Posted by: montclairlibrary | April 24, 2014

It’s Gardening Time!

Planting Native Garden photo by Forest Service Northern Region via Flickr

It’s spring, Tuesday was Earth Day, and if you’re a gardener your mind is on plants and soil (along with how to make every drop of water count this summer).

If you’re ready to get your hands dirty, this Saturday, April 26th, from 10am-1pm, you’re invited to come help with the next phase of turning the library’s wild backyard into a low-water-use, bird- and butterfly-friendly garden featuring native plants. Volunteers will be weeding and discussing the next steps and the design process. There may be some trees to plant as well. If you can help, please RSVP with Lynne Cutler at lcutler@oaklandlibrary.org. The event is part of Oakland’s Earth Day celebration, when over 3,000 volunteers will help clean and green over 90 locations throughout Oakland.

If you’re looking for some inspiration for your own garden, check out one of these books about gardening from the Montclair branch:

Golden Gate Gardening: The Complete Guide to Year-Round Food Gardening in the San Francisco Bay Area & Coastal California by Pamela Peirce (e-book)

Sunset Western Garden Book edited by Kathleen Norris Brenzel (635.9 SUNSET 2007)

Strawberries in November: A Guide to Year-Round Gardening in the East Bay by Judith Goldsmith (635 GOLDSMITH)

Plants and Landscapes for Summer-Dry Climates of the San Francisco Bay Region by Nora Harlow (OVERSIZE 635.9525 HARLOW)

Designing with Succulents by Debra Lee Baldwin (635.9525 BALDWIN)

Eat Your Yard!: Edible Trees, Shrubs, Vines, Herbs and Flowers for Your Landscape by Nan K. Chase (635 CHASE)

Community Gardening by Ellen Kirby and Elizabeth Peters, editors (635 COMMUNITY)

Gardening Weekends: Strategies for the Busy Gardener by Olwen Woodier (OVERSIZE 635 WOODIER)

Seed Sowing and Saving: Step-by-step Techniques for Collecting and Growing More than 100 Vegetables, Flowers, and Herbs by Carole B. Turner (OVERSIZE 635.0421 TURNER)

The Backyard Parables: Lessons on Gardening, and Life by Margaret Roach (635.01 ROACH)

P.S. – Did you know you can check out garden tools with your library card from the Tool Lending Library, and get free seeds at the Chavez branch’s Seed Lending Library? How cool is that?!

Photo: “Somers Middle School Planting Native Garden” by Forest Service Northern Region via Flickr/Creative Commons

Posted by: montclairlibrary | April 21, 2014

Poetry reading Tuesday

Photo by VH Hammer via Flickr/Creative Commons

“Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.” — Carl Sandburg

Celebrate National Poetry Month at the Montclair Library!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 at 6:00pm, six local poets will read their poetry. There will be an open mic from 7-7:30pm. Linda Brown, Past President of the California Writers Club, will MC.

Poets reading (click on their names to preview some of their work on other websites):

Photo: VH Hammer via Flickr/Creative Commons

Posted by: montclairlibrary | April 20, 2014

This week at Montclair Library: April 21-27, 2014

Tuesday, April 22, 2014
Celebrate National Poetry Month – 6:00-7:30pm
Come join us to celebrate National Poetry Month! Six local poets will read their poetry, then an open mic will be held from 7 to 7:30.  Linda Brown, Past President of the California Writers Club, will MC.

Poets reading: Grace Marie Grafton, Stewart Florsheim, Barbara Joan Tiger Bass, Heather Angier, Cyrus Armajani, Jane Flint.

“Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.” Carl Sandburg

Thursday, April 24, 2014
Toddler Storytime – 10:15am
Baby Bounce – 11:30am

Saturday, April 26, 2014
Garden Workday – 10am-1pm
Celebrate Earth Day at the library!  Come help with the next phase of our back garden development.  We will be doing some weeding, and discussing purchase and planting of five or six trees and the next steps of the design process. RSVP to the front desk or lcutler@oaklandlibrary.org.

Posted by: montclairlibrary | April 14, 2014

Ladybugs!

Ladybugs by Sharon Mollerus

Ladybug Season photo by Sharon Mollerus via Flickr / Creative Commons.

Pretty much everybody loves ladybugs, with their jaunty polka dots and aphid-eating superpowers. Here are nine books about ladybugs available at the Montclair branch, perfect for spring reading.

Bonus for fans of the “Ladybug Girl” books: Bay Area Children’s Theatre is currently presenting “Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy, the Musical” in Berkeley. BAC’s all ages shows, based on popular children’s books, are a great way to introduce kids to live theatre.

By the way, if you’re a ladybug fan in Oakland and haven’t yet checked out the ladybug swarms overwintering in Redwood Regional Park, put it on your calendar for next year. Between November and February, thousands of ladybugs converge on the intersection of the Prince and Stream trails, snuggling up in big clumps to keep warm. It’s a nice hike and an amazing sight. Photos and details: A Nature Mom | Frog Mom

Picture books:
What the Ladybug Heard by Julia Donaldson

The Very Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle

Ladybug Girl by David Soman & Jacky Davis

Can You Make a Scary Face? by Jan Thomas

Little Buggy by Kevin O’Malley (“A young ladybug is determined to learn how to fly and, with the help of his father, he succeeds.”)

Caterpillar’s Wish by Mary Murphy (“Caterpillar wants to fly away with her friends Bee and Ladybug, and she can after she becomes a butterfly.”)

Non-Fiction
Are You a Ladybug? by Judy Allen (J 595.769 ALLEN)

Ladybugs by Gail Gibbons (J 595.769 GIBBONS)

Chapter Book
Violet Mackerel’s Natural Habitat by Anna Branford (J FIC BRANFORD, ages 6-10)
“As the youngest in her family, seven-year-old Violet identifies with small creatures in the natural world, but when she tries to help a special ladybug, she learns an important lesson about animal habitats.”

Posted by: montclairlibrary | April 13, 2014

This week at Montclair Library: April 14-20, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014
Toddler Storytime – 10:15am
Baby Bounce – 11:30am

Posted by: montclairlibrary | April 6, 2014

This week at Montclair Library: April 7-13, 2014

Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Lawyers in the Library - 6-8pm

Thursday, April 10, 2014
Toddler Storytime – 10:15am
Baby Bounce – 11:30am

Pop Up TeenZone – 3:30-4:30pm
Come visit the Montclair Branch for a Pop Up TeenZone with crafts; hang out and share suggestions for serving you better!

Posted by: montclairlibrary | March 31, 2014

This week at Montclair Library: March 31-April 6, 2014

Tuesday, April 1-Wednesday, April 30, 2014
UNBOUND Book Art & Craft Contest

Thursday, April 3, 2014
Toddler Storytime – 10:15am
Baby Bounce – 11:30am

Posted by: montclairlibrary | March 26, 2014

Eyre apparent

Reading Jane Eyre.  Photo by Easa Shamih under Creative Commons.

Reading Jane Eyre. Photo by Easa Shamih under Creative Commons.

I just finished re-reading Jane Eyre for my book club, which got me thinking about all the clever ways Charlotte Brontë’s 1847 book has been repurposed and reimagined over the years.

Of course you can find the original book in the Montclair Classics section, as well as various other editions throughout the OPL system, and several movie versions.

But for a different take on the story, try Margot Livesey’s The Flight of Gemma Hardy, which moves the action to 1960s Scotland, or Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys (not at Montclair), which imagines the backstory of the “madwoman in the attic.” (By the way, FOML currently has a donated copy of Wide Sargasso Sea for sale on Half.com, with all proceeds going to the library.)

For something completely different, The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde (also available as an audiobook) drops book-hopping literary detective Thursday Next into the pages of Jane Eyre to figure out who is kidnapping characters from works of literature.

In Jane, the Fox, and Me, a graphic novel by Fanny Britt (not at Montclair), a lonely girl identifies with Jane Eyre.

Brontë apparently drew much of the story of Jane Eyre from experiences in her own life or her siblings’. Becoming Jane Eyre by Sheila Kohler (not at Montclair), biographical fiction about the Brontës, explores the connections.

And finally, in the vein (so to speak) of genre-bending books like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies there’s Jane Slayre: The Literary Classic with a Blood-Sucking Twist by Sherri Browning Erwin (not at Montclair – also available as an audiobook), in which Jane is a vampire slayer and Rochester’s wife is a werewolf. Yikes!

What’s your favorite riff on a classic novel?

Posted by: montclairlibrary | March 24, 2014

This week at Montclair Library: March 24-30, 2014

Thursday, March 27, 2014
Toddler Storytime – 10:15am
Baby Bounce – 11:30am

Posted by: montclairlibrary | March 17, 2014

This week at Montclair Library: March 17-23, 2014

Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Montclair Branch History Event – 6:00pm
Learn more about your neighborhood branch and its rich history.  Come join us for a presentation by Oakland History Room librarian Kathleen DiGiovanni about the history of the Montclair Branch.  This should be a fun event – come join others who love the Montclair Library!

Thursday, March 20, 2014
Toddler Storytime – 10:15am
Baby Bounce – 11:30am

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