Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Don't Know Much About History

American History

In time for Thanksgiving, here's a few of our favorite -- and somewhat unusual -- books about the history of our country ...

Dave Barry Slept Here: A Sort of History of the United States by Dave Barry.

"In the words of a very wise dead person, 'A nation that does not know its history is doomed to do poorly on the Scholastic Aptitude Test.'" So says Dave Barry, with the sort of wry wit that has made him a beloved humor writer for close to thirty years. While not nearly as historically accurate as another of his history-heavy books, Dave Barry Slept Here is an always-amusing journey through the history of our country ... or, at least, through the typical American history textbook.

The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell.

Speaking of humor, it doesn't get much more humorous than Sarah Vowell, a journalist who manages to write researched, accurate books about history while also keeping her sense of humor firmly intact. The Wordy Shipmates is one of my favorite Vowell reads, exploring as she does the Puritan roots of our nation by discussing the little-known rift between the Plymouth Puritans and the Massachusetts Bay Colony Puritans.

The Pirate Coast: Thomas Jefferson, the First Marines, and the Secret Mission of 1805 by Richard Zacks.

The promise of a pirate story might be enough to pique your interest. But Zack's book is also a little-known chapter from Thomas Jefferson's history: implementing America's first covert operation. The plan was to replace the Bashaw of Tripoli with the ruler's brother, in the hopes that the new Bashaw would be more sympathetic to our new nation. Jefferson would send disgraced diplomat William Eaton -- with eight Marines (and a few hundred mercenaries) -- to achieve the objective. The mission was impossible -- but the results, quite surprising.

Poisons of the Past: Molds, Epidemics, and History by Mary Kilbourne Matossian.

This one might be the most unusual of the lot, particularly for a listing of American history reads. And, indeed, the chapters in this book do not deal solely with American history. But there is a section in which Matossian makes an intriguing case for a scientific explanation for the Salem Witch Trials: mold. Ergot is a type of fungi that can grown on rye -- and, if ingested, can cause ergotism in humans. Symptoms of ergotism can include temporary blindness, burning sensations, visions, and suffering from "fits" -- all of which fit the pattern of those claiming to be under the thrall of witchcraft. Mastossian makes an intriguing and surprising case for one of the darker moments in our nation's early history.

John Adams by David McCullough.

Perhaps the most comprehensive biography on one of our most unusual Founding Fathers (and later president). There's also a miniseries starring Paul Giamatti and Laura Linney.

-- Post by Ms. B

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Give Thanks

It's easy to overlook Thanksgiving, nestled as it is between Halloween and the winter holidays. Most shops swap out the Halloween decorations for the Santas and snowmen without using the time in between to spread a bit of Thanksgiving cheer.

But as far as I'm concerned, Thanksgiving has always been worth a little attention. While not as flashy as the holidays that bookend it, the fourth Thursday in November has always been a time for family to me. And, let's be honest, a time for food. Lots and lots of food. (In particular, pie. My mother makes a mean pumpkin pie.)

As we prepare to give thanks for our family, friends -- and food, food, food -- check out some of these films to get you in the Thanksgiving mood. The mad dash of December will come soon enough (even sooner than usual this year), so take a moment to relax and enjoy a few of these Thanksgiving treats.

And have a happy holiday.

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

While the Peanuts' Christmas special gets more of the attention, this Thanksgiving special is a classic in its own right. There's food, family, friends -- and, of course, football.

Holiday Reunion

All Mitch Snider wants is a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with his entire family in attendance. Unfortunately, his long-lost (and completely nutty) relatives turn to be more than anybody bargained for.

Hannah and Her Sisters

A must-watch Thanksgiving movie for any Woody Allen fan.

An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving

Based on the short story by Louisa May Alcott.

A film about the Native American man credited with bringing about the first Thanksgiving.

Home for the Holidays

Holly Hunter, Robert Downey, Jr., and Anne Bancroft star in a tale of grown children returning home to answer the age-old question: can you ever truly go home again?

Pieces of April

Opinions clash in this politically-minded family as they try to find some common ground during the holiday. Starring Katie Holmes.

American Son

A powerful film about a young man home on Thanksgiving holiday leave from the Marines -- before shipping off to serve in Iraq.


Dutch Dooley offers to give his girlfriend's son a ride cross-country as they both travel home for Thanksgiving, figuring it's a chance to get to know the kid better. Easier said than done.

Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Steve Martin and John Candy star in this classic comedy about a man who just wants to get home in time for Thanksgiving dinner -- and the guy who won't stop getting in his way.

The House of Yes

Parker Posey and Freddie Prinze, Jr. star in this raunchy Thanksgiving comedy.


A too-cool college student spends the Thanksgiving holiday at a classmate's family farm. A fish-out-of-water comedy.

Nobody's Fool

A gruff grandfather gets a chance to bring his son and grandson back into his life during the Thanksgiving season. Starring Paul Newman.

Garfield's Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is not the ideal time for anybody to go on a diet ... particularly not Garfield!

Miracle On 34th Street

Though traditionally a Christmas film, the action kicks off in the aftermath of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

-- Post by Ms. B

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dead & Loving It

This Friday marks the release of what is sure to be one of the most popular movies of the year: the fourth installment in the Twilight Saga, Breaking Dawn: Part 1. Taking a cue from the blockbuster Harry Potter series, the final novel in the Twilight series has been broken into two feature-length films, with Part 2 due out next year.

A young adult series that's become popular with readers of all ages, most know that the Twilight series tells the story of an ordinary high school girl who falls in love with a not-so-ordinary classmate -- a classmate who just so happens to be a vampire. There's also a pack of local werewolves, a band of evil vampires out for revenge, and even a scene or two of vampire baseball (see the first installment for more about that). But while Meyer's vampiric series is renowned in its own right for its devoted fanbase, it's also ushered in a fresh wave of vampire fiction, on the printed page as well as the screen. From Sookie Stackhouse's Bill and Eric (in the decidedly for-adults HBO series True Blood) to Mitchell, the vampire hero of the British television program Being Human, vampires are all the rage.

Edward Cullen -- the dark, handsome, and brooding vampiric hero of Meyer's Twilight series -- is on his way to becoming one of the iconic vampire characters of fiction. It makes him the latest in a long line of iconic vampire (or vampire-hunting) characters who have made their own (bite)marks on the genre of paranormal fantasy fiction for several centuries.

But before you buy your tickets for Friday's premiere, let's take a look at some of the characters Edward shares the spotlight with:

Buffy Summers: The character was the star of a somewhat ill-conceived movie before returning in proper form (and with a new actress) in her own television series (and, now, a comic book). Subverting the trope of the helpless high school cheerleader who gets eaten by the monster before the first commercial, Buffy is the Slayer -- the Chosen One of her generation whose destiny it is to stop vampires (and all other manner of supernatural creatures) throughout her seven onscreen seasons. Aided by her friends and her Watcher (the latter being one of the coolest librarians in fiction), Buffy kicks vampire butt to keep her new hometown of Sunnydale safe.

Lestat de Lioncourt: The vampiric main character of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, Lestat first appears in the novel Interview With the Vampire (he'd later be portrayed by Tom Cruise in the film version). Born in the eighteenth century, known for his charism and defiance, Lestat is the quintessential vampire anti-hero -- making him popular with readers and movie-goers the world over.

Barnabas Collins: The late-60s gothic soap opera Dark Shadows did not start off as a supernatural show; ghosts and other paranormal elements were not introduced until the series had already been running for six months. The character of Barnabas Collins was brought in by producers as a last-ditch attempt to save the show from flagging ratings, and he proved to be the breakout character the series needed to stay alive. Posing as a long-lost relative from England, the 200-year-old vampire moves into the Collinwood estate -- though he slowly transforms from a threat to the Collins family into their protector. (Look for the Tim Burton/Johnny Depp Dark Shadows film coming out next year.

Dave of The Lost Boys: With a title referencing the "lost children" of J.M. Barrie's stories of Neverland, The Lost Boys features a teenage vampire gang, led by Kiefer Sutherland's character Dave. Intended to be a vampire version of The Goonies, the film was credited for its successful blend of horror and comedy ... with classic results.

Dracula: Arguably the character that started the modern vampire craze, Bram Stoker's title character first appeared in a 1897 novel. Partially inspired by Vlad the Impaler, Dracula has not only become a staple of popular culture (appearing in books, films, TV shows, stage, comics, and countless other incarnations), but has defined our standard idea of a vampire -- with bats, wooden stakes, garlic, and sunlight all a part of his vampiric mythology. Although he's been portrayed by more actors than any other character in the history of horror fiction, Bela Lugosi's version of the character from the 1931 film remains a recognized classic.

-- Post by Ms. B

Friday, November 11, 2011

Time And Relative Dimensions

On November 22, 1963, President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, and the world was changed forever. What if you could change it back? Stephen King’s newest novel, entitled 11/22/63, tells the story of Jake Epping, a thirty-five-year-old high school English teacher who is presented with the opportunity to alter history. Jake's friend Al, who runs the local diner, shares with Jake a secret: Al's restaurant contains a portal to the year 1958. So begins Jake's trip back in time -- to the world of Elvis, sock hops, big American cars ... and JFK. It's the world of troubled loner Lee Harvey Oswald, and of high school librarian Sadie Dunhill -- both of whom will have an impact on Jake's life in a way that transgresses all the ordinary rules of time.

King's novel is being touted as a fascinating look into America in the 50s and 60s, as well as being a thrilling page-turner with a great premise and fully-realized characters. It's also King's first real foray into that sub-genre of science fiction known as time travel, which got me thinking about time travel stories in general.

Since H.G. Wells arguably invented the genre with his classic story The Time Machine (see below for a link), time travel stories have flourished on the printed page as well as in movie theaters and on television screens. So while you're waiting for your reserved library copy of 11/22/63, check out these other great stories about traveling through time:

Doomsday Book by Connie Willis.

Here's a novel about someone presented with the chance not to alter the course of history -- but rather to study it. Kivrin will be traveling to the fourteenth century to observe one of the deadliest eras in human history: the Black Death sweeping through Europe. While on the surface, the assignment seems easy -- she'll just receive her modern-day inoculations and be on her way -- things get complicated when a crisis leaves her stranded in the past. While her instructors try desperately to get her back, Kivrin is left to struggle her way through one of the most harrowing periods of the Middle Ages. A different sort of time travel story, this novel places less emphasis on flashy technology and action sequences, and more on the unfolding of character growth and development.

Night Watch: A Novel of Discworld by Terry Pratchett.

Pratchett's infamous Discworld series has been renowned for years for its sharp humor and witty satire of the typical fantasy tropes. But as the series has continued its grown into a fine (and funny) fully developed story of its own, with fully-developed characters and fresh ideas of Pratchett's own. This particular installment in the series stars the put-upon leader of the Watch, Sam Vimes, as he's dragged back in time to serve as a mentor ... to his younger self. And it's up to the two Vimes to deal with a revolution -- which, for the elder Vimes, has already happened.

Pastwatch: The Redemption of Christopher Columbus by Orson Scott Card.

Most famous for his young adult sci-fi series about Ender Wiggin and his fellow classmates from Battle School, Card has also written a number of other science fiction and fantasy titles. This book, the first in a planned series, follows a group of future scientists sent back in time to observe Colombus's westward exploration. They find out more than they bargained for when they discover that Columbus is acting under the orders of another group of scientists -- these from an alternate future -- who were sent back to try and prevent their own terrible timeline from coming to pass. The scientists from our own timeline send back three agents to various turning points in history, trying to find an outcome for history that won't result in the genocide of the Native American people -- but the agents will never know if they succeed. Sound confusing?  It is, but Card pulls off the the twisting, turning plot-tangle with aplomb.

Yesterday's Enterprise - from Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Trials and Tribble-ations - from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

The various Star Trek series -- there are five in total -- are full of episodes about time travel and alternate timelines. Here are two of the most famous: in Yesterday's Enterprise, the crew of the starship Enterprise suddenly find themselves in an alternate timeline where dead crewmates haven't died, the Federation is at war with the Klingons -- and only one person on board knows anything has changed. And in Trials and Tribble-ations, the DS9 crew travels into the past to the time of Captain James T. Kirk, in an episode with such plot twists (and with an impressive use of CGI technology used to place DS9 actors onto the bridge of Captain Kirk's Enterprise) that the story would be nominated for a Hugo award.

Time Traveler: A Scientist's Personal Mission to Make Time Travel a Reality by Ronald L. Mallett, with Bruce Henderson.

A non-fiction read about time travel? Not as far-fetched as it sounds. Dr. Ronald Mallett, a Pennsylvania native (who is also one of the first African-American theoretical physicists), writes about his discovery of the basic equations that he believes are needed to one day develop a working time machine. Interwoven with his personal journey about his life and family (he first became interested in the concept of time travel after losing his father at the age of ten), this book is both science thesis and memoir -- and truly original.

Time Travel Classics:

The Time Machine by H.G. Wells.
Wells's classic novel has been adapted into audiobooks, radio plays, and films.

Doctor Who - the series.
This classic British television series -- about an alien called the Doctor and his time-traveling blue police box -- was recently updated for modern audiences.

Back to the Future - Complete Movie Trilogy.
Join Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd in the famous film trilogy about an ordinary high schooler and his mad scientist friend traveling into the past and future as they try to keep their own timeline intact.

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain.
A nineteenth-century man is transported back in time to the land of Camelot.

Terminator - film.
A cyborg assassin is sent back in time to kill the mother of future rebel leader John Connor -- before Connor can even be born.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle.
Though not having quite as much time travel as its three sequels, the first novel in L'Engle's YA, sci-fi, time-traveling quartet is easily the best of the lot.

Peggy Sue Got Married - film.
A fainting spell at her high school reunion send Peggy Sue back in time to her senior year of high school -- and gives her another chance at getting her future "right."

-- Post by Ms. B

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

"Amazing things do happen, I know, but always to someone else ..."

Today marks the release of Inheritance by Christopher Paolini. It's the fourth and final novel in Paolini's young adult fantasy series, which began in 2003 with the blockbuster book Eragon.

Even if you're not a fan of fantasy books -- or young adult novels in general, for that matter -- you've probably heard about Paolini, who garnered national attention for being fifteen years old when he started writing the book Eragon. Home-schooled (and finishing his high school courses at age 15), Paolini wrote Eragon and then had the book published by Paolini International, his parents' publishing company. To promote Eragon, he toured dozens of schools and libraries, talking to audiences about writing -- and about his book.

While people were reading Eragon, the book would probably not have seen the popularity that it did had the stepson of author Carl Hiaasen not picked up a copy from a Montana bookstore (where Paolini lives). Hiaasen's stepson read the book and loved it, prompting Hiaasen to bring the book to the attention of a major publishing house, Alfred A. Knopf. Knopf promptly published the book the following year, and Eragon would go on to become a national best seller, bringing on three more books (Eldest and Brisingr, as well as Inheritance) and even a film adaptation.

Some praise the Inheritance series as an epic tale by an author whose talent belies his years. Others say the series relies too heavily on plot points seemingly derived from Star Wars and Lord of the Rings. But regardless of opinion, there's no denying the accomplishment of a best-selling teenage author -- though, surprisingly enough, Paolini was hardly the first.

The Young Visiters: or, Mr. Salteena's Plan by Daisy Ashford.

That misspelled title is not a typo. It is, instead, the work of Ashford, who wrote her amusing classic about life for the upper crust in nineteenth century England ... when she was just nine years old. The book was originally published with a forward by J.M. Barrie, and was enjoyed as such a satiric work of wit that many accused Barrie of having written it himself. Daisy Ashford was a real person, however, and she really did write this novella on her own -- along with several other works, before retiring from writing in her teens.

Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

Atwater-Rhodes was only fourteen when she published her first novel, and as since gone on to publish a book every year. She was writing about teens and vampires five years before the first Twilight book was released, and is known for her independent main characters and the strong fantasy elements in her novels.

Gordon Korman

I've been a fan of Korman -- and of Jeremy Bloom, Korman's middle-school poet character -- for years. What I didn't know is that Korman completed his first book at the age of 12, as part of an English assignment, and was published when he was 15. I wonder now if Ms. Terranova, the put-upon English teacher of The D- Poems of Jeremy Bloom, might not be based on the real-life teacher who apparently helped inspire Korman to become an author.

Zlata's Diary, by Zlata Filipovic.

Everyone knows Anne Frank, a teenage girl who kept a diary of her experiences in Amsterdam during the Holocaust, hiding with her family from the Nazi occupation. While Zlata Filipovic's story has a far happier ending than that of Anne Frank's, Filipovic has been called "the Anne Frank of Sarajevo," as she used her diary to record her experiences living in wartorn Sarajevo. Her diary is a fascinating, heartbreaking look into the life of an average teenager trying to live as normal a life as she can in a world torn apart by war.

Don't Get Perconel With a Chicken by H. Allen Smith.

Not all young writers' work ends up on the best-seller list. Still, you should check out this hilarious collection of poems, short stories, letters, and vignettes, all written by kids and teens. (Be sure to check out the limerick summing up the entire myth and legend of King Arthur.)

-- Post by Ms. B

Thursday, November 3, 2011

All About Atwood

My favorite author is Jane Austen. My favorite living author, however, is Margaret Atwood. While on the surface that might appear odd, but I think they have more in common than you would think. Plus I like to read a variety of things.

To me Jane Austen was a great observer of human nature. She had a keen eye for the everyday foibles of the average person. Margaret Atwood is also a keen observer of human nature in all its frailties. The big difference is that Jane Austen's protagonists almost always have a happily-ever-after ending; Margaret Atwood's characters are not always so lucky.

I first read one of her novels over 15 years ago and have been hooked ever since. She is an incredibly prolific writer having published over 50 books which include novels, poetry, non-fiction, short fiction and children's books over more than 40 years. She has been short-listed for the Man Booker Prize on numerous occasions and won it in for The Blind Assassin in 2000, which just happens to be my favorite Atwood book.

If you are interested in reading any of her novels, you might want to check one or more of these:

I first read this about 10 years after it was published and really had no idea what I was getting into! This was one of those moments of serendipity while browsing at my local library at the time. To this day I'm not sure what drew me to this title or how I stumbled upon. Maybe I had heard something about it at some point and it stuck in my head. No matter what lead me to it, it turned out to be unlike anything I had ever read before. The story is set in the near future of Gilead (the fomer U.S.) after a monotheatic government has taken over and forced women into becoming "breeders". Women no longer have their own name, they take the name of their husband. The main character is Offred ("Of Fred"). She tells us how this new Republic came to be and the life she had before which included a husband and child. This is a powerful statement by Atwood regarding the Moral Majority of the 1980s and the backlash against feminists of that time period.

This was also made into a major motion picture in 1990 starring Natasha Richardson and Aidan Quinn.

This was the 2nd Margaret Atwood book I read, which was about 5 years after the first. I found this while living in Germany (where the English language section at the Essen Public Library saved me!). This is a rare attempt by Atwood into historical fiction. It is also another examination of the status of women by Ms. Atwood. The story is based on the 1843 murder of Canadian Thomas Kinnear and his housekeeper and lover, Nancy Montgomery. Grace Marks, 16, who worked for Mr. Kinnear, was convicted of the crimes. Her death sentence was commuted to life in prison. Ms. Marks claims to have no memory of the murders. Ms. Atwood explores the relationship that develops between Grace and an American "mind doctor", Simon Jordan, who is intent on clearing Grace's name. We learn of Grace's life through her talks with Dr. Jordan, but we never know what exactly to believe from Grace. She seems to only tell Dr. Jordan what she wants him to know. Did she or didn't she do it? You'll have to read it for yourself to find out!

As much as I loved the first 2 Atwood books I read, they lost their place as soon as I finished reading The Blind Assassin. In my humble opinion, I think it is Ms. Atwood's finest work of fiction, if not one of the best novels I have ever read. She is once again exploring the history of Canada, but this time it is entirely fictional. The Blind Assassin is also a book within a book and it's very important to not skip that "other" book because by the end it's hard to know where the one story ends and the other begins. The book opens with the death of Toronto socialite Laura Chase in 1945. How this relates to her sister Iris, Iris' husband, a young man named Alex Thomas and science fiction book written by Laura is the roller coaster ride you will be on if you read The Blind Assassin.

Oryx And Crake (2003) and The Year of the Flood (2009)
I'm going to address these together because, although The Year of the Flood is not a sequel to Oryx and Crake, they are intertwined in so many ways. In these two books, Atwood returns to the dystopian subject she loves so well, this time involving the near destruction of the environment. The environment is very important to Ms. Atwood and it shows in these stories. From a young age she was exposed to the wilderness of her native Quebec. These family trips obviously left a lasting impression on her.

Oryx and Crake is a dark look into what could be our future on this planet. The main character, Jimmy, recalls the life he knew before the ecological disaster that befell Earth. While he struggles to survive amongst genetically altered "humans", he remembers his friends Crake and Oryx. Crake (a.k.a Glenn) was a childhood friend and Oryx was a young, Asian girl sold to a sex-seller. Life before the disaster was not a pretty one and it's a future that Atwood posits could be ours if we don't come to our senses.

In The Year of the Flood, we are introduced to another side of Jimmy's story. This time we see the destruction of the ecological plague through the eyes of Toby and Ren. They are both members of a Christian environmental group called God's Gardeners. After the waterless flood hits, they both struggle to survive. Their story, especially Ren's, is intertwined with Jimmy's. By the end, Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood will intersect. This is continues the same theme as the previous novel - the near ecological destruction of the our world at the hands of powerful corporations.

If you've already read The Year of The Flood or after you do read it, you might want to check out an interesting DVD called In The Wake of The Flood. Filmmaker Ronn Mann follows Margaret Atwood on her tour of Great Britain and North America as she promotes her book by staging theatrical versions of the book, instead of a traditional book tour with readings and autographs. The DVD includes one of these productions.

-- Post by Tracy

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Friends of the Library Book Sale @ MPL

Book Sale Dates:
Thursday, November 3 ~ 2:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Friday, November 4 ~ 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 5 ~ 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 6 ~ 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

"This is the 12th Annual Library Book Sale," says Barbara Martinelli, Vice President of Monroeville Public Library's Friends of the Library. "And the quality of donations is really wonderful this year!"

The Friends of Monroeville Public Library are holding their Annual Used Book Sale from November 3 through November 6. Items for sale will include books, DVDs, CDs, games, craft and cooking magazines, children's books and games, and plenty more. And the Friends, Barbara included, have already been hard at work preparing for the sale since the summer.

"Once a week, we'd sort through the donations [to the library] and box them up by genre," Barbara says. "The week before the sale, we open the boxes and start setting up the donations."

In fact, the volunteers work from 9:00 in the morning until 3:00 in the afternoon for at least six days straight, arranging ... and arranging ... and arranging. It's a lot of hard work, but the volunteers always seem happy to be there (and happy to be helping) -- it is, after all, for a good cause!

"Last year, the Friends raised $10,000 for the Library through our book sales," says Barbara. "We want to reach that goal again this year!"

This year's sale features something special -- a collection of vintage, antique books, donated by an anonymous source. "A Friends volunteer worked hard to price them all," says Barbara, adding that these antique books range in price from $4.00 to several hundred. (See below for pricing on the more recent items.)

While the vintage books will be available for purchase throughout the sale, those who want first crack at these special antiques (as well as the rest of the items up for sale) should consider attending this year's Preview Party, held this Wednesday from 6:30–8:30 p.m. (More details about the Preview Party are also below.)

Having seen the sale set-up firsthand, I can say the amount of books -- and the level of organization for them -- is beyond impressive! "Most patrons love our sale, in part, because it's so well-organized," Barbara tells me. "Items are alphabetized, so it's easy to shop. Come and shop!"

The Preview Party will be held Wednesday, November 2 from 6:30–8:30 pm. There will be a $5 donation per person to enter the Preview Party.

Hardback books are priced at $3.00, large (trade) paperbacks at $2.00. Small mass-market paperback books are $.50. DVDs are $3.00, CDs are $2.00.

Sunday will feature the Bag Sale. Donate $10.00 for a bag the Friends provide and fill the bag with as many items as you can fit!

Proceeds benefit the Monroeville Public Library. Our thanks to the Friends of the Monroeville Public Library for their incredible hard work and dedication!

-- Post by Ms. B