Novels in Verse and Young Adult Readers

Did National Poetry Month pass without your having the chance to read a sonnet or haiku? Maybe you prefer to read novels. Historical fiction? Non-fiction, even? Anything but poetry? If so, novels in verse may be for you.

The library’s Young Adult (YA) and Children’s collection has a number of interesting novels in verse that may help diminish your reluctance to reading poetry. (Critics may argue that novels in verse aren’t really poetry but few will quibble with their ability to resonate emotionally with readers, especially young adults.)  Consider these:

Like interesting rhymes and sports, try Coretta Scott King and Newbery Award winner Kwame Alexander’s The Crossover or Booked, available electronically or in print. Did you see the movie Loving (2016), which recounted the story of the plaintiffs in the Supreme Court Case that invalidated states’ laws prohibiting interracial marriage? If so, maybe you would like Patricia Hruby Powell’s Loving Vs. Virginia, which combines verse with illustration and artwork. Carnegie Medial winning Irish author Sarah Crossan’s One tells the story of conjoined twins forced to make the most difficult choice of their lives.

A catalog search for novels in verse will bring up more titles, including print and e-books. Need help finding the right title or accessing the format that works for you? Ask a librarian.

Icebergs in the Desert

There have been numerous scientific theories on how to transform the deserts of the world into lush farmlands or dense forests.  Scientists have developed numerous permaculture projects specifically designed for dry land desert environments.  These projects range from”conserving scarce water and nutrients, building up fertile soil, and creating cooling micro-climates to protect tender crops from the desert heat.”  Other ideas are”Contour Trenching Technique“, which consists of digging trenches on contour elevation lines in the landscape and trapping precipitation in the trenches” or integrating solar power and desalination technology.

One idea that has been in the news recently is an attempt by the United Arab Emirates to drag an iceberg from the Antarctica (over 5,000 miles) to the coast of Fujairah.  It will be used to provide billions of gallons of fresh water and perhaps, as The Emirates’ weather experts hope, the enormous iceberg will change the weather system of this arid country.  Some scientists question the possibility of this plan harming the global climate.

Quick Facts on Icebergs

More information on the project

More information on icebergs and climate


Popular Science Magazine….Again!

This magazine, Popular Science, is one of my favorites. This is at least my third blog on the good stuff I find there.

The May-June issue is about big machines. You can find out where the second U.S.S. Tripoli is being built on page 69.  The photo is of the finished product; so, it is an artist’s rendering.

When the oil boon dries out, what is Dubai planning to do? Pictures and big ideas for Dubai’s future begin on page 58.


Our perception ability is discussed on page 92 when we look at two orange circles and decide which one is bigger. What’s behind optical illusions? Read the article to find out.

Finally, Tommy Dunne, armorer and weapons master for Game of Thrones, explains on page 84 what it takes to build weapons from Roman and Medieval siege weapons to look and act real, but keeping in mind their safe use for the filming.

UPDATE: Fixed! Kindle Users Experiencing Issues with eRead IL App

We are happy to report that Baker & Taylor announced that the updated version of the Axis 360 (used for eRead IL) mobile app is now available for Kindle Fires in the Amazon App store. Please update to the latest version as soon as possible, as this version of the app resolves the issues with being able to checkout, return, and renew titles. To check if the app has automatically updated, you can open your app store, tap on the menu button (the icon with three lines in the top left corner), and then tap App Updates. You should see the Axis 360 app icon with an Open button next to it. If the app did not automatically update, you can manually update it.


Hi Everyone,

We heard from eRead IL, one of our ebook services, that folks using the Axis 360 App (a Baker and Taylor product) on their Kindles are experiencing some problems:

“An app update released last week contained a bug that has been causing connectivity issues for patrons. Baker & Taylor has released a corrected version of the app to Apple, Google, and Amazon. The corrected version has been released by Apple and Google into the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store but Amazon has not yet rolled it out to the Amazon App Store. Kindle Fire users looking for the Axis 360 app in the Amazon App Store may receive a message that the Kindle Fires are no longer compatible with Axis 360. This is not correct. We do not currently have any indication from Amazon about when they will release the corrected app.”  –statement issued from eRead IL, 4/18/17

It is suspected the issue will be resolved soon.


Have You Celebrated Poetry Month Yet?

April is Poetry Month!  We have some great titles in the first floor lounge that showcase the different ways poetry can speak to your heart.

Derek Walcott, Winner of the Nobel Prize and Saint Lucia’s favorite son, died last month.  We have a wonderful introduction to his decades of work Selected Poems Derek Walcott, Edited by Edward Baugh

The Persian poet and Sufi mystic Rumi is beloved by lovers of poetry all over the world.   If you know his poetry, you may want to check out a book about his life: Rumi’s Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love by Brad Gooch

Somos Como Las Nubes/We Are Like the Clouds is a moving and beautifully illustrated account of the tragic migrations of thousands of children in Central America to seek refuge in the US.  The poet, Jorge Argueta, was himself a refugee from El Salvador in the 1980s.

This Week in Space History

One of the most dramatic events in space exploration history happened 47 years ago this week. On April 11, 1970, the Apollo 13 space mission was launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida; the goal was to be the third mission to land on the moon. Two days after the launch, an oxygen tank exploded, causing loss of power, heat, and water in the spacecraft. The carbon dioxide removal system also was damaged. Amazingly, the crew (with help from many people on Earth) was able to make the repairs necessary to return a few days later on April 17.

The library has this material on the subject:

Moraine Valley Student Trustee Debate April 2017

Candidates for MVCC Student Trustee discuss issues impacting students. This event sponsored by Student Life and the Student Government Association.

Moraine Valley Student Trustee Debate April 2017

The audio of this discussion is available below: