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From the Natrona County Public Library
Giving the Gift of Reading
By Kate Mutch, Public Services Librarian
December 14, 2005
My favorite presents are books, and that is not just because I am librarian. From the time I was old enough to read, I was always delighted to find books under the tree. During one financially lean year, I remember receiving a gift certificate to a book store. Oh, the time I spent trying to choose the perfect book. Finally, I opted for “And the Ladies of the Club,” by Helen Hooven Santmyer. The deciding factor? With over 1000 pages, it was the thickest book I could find, guaranteeing me hours upon hours of reading enjoyment. Remembering my own delight in receiving books as gifts, I make it a practice to give books every holiday.
The following books are some I’m giving this year and can recommend for readers of various ages.
“Talk to the Hand: The Utter Bloody Rudeness of the World Today, or Six Good Reasons to Stay Home and Bolt the Door,” by Lynne Truss, is a witty, thought-provoking book and is perfect for my dad. This is not because he needs to learn about good manners, but because he will enjoy the colorful call-to-arms about the decline of civility.
Shel Silverstein’s “Runny Babbit” is making its way to a family member who will enjoy the “billy sook” of a runny babbit who mixes up his words when he talks. This is a “feel good” book sure to make anyone smile.
The recent movie release of “Chronicles of Narnia” has brought renewed interest in C. S. Lewis’s books. Children and adults will delight in the allegorical adventures of four children who discover a land of wonder and enchantment called Narnia that exists beyond the back of their wardrobe.
Penguins are a perennial favorite and this year’s release of the movie “The March of the Penguins” is sure to make penguin books a hit. Grandkids on our list are receiving Helen Lester’s Tacky the Penguin books. In “Tacky and the Winter Games,” Tacky and his friends are in training, with Tacky being less than diligent about doing his sit-ups and eating proper training food. “Tacky in Trouble” is another delightful tale, during which Tacky goes ice surfing and ends up in Africa, where he must prove to an elephant that he is a penguin.
My favorite book of the season is Stephanie Kallos’ “Broken For You.” It is filled with quirky, but loveable characters, all of whom are wounded in one way or another. Their lives intertwine when 70-year old Margaret is diagnosed with a brain tumor. Through Margaret and her boarder, Wanda, we discover that these broken souls, like the valuable knick knacks they break to create mosaics, are more interesting and beautiful broken than whole. I enjoyed this book so much that I am giving it to four people on my list.
Need more suggestions? Drop by your Natrona County Public Library and chat with the librarians; they have loads of recommendations!
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