Sir Callie

#1 Sir Callie and the Champions of Helston, #2 Sir Callie and the Dragon’s Roost,

Author: Symes- Smith, Esme
Call number: T FIC SYM and Libby
Reviewer: Randy Morgan
Date: May 15, 2024

Sir Callie and the Champions of HelstonCallie’s greatest dream is to become a knight, just like Papa. When Papa is summoned to Helston to teach the young prince how to fight, Callie seizes the opportunity to prove their worthiness to be a knight. Here, Callie makes lifelong friends; twins Edwyn and Elowen, plus the crown prince, Willow. 

Esme has created a magical fantasy with magic, dragons, and swords. Esme and Callie’s activism for inclusivity and acceptance knows no bounds. These books will inspire you to help others utilize their strengths and improve weaknesses. I am excited for the third book to come out.

#3 Sir Callie and the Witch’s War will be released October 29, 2024.



Gentleman Bastard

#1 The Lies of Locke Lamora, #2 Sed Seas Under Red Skies, #3 The Republic of Thieves

Author: Lynch, Scott
Narrator: Page, Michael
Call number: FIC LYN and Libby
Reviewer: Randy Morgan
Date: April 24, 2024

Gentleman Bastard Sequence Series 3 Books Collection Set By Scott Lynch(The Lies of Locke Lamora, Red Seas Under Red Skies...“An orphan’s life is harsh—and often short—in the mysterious island city of Camorr. But young Locke Lamora dodges death and slavery, becoming a thief under the tutelage of a gifted con artist. As leader of the band of light-fingered brothers known as the Gentleman Bastards, Locke is soon infamous, fooling even the underworld’s most feared ruler. But in the shadows lurks someone still more ambitious and deadly. Faced with a bloody coup that threatens to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the enemy at his own brutal game—or die trying.”

A friend recommended Gentleman Bastards to me and once I started reading, I could not stop. The writing is so good, I could not come up with a smiliarly insightful synopsis. Scott Lynch filled this series with wit, comradery, action, and schemes that are intricately woven so nothing is insignificant. Gentleman Bastard is hyped as a "high fantasy" but the magic and mythical beings are easy to navigate, creating the perfect combination for general fiction readers to test the waters of fantasy.

5 Chairs 5 Choices

Author: Louise Evans
Call#: 658.4 EVA
Reviewer: Sonja Downey
Date: April 21, 2024

5 CHAIRS 5 CHOICES: Own your behaviours, master your communication, determine your success. (English Edition)To say it in the author's own words, the concept of the 5 chairs 5 choices program is to "choose an attitude in life which conscientiously contributes to happiness and success of everyone, both at work and at home!".

I find the concept of the book unique and innovative. It can be applied to all situations in life, at home or at work. The figurative chairs the concept is based on are:
The Attack Chair
The Self-Doubt Chair
The Wait Chair
The Detect Chair
The Connect Chair

In any given situation we sit down in one of these chairs whether conscientiously or by habit. But it is our choice to get back up and choose another chair to handle a situation differently. WIth self-awareness and the understanding of other people among other things we can learn to manage challenging situations in a way that will avoid misunderstandings, hard feelings or conflict.

I read this book cover to cover first and then went straight back and read it again taking copious notes. This method is very adaptable to everyday life.

The Atlas

Book Titles: The Atlas Six, The Atlas Paradox, and The Atlas Complex

Author: Blake, Olivie
Narrator: Full Cast
Call number: LP FIC BLA
Reviewer: Randy Morgan
Date: April 18, 2024

The Atlas SixWhat happens when the six most powerful medians gain unlimited access to knowledge and power? They will make, break, and repeat to satiate the need for more.

Olivie Blake has created a philosophical masterpiece about humanity's obsession with love, death, and power. Her focus on character development and diversity allows readers to sympathize and justify character choices. The primary focus of this series is power which means the world building and action is minimal. However, these are some of the qualities I like about this series.

It makes perfect sense, it makes no sense, it's insane, it's a masterpiece.


When Stars are Scattered

Author: Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed
Narrator: Full Cast
Call number: Libby
Reviewer: Randy Morgan
Date: March 1, 2024

When Stars Are ScatteredOmar works incredibly hard to follow his mother’s wishes- to protect and provide for his little brother, Hassan. This is an incredible undertaking for a preschooler. The burden is increased by Hassan’s seizures and nonverbal communication. To top it all off, they live in Dadaab, a refugee camp in Kenya.

But, Omar loves to learn and often relishes tutoring from children who attend school. When Omar is given an opportunity to enroll in school, he hesitates. What will happen to Hassan? Does it affect the chances of relocation? Is this what Mom wants?

This audio book is PHENOMENAL! Listing to it was like listing to a movie. The full cast and sound effects really brought this story to life. I found myself double checking for cars as I was walking or children as I was driving. The end of the book has an epilogue with author’s notes that everyone must listen to.

When Stars Are Scattered started as a juvenile graphic novel depicting Omar Mohamed’s experiences as a refugee. Victoria Jamieson’s illustrations are vibrant and humbly detailed. The audio and graphic novels dutifully touch on troubling experiences of: bullying, child starvation, sports, education, homelessness, foster care, death, child marriage, migration, and war.

The audio and print version can be ordered through our MelCat service.

Further information on Omar Mohamed (and how I found this novel)

Native American Heritage

Book Recommendation List

November is National Native American Heritage Month. Our community has a rich history of this culture. Join us in celebrating by reading a title from this list of books selected on the Native American experience.

Native American Heritage Book List


Author: Jo Weaver
Call #: EASY WEA
Reviewer: Mary Beth Reasoner, Children's Librarian
Date: May 24, 2023

Bibi: Weaver, Jo: 9781682635537: Books    Bibi – Peachtree Publishing Company Inc.

Bibi is an elderly flamingo who looks out for the flock, and especially the babies - but when it looks like she may not be able to migrate, the rest of the flock tells her it is their turn to look out for her.

I love this picture book!  The story is gently told with a lot of respect and mutual love between the generations.
As I finished reading it, I said to myself, "Yup! This is one I will buy for my personal collection!" 



a story about color blindness

Author: Julie Anderson
Call #: J 617.759 AND
Reviewer: Mary Beth Reasoner, Children's Librarian
Date: May 24, 2023

book jacket       ヤフオク! - ☆送料無料【絵本】エリックの赤・緑(原題:Erik the...

When Erik begins having problems in school and on the soccer field, he discovers that he is color blind.
Endnotes: All about color and vision

I am including this children's book about color blindness in my reviews in hopes it will catch the attention of families who may be dealing with this issue. The illustrations are delightful. The story is well-told and the parents and teachers are portrayed as responsible. His classmates end up being helpful in helping Erik deal with his diagnosed color blindness.

It reminds me slightly of my own experience in not being able to read the chalkboard writings in third grade and thinking I was dumb.  But no, I just needed glasses!

Children's DVDs

Mary Beth Reasoner

Children's Librarian


The Children's DVD Collection contains
stories, documentaries, and cartoons
of current interest as well as favorites from the past!

This is the amazing true story of Fiona, the baby hippo born prematurely at the Cincinnati Zoo, the team that nursed her back to health, and the community who loves her.

Follow Casper's misadventures as he scares most adults he encounters, but delights babies and animals;
includes all 81 short films and episodes of "The New Casper Cartoon Show" made between 1945 -1963.

Scaredy Squirrel never leaves his nut tree. It's way too dangerous out there! But one day his worst nightmare comes true and he finds himself out of his tree and discovers something really surprising.
(I love Scaredy Squirrel and how he ends up dealing with his phobias!  Very funny!)


Follow Pinkalicious and her brother Peter on their adventures in the town of Pinkville!
This animated series, based on the beloved books by Victoria Kann,
encourages children to engage in self-expression
and to explore the arts, including music, dance, and visual arts.

Direct from Mr. Peeble's Pet Shop habitat, Magilla Gorilla swings into action in this hilarious collection. Showing that primates and humans share similar situations, Magilla becomes an Army draftee,
a football player, a movie star and more. It's chock full of silly predicam

Leo Lionni's Friends

BOARD BOOK series: Leo Lionni's Friends 
Reviewer: Mrs. Reasoner, Children's Librarian

Leo Lionni is a legendary children's author and illustrator.
I am delighted with this new series presented in the Board Book format (with sturdy pages)
for our younger patrons!  The illustrations are full of colorful details.

Spring is a time of budding trees, chirping birds, and croaking frogs.
Discover the wonders of spring!

Each doublespread reveals the color name in its color along with the traditional Lionni mice illustrating the color.
(GREEN:  A crisp, crunchy pickle.   PINK:  Bubble gum that pops on your nose)

The traditional Lionni mice Introduce each letter of the alphabet with delightful illustrations.

BOARD BOOK series: Little People, BIG DREAMS

by Isabel Sanchez Vegara
Reviewer: Mrs. Reasoner, Children's Librarian



 Told in simple sentences,
this series is perfect to read out loud to little dreamers.

Follow Ada from her childhood in England and her studies in mathematics
to her development of the first computer programming language.

Presents information about Audrey Hepburn, from her youth in Nazi-occupied Europe, through her rise to stardom in some of the era's most popular films,
to her dedication to UNICEF.


Ella Fitzgerald grew up near Harlem, in New York, where she was surrounded by music and dance. After winning first prize in a talent competition at the Apollo Theater,
she went on to tour the world with her pioneering voice.
Follow her rise to stardom as one of the top jazz singers of all time.


When Frida was a teenager, a terrible road accident changed her life forever. Unable to walk, she began painting from her bed. Her self-portraits, which show her pain and grief,
but also her passion for life and instinct for survival,
have made her one of the most famous artists of the twentieth century. 

Other longer titles in this series can be found
in the Juvenile Non-fiction 921 Biography section:
Agatha Christie, Amelia Earhart, Marie Curie, and Coco Chanel