree on, is that we get so much more from a book we’ve read if we can share what we’ve read with others.
If you are looking for a group to discuss the books you read and for new reading suggestions, the Tuesday Evening Book Club may be the answer. We meet on the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m. Please call the library (215-4700) for more information. - Linda

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Mystery Book Club Musings

Hi everyone!

On October 12th, the Socastee Library Mysterious Mondays Book Club had another lively and very entertaining book discussion of Karin Fossum's "Don't Look Back." Featuring a very earnest and empathetic character, Inspector Sejer, Fossum skillfully blends psychological suspense, well- crafted subplots, red herrings, and a complex study of fragile characters within her police procedurals.

Dubbed the "Norwegian queen of crime fiction" Fossum is one author to check out especially if you have enjoyed books by Greg Iles or the Kurt Wallander detective series by Henning Mankell. Not for the faint of heart cozy mystery reader, the Inspector Sejer series is gripping, complex, harrowing, and suspenseful. Most of the book club members described the books as hard to put down, dark, but engrossing. The library system carries all six books within the Inspector Sejer series.

If whodunits are your thing, stop by the Socastee Library the second Monday of the month at 6pm from January-November and join the Mysterious Mondays Book Club. For November '09 we will be discussing John Burdett's "Bangkok 8." You can call or stop by the Socastee Library to request a copy of this book. I hope to see you there! -Kim

Family Fall Festival

Our annual Family Fall Festival, featuring storyteller Elizabeth Huntsinger Wolf, will be held on Tuesday, October 27, from 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. Plan on coming to the library with your children (costumes are optional) for an hour of fun and entertainment. Ms. Wolf will be telling ghost stories. There will be treat bags for all children attending the program. Seating is limited, so please call the library at 215-4700, or sign up in the Children's Room. - Linda

Monday, October 12, 2009

Author Event-Issac J. Bailey

Socastee Library is hosting a free author event! Please join us on Thursday, October 15th at 1pm as local author and Sun News columnist Issac J.Bailey presents a talk about his book, "Proud, Black, Southern: But I Still Don't Eat Watermelon in Front of White People." Seating is limited so please be sure to call 215-4700 to sign up. -Kim

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Welcome to our library

Welcome to the blog of the staff of Socastee Library. Check here to find book reviews, information about programs and services, and humorous happenings at your library.