News & More...

Sandra Cisneros at the Library

Thucover art for Caramelo by Sandra Cisnerosrsday, February 23, 2017, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.: Sandra Cisneros, world-renowned author of Caramelo and The House on Mango Street, will join Thursday’s Talk About Literature in Kansas (TALK) program by phone to discuss her work, her life, and her views on contemporary immigration.

Cisneros is known for her experiments with literary form and her challenging of social conventions as well as the personal intimacy which she includes in her work. She received the National Medal of Arts award presented by President Obama, as well as NEA fellowships, the Texas Medal of the Arts, and Chicago’s Fifth Star Award among others.

After seeing her book Caramelo mentioned on the Manhattan Public Library’s blog as one of this year’s TALK discussion features, Ms. Cisneros contacted the library. She generously offered to speak with TALK participants via phone conference from her home in central Mexico.

“We are so excited at this opportunity to get to talk directly with the author. She indicated that she is pleased that we are exploring the topic of contemporary immigration and is looking forward to discussing a book that is very important to her,” said Manhattan Public Library Adult Services Manager, Rhonna Hargett.

The TALK program will meet in the library’s Groesbeck Meeting Room on the second floor from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. this Thursday, February 23. No registration is required and extra copies of Cisneros’ book will be available for checkout. Please allow a little extra time to find parking, as this will likely be a popular event.

To learn more about Sandra Cisneros and her work, visit her website at www.sandracisneros.com

The Talk About Literature in Kansas program is made possible by the Kansas Humanities Council. The Manhattan Library Association sponsors the program for the Manhattan community. If you would like to learn more about TALK, please visit www.kansashumanities.org. More information about the Manhattan Public Library and the Manhattan Library Association can be found at www.MHKLibrary.org, by calling (785) 776-4741 ext.300, or by visiting the library at 629 Poyntz Avenue.

 

Posted in: News

Leave a Comment (0) →

The House that Healed

By Marcia Allen, Technical Services and Collections Manager

Rise: How a House Built a FamilyNew to the library is a nonfiction book that speaks of unbelievable determination and courage.  Author Cara Brookins wrote the book to chronicle an experience she shared with her four children.  Rise: How a House Built a Family is an inspirational story that you won’t want to miss.

Brookins, the mother of three children, met and married a man who appeared to be an ideal partner.  He seemed to care deeply about her children, and the couple had another child sometime later.  But things began to go very badly.  Her husband scheduled and paid for a conference room for a presentation to which no one was invited.  He repeatedly threatened his wife with murder.  The children learned early to flee to their rooms and lock the doors to avoid irrational confrontations.  Fearing the increasingly frightening outbursts resulting from her husband’s schizophrenia and worried about her children’s safety, Cara filed for divorce.

The dissolution of her marriage left Cara with one troublesome problem: at some point soon, she and her children would have no place to live.  While the mother had a productive career, she didn’t have many resources and she also had a family for which to provide.  That’s when a seemingly impossible solution occurred to her.

Why not take out a small loan and begin building a house?  Sounds reasonable, doesn’t it?  But her plans entailed much more thought.  She decided that she and the kids (ages 2-15) could do the actual building, if they had access to advice from building supply staff and if they studied YouTube videos that demonstrated techniques.

And so, the long process began.  She bought a small piece of land, and she and the kids began marking off rooms.  They ordered foundation materials and enlisted help from others.  This after-work and after-school project became a lasting commitment in which each had designated parts.  Their projected deadlines for completion were delayed by rainy weather, warping boards, defective plumbing and routine exhaustion, but they kept struggling to complete necessary steps.

And there were other unsettling setbacks.  Despite the finalization of the divorce, her husband continued to appear at the house the family would soon have to vacate and he would make eerie threats.  Several times, he stalked the family until the police were called.  A restraining order had little effect on his bizarre visits.

There were also other obstacles.  The youngest child, who was a two-year-old, had to be kept safe around the many dangers of the family’s construction zone.  The oldest son, a fifteen-year-old, lost his best friend in a car accident.  Cara had the pressures of her job that had to take precedence over the construction.

In fact, one of the lowest points occurred when Cara suffered a nasty puncture wound to her leg.  Shortly after that, she was struck by some falling lumber which left a serious gash over one eye.  Her son took her to the emergency room where the attending physician believed Cara to be the victim of domestic abuse.  When he told her his suspicions, she replied that she knew all about domestic abuse, but this instance certainly wasn’t such.

As the work continued, something remarkable began to happen.  Mom and kids, all pulling together, began to get past the abuse of earlier times.  In fact, they became quite independent.  Any time they stumbled upon a new home-building task, they did quick studies, and each developed special talents, whether that be putting up wall board, staining cabinetry or running water lines.  Perhaps the oldest son explained it best when he reflected that if you can build your own damn house, you can do anything.

Why read this book?  It’s a testament to individual fortitude you won’t want to miss.  Plus, the start-to-finish photographs of the project are unbelievable.   You’ll want to spend some time reading about this amazing mother and her equally determined children.

Posted in: Adult Services, For Adults, Mercury Column, News, Parents, Uncategorized

Leave a Comment (0) →

Books to Read if You Like The Walking Dead

By Amber Johnson, Youth Services Library Assistant

Rot & RuinA post-apocalyptic story at its finest, The Walking Dead tells the story of sheriff’s deputy Rick Grimes, after he wakes from a coma to find the world infested with “walkers.” Survival becomes tantamount to Rick and the people he meets along the way, as they try to avoid the ever-growing zombie population. This show, for some, has become more than just a story with zombies.  It has become a commentary on the nature of violence and the lengths to which we go to survive and thrive. As the second part of season seven begins tonight, here are some books that might pique your interest.

Feed by Mira Grant

The zombie apocalypse has happened, but information regarding it doesn’t seem to be very widespread.  Mainstream news has yet to reveal what the infected are actually doing, but bloggers Georgia and Shaun Mason are shouting the truth loud for all to hear.  When they are asked to be a part of the presidential campaign, they find out that the zombies themselves might not be their worst enemies.

Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

The only world Mary has ever known has been inside the walls of her community.  The Guardians serve to protect the community from the Unconsecrated, who live beyond the wall and seek to turn people into their own, into the undead.  In this softer, less violent story, Mary seeks to understand her world and the limitations that have been set before her, wondering what kind of threat the Unconsecrated actually hold for her.

Partials by Dan Wells

The human race has been ravaged by a weaponized virus, and the survivors are currently hiding out on Long Island.  Living under mandatory pregnancy laws and in such close quarters, the community is finding it hard to maintain sanity and composure.  Sixteen-year-old Kira is doing everything in her power as a medic not only to reclaim immunity for humans, but also to keep those still living from taking each other out.

Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

Benny Imura wants more out of life than following in his brother’s footsteps as a zombie hunter.  Tom, his brother, is respected, revered and just insanely good at what he does.  In a post-apocalyptic world in which “zoms” run rampant, the job of bounty hunter has become even more important.  As Benny wrestles with his animosity towards his brother, the threat of zombies, and the truth about his family, he might just discover more about his own identity in the meantime.

Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi

Nailer is a “ship breaker,” meaning he salvages parts and pieces from old ships, in hopes of finding something to build a life on.  While fortunate enough to have the opportunity to salvage, Nailer goes home to a shanty town and a deadbeat dad.  The idea of rising above this life of poverty and hopelessness is beyond his imagination.  When he discovers a survivor on one of the boats, a wealthy girl named Nita, he has to decide what to do next. Kill her and take all her wealth? Or help her out, trusting his chance at a better life will come soon?

This Is Not a Test by Courtney Summers

The end of the world has arrived, and six students are hiding out in their school, listening to the sounds of zombies trying to get in.  The situation seems dire, but to Sloane, the world collapsed before the apocalypse happened.  With not much left to live for, Sloane gets to watch her classmates struggle to understand their new reality and learn how to interact with each other.

After you’ve hunkered down to watch the beginning of the second part of this season, be sure to stop by the library to check out these titles. Or if you’re new to The Walking Dead series, use your library card to check out the seasons on DVD.

Posted in: Adult Services, For Adults, Mercury Column, News, Uncategorized, Young Adult Dept

Leave a Comment (0) →

Fun for Kids When School is Out – February 13, 2017

NO SCHOOL DAYS

Kids are out of school three days this week, and the library has fun activities planned just for them!

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 13

9:30 a.m. Toddler Wiggleworms Storytime, infants and toddlers with an adult caregiver
Fun stories, action rhymes, and songs will get toddlers moving and learning.

10:15 a.m. Free Face Painting, kids PreK through 6th grade
Allison Booth of Painting Pearls will be in the library to add some fun and magic to your face (or hand, or arm) for the day. Hearts will be today’s theme!

2:00 p.m. Free Kids’ Movie, kids K through 6th grade
Rated PG, 93 minutes: Enter a bright, wondrous world populated by hilarious little creatures with colorful hair. Their story is filled with music, heart, and hair-raising adventures. (Our movie licensing contracts do not permit listing movie titles on this page.)

4:00 p.m. CANTEEN, teens 7th through 12th grade
Unwind with friends and enjoy video games, crafts, and snacks in the library’s Groesbeck Room.

 

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16

9:30 a.m. Baby Rhyme Time, infants and young toddlers with an adult caregiver
Listen to bouncy songs, nursery rhymes, and short stories.

11:00 a.m. Preschool Story Train, kids PreK
Stories, songs, and activities to keep preschoolers engaged and excited about learning to read.

3:00 p.m. Odd Squad Math Challenge, kids K through 3rd grade
Here’s a case for Manhattan’s own Odd Squad: Dangerous Dobbles are on the loose! We will work together to find them all and put things right again with stellar sorting and classifying skills. Then it’s time for the Shape-Up Quest in the Children’s Room. Report your findings at Headquarters and create an odd-shaped snack.

4:30 p.m. Tween Club DIY Creations, kids 4th through 6th grade
Craft to your heart’s content with all forms of duct tape. You bring an idea and we’ll make it happen!

 

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 17

10:00 a.m. Preschool Story Train, kids PreK
Stories, songs, and activities to keep preschoolers engaged and excited about learning to read.

1:00 to 6:00 p.m. Throwback Board Games Day, kids through 6th grade
Stop by anytime today to play classic board games.

young children in a classroom

Posted in: For Kids, News

Leave a Comment (0) →

Shakespeare Now Press Release

MODERN SHAKESPEARE EXTRAVAGANZA

MANHATTAN, KS—In February and March, the Manhattan Public Library will partner with the K-State English Department to bring a series of modern Shakespeare events to the Manhattan community. All of the programs are planned, performed, and executed by K-State students as part of the grant for the Shakespeare’s First Folio project. The public is welcome and tickets are not required for any of the events.

Film Screening
6:00 p.m. Tuesday, February 14
Manhattan Public Library
Watch an award-winning film on the big screen in full surround, while you contemplate the history of young Shakespeare and who may have served as his muse. A student-led discussion will follow.

Vinegar Girl Discussion
6:00 p.m. Wednesday, February 15
Manhattan Public Library
Discuss Anne Tyler’s Vinegar Girl—a delightful retelling of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, updated to current times. Familiarity with the original play is not necessary to participate. Copies of Tyler’s book are on reserve at Hale Library and Manhattan Public Library and may be checked out before or after the event.

“Shakespeare and the Military”
6:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 1
Manhattan Public Library
Students will lead a discussion based on video clips and passages from Shakespeare’s works. Special emphasis will be placed on text from the war play Henry V. Prior knowledge of Shakespeare’s plays is not required for participation.

Nutshell
6:00 p.m., Wednesday, March 15
Manhattan Public Library
Explore the dark comedy of Ian McEwan’s Nutshell. This suspenseful and comedic spinoff of Hamlet, casts Hamlet as a fetus overhearing the plans to murder his father.

“Still Dreaming”
6:30 p.m., Friday, March 10
Meadowlark Retirement home
Watch the documentary film “Still Dreaming,” then join the discussion about an amateur, retirement home production of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

“Shakespeare Now” Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Research Symposium
Saturday, April 22
KSU and Hale Library,
Teaching interdisciplinary knowledge, early literature, and culture.

Shakespeare Display
Saturday. April 22
Hale Library
Student Posters/Display, roundtables, and presentations.

To check out the books and learn more about the event series, visit the Manhattan Public Library at 629 Poyntz Avenue or Hale Library on the K-State Campus. Information is also available through the K-State Department of English website at https://www.k-state.edu/english/.

Posted in: For Adults, Press Release

Leave a Comment (0) →

Self-Help for Non-Gurus

By Vivienne Uccello, Public Relations Coordinator

The Miracle of MindfulnessI am an unabashed fan of self-help books. What better way to spend your time than by improving yourself and your life? Someone once told me that Ghandi said “be the change you wish to see in the world.” So, let’s go! Here are a few of my favorite self-helpers that are guaranteed not to bore you with platitudes.

The title of Jen Sincero’s book You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life gives the first clue about how funny, irreverent, and straight-talking she is. Sincero is the tough-loving best friend who can be blunt without ever hurting your feelings. Chapters like “My Subconscious Made Me Do It” and “Fear is for Suckers” will share good tips, teach you how to find the courage to change your life, and keep you laughing all at the same time.

What I love most about this book is that Sincero never gets preachy. Her words are always loving and often hilarious. Her main advice, which she repeats at the end of each chapter, is to love yourself and everything else will fall into place.  Plus, she isn’t snooty. Sincero uses the word “ain’t,” and phrases such as “break out the booze,” which keep her from sounding “holier than thou.”

You are a Badass has been on the New York Times Bestseller list for more than a year, and Jen Sincero professes to have helped “even the most skeptical self-helpers change their lives.” It’s definitely worth checking out.

Sincero also has a new book coming out in April. You are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth promises to be “a refreshingly frank and entertaining step-by-step guide.” From what I’ve read so far, it’s probably going to be another bestseller so you should keep it on your radar.

Another book which has helped me greatly, and I believe has changed my life, is called The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh. Mindfulness describes a state of being aware and awake for even the small moments in our lives. Have you ever arrived at work without being able to remember the drive? Do you sometimes look up from your Facebook feed to realize that hours have passed? It’s easy to get caught up in tasks and forget to enjoy the experience of being alive, but this unfortunately means that we also miss out on the joys of living.

In The Miracle of Mindfulness, Hahn shares stories and practical advice which remind us to pay attention. He gives readers practice skills which can be as simple as not reaching for the next bite of food until you finish chewing. His teaching style is loving and gentle, and after you read his book you will find yourself breathing deeper and noticing things you used to take for granted.

Finally, Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When the Stakes are High by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, and Switzler, is the best resource I’ve found for making difficult conversations end well. The book is well-researched, backed up with both practical advice and statistical information, and will give you concrete examples of how to check your emotions and speak respectfully even in heated situations.

Crucial Conversations will set you up for communication success. By taking a moment to decide what you want out of a conversation and acknowledging the needs of the other person, you can create safe space for everyone involved. Most importantly, you will learn how to speak honestly and directly without damaging your relationships. The techniques are easy to remember, and this would be a good book to study as a group. I’ve noticed immediate results from the skills I learned in Crucial Conversations and I’ve been recommending it to everyone I know.

Even though it’s a catchy phrase for bumper stickers, Ghandi did not actually say “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” He did, however, say that “if we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change.” Working on yourself can have widespread effects in your family and in all of your relationships. Now is always the perfect time to take small steps to improve your life. For more recommendations, or to check out any of these books, visit the Manhattan Public Library.

Posted in: Adult Services, For Adults, Mercury Column, News, Uncategorized, Young Adult Dept

Leave a Comment (0) →

Flipster Digital Magazines


Flipster online magazines
Starting February 1, 2017, Manhattan Public Library cardholders will have access to digital magazines with Flipster. Just click on the Flipster link here or on the Resources page, enter your library card information and access a site where you can browse available magazines. You can then click on a magazine to view it in your browser. You can also access magazines with the Flipster app, which will allow you to download magazines for offline viewing.

These magazines are available in Flipster:

  • Better Homes and Gardens
  • Country Living
  • Discover
  • Food Network
  • HGTV
  • Highlights for Kids
  • New Yorker
  • O, The Oprah Magazine
  • Popular Mechanics
  • Popular Science
  • Prevention
  • Ranger Rick
  • Rolling Stone
  • Seventeen
  • Teen Vogue
  • Woman’s Day

Library staff can assist you if you have questions and the resources below can help you get started.

Video tutorials:

Flipster on Desktop

Flipster for Mobile Devices

Here are some handy guides for getting started:

Getting Started with Flipster

iOS App for iPad and iPhone

Android App

Posted in: library services, News

Leave a Comment (0) →

Contemporary Immigration and Children’s Books

By Jennifer Bergen, Youth Services Manager

The JourneyThis year’s three-part TALK program (Talk About Literature in Kansas) at the library will focus on books about contemporary immigration. It is a timely topic that many adults struggle to understand more fully. When it comes to children, explaining what it means to be an immigrant or a refugee can be even more of a challenge. Reading one of these picture books together may help open communication.

Their Great Gift by John Coy tells a heartfelt story of a shared experience that rings true. Describing the unnamed family of the story, Coy writes, “They made mistakes and people laughed. Others didn’t understand how much they’d sacrificed.” This thin book is full of remarkable photographs of immigrants by Wing Young Huie. Each photo is striking and seems to have a story of its own.

In I am New Here, author/ illustrator Anne Sibley O’Brien shows three children experiencing the lonely and confusing transition after leaving a country and a language behind. Maria, Jin and Fatimah show bravery and courage as they find ways to fit in at their new school.  In an interview, O’Brien says she “noticed there was a missing piece” when people seemed to think immigrant children came as “blank slates.” The truth is these children “bring with them full, complete, rich lives in which they have already accomplished so much and know so much.” In her book, she strives to bring out that richness and fullness.

Jose Manuel Mateo and Javier Martinez Pedro chose to create their book Migrant in the format of a codex. The book unfolds like an accordion and is read from top to bottom. The topic is heavy, describing a mother who must take her children and leave their country.  The detailed ink drawing is fascinating as it evolves from a happier time in Mexico to their new life in L. A.

Two White Rabbits by Jairo Buitrago and Rafael Yockteng is also a somber tale of a father and his daughter traveling by various means – walking, riding atop a train or in the back of a truck. The unnamed setting is desolate and marked with homeless people, refugees, foxes and soldiers. The young girl’s voice is not distraught, though. She finds beauty in the clouds and friendship in the people she meets, but their traveling does not seem to have an end. This book could bring out questions from children for which we do not have many answers.

Mama’s Nightingale by Edwidge Danticat tackles another tough situation when Saya’s mother is imprisoned for being an illegal immigrant.  The mother sends Saya cassette tapes so she can listen to her mother’s voice, and Saya is moved to write a story of her own to try to change her situation.

The Journey by Francesca Sanna is a child’s view of leaving everything behind to escape to a new place, with illustrations that Kirkus Review describes as “playing dramatically and beautifully with light and shadow…to accentuate the family’s struggles.”

In the award-winning picture book My Two Blankets by Irena Kobald, the main character, nicknamed Cartwheel, has left her home country to be safe. But nothing feels right. “The food was strange. The animals and plants were strange. Even the wind felt strange,” so she invents an imaginary blanket of her old words and familiar things. This metaphor gives readers a sensory object — a warm, soft blanket that can cover Cartwheel with the things she loves and misses.

Similarly, The Quiet Place by Sarah Stewart describes how new immigrant Isabel prefers to hang out in a special place she made from discarded cardboard boxes.  Here, she merges her love of and longing for her old language with the delight of learning new words and piecing them together.

For another positive outlook, try Jamie Lee Curtis’s new picture book, This is Me: A Story of Who We Are and Where We Came From. The rhyming text is perfect for younger children, and it may lead to an insightful activity where children try to decide what they would take with them if they had just one small suitcase to fill.

In furthering the topic of immigration, the TALK programs this February, March and April will invite interesting discussions of the adult novels Caramelo by Sandra Cisneros, Harbor by Lorraine Adams, and Typical American by Gish Jen. Extra copies of these titles are available at the library.

Posted in: Adult Services, Children's Dept, For Adults, library services, Mercury Column, Parents, Uncategorized

Leave a Comment (0) →

2017 MLA Book Sale

Thousands of books will be for sale at the Manhattan Library Association’s (MLA) Annual Book Sale.  The sale will be held the last weekend in February in the auditorium of the Manhattan Public Library, located at 629 Poyntz Avenue.

Friday, February 24 from 5:30 – 7:30 is a special preview night, open to MLA Members only. Anyone who joins MLA will get first pick of the sale items. Memberships will be sold at the door starting at $10 for an individual, $15 for families, and $25 for organizations.

The library’s book sale will be open to the public on Saturday, February 25 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sunday, February 26, from 1:00 – 3:30 p.m. Sunday prices will reflect special deals on the remaining materials.

Bargains abound at this annual sale with:

  • Hardcover books $1.50
  • Children’s hardcover books $1.00
  • Softcover books (trade paperbacks) $1.00
  • Mass market paperbacks for children or adults 50 cents
  • DVDs $2
  • CDs $1
  • Audiobooks on CD $4
  • Audiobooks on cassette $1.00
  • Vinyl 25 cents
  • Sheet music 25 cents
  • Coffee table and specialty books priced as marked.

All of the money raised will be used to fund library programs and purchases such as new books and furniture, special events for children, and summer reading programs.  In 2016, more than $10,000 was raised to support the library.

This is truly a community event, staffed by wonderful volunteers like Roger Brannan,

Keri Mills, Elaine Shannon, Carol O’Neill, and Carol Oukrop, who devote countless hours of work to organize the sale.  Helpers from JobCorps and the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity make the heavy-lifting much easier, and community supporters like Dara’s, the Manhattan Mercury, and Community First National Bank do an excellent job getting the word out.

Posted in: News

Leave a Comment (0) →

Tax Forms and Preparation 2017

Tax Forms

Find copies of 2017 Federal tax forms on the table next to the Check-Out Desk: 1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ.  Instruction booklets for each form will arrive in February.

If you need additional Federal forms, visit the IRS website https://www.irs.gov/forms-pubs to download forms for individuals and businesses.  If you would prefer to have these forms delivered by mail, please call (785) 235-3053.

State forms, like the K-40, are available to download from the Kansas Department of Revenue’s website http://ksrevenue.org/formsii.html.  You can order forms to be mailed to  you by calling 785-296-4937 or sending an email to kdor_tac@ks.gov.

Tax Assistance

AARP offers free assistance by appointment at the Riley County Senior Center.  Appointments can be made by calling 785-537-4040 beginning January 20th.  They give priority to older persons with low to middle income and they do not help with international, out-of-state, farm, or business returns.

Riley County Extension will begin their free tax preparation service on January 30th in the Manhattan Public Library’s Technology Classroom.  This free service is available by appointment only to people whose household income does not exceed $54,000 per year. To schedule an appointment, visit https://us.bookingbug.com/home/w3710314, call 785-565-6426, or email vitataxes@gmail.com.  The maximum household income is $54,000 and they can help with 1040 tax returns and Kansas returns.  They cannot help with itemized returns, international student returns, military returns, or out-of-state returns.

Members of the armed forces can get help on base at the Fort Riley Tax Center (Building 7034) or by calling 785-239-1040.

PRINT TAX HELP FLYER BELOW

Tax help handout

Posted in: library services, News

Leave a Comment (0) →
Page 1 of 77 12345...»