The Way Back Machine – Best Sellers 1970

Feelin’ groovy? Step into those clogs and let’s pay 1970 a visit. Here’s the happenings…

  • Biggest film of the year? Love Story (and the reason there are so many GenX Jennifers)
  • Diana Ross and the Supremes performed for the last time together as a group in January
  • The AMC Gremlin – gotta love that car name – premiered in April.

Get back into the mood (without your mood ring) with one of these books, all on the New York Times Best Sellers List for the week of February 15, 1970. Can you dig?



1. The Godfather by Mario Puzo

2. The French Lieutenant’s Woman by John Fowles

3. The House on the Strand by Daphne Du Maurier

4. The Inheritors by Harold Robbins

5. Puppet on a Chain by Alistair Maclean

6. The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight by Jimmy Breslin

7. Fire from Heaven by Mary Renault

8. Travels with My Aunt by Graham Greene

9. In This House of Brede by Rumer Godden

10. The Seven Minutes by Irving Wallace



1. The Selling of the President 1968 by Joe McGinniss

2. The Peter Principle by Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull

3. Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex by Dr. David Reuben

4. Present at the Creation by Dean Acheson

5. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language

6. The Graham Kerr Cookbook by The Galloping Gourmet and Hubert Sieben

7. The Collapse of the Third Republic by William L. Shirer

8. Mary Queen of Scots by Antonia Fraser

9. Ruffles and Flourishes by Liz Carpenter

10. Love and Will by Rollo May

Take Ten: Floods!

With a warm-up on the way after our epic January snow, we’re probably going to be dealing with lakes popping up everywhere for a little while (which is possibly better than potholes?). Anyway, we thought we’d list a few books – fiction and nonfiction – that deal with flooding, in an attempt to convince you it could be worse. But be safe out there anyway!



Breach of Faith: Hurricane Katrina and the Near Death of a Great American City – Jed Horne

  • A view into the private worlds and inner thoughts of the victims of Hurricane Katrina to examine the aftermath of the storm and its impact on New Orleans.

The Children’s Hospital – Chris Adrian

  • Surviving in a floating hospital after the earth is flooded beneath seven miles of water, medical student Jemma Claflin finds herself possessed of strange powers that lead to an understanding of her frightening destiny.


Dark Tide: The Great Molasses Flood of 1919 – Stephen Puleo

  • Describes the 1919 collapse of a steel tank containing more than two million gallons of molasses in Boston–a disaster that claimed the lives of twenty-one people, injured 150, and caused widespread destruction–the causes of the tragedy, its aftermath, and the sweeping social changes that transformed the era.

Flood – Stephen Baxter

  • Four hostages are finally released, but they face a world suddenly inundated as vast amounts of water is released from the earth’s mantle. As the world’s cities and countries disappear under the rising seas, humanity faces unimaginable global disaster.


In Sunlight, in a Beautiful Garden – Kathleen Cambor

  • A bittersweet romance set against the backdrop of the greatest industrial disaster in American history: the construction and subsequent collapse in 1889 of the Johnstown, Pennsylvania dam.

The Johnstown Flood – David McCullough

  • In the spring of 1889, Johnstown, Pennsylvania was a booming coal-and-steel town. In the mountains above Johnstown, an old earth dam had been hastily rebuilt to create a lake for a summer resort patronized by the likes of Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and Andrew Mellon. Warnings of possible danger were ignored, and on May 31, the dam burst, sending a wall of water through the town and killing more than 2,000 people. David McCullough examines the tragedy and the scandal that followed.


Paris Under Water: How the City of Light Survived the Great Flood of 1910 – Jeffrey H. Jackson

  • Captures the drama and ultimate victory of man over nature during Paris’s Great Flood of 1910.

The Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America – John M. Barry

  • Provides an account of one of the greatest national disasters the United States has ever experienced and its consequences.


Stillwater – William F. Weld

  • In 1938, as the inhabitants of a small valley prepare for the forthcoming flooding of their homes to create a giant reservoir, three young people stumble upon the deceitful machinations of the local lawyer and preacher, and uncover dark secrets.

The Tilted World – Tom Franklin

  • Bootleggers, revenuers, an orphaned child, extreme weather, a disintegrating marriage and romance. There are no dull characters or moments in this beautifully-written story.


Annotations courtesy of NoveList Plus. Log into NoveList Plus (with your Library card) for more great book and author information.

A is for Amsterdam

Want to travel to some of the world’s most interesting places, but don’t want to deal with the hassles, costs, and craziness of arranging a trip? Let’s armchair travel instead!

We’ll start out with one of Europe’s most culturally significant cities – Amsterdam. It’s also significant to the U.S.; New York, after all, was once called New Amsterdam when it was settled by the Dutch. Amsterdam is probably best known as the city where Anne Frank lived (and was hidden), as a northern Venice because of its canal system, and for its history as a financial center.

Learn more about this fascinating city:



Amsterdam: A History of the World’s Most Liberal City – Russell Shorto

  • A historical portrait of Amsterdam and the ideas that make it unique explores the ongoing efforts of its citizens to navigate its seaside challenges and democratic philosophies, revealing the influence of the liberal ideals that evolved there.

The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank

  • A timeless story that stands without peer, this definitive edition brings to life the world of a brilliant young girl who, for a time, survived the worst horrors the modern world has ever seen–and who remained triumphantly and heartbreakingly human throughout her ordeal.

The Coffee Trader – David Liss

  • In seventeenth-century Amsterdam, Miguel Lienzo, a Portuguese-Jewish trader desperate to recover his lost fortune, enters into a partnership with seductive Geertruid Damhuis to introduce coffee to the city, and confronts a ruthless adversary. (Fiction)

The Golden Age of Dutch Art – Judikje Kiers and Fieke Tissink

  • Published on the occasion of the exhibition ‘The Glory of the Golden Age: Dutch Art of the 17th century’ at the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.*

The Good Thief’s Guide to Amsterdam – Chris Ewan

  • A novelist who moonlights as a thief for hire, Charlie Howard is suspicious when an enigmatic American offers to pay him to steal two small monkey figurines, a suspicion that becomes all-too-real when his employer is nearly beaten to death.

The Miniaturist – Jesse Butron

  • A dollhouse whose figures and furnishings foretell life events, mysterious notes, family secrets and the powerful guild and church of 1686 Amsterdam. All these elements combine for an engaging story of a young bride’s struggle to be the ‘architect of her own fortune.’

The Netherlands in a Nutshell: Highlights from Dutch History and Culture

  • Compiled by the Committee for the Development of the Dutch Canon in 2005, when the Minister of Education, Culture and Science asked it to design a canon of the Netherlands. Fifty themes detailed with a list of places to visit and websites.

Rick Steves Amsterdam and the Netherlands



The Fault in Our Stars

Ocean’s Twelve



Aerial Panorama

Audio Tour

Rijksmuseum Gallery (and Mix Your Own Studio)

Secret Annex at the Anne Frank House


Annotations are provided by NoveList Plus unless indicated. Log in to NoveList Plus with your Library card to get more great info about books, series, and authors for readers of all ages.

Indieflix Improvements

Last year, we announced our new service for streaming videos, Indieflix, which offers independent films, documentaries, and some classic movies. At that time, Indieflix could only be streamed online through a browser. Now, however, they’ve added an app to Roku, AppleTV, and XBox, so you can watch via your television. Awesome-sauce!

Make sure you have an Indieflix account through the Library, and then add the app to your device. You will have to go online to get a verification code through your account, but once that’s done, you’ll be able to stream on your TV. Now, get out there and watch some movies!

Hello (and Happy Birthday) Dolly!

Beloved country music star, actress, and all-around cool chick Dolly Parton turns 71 today. She’s definitely an iconoclast – someone who knows how to break the rules and look good doing it! In celebration, here are a few items you should check out:


Eagle When She Flies

Backwoods Barbie

Those Were the Days

Dolly: The Collection (download through Freegal)

The Essential Dolly (download through Freegal)



9 to 5

The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas

Joyful Noise

Take Ten: Myths Made Over

Ulysses and the Sirens by John William Waterhouse

If mythology is just Greek to you, maybe you need to approach it in a different way. Instead of trying to remember a list of gods and their attributes from 8th grade, try one of the following contemporary fiction books instead. Reading the following stories – all novels based on Greek myth – about the interactions between mortals and the immortals will probably be more exciting than browsing through a wikipedia page (or that 8th grade textbook…).


Alcestis – Katharine Beutner

  • Greek heroine Alcetis, known as the good wife because she loved her husband so much that she died to save his life, tells about her childhood, her marriage to the young king of Pherae, and what happened during the three days she spent in the underworld before being rescued by Heracles.

Helen of Troy – Margaret George

  • Married at a tender age to the Spartan king Menelaus, the beautiful Helen bears him a daughter and anticipates a passionless marriage before falling in love with the Trojan prince Paris, with whom she flees to Troy with devastating consequences.

The King Must Die – Mary Renault

  • Theseus joins the bull-dancers in Crete and takes advantage of an earthquake to overthrow the kingdom.

Lord of the Silver Bow – David Gemmell

  • A retelling of the legend of the Trojan War chronicles the exploits of Aeneas, the Lord of the Silver Bow, a powerful warrior known as Helikaon to his friends, as he engages Argurious, a warrior of Agamemnon, in a battle to the death.

The Lost Books of the Odyssey – Zachary Mason

  • A brilliant and beguiling reimagining of Homer’s classic story about the hero Odysseus and his long journey home after the fall of Troy.

Olympos – Dan Simmons

  • Achilles and Hector lay seige to the home of the gods, inadvertently triggering a massive conflict between humanity and such powerful beings as Setebos, Prospero, and Caliban.

Penelope’s Daughter – Laurel Corona

  • With her father, Odysseus, away and her mother, Penelope, dealing with power-hungry suitors, Xanthe barricades herself in her room and reminisces about her eventful life, from her humble upbringing among slaves to her years spent in hiding with Helen of Troy to the passion of sexual awakening in the arms of the man she loves.

Ransom – David Malouf

  • A reimagining of the story of Priam’s effort to claim the slain body of his son finds the grief-stricken Achilles striking out against Hector after the death of Patroclus during the siege of Troy, an act that results in a powerful confrontation.

Song of Achilles – Madeline Miller

  • Patroclus, an awkward young prince, follows Achilles into war, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they have learned, everything they hold dear. And that, before he is ready, he will be forced to surrender his friend to the hands of Fate. Set during the Trojan War.

War at Troy – Lindsay Clarke

  • A retelling of the wars fought for the Bronze Age city follows the stories of Paris, Helen, Agamemnon, Clytaemnestra, Achilles, Odysseus, and Hector, in an epic tale in which quarrels among immortal gods mirror the conflicts of the human heart.


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The Way Back Machine – Best Sellers 1960

I know it’s a little cold out – and our snow has stuck around a lot longer than we probably thought it would – but we should dust off the Way Back Machine anyway and take it for a spin. Of course, we should make it worth the effort, so let’s go all the way back to 1960. Here’s some info to remind you of what the world looked like then…

  • Eisenhower was serving his last month in office after 8-years.
  • The world population was at 3 billion (today, we’ve more than doubled at 7.4 million).
  • Notable births included: Bono, Ian Rankin, Nigella Lawson

Without further ado, here are the New York Times best sellers for the week of December 25, 1960.



1. Hawaii by James Michener

2. Advise and Consent by Allen Drury

3. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

4. The Lovely Ambition by Mary Ellen Chase

5. The Dean’s Watch by Elizabeth Goudge

6. The Last of the Just by Andre Schwarz-Bart

7. Decision at Delphi by Helen MacInnes

8. Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt

9. The Leopard by Guiseppe di Lampedusa

10. Sermons and Soda Water by John O’Hara

11. The Listener by Taylor Caldwell

12. Pomp and Circumstance by Noel Coward

13. The Nylon Pirates by Nicholas Monsarrat

14. Rabbit, Run by John Updike

15. The House of Five Talents by Louis Auchincloss

16. The Side of the Angels by Alexander Fedoroff



1. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William L. Shirer

2. The Waste Makers by Vance Packard

3. Born Free by Joy Adamson

4. Baruch: The Public Years by Bernard M Baruch

5. The American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War by Bruce Catton

6. The Snake Has all the Lines by Jean Kerr

7. The Politics of Upheaval by Arthur Schlesinger

8. Vanity Fair by Cleveland Amory and Frederic Brad Lee

9. Folk Medicine by Deforest Clinton Jarvis

10. Taken at the Flood by John Gunther

11. Enjoy, Enjoy! by Harry Golden

12. The Conscience of a Conservative by Barry Goldwater

13. My Wilderness by William O. Douglas

14. Felix Frankfurter Reminisces by Felix Frankfurt

15. How I Made $2,000,000 in the Stock Market by Nicolas Darvas

16. The Liberal Hour by John Kenneth Galbraith