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Has the pile sitting by your bed dwindled to Audacity of Hope? Here are some new books to read this fall, suggested by Children's Librarian Pam Ow and Voice Speedreader Karol Barske. To see if a book is available at your local branch, visit the San Francisco Library online at www.sfpl.org. Note: The Noe Valley Library at 451 Jersey Street is currently closed for renovation. The new target date for reopening is Spring 2008.
- A young homeless woman witnesses a crime while she searches for her missing husband on the streets of San Francisco, in poet Kim Addonizio's second novel, My Dreams Out in the Street.
- In The Sister: A Novel of Emily Dickinson, by Argentinian writer Paola Kaufmann, the life of the 19th-century New England poet is seen through the eyes of her younger sister Lavinia.
- Doris Lessing's The Cleft offers an alternative story of the origins and evolution of the human race, with the first people being female. The tale is interwoven with the journal of an elderly Roman historian.
- In Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA, Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times correspondent Tim Weiner analyzes the workings of the United States' main intelligence-gathering arm, from 1947 to today.
- Journalist Sara Bongiorni documents
A Year Without "Made in China" -- her family's attempt to give up products made in the world's fastest growing economy.
- Maureen B. Adams' Shaggy Muses, subtitled "the Dogs Who Inspired Virginia Woolf, Emily Dickinson, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Edith Wharton, and Emily Brontë," describes the intense emotional attachments five women writers had for their canine companions.
- Joshua Clark's memoir of life in New Orleans, Heart Like Water: Surviving Katrina and Life in Its Disaster Zone, chronicles the physical and emotional devastation of the hurricane and its aftermath, while maintaining a sense of the absurd.
--Karol Barske of the Noe Valley Voice staff
- Library Lion becomes a helpful, friendly presence in the library once he learns to obey the rules. After an accident occurs, even the disapproving Mr. McBee realizes that sometimes, under special circumstances, a rule may be broken. Michelle Knudsen's story and Kevin Hawkes' illustrations pay homage to libraries. Ages 4 to 7.
- A classroom of kids, including Charlie, who is the smallest one, learns some science and counting methods when they open up three pumpkins, sized small, medium, and large, to learn How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? Margaret McNamara's text is illustrated by G. Brian Karas. Ages 5 to 7.
- In Rose Impey's Wanda Witch and the Wobbly Fang, a little witch girl goes a bit overboard with a magic spell to make her loose fang fall out. Katharine McEwen illustrates this beginning reader. Ages 5 to 7.
- Korean-American Kimin forges a connection between Halloween traditions and memories of his Korean grandfather when he dresses in his grandpa's scary dance mask and clothes, in Yangsook Choi's Beyond the Mask. Ages 5 to 8.
- Sara Pennypacker's Clementine is an irrepressible 8-year-old who really does pay attention, but who still manages to get into humorous predicaments at home and at school. Clementine's fresh and honest first-person narrative is accompanied by Marla Frazee's expressive ink drawings. Ages 7 to 9.
- Bob Raczka offers an appealing introduction to 20th-century sculpture in 3-D ABC: A Sculptural Alphabet. Learn about different styles and materials, and think about your responses to the art in full-color photographs. Ages 4 to 10.
--Pam Ow, Children's Librarian
Eureka ValleyHarvey Milk Memorial Branch Library
Tell Me a Story
- The Noe Valley Library invites you to enjoy stories, songs, and finger plays with your baby or toddler at the lapsits held on Tuesdays, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30, 10:15 a.m., at Bethany United Methodist Church, 1268 Sanchez Street at Clipper Street. Preschool story time, a read-aloud program for kids ages 3 to 5, follows at 11 a.m.
Catch the Book Bus
- You can get a library card and check out books, CDs, DVDs, and VHS videos at the Noe Valley Bookmobile, which parks on Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 665 Elizabeth Street near Diamond.
Wear Your Costume
- Sherrie Dobrott hosts a Spooky Halloween Story Time, for ages 21/2 to 5, at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 30, at the Eureka Valley Branch Library, on 16th Street near Market. There is also an afternoon story time (3:30 p.m.) the same day, featuring stories, songs, and rhymes for kids 3 to 6.
Glen Park Open House
- The new Glen Park Library, at 2825 Diamond Street, holds a grand opening celebration featuring lion dancers, music, and a street fair at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13. Branch opens at 2.