The Way Back Machine – Best Sellers 1962

Cloudy, windy April is upon us – which makes it a great time to finish up a few books before the nicer weather arrives, right? If you’re looking for something different, grab a read popular years ago, in today’s case, from 1962. If that year seems to be beyond your memory, here are a few events that might make it seem more familiar…

Beyond all that, we were also reading! Pick up one of these New York Times best selling books to remember the country’s cultural attitude for the week of April 22, 1962.



1. Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger

2. The Bull from the Sea by Mary Renault

3. The Fox in the Attic by Richard Hughes

4. The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone

5. Ship of Fools by Katherine Anne Porter

6. Devil Water by Anya Seton

7. A Prologue to Love by Taylor Caldwell

8. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

9. Captain Newman, M.D. by Leo Calvin Rosten

10. Chairman of the Bored by Edward Streeter

11. The Ivy Tree by Mary Stewart

12. Island by Aldous Huxley

13. Hornstein’s Boy by Robert Traver

14. Daughter of Silence by Morris L. West

15. Pigeon Feathers by John Updike

16. Kirkland Revels by Victoria Holt



1. Calories Don’t Count by Herman Taller

2. My Life in Court by Louis Nizer

3. The Rothschilds by Frederic Morton

4. The Guns of August by Barbara W. Tuchman

5. Six Crises by Richard Nixon

6. The Making of the President 1960 by T.H. White

7. In the Clearing by Robert Frost

8. The Last Plantagenets by Thomas B. Costain

9. Scott Fitzgerald by Andrew Turnbull

10. CIA: The Inside Story by Andrew Tully

11. The Oxford New English Bible; New Testament

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

13. Before I Sleep by James Monahan

14. The Rich Nations and the Poor Nations by Barbara Ward

15. Mirror, Mirror on the Wall by Gayelord Hauser

16. A Nation of Sheep by William J. Lederer

Twin Falls Incorporated

Did you know that today is the unofficial official birthday of Twin Falls? While the town had been in existence for about a year, it wasn’t until April 13, 1905 that incorporation was filed in Cassia County. New city council members (called trustees at that time) included Paul Bickel – yes, that Bickel – and Sam Hamilton, who later served as mayor. The 1905 population of Twin was about 2000, so incorporation made sense in order for the town to pass laws and make decisions for the benefit of its citizens.

So, although we celebrate 1904 as the beginnings of our wonderful metropolis (official now that we’ve hit 50,000), 1905 was the year we made plans for permanence.

Take Ten: Bette Davis

Davis in the film, “The Little Foxes.”

Silver screen icon Bette Davis was born on April 5, 1908 – 110 years ago. Depending on your age, you might remember her more for her sultry, smart, or smoldering movie roles (The Little Foxes, All About Eve), or more for her crazy ones (What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?). Or, if you’re my age, you might not be able to remember her without thinking of the Kim Carnes hit song of the 80s, Bette Davis Eyes.

Learn more about this fascinating actress, or watch a great performance, by checking out one of these titles:



Bette Davis – David Thomson

Dark Victory: The Life of Bette Davis – Ed SikovDark victory : the life of Bette Davis

The Girl Who Walked Home Alone: Bette Davis, A Personal Biography – Charlotte Chandler

I’d Love to Kiss You: Conversations with Bette Davis – Whitney Stine

Miss D and Me: Life with the Invincible Bette Davis – Kathryn Sermak

Warner Brothers: The Making of an American Movie Studio – David Thomson



All About Eve

The Watcher in the Woods

The Whales of August

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?




National Library Week – April 8-14

The Way Back Machine – Best Sellers 1991

We’re going to “spring” back to this week in 1991 for a look at the books we were reading almost 30 years ago (and if you can remember that far back, you probably don’t realize it has been almost 30 years). It was the year of Desert Storm, Rodney King, and the invention of the World Wide Web by Tim Berners-Lee. Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego debuted on television, and we were all bopping to Michael Jackson’s Black or White.

What were we reading? Here are the New York Times best sellers from the week of March 24, 1991:



1. Heartbeat by Danielle Steel

2. The Druid of Shannara by Terry Brooks

3. The Eagle Has Flown by Jack Higgins

4. Forgiving by Lavyrle Spencer

5. Cold Fire by Dean R. Koontz

6. The Plains of Passage by Jean M. Auel

7. Magic Hour by Susan Isaacs

8. The Firm by John Grisham

9. Circle of Friends by Maeve Binchy

10. The Secret Pilgrim by John Le Carré

11. The Witching Hour by Anne Rice

12. Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss

13. The Old Contemptibles by Martha Grimes

14. Battleground by W. E. B. Griffin

15. Possession by A. S. Byatt



1. Iron John by Robert Bly

2. And the Sea Will Tell by Vincent Bugliosi with Bruce B. Henderson

3. The Prize by Daniel Yergin

4. The Next Century by David Halberstam

5. You Just Don’t Understand by Deborah Tannen

6. The Civil War by Geoffrey C. Ward with Ric Burns and Ken Burns

7. A Life on the Road by Charles Kuralt

8. Millie’s Book, as Dictated to Barbara Bush

9. Riders on the Storm by John Densmore

10. Darkness Visible by William Styron

11. The New Russians by Hedrick Smith

12. The Spiritual Life of Children by Robert Coles

13. Patrimony by Philip Roth

14. Breaking Barriers by Carl T. Rowan

15. In Our Defense by Ellen Alderman and Caroline Kennedy

16. The Japan That Can Say No by Shintaro Ishihara

Take Ten: Math in Fiction

With Pi Day just passed, we started thinking about some of the times we’ve unexpectedly – and pleasantly – seen math in fiction. Sometimes it fits the plot, and sometimes it’s part of a character’s traits, but in the following books, it’s an obvious positive rational element (well, sometimes it’s irrational, and maybe sometimes negative… :).


Anathem – Neal Stephenson

  • Having lived in a monastery since childhood, away from the violent upheavals of the outside world, Raz becomes one of a group of formerly cloistered scholars who are appointed by a fear-driven higher power to avert an impending catastrophe.

The Boy Who Escaped Paradise – J.M. Lee

  • An astonishing story of the mysteries dividing truth and deception that follows the odyssey of Ahn Gil­mo, a young autistic math genius, as he escapes from the most isolated country in the world and searches for the only family he has left.

Break Your Heart – Rhonda Helms

  • Math major Megan Porter is on the fast track to graduating with honors, but her senior year is quickly turned upside-down by her new thesis advisor, the intriguing cryptography professor Dr. Nick Muramoto. As she decodes the hidden messages he leaves in the margins of her assignments and in their emails, she realizes this might be more than a schoolgirl crush.

The Doubter’s Almanac – Ethan Canin

  • An exploration the mysteries of a father, a son, and a family, as well as the nature of genius, jealousy, ambition, and love.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime – Mark Haddon

  • Despite his overwhelming fear of interacting with people, Christopher, a mathematically-gifted, autistic fifteen-year-old boy, decides to investigate the murder of a neighbor’s dog and uncovers secret information about his mother.

The Fractal Murders – Mark Cohen

  • Learning that three instructors who were researching fractals have died under mysterious circumstances, fractal geometry professor Jane Smythe turns for help to former marine and private investigator Pepper Keane.

The Housekeeper and the Professor – Yoko Ogawa

  • A relationship blossoms between a brilliant math professor suffering from short-term memory problems following a traumatic head injury and the young housekeeper, the mother of a ten-year-old son, hired to care for him.

Measuring the World – Daniel Kehlmann

  • At the end of the 18th century, two young Germans set out to measure the world. One of them, Alexander von Humboldt, fought his way through jungles and across the steppes. The other, mathematician and astronomer Carl Friedrich Gauss, stayed at home in Gottingen, to prove that space is curved.

No One You Know – Michelle Richmond

  • Twenty years after the unsolved murder of her sister Lila, Ellie’s chance meeting with the man accused of the crime leads to the discovery of Lila’s secret notebook, filled with mathematical equations that lead to other enigmas in her sister’s life.

The Parrot’s Theorem – Denis Guedj

  • After inheriting a large library of math books, Mr. Ruche, a reclusive Parisian bookseller, encounters a young boy named Max who owns a math-obsessed parrot, and enlists the help of the parrot to teach Max and his siblings the wonders of mathematics.


Annotations are courtesy of NoveList Plus, which you can log into using your Library card for more great reading resources.



Great Online Resource: Music Map

At the Library, we’re always asked for “readalikes” – that is, books that are similar to a favorite read. Well, if you’ve always hoped you could find a “soundalike,” we’ve found a great resource to help you find new music. Take a look at Music Map. All you have to do is plug in an artist’s name, and Music Map will create a chart of other artists you might enjoy – in similar genres or from the same time periods.

Go play – and then don’t forget to look up those artists in the Library’s Freegal service for free song downloads and streaming!