Sunday, June 18, 2017

Summer Reading, here we come.

I tried to work on this last night, but after I worked Summer Reading Program sign-up with 4+ hours on the desk and 1.5+ hours out on the floor, I couldn't really formulate sentences.  I'm not sure where the rest of the day went, because I was at my workstation for less than an hour. 

You don't have to say you love me: A memoir by Sherman Alexie.  I always mean to read more of this author, and I check his work out a few times a year, but then I never actually read it.  This is a beautiful, difficult, irreverent read.  There are lots of things to think about, which I won't go into, but which make this an appropriate choice for a book group.  

On Her Majesty's frightfully secret service by Rhys Bowen.  I think I keep promising myself I"m going to stop reading these, because they're pretty fluffy and insubstantial.  This one was a bit better than the last few installments-- the mystery element was a bit less obvious, the secondary characters less over-the-top silly.  I still the the author would do well to wrap this up in another book or two.  If you're looking for a light historical fiction with a good period feel, you'll find a 4-star book.  If you're looking for suspenseful mystery with a challenging who-dun-it, this is maybe a 2-star series. 

In our backyard: Human trafficking in America and what we can do to stop it by Nita Belles; read by Nicol Zanzarella.  I downloaded this audiobook through the Sync download promotion currently going on.  (I think Sync's title selection or promotion could have been a little tighter, a bit better planned-- it's marketed as a YA program but nearly half the titles would easily appeal to a much wider audience.  If it's a YA program, pick more YA titles.  If it's an all-ages program, stop sticking "teens" in all your promotional materials.)

This is an introduction to the topic, and not very graphic, so while it is accessible for teens, I'd call it a general or adult nonfiction.  The audio is also very good-- the narrator is easy to listen to and does a good job with different speakers quoted in the book; her generic-kid or generic-man voices are not overt or over-the-top, and the regional dialects or accents she uses are also neither distracting nor caricature.  Her narration is slow, appropriate to the weighty content.

I have previously read Trafficked, also about human trafficking, but that talked mostly about one person's situation in a non-US country.  I have a college friend who has become very active in anti-trafficking in a major US city.  A few years ago, I suggested to her that a good outreach would be to go to library conferences and talk to library staff, as people who work in a public place-- maybe the nearest warm or cool place for people without a safer place to go.  Another person belittled that idea saying library staff "already know" and "know what to look for."  Um, it's not covered in library school, it isn't part of the in-house training at any library I've worked at.  I've read two whole books, non-required reading, and still feel unprepared.  It's kind of hard to imagine the numbers and statistics referenced in this book.  But it happened here.

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