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Posts by Miranda J. McDermott

Booktalking "Anyone You Want Me to Be: A True Story of Sex and Death on the Internet" by John E. Douglas

Luckily for criminals and unluckily for the rest of us, the advent of the Internet provided a new trolling ground for serial killers to scroll for victims. Millions of people are available at the click of a mouse on Internet dating sites. Easier, perhaps, then cruising the streets on the hunt. Easier to present a likeable, easy-going, good-guy image 

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Booktalking "Miss Smith and the Haunted Library" by Michael Garland

Miss Smith and the Haunted Library by Michael Garland, 2009

How is this for a Halloween treat? Miss Smith takes her class to a dark mansion that is now a library. Librarian Virginia Creeper, complete with blue hair, reads to the class about scary creatures 

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Children's Literary Salon in Retrospect: Maud and Miska Petersham on September 7, 2013

We were lucky enough to have Lawrence Webster, author of Under the North Light: the Life and Work of Maud and Miska Petersham, give a Power Point presentation about the lives, picture books and illustrations of 

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Booktalking "Heather Has Two Mommies" by Lesléa Newman

Heather likes pairs, and one of her favorite pairs is her two mamas: Mama Jane and Mama Kate. Kate is a doctor, Jane is a carpenter, and Heather helps them both with their jobs. The girl loves to go outside for picnics with her mothers when the weather is nice.

Then, Heather joins a play group and finds out that some kids have fathers, but she does not. This makes Heather very sad, but then she realizes that some other kids have two fathers and no mother or a mother, step-father, and father, but they do not live with their father. Teacher Molly lets the kids know that 

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Great Book Web Sites

I was inspired to write this blog from my terrific experience with booktv.org. I very much enjoy watching and listening to authors describe their research and conclusions that they have metamorphosed into works of literature.

BookTV is featured on CSPAN2 (Channel 66 in my neighborhood) on weekends, if you have cable TV. It features authors of nonfiction works being interviewed about their books. Following the interview, the floor is opened up to audience questions. One weekend, I was delighted to discover that they have a web site. It got me to thinking about what 

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Booktalking "Listen to the Wind" by Greg Mortenson and Susan Roth

The kids of Korphe, a village in Pakistan, lived in a very do-it-yourself environment. They were a society of farmers and weavers. The people made their own clothes and produced their own food. The kids even made their own toys. Prior to having a school, they held classes outside and drew lines in the dirt with sticks. So it comes as no surprise that the people of Korphe were able to 

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Booktalking "Will You, Won't You?" by Jessie Haas

Mad is not exactly thrilled to be spending the summer learning how to dance Ceilidhs (pronounced kay-lees) in the Scottish style. However, to her surprise, she finds that dancing is just like riding, in terms of the movement. She loves the geometry of the group dance, and she feels as though she is flying.

The girl imagined that trail-riding with Cloud would be dreamy 

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Booktalking "Off Like the Wind" by Michael Spradlin

Three businessmen, William Russell, Alexander Majors and William Waddell came up with the idea of using horses and riders to transport mail from Missouri to California to expedite communication between the eastern and western states. This was particularly important since the Civil War was approaching. Also, people were able to get news from their families in several days instead of months or years.

In 1860, the Pony Express was born, and it ran until 1861. In the spring of 1861, Lincoln's inaugural address traveled from Missouri to California in record time: 7 days 

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Booktalking "Lizards" by Nic Bishop

Stunning. That one word does justice to Nic Bishop's photographic talents.

Lizards existed 150 million years ago, along with dinosaurs. Some lizards lack legs; therefore they can be confused with snakes, but snakes do not have ear holes. The biggest lizard, the Komodo dragon, which is also the largest venomous animal in the world, can grow to be up to ten feet long. One of its favorite snacks is water buffalo.

Unfortunately, baby lizards do not get much of a childhood; they are on their own shortly after birth. Some lizards inhabit deserts, while 

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Booktalking "Book Fiesta!" by Pat Mora

The kids in this book read in many languages, including English, Spanish, Chinese, etc. They read by themselves or together at the library. In fact, a lion that looks suspiciously like one of our guardian lions of our flagship library, the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building ("the library with the lions") adorns the page 

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Booktalking "Alligator Wedding" by Nancy Jewell

I love the rhyming poetry in this book:

Where the alligators slither and slide on a warm summer night when the moon was bright an alligator took a bride.

The book is full of alligator things. The pair of alligators was married in the marshy glades, and the bride had a cobweb veil and a scaly green paw. The couple invited crocodiles, 

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Booktalking "Crocodile Safari" by Jim Arnosky

Crocodiles existed in the time of dinosaurs. In some countries in Central America, crocs are an endangered species. This is the story of one couple's search for knowledge about the ancient creatures in the Everglades of Florida. They were able to see, photograph and videotape 20 crocs, including a one-foot long baby crocodile (adults are between eight and eleven feet long). It is difficult to see crocs even when they are present, since crocs like to camouflage into their environments.

Crocs are not the only animals that inhabit the Everglades. Rattlesnakes, manatees, 

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My Book Expo America Experience

On Thursday, May 30, 2013, I was lucky enough to take a trip to the annual Book Expo America. This year, it was held at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. It will be in New York City for the next two years; after that, I believe that it will be in Chicago.

I fell in love with Book Expo America when I first attended the conference in 2012 at the suggestion of my supervisor. This event is different than most of the other conferences in the New York City area that I have attended, which 

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Booktalking "Frog Song" by Brenda Guiberson

Moisture helps frogs sing, not just the expected ribbit, but also different guttural sounds, such as thrum-rum. Think frogs are boring linguistically? Think again. Frogs and toads say buzz, chirp, bonk, click-clack, tink, plunk, brack, mwaa, and they whistle.

The strawberry poison dart frog in Costa Rica's rain forest sings a tiny song. Oklahoma's Great Plains narrow-mouthed toad makes a sound like a fly! The Surinam toad from 

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Booktalking "Flamingo Sunset" by Jonathan London

A baby chick is incubated by a flamingo couple for a month. When it hatches, its mother feeds it milk, mouth-to-mouth. Later, the bird baby rushes to its mother when a storm suddenly darkens the sky and rain pours down.

However, the next morning, a calm, bright world emerges. The flamingo grows and develops. Eventually, the teenage flamingo is 

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Booktalking "When the Stars Go Blue" by Caridad Ferrer

Relentless physical agony for a few minutes of perfection; is this dance? A whirlwind romance with Jonathan, but will it last? Soledad is an 18-year-old woman who just finished high school. She is contemplating teaching dance during the summer or portraying Carmen in a competitive drum and bugle corps. She is not the prototype stick-thin ballet dancer; would Latin Dance work for her? It's about being free, finding your way in the world, and true love.

Effusive declarations of undying love from a boy who has pined for her for four years. Intoxicating teenage 

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LGBT Special Libraries and Museums

I cataloged a couple of gay libraries in Dublin, Ireland and Albany, NY, and there has been much in the news media lately about LGBT rights since New York State began recognizing gay and lesbian marriages in 2011. I think it is awesome and terrific that people are now able to legally marry who they love regardless of the gender of the spouses. Below are some LGBT libraries and museums that I found.

Special Libraries

from the

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Booktalking "Every Day" by David Levithan

Tired of living with the same people every day? What about being a drifter who gets to experience life in different people's bodies every single day? You can never be in the same person's body for more than one day. Of course, identical twins are a different story.

No consequences for your behavior the next day. Luckily, the book's main character is the responsible 

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Booktalking "Giant Dance Party" by Betsy Bird

Lexy longs to perform in dances, but stage fright nixes that dream. Instead, she decides to become a dance teacher so that she can dance and avoid the stage. After all, dance teachers do not have to perform. Unfortunately, recruiting students seems impossible, even for free dance lessons. Frustrated, she quits being a dance teacher, but, unbeknownst to her, the 

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Booktalking "True Green Kids" by Kim McKay

Ever wonder what you could do to help the environment? This book provides a plethora of suggestions. Following are just a few of the ideas you can read about in this work.

    Watch your water consumption. Use natural light, such as sunshine. Recycle materials such as paper and aluminum cans. Reduce your consumption; use less.  
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