Noe Valley Voice December-January 2003

Books in our Branch

December 2003

This month's book list, chosen by Noe Valley branch librarians Wayne Donica and Carol Small, features the story of a Zen countercultural childhood, tales of violence in the suburbs of Tokyo, and the giant carnivorous crabs of Planet J'koot. To find out which books are available, call 695-5095, log onto, or visit the Noe Valley­Sally Brunn Library at 451 Jersey Street near Castro. Besides books, the branch has magazines, videos, CDs, and the archives and index to the Noe Valley Voice. It also offers the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, a collection of books in Spanish, and sections on women's studies and career resources. Branch hours are Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Wednesdays, 1 to 9 p.m.; Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Fridays, 1 to 6 p.m.; and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Adult Fiction

- Iran comes into possession of nuclear weapons and sets out on a course of world domination in The Road to Armageddon by Larry Collins.

- Hidden in the background of Cassandra Sales' seemingly idealistic family lurk betrayal and deadly retribution in Over His Dead Body by Leslie Glass.

- Random violence in the suburbs of contemporary Tokyo is the subject of Natsuo Kirino's starkly realistic Out.

- Smoke Screen by Kyle Mills exposes the immense, unchecked power of Big Tobacco in the United States, and the intrigue and treachery of its backroom culture.

Adult Nonfiction

- Even if your marriage is the pits, before you rush off to divorce court think first of your children, contends Joshua Coleman in Imperfect Harmony.

- Kieran Mulvaney presents a raw look at ruthless Japanese whalers and the feeble attempts of international conservationists and activists to save the great whales in The Whaling Season.

- Life has nothing to do with being a passive victim of circumstances, and everything to do with making choices, says Gary Zukav in The Mind of the Soul.

- Ivan Richmond describes his Zen countercultural childhood in California in Silence and Noise: Growing Up Zen in America.

Children's Fiction

- Anna Grossnickle Hines provides a fun guessing game for toddlers in Which Hat Is That? a "Flip-the-Flap Book," illustrated by LeUyen Pham. Ages 2 to 3.

- Although Alfie is annoyed when his younger sister interferes with his toys or throws a tantrum in a store, he still feels caring and protective toward her, in Annie Rose Is My Little Sister, written and illustrated by Shirley Hughes. Ages 3 to 5.

- Preschool children will happily go along for the ride, and may understand more than the protagonist about certain things seen along the way, when they hear Minerva Louise and the Red Truck, written and illustrated by Janet Morgan Stoeke. Ages 3 to 5.

- Louise Erdrich shows that a household object can have meaning as a provider of comfort and protection, as well as be a stimulus for memories, in The Range Eternal, illustrated with paintings by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher. Ages 5 to 7.

- In The Castaway, James Stevenson writes and illustrates his latest Hubie the Mouse story, in which the youngest member of the family is accidentally separated from his brother and parents, then reunited after some amazing adventures. Ages 5 to 7.

- Jack Prelutsky, author of many books of poetry enjoyed by children and adults, shows us that frogs, babies, galoshes, and other creatures and objects can be quite entertaining in The Frog Wore Red Suspenders, illustrated by Petra Mathers. Ages 6 to 9.

- A 12-year-old who has grown up in foster homes, run away several times, and yearned to live in a stable family tries to save an artistic woman who has helped her in Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff. Ages 10 and up.

- Teenagers Barney and Katie, kidnapped and whisked off to Planet J'koot, are faced with the possibility of being eaten by giant crabs in Parasite Pig by William Sleator, a suspenseful science-fiction sequel to his Interstellar Pig. Ages 10 and up.


Chinese Lion Dancers

- The Jing Mo Lion Dancers perform a special program in honor of the Chinese New Year on Saturday, Jan. 17, 2004, at 10:30 a.m.

Saturday Morning Lapsits

- Accompany your baby or toddler to the library's popular lapsits, featuring stories, songs, and finger plays, on Saturdays, Dec. 6, and Jan. 10, 24, and 31, at 10:30 a.m.

Stories and Films for Kids

- Children 2 and up are welcome to attend preschool story time, 10 a.m. on Tuesdays, Dec. 2, 16, 23, and 30, and Jan. 6, 13, and 27. Meanwhile, kids a bit older (3 and up) can come watch short films, at 10 and 11 a.m., including Camel Who Took a Walk, Hush, Little Baby, and Three Little Pigs, on Tuesday, Dec. 9, and Good Night, Gorilla, Harold's Fairy Tale, and Pete's a Pizza on Tuesday, Jan. 20.