Thursday, July 17, 2014

Paws to Read

Our Second Annual Reading Program for adults is going strong. If you haven't signed up yet, you should consider it. All you have to do is read the books you want to read, and get a chance to win lots of cool prizes. Win anything from a gift card to a grand prize drawing of an Amazon Kindle. What are you waiting for... it is summer reading time!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Captive Kitty - The Perils of Kids

If the older sentries weren't rude enough than the small one certainly is. He holds me strange, and every time I try and get away I am contorted into another position by his enormous hands and brutish strength.

Everywhere I try to hide – the child finds me. And somehow, he manages to lure me out with a device that is impossible to describe. It’s like a worm of some sort. It wiggles around and then lays still – I MUST attack it.

He gets me every time.

And the I am once again stuck in the torture that is his arms. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Captive Kitty: Food Dish

Home life is perilous.

My food has run out. It is certain that I will die soon.

I try to bring attention to my predicament with the guards, but all they do is shoo me away. What else can I do? I have scratched them, I have climbed on them, I have even attempted to lick their face (even though I am sure they would not taste pleasant).

I usually become hungry when the guards are all fast asleep. Nothing I do will make them feed me, but I try nonetheless.

I whine to them for food – they say I am loud and lock me out of their quarters.

I walk over their sleeping bodies, and they complain that I am heavy and lock me out of their quarters.

I try to busy myself by sharpening my claws or playing under their bed but they say I am annoying and lock me out of their quarters.

So I have taken to a routine.

With my agile abilities I am able to jump onto their bed and wriggle in between the fortress that is their bodies. I position myself on the fluffy apparatus that their heads rest on. Then, like a tiger - I strike!

My paw hits them smack dab in the face. This is my way of saying “Feed me now!” It is my way of being dominant. This is my way of showing them that I have not given up, and that I am not ready for death. And most importantly it is my way of not starving…    

I circle the guard’s feet as he dumps the food into my designated feeding area. He needs to be constantly watched so that he doesn’t forget – possibly leaving me foodless, and weak. He coos and talks to me, but why should I care? All I want is to feel that crunch between my teeth…

I have survived this round, but who knows what tomorrow will bring?

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Captive Kitty: Prisoner Transfer

Enjoy some animal themed stories during our Adult Summer Reading Program "Paws to Read."

This month we have Captive Kitty. Captive Kitty is a mini-series about cats for cat lovers! Below is the story of our Captive Kitty. He is an evil genius and alone at the shelter. Let’s see how things play out for him.

Today’s Adventure: Prisoner Transfer

As I count it, today is the 55th day I have been on the earth. My life started out in captivity and has continued to be such ever since.

Today though, something is amiss. The guards have been moving about frantically in an effort to sterilize everything. I think they are all insane. Just like I think it’s insane that they expect me to go to the bathroom in this little sand box. Why must I degrade myself to do so? Can I not just relieve myself anywhere?

Why the rules? Certainly someone, somewhere, made them up to spite me.

The other inmates are restless. Maybe I am the only one who doesn’t know what is going on, but when I try to initiate contact with either of my neighbors they simply turn their butt to me as if I never asked… Felines…

I have tried countless times to unlock my cell door. The holes are big enough for me to put my entire paw through, but the lock… it taunts me.  It is quite ingenious really. When the sentry comes to feed me, they have no trouble pushing down the mechanism and opening the grate. I, on the other hand, cannot apply the necessary pressure from my current position. No matter how much I scratch at it – my attempts always end in monstrous failure.

One time I got my nail stuck in the keyhole. The pain was indescribable. And I think, out of mercy, the guard pried my hand from the lock; all the while mocking me with a condescending tone, mixed with a squeaky voice. They dare to baby-talk me? I am far more advanced than they are; even with their oversized heads.

Today, though… Today is curious. The prison doors are being opened and my fellow inmates and I are left to wander the halls. There, of course, is a barrier preventing us from escaping into the outside world, but I find it strange that they are letting us have this much interaction with one another. Three fights have already broken out over territory, so I have keep my distance to this corner. Hopefully, the others will see that I am physically small, and leave me to my exile.

Time passes slowly here. Usually time rides by slowly enough in the cage, but when I am faced with physical confrontation by the other cats I can’t help but try to shrink in size. I’m a thinker, not a fighter.

An explosion of sound suddenly erupts from beyond our encampment. It is so utterly consuming that I try to position my ears as close to my head as possible. Maybe if there is little ear left exposed, my hearing capabilities will diminish. But, alas, the sound is all encompassing and I am left to wallow in anguish.

What seemed like years later, but was probably only seconds, there came a tremor through the floor. My paws could feel the vibrations, and it felt like a stampede was about to overtake our prison yard. I have lived a short life, and now it is time I accept defeat.

The prison guards stand at the gate. They are accompanied by smaller, less developed guards, but they are of the same species I am sure. The tinier ones are horrendous. They are ungodly loud, and when their feet make contact with the floor it makes me quiver. Can they not stand still? Why must they jump about like that? Obviously the intelligence level diminishes the smaller you get. Hopefully they will all digress to such a state, and leave a hole in security for my escape.

One guard decides to open the gate. Many of my fellow inmates rush forward in attempts to escape, but are blocked by the guard. As the sentry looks around at the prisoners the frenzy in the small humans becomes ever so louder. So loud, that I bare my teeth at them. I must protect myself, I refuse to go down so easily.

The guard starts picking up my fellow prisoners and handing them over the gate into the mob. They must be on a death sentence. So long, my inmates. I cared for you not, but we shared the same living space, and thus share some sort of tangible connection for one another.        

The guard is upon me now. I had thought that by shrinking into this corner I would be left alone, but no… he is coming for me. I must escape. He will not take me to death. I have done little to deserve such a fate.

I take to my paws and dart between his garish feet. He stumbles, but tries to call to me in that annoying way they all do. As if that helps… Why do they insist using that high pitch voice? I understand them perfectly when they talk amongst themselves beyond the prison yard.  

While dodging all of the other cats I am able to position myself in another place. Closer to him then I would like, but far enough away to be ninja. His glance passes over me, but he loses interest and takes a different feline in my place. I have won a great victory on this day.

This cycle of scooping up cats and passing them beyond the gate continues for a while. Eventually all of the older prisoners are gone, and only the young ones… like myself, remain. If I had any plans of world domination I would have enacted them now.

But today is not that day. The guard opens the gate and lets the onslaught of hyperactive children into the prison yard. There is a frenzy of movement and fear. My fellow prisoners and I scatter as if to avoid being captured – even though we are already detainees in this place.

I have luck dodging my first bubbling human, and the second – but the guard scoops me up and holds me around the stomach. He lets my feet dangle in the air emasculating me, and thus I scratch at his enormous hands.

For all of my attacking the guard seems less than injured. My claws are not at their sharpest and my fatigue is growing. Minutes pass… Still he holds me captive. Why? Am I to be taken over the barrier and disposed of like my predecessors?

The sentry brings me up to his face, and then with his massive lips – which are the size of my entire head – he gives me a quick kiss. Ugh. I have been defiled. I am ready to die. I stare at him in disgust and try to pry myself from his grip with my feet.

I am losing this battle.

It seemed that right then, a tiny human made a decision. My fate was sealed…

I am being carted away, beyond the barrier. Beyond my fragile existence. This, my friends, is the end.

I am placed in a small carrier. Prison bars are closed in front of my face. Solitary.

Beyond me, a child is jumping up and down. Insane.

A mother is signing a paper.

The child says “I can’t wait to take him home! I’m going to name him…”

To find out what happens to our Captive Kitty stay tuned during our Adult Summer Reading Program!

Friday, June 6, 2014

Staff Selections: Keelia McCaffrey

Why do I love the library? Well to put it simply, I just enjoy the idea of a place a person can go - spend their whole life - and learn something new everyday. Libraries can make a community come alive and unify all sorts of people just by being there. The people, events, and selection of any library is precious and fun. I will probably always love libraries, just like I will always love books. I will take my kids to the library and hopefully they will take their kids - Vive la Library! 

Keelia is a reference assistant at Samuels Public Library. 

What is your favorite genre?

Who are your favorite authors?
Alice Croggon, Meg Cabot, Shannon Hale, Kiera Cass, Gail Carson Levine, Rainbow Rowell, and many more

What are you reading right now?
Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

What have you read recently?
Enchanted by Alethea Kontis, The Elite by Kiera Cass, Underworld by Meg Cabot, Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell, and the Lunar Series by Marissa Meyer

What is your favorite classic?
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin

What are your all-time favorite books/series?
The Pellinor Series by Alice Croggon, Queen of Babble by Meg Cabot, and I am falling in love with the Lunar Series by Marissa Meyer 

What are your favorite recommendations?
Well I am very into teen fiction with an emphasis on female lead characters. My main character has to be witty and make me laugh, otherwise what’s the point, right? So if you like the same types of books that I do then I would recommend: Tricksters Choice by Tamora Pierce, The Sookie Stackhouse Series by Charlaine Harris, Almost to Die For by Tate Hallaway, and The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale.

What is your favorite sub-genre?
I like dark fantasy. And “dark” is a very broad term, but pretty much, for me, it means that I like plot elements with magic, otherworldly creatures like vampires and werewolves, witches, swords and bows, etc.

What are a few books you are looking forward to reading?
The rest of the Bloodline series, Awaken by Meg Cabot, and the last book in the Selection series

What is your favorite short story?
A Rose for Emily by Faulkner

What is your favorite play?
Once Upon a Mattress

What is your favorite magazine?

How do you get you news?
Mostly internet, but sometimes I watch the news on TV

Do you prefer books or e-books?
I tend to like books better. Why? Because I don’t have a kindle or a nook and I like to be able to hold my books in my hand. Maybe it will change later, but for now I like being old fashioned.

What type of plots do you enjoy?
Romantic comedy, and slice of life

Friday, May 16, 2014

Time to Organize!

It's that time of year again! Time to CLEAN! Spring is here and people it is time to get rid of the dust in your house and get everything off the floor. Clutter is the enemy of allergies and a healthy lifestyle so grab one of the books below to get yourself started with organizing your world!

Room by Room by Monte Burch
We don't like to admit it, but most of us have way too much stuff in and around our houses. Look in your cabinets, closets, garage, attic or basement. They're probably a disorganized clutter, with items often not stored properly, which can damage them, create stress in locating what you need, even cause an unsafe situation. The first step in storing your stuff is to cut the clutter and organize it. Room by Room shows you what accessories are available at your local home improvement and online stores to help you reduce your organizing efforts and time. The possibilities are endless.

Home storage projects: creative solutions for every room in the house by Paul Anthony
This practical and inspiring book features 18 projects designed to maximize storage in every corner of every cluttered home. A wide array of practical, attractive and well-designed projects will appeal to woodworkers at every skill level. Each project includes detailed building instructions, complete plans and a list of materials.

Cut the clutter and stow the stuff: the Q.U.I.C.K. way to bring lasting order to household chaos by Lori Baird
Discover your unique clutter style-- and how to make it work for you, not against you, in the fight with clutter. Take the clutter quiz on page 8. Once you know your clutter style, you'll finally understand why you feel compelled to collect every style of Spode teacup produced since 1856...or stash a year's worth of newspapers under the bed...or keep your 45-year-old son's high school football jerseys "just in case." And you'll find effective strategies to turn those tendencies to your advantage! Rediscover your rooms, find storage space you never knew you had, clear out the kids' rooms without starting a war, and make all those piles of paper disappear like magic.

Throw out fifty things: clear the clutter, find your life by Gail Blanke
"If you want to grow, you gotta let go," is Blanke's mantra; and that means eliminating all the clutter-physical and emotional-that holds you back, weighs you down, or just makes you feel bad about yourself. In Throw Out Fifty Things she takes us through each room of the house-from the attic to the garage-and even to the far reaches of our minds. Through poignant and humorous stories, she inspires us to get rid of the "life plaque" we've allowed to build-up there.

Easy home organizer: 15-minute step-by-step solutions by Vicki Payne

Are things at home out of hand? Is the thought of putting things in order just…overwhelming? With these simple, quickly implemented solutions, life can become less stressful—and the messy habits of a lifetime will disappear along with the chaos. The focus is on the little things that make a big difference—like not having to search for the car keys at the last minute—and the book is as organized as the house will be when you’re through: it begins with advice on assessing the accumulated junk and eliminating the excess, and moves on to shopping for containers, applying clutter strategies, labeling jars and boxes, and creating a proper place for everything, room by room. The ideas are smart and attractive!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Chick Lit Part. 1

Here at SPL we love ourselves some chick lit! Don't know what chick lit is? Well... Chick lit is a genre of fiction which addresses issues of modern womanhood, often humorously and lightheartedly. In other words, books for girls that will make us laugh and carry on (which we do so well anyways). Check out some of the books below to be on your way to becoming a chick lit addict! 

Insatiable by Meg Cabot
Sick of hearing about vampires? So is Meena Harper. But her boss is making her write about them anyway, even though Meena doesn't believe in them. Not that Meena isn't familiar with the supernatural. See, Meena Harper knows how you're going to die (not that you're going to believe her. No one ever does). But not even Meena's precognition can prepare her for what happens when she meets - then makes the mistake of falling in love with - Lucien Antonescu, a modern-day prince with a bit of a dark side...a dark side a lot of people, like an ancient society of vampire-hunters, would prefer to see him dead for. The problem is, Lucien's already dead. Maybe that's why he's the first guy Meena's ever met that she could see herself having a future with. See, while Meena's always been able to see everyone else's future, she's never been able look into her own. And while Lucien seems like everything Meena has ever dreamed of in a boyfriend, he might turn out to be more like a nightmare. Now might be a good time for Meena to start learning to predict her own future... If she even has one.

The Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Bank
Hailed by critics as the debut of a major literary voice, The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing has captivated readers and dominated bestseller lists. Generous-hearted and wickedly insightful, it maps the progress of Jane Rosenal as she sets out on a personal and spirited expedition through the perilous terrain of sex, love, relationships, and the treacherous waters of the workplace. With an unforgettable comic touch, Bank skillfully teases out universal issues, puts a clever, new spin on the mating dance, and captures in perfect pitch what it's like to be a young woman coming of age in America today.

The House on Willow Street by Kelly Cathy
The Irish seaside town of Avalon is a tourist’s dream of quaint shops and welcoming caf├ęs. Avalon House, perched at the end of Willow Street, was in Tess Power’s family for generations. Now Tess ekes out a living from her antiques shop while the crumbling mansion awaits a new owner. Her marriage and business may be floundering, but her affection for Avalon is undimmed. The same can’t be said of her glamorous sister. Suki left without a backward glance and married into an American political dynasty. Only a muckraking biographer could send her slinking back to Ireland to escape a scandal. Postmistress Danae watches from the sidelines, doling out gentle advice while locking away her own secrets. Then her unconventional niece Mara comes to stay and draws her lonely aunt back into the world. As autumn gives way to winter, the four women encounter old loves, embrace new friendships, and begin to look beyond the past to the possibilities just beginning to unfold.

Girls' Poker Night: A Novel by Jill Davis
Dissatisfied both with writing a “Single Girl on the Edge/ Ledge/Verge” lifestyle column and with her boyfriend (who has a name for his car and compulsively collects plastic bread ties), Ruby Capote sends her best columns and a six-pack of beer to the editor of The New York News and lands herself a new job in a new city. In New York, Ruby undertakes the venerable tradition of Poker Night—a way (as men have always known) to eat, drink, smoke, analyze, interrupt one another, share stories, and, most of all, raise the stakes. There’s Skorka, model by profession, homewrecker by vocation; Jenn, willing to cross county lines for true love; Danielle, recently divorced, seducer of at least one father/son combo in her quest to make up for perceived “missed opportunities.” When Ruby falls for her boss, Michael, all bets are off. He’s a challenge. He’s her editor. And he wants her to stop being quippy and clever and become the writer—and the woman—he knows she can be. Adding to Ruby’s uncertainty is his amazing yet ambiguous kiss in the elevator, and the enjoyably torturous impasse of he-loves-me, he-loves-me-not.

Calendar Girl by Naomi Neale
Nan's career as a "Cheer Facilitator" for Seasonal Staffers, Inc., leaves something to be desired. Her previous boyfriend turned out to be a self-centered lothario, and the man she has worshiped from afar since college just announced his "pre-engagement" to another woman. Then Nan's friends and fellow members of the Elizabethan Failures Society, who have been listening to her for years, tell her to stop whining and do something about her unhappiness. So when Colm Iverson, artist and department-store heir, walks into her life, Nan realizes it really is up to her to keep him from walking back out.