Noe Valley Voice May 2003

Books in our Branch

This month's new book list, chosen by Noe Valley librarians Roberta Greifer and Carol Small, features a novelization of the last days of Sylvia Plath, a discussion of California's earthquake risk, and a children's book on the history of chocolate. To find out what's available, call 695-5095 or visit the Noe Valley­Sally Brunn Library at 451 Jersey Street, near Castro Street. Besides books, the branch offers magazines, videos, DVDs, and the archives and index to the Noe Valley Voice. It also has periodicals such as the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, a collection of books in Spanish, a women's literature section, and a section devoted to 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

- In Twelve Times Blessed, by Jacquelyn Mitchard, a 43-year-old woman finds potential romance when her car crashes into a snow-filled ditch.

- In What I Loved, by Siri Hustvedt, an art historian in New York City befriends an unknown artist and his family after he discovers his painting in a Soho gallery.

- Wintering, by San Francisco author Kate Moses, traces in novel form the traumatic last two weeks in the life of poet Sylvia Plath.

Adult Nonfiction

- A Dangerous Place, by the late environmentalist Marc Reisner, author of Cadillac Desert, envisions the seismic catastrophe that will ultimately befall California.

- Nonrequired Reading is a collection of essays on subjects including yoga and gardening by Nobel Prize­winning poet Wistawa Szymborska.

- Mary Queen of Scots and the Murder of Lord Darnley, by Alison Weir, investigates the notorious unsolved murder of Henry Stuart, who was Mary's second husband.

- In What About the Kids? Judith Wallerstein and Sandra Blakeslee discuss how to raise children before, during, and after divorce.

Children's Fiction

- My Somebody Special, written by Sarah Weeks and illustrated by Ashley Wolff, shows what a youngster might feel when waiting at school for a parent who finally--at the very end of the day--arrives to pick up the child. Ages 2 to 5.

- In Walking with Maga by Maureen Boyd Biro, illustrated by Joyce Wheeler, a young girl and her grandmother enjoy eating ice cream, seeing their neighbors, watching small animals, and talking about their feelings for each other. Ages 4 to 6.

- In Cassie's Word Quilt, Faith Ringgold names and illustrates many of the important elements in a young girl's world in 1939 New York City. Ages 4 to 6.

- Actor/writer Harvey Fierstein tells the story of Elmer, teased because he is "different," who wins the admiration of others in The Sissy Duckling, illustrated by Henry Cole. Ages 4 to 7.

- Welcome Home Swallows, written by Marlene Shigekawa and illustrated by Isao Kikuchi, explores issues of prejudice, loyalty, and patriotism. Ages 6 to 9.

- In Up on Cloud Nine, an unusual and thought-provoking book, Anne Fine shows that sometimes a friend is someone who helps you see how much other people appreciate you. Ages 10 and up.

Children's Nonfiction

- If you have a few minutes for fun and enjoy the challenge of puzzles, you will love Walter Wick's Can You See What I See? Picture Puzzles to Search and Solve, with great color photographs. All ages.

- Learn fascinating things about a very popular food--including its source, its history, and the different forms in which it has been enjoyed over the years-- in Robert Burleigh's Chocolate: Riches from the Rainforest. Ages 7 to 10.


Evening of Mystery

- Diane Kudisch of the San Francisco Mystery Bookstore hosts a reading by local mystery writers, including Cara Black, Michael Castleman, Peter Plate, Martha Conway, Claire Johnson, Bette Lamb, and JJ Lamb, on Wednesday, May 28, at 7 p.m.

Preschool Story Time

- Children ages 3 to 5 can hear stories read aloud at preschool story time, at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays, May 6, 13, and 27.

Films in February

- The library invites preschoolers 3 to 5 to watch a series of short films, including El Alfabeto (The Alphabet), Angus and the Ducks, and Caterpillar and the Polliwog, on Tuesday, May 20, at 10 and 11 a.m.

Family Lapsits

- The library's family lapsit offers stories, songs, and finger plays for infants and toddlers, at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 31.

Noe Valley head librarian Roberta Greifer contributed this month's adult book annotations. Children's librarian Carol Small wrote the children's book descriptions.