Archive for January, 2015

Great Online Resource: Literary Classics Online Book Club

If you enjoy the classics and want a place to talk about them, you might try the new Literary Classics Online Book Club sponsored by Recorded Books. They’ll be hosting six discussions a year – the first is Hamlet by William Shakespeare – featuring one text every two months. You can pick up a physical copy of the play from the Library, or you can check out an e-version online. The audio is available through Recorded Books’ One-Click Digital service and the text format is available through the ID8 Overdrive service.

In February, they will post discussion questions and open up their boards – on the blog, on Facebook, and on Twitter – for comments. Get your classic fix this year through Book Club!

Set In: The Polar Regions

Winter has finally hit Southern Idaho (whether we wanted it or not), so it’s a perfect time to take a look at books set in places even colder – the polar regions. For centuries, we’ve been fascinated by the poles; whether in terms of isolation, distance, or frigid temperatures, it seems humans are undaunted by these extremes in our quest to conquer the Earth. Regardless, the nice thing about reading about the Arctic and Antarctic is that you can experience all the excitement and drama without actually dipping your toes in the freezing water (read: ice).

(Side note – Not sure what it is about the Poles that makes fiction writers move toward terror – the darkness, the unknown – but many of these fictional accounts are eerie…)


North Pole/Arctic


Afterlands – Steven Heighton

The Collector of Lost Things – Jeremy Page

Deception Point – Dan Brown

Icebound – Dean Koontz

Terminal Freeze – Lincoln Child

The Terror – Dan Simmons

The Voyage of the Narwhal – Andrea Barrett

Voyage to the North Star – Peter Nichols


Ada Blackjack: A True Story of Survival in the Arctic – Jennifer Niven

Arctic Obsession: The Lure of the Far North – Alexis S. Troubetzkoy

The Ice Balloon: S.A. Andrée and the Heroic Age of Arctic Exploration – Alec Wilkinson

In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the U.S.S. Jeannette – Hampton Sides

The Magnetic North: Notes from the Arctic Circle – Sara Wheeler

Rowing to Latitude: Journeys Along the Arctic’s Edge – Jill A. Fredston


South Pole/Antarctic


Antarctica – Kim Stanley Robinson

Antarctic Navigation – Elizabeth Arthur

Blood and Ice – Robert Masello

Cold Skin – Albert Sánchez

Dark Winter – William Dietrich

Dead Men – Richard Pierce

Ice Station – Matthew Reilly

Where’d You Go, Bernadette? – Maria Semple


Alone on the Ice: The Greatest Survival Story in the History of Exploration – David Roberts

Empire Antarctica: Ice, Silence, and Emperor Penguins – Gavin Francis

Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition – Caroline Alexander

Ice Bound: A Doctor’s Incredible Battle for Survival at the South Pole – Jerri Nielsen

South: A Memoir of the Endurance Voyage – Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton

The Worst Journey in the World – Apsley Cherry-Garrard

Freegal Music Playlists – Protest/Folk Songs

In celebration of Idaho Human Rights/Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on January 19th, we’ve compiled a collection of some great protest songs – some contemporary, but a few reaching back over 150 years. Whether they concern themselves with the rights of workers, freedom of speech, or even the atomic bomb, they are all examples of songs that have been used to make a statement against the status quo. And some are quite catchy, too…

Remember, all of the music – 3 downloads each week – is free with your TFPL card. Just start from our homepage and then click on “Get E-Audio” to pull up the link for Freegal.


When Johnny Comes Marching Home by Ronnie Gilbert (Album: Songs of the Civil War)

Follow the Drinking Gourd by The Weavers (Album: The Weavers at Carnegie Hall)

Bread and Roses by Utah Phillips (Album: Making Speech Free)

Strange Fruit by Billie Holiday (Album: Freedom: Songs from the Heart of America)

This Land Is Your Land by Woody Guthrie (Album: The Best of Woody Guthrie)

Old Man Atom by Sons of the Pioneers (Album: RCA Country Legends)

We Shall Overcome by Pete Seeger (Album: The Essential Pete Seeger)

Oh, Freedom by Joan Baez (Album: How Sweet the Sound)

The Times They Are A-Changin’ by Bob Dylan (Album: The Essential Bob Dylan)

Not Ready to Make Nice by the Dixie Chicks (Album: Taking the Long Way)