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New Books / Book Lists

Reading Recommendations

Lord of the Rings ring

Why Everyone Should Read 'The Lord of the Rings' at Least Once

In my opinion, everyone should read The Lord of the Rings at least once in their life. Or, at the very least, watch the extended edition of the movies. Why, you ask? It’ll make you feel a lot of things (AKA, it’ll make you cry) Many of the parts not included in the movies are the funnest parts In the age of easily digestible books (and shorter attention spans), modern readers have a harder time putting in the time that a trilogy requires. The way Tolkien writes is rich and dense, and every detail seems important Personal relationships are very important in the books There are 5 million different types of fear in...

example of a handprint owl craft

Fall Fun for the Family

Many of the leaves have fallen from the trees, but it's still autumn according to the calendar! To celebrate, and to give parents and families some fun things to do and see at home, we've put together a special "Fall Fun for the Family" video with stories and fun facts about animals that can be watched anytime! (Or, like our other virtual stories, multiple times if you really like it!) Before you watch the video, you'll want to download the "Animal Play-Along" sheet included below, and either print it or have it ready to view on your screen, so young ones (and adults) can follow along with Miss Lisa (we'll also tell you in the video when it's time for that part of the fun!) Also available to download below...

Picture Book Month logo

Five Picture Books for Picture Book Month!

Doing a simple search online for “Children and Literacy” will bring up ample research tracing the positive impact of reading from an early age. Reading builds vocabulary, develops listening comprehension, and improves story telling. According to Reach Out and Read, an organization that promotes families reading together:

“Children that are read to more often have improved language and listening skills, experience stronger emotional connections to their loved ones, and gain a lifelong love of reading.”
All of these picture books are great books to share and read together!

Charles Hagner

Ugandan Chimps to Chimney Swifts: Q&A with Charles Hagner

The Central Wisconsin Book Festival will take place Sept. 21-27, 2020. Before it happens, we want to share a bit about some of the guests, so we've asked a few to answer some questions from festival organizers about themselves and their work. Below is a back-and-forth from Charles Hagner and CWBF committee member Chad Dally through email. Charles will join us virtually at 10 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 27 to tell us why Wisconsin is a great state to look for birds, and share some tips and techniques to identify birds. He’s the director of Bird City Wisconsin and author of the American Birding Association Field Guide to Birds of Wisconsin.   What's your background and how did you get involved with...

Laptop with Netflix on the screen and a teddy bear next to it

New Netflix Series Features Children’s Books

On September 1, Netflix launched a new 12-episode collection called Bookmarks: Celebrating Black Voices. The show, which you can watch with your Netflix account – or for FREE without a subscription on the Netflix Jr. YouTube page – features prominent Black celebrities and artists reading children’s books by Black authors about Black kids. Some of the featured celebrities include Lupita Nyong’o, Karamo Brown, Common, Misty Copeland, Tiffany Haddish and Jacqueline Woodson. For more about the series, click here or watch the trailer below!  Want to read the books that are featuring in Bookmarks, or check them out so you can follow along to the episodes at home? See the titles below and click on...

CWBF featured authors

Central Wisconsin Book Festival: Events for Literature Lovers!

The fourth annual Central Wisconsin Book Festival (CWBF) takes place September 21–27, 2020, with events happening each of the six days, bringing authors and literature lovers together in exciting, creative and introspective ways! Although organizers felt it was necessary to make this year’s festival all-virtual, we’re still really excited about this year’s lineup and hope you will be, too. About a dozen volunteers have met monthly — first in person, then virtually — since the end of the 2019 festival to set up this year’s events. It’s been a challenge to reorganize the whole festival to take place online, due to the coronavirus pandemic. We’ll certainly miss the opportunity to gather together...

CWBF logo with featured book covers

The Books of CWBF!

The following is a selection of books written by authors featured in the 2020 Central Wisconsin Book Festival (CWBF) From fiction to nonfiction to poetry, this year's "virtual" CWBF will be a great opportunity for members of the community to hear from notable writers with diverse backgrounds.  Check out the following items before or after the festival to explore their creations:

Tiffany Midge

Quarantine Questions with CWBF Guest Tiffany Midge

The Central Wisconsin Book Festival will take place Sept. 21-27, 2020. Before it happens, we want to share a bit about some of the guests so we've asked a few to answer some questions that festival organizers have. Below is a back-and-forth between CWBF committee member Danielle Hale and Tiffany Midge, who will appear during two virtual events, Sept. 24 and Sept. 27. Quarantine Questions with Tiffany Midge I have a confession to make. I’m a bit of a fangirl when it comes to Tiffany Midge. I first heard about her just after I finished grad school in 2017. I was looking up Native American women writers because I wanted to read more from authors I could identify with. (Midge is a member of...

new homeschooling materials in Aug. 2020

New Materials for Homeschooling Families at MCPL!

If you’re one of the many families that have considered – or who have already committed to – homeschooling your child this fall, you may be wondering what you can use to facilitate your teaching. Or, maybe you’ve homeschooled your children for years but are looking for some new supplemental materials to take your lessons to the next level. Either way, the Marathon County Public Library (MCPL) is here to help. As we get closer and closer to starting a school year unlike any other before, many parents have been filled with questions and concerns over their kids’ education. If your children will be homeschooled this year, or learning completely virtually, MCPL has a slew of newly-purchased materials that will...

alien planet

Check out these science fiction & fantasy award winners!

A variety of annual awards for fantasy and science fiction works were announced over the last few months, including the Hugo Awards, Nebula Awards, Locus Awards and others! Whether you're already a fan of science fiction or fantasy – or neither of these genres appeal to you – perhaps the accolades and descriptions of the following works will serve as inspiration to read something new, surprising and/or unusual. So, without further ado (and in no particular order), the following are a sampling of award-winners that may be found in the Library Catalog (V-Cat):

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