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South Branch Staff Picks

The Enchantress of Florence by Salman Rushdie

The Enchantress of Florence by Salman Rushdie

“So she became a symbol of peace, of self-sacrifice in the name of peace, for many people. There was much talk of her ‘Eastern wisdom,’ which she dismissed when it reached her ears. ‘There is no particular wisdom in the East,’ she said to Argalia.  ‘All human beings are foolish to the same degree.’” (286)

A young, golden-haired man shows up at the court of the emperor of Hindoostan with a secret. A secret “which only the emperor’s ears may hear,” and a story that has traveled generations and great continents to arrive…

But what do three boyhood friends from Italy have to do with a legendary princess from East Asia?  Part love story, part history lesson, Salman Rushdie beautifully weaves numerous interconnected stories, richly detailed against the background of 17th century Italy and Eastern Asia.  Though these tales are abundant with beautiful strong-willed women, mysterious world-travelers, and philosophical poet-emperors, there are lessons for all of us, even if it’s just that, no matter how large the world, “All human beings are foolish to the same degree.”

Also available in Large Type, Audio CD, and Ebook.

Review by A.Smith

By MPPL on February 23, 2015 Categories: Adult, Books, Fiction

Shatter me [sound recording]by Stirling, Lindsey

Shatter Me

Shatter Me

Have you ever wanted to listen to music and don’t know what to pick? Well, let me tell you about Lindsey Stirling’s latest CD, Shatter Me!, It is filled with upbeat music that gears your appreciation of the ability that Stirling has with the violin. I invite you take a journey with Stirling as she takes you through beats and melodies that intertwine to create her one of a kind dubstep songs. Join the rollercoaster of sound that takes you from smooth classical sounding pieces to more dramatic high pitched “JAM TO THIS” numbers that just make you want to jump up and rock it! I leave you in good hands with Lindsey Stirling in hopes that you too become a fanatic of her rhythms and style.

PS – By far my favorite is track 6 “Roundtable Rival”

 

Other albums similar to this one:

Lindsey Stirling, Lindsey Stirling; The Piano Guys, The Piano Guys; Escala, Escala; 2Cellos, Luka Sulic

By Maria R.

By jperez on November 3, 2014 Categories: Adult, Music

Hecho a Mano: suin a la colombiana(Audio CD) Monsieur Periné

Hecho_a_ManoReady to explore the music scene in other countries? Take an audio visit to Bogotá, Colombia with the new album by Monsieur Periné: Hecho a Mano.  Inspired by the “gypsy jazz” of the 1930s, these young intrepid musicians have crafted a new sound, mixing latin classics and a jazzy swing to create suin a la colombiana, or “swing, Colombian style.”  A huge part of their charm is in the way they’ve switched up classic jazz instruments for those from a more Latin tradition.  Listen for the clarinet and accordion, but also the Charango, a string instrument from the Andes, among many others. This upbeat, 12-track album is a great addition to a party mix, or just for listening in the car. Be warned: you may find it difficult to keep from dancing…

 

¿Tienes curiosidad por  saber lo que es popular en otros países? Toma un viaje musical a Bogotá, Colombia con el primer disco de Monsieur Periné: Hecho a Mano.  Ellos han creado un estilo nuevo y único, inspirado originalmente por el jazz gitano de los años treinta y como muchos otros géneros.  Aunque sea difícil definir exactamente, han llamado su estilo “suin a la colombiana”.  Gran parte de su sonido encantador viene de haber cambiado los instrumentos clásicos de jazz por instrumentos y ritmos reconocidos de música latina. Nótese el clarinete y el acordeón, pero también el Charango, un instrumento de cuerda de los Andes y varios otros más.  ¡Disfrútalo!

Review by A.smith

By MPPL on October 25, 2014 Categories: Adult, Music, Young Adult

Windows 8 Simplified

Windows 8 Simplified

Windows 8 Simplified

Are you new to computers? Do you need a refresher on the Microsoft Windows operating system? Don’t get left behind–pick up Microsoft Windows 8 Simplified today! Learn Windows’ newest operating system visually with step-by-step guides that will have you browsing the Internet and downloading your vacation photos in no time. The best part of Windows 8 Simplified? You can start anywhere: from the beginning or from the middle of the book, each lesson offers additional tips to fulfill the task at hand.

You may also like: Windows 8 for Dummies and Office 2013

By jperez on September 1, 2014 Categories: Adult, Books, Nonfiction

Prawie siostry Maria Ulatowska

Prawie siostry

Prawie siostry

Prawie siostry, nowa powieść autorki bestselleru Sosnowe dziedzictwo Marii Ulatowskiej jest miłą powieścią na lato.

Po ukończeniu liceum Leksi, Teo i Luśka, czyli Aleksandra, Teodora i Jolanta, trzy przyjaciółki z tej samej klasy, postanowiły, że bez względu na to, jak potoczą się ich losy, będą się spotykały co pięć lat w umówionym miejscu, zawsze tego samego dnia. Każda opowie wtedy, co się wydarzyło przez ten czas w jej życiu. A dzieje się wiele, jak to w życiu. Pojawia się pewien mężczyzna, jest więc miłość, odrzucenie, tęsknota, ból po stracie najbliższej osoby, zdrada, wybaczenie… Ale czyż z tym wszystkim nie poradzi sobie prawdziwa przyjaźń? Ta największa, trwająca przez lata…

Osadzona w trzech planach czasowych opowieść o wielkiej próbie lojalności, wierności i pamięci; o wartościach, dla których czas jest najtrudniejszym sprawdzianem.

Maria Ulatowska – autorka poczytnych książek obyczajowych („Sosnowe dziedzictwo”, „Pensjonat Sosnówka”, „Przypadki pani Eustaszyny”, „Domek nad morzem”, „Całkiem nowe życie”), urodzona i mieszkająca w Warszawie, najbardziej chciałaby, żeby można było się rozdwoić I mieszkac w kilku miejscach na raz. Tak jak wielu  z nas.

 

Maria G.

By mariag on July 16, 2014 Categories: Adult, Books, Fiction, Polish

Inquebrantable: mi historia, a mi manera: La autobiografia official de Jenni Rivera

Inquebrantable : mi historia, a mi manera

Inquebrantable : mi historia, a mi manera

Piensas que sabes todo sobre Jenny, pues piensa otra vez. A pesar de su franqueza con el público, ella se guardó bastante. Pero ahora puedes descubrir unos de sus más íntimos secretos en su autobiografía. Con su historia escrita por su puño y letra ella te guía por la montaña rusa que fue su vida. Descubre como a pesar de todos sus pesares ella logro ser Jenni Rivera, La Diva de la Banda ¡La Gran Señora!

Otros libros que te gustarian: Amando a Pablo, odiando a Escobar por Virginia Vallejo; Vivir para contarla por Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Por Maria R.

By MPPL on May 19, 2014 Categories: Adult, Books, Nonfiction

Ciemno, Prawie Noc Joanna Bator

 

Ciemno, prawie noc

Ciemno, prawie noc

Książka wałbrzyszanki Joanny Bator, która otrzymała prestiżową w Polsce nagrodę, nie jest propozycją lektury dla każdego. Klimat w niej jest mroczny i gęsty (“kraina, gdzie noce są czarniejsze, zima przychodzi już w listopadzie”, “lodowaty deszcz pada z taką zaciekłością, że wydaje się nierealny niczym filmowa scenografia”), a miejsce akcji mało liryczne (Wałbrzych).

Bohaterką powieści (horroru?) jest dziennikarka, która postanawia rozwiązać kryminalną zagadkę zaginięć kilkuletnich dzieci. Ale powrót do krainy dzieciństwa to także potrzeba zmierzenia się z tajemnicami rodzinnymi. Nie tylko zresztą one są powoli odkrywane przez główną bohaterkę.

Autorka „Ciemno, prawie noc” jest z wykształcenia antropologiem, zafascynowanym odwiedzaną regularnie Japonią. Po raz kolejny jednak próbuje się uporać z naszymi narodowymi mitami, uprzedzeniami, zaszłościami. Może dlatego odbierając złote pióro dla finalistów nagrody Nike, zaapelowała: Polacy, czytajcie książki!

Nic tak bowiem nie zmienia naszego oglądu świata i relacji z ludźmi, jak czytanie książek o nas.

 Zapraszamy do lektury  i – Naszego Polskiego Klubu Ksiazki, ktory spotyka sie 21 maja o godzinie 7 wieczorem

 

By mariag on May 5, 2014 Categories: Adult, Books, Polish

Sigh No More Mumford & Sons

Mumford & Sons/ Sigh No More

Mumford & Sons/ Sigh No More

Get out your plaid, skinny jeans and thick-rimmed glasses because we’re ready to talk about some Mumford and Sons’ Sigh No More. In all seriousness I’m definitely not a pioneer of the “hipster” movement. I like what I like, and I definitely like this CD. The general feel of it makes me want to lay on a grassy hill and just look up into the sky and find shapes in clouds. Now, don’t get me wrong, there are times when I was “gettin’ down” (as in, grooving in my chair and dancing while doing the dishes). Of course there are the tried and true singles that have music videos and air time on the radio, such as “The Cave” and “Little Lion Man”. But, that’s not all, (sounding like an infomercial here) there are special gems sprinkled throughout the album. Marcus Mumford, the lead singer, has a gravel-filled, soulful, passionate voice. There were times when I couldn’t help getting chills. I would tell you which ones, but I want you to figure them out for yourself. (It would be like giving away a twist in a book, or the climax in a movie.)

So what’s this album sound like? Well, it has a folksy feel with a: bass, guitar, banjo, mandolin, and a resonator guitar. If you’re not quite sure if you like the folk-style, this is definitely a good introduction. It has a sense of rock, soul, and folk. With time changes and key changes, Mumford and Sons make their music stand out from other genres.

Other albums similar to this one:

The LumineersThe Lumineers, Imagine Dragons’ Night Visions, Of Monsters and Men’s My Head is an Animal, and fun’s Some Nights

By Megan Y.

By MPPL on February 17, 2014 Categories: Adult, Music

Heaven is for Real: a little boy’s astounding story of his trip to heaven and back by Todd Burpo

Heaven is for Real

Heaven is for Real

Have you wondered about the mysterious and extraordinary existence of heaven? Read Heaven is for Real  to see Todd, a minister in a small town, retell the story of how his critically hospitalized son made an incredible trip to heaven and back.  Todd is taken aback by three-year-old Colton’s descriptions, marveling at how all that Colton expresses about heaven matches the stories in the Bible–despite his being too young to read.  Imagine having a three-year-old telling you that the angels sang to him and that Jesus rides a rainbow horse…Take the trip with Colton and his father through the next several years as this experience strengthens their family and inspires others in the community.        

If you like this, you may like: 90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper and Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander.

By jperez on January 6, 2014 Categories: Adult, Books, Nonfiction

USA Citizenship Interview and Test Practice Made Easy

USA Citizenship Interview and Test Practice Made Easy 2013 Edition by J.S. Aaron

Do you want to become a U.S. citizen? Learn how you can get a Green Card or prepare yourself for the citizenship interview with USA Citizenship Interview and Test Practice Made Easy.  Created with English as a Second Language user, this study guide is a comprehensive tool covering a variety of useful information including how to apply for “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals”.  From the reading and writing practice to simple steps on how to apply, this edition by J.S. Aaron will give you a clear understanding of what you need know and do to become a U.S. Citizen. 

If you like USA Citizenship Interview and Test Practice Made Easy you may also like Your U.S. citizenship guide : what you need to know to pass your U.S. citizenship test, A simple guide to U.S. immigration and citizenship, or The citizen’s almanac : fundamental documents, symbols, and anthems of the United States

By hmarroquin on August 1, 2013 Categories: Adult, Books, Nonfiction