Hi y’all! With the hot weather and sunshine-filled days, I hope you are finding time to go to the beach or sit by the pool. These relaxing days call for a good summer read!! I don’t know about you, but I often find it difficult to read for enjoyment during the regular fall and spring semesters, so I often take the summer to cross off several books on my “to-read” list. If you’re having trouble picking a book, the students, staff, and faculty at Coastal have some wonderful suggestions:
Kellie Cannon, English Instructor
My suggestion is Interpreter of Maladies, Jhumpa Lahiri’s first collection of short stories. The stories explore interesting themes of identity and relationships, which appear in different ways throughout the individual stories. I enjoy reading short stories, especially in the summer. This collection carries themes in interesting ways, so the entire collection is even more fulfilling as a whole.
Anna Cancelli, English Instructor
Suggested book: The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride
Why I enjoyed reading it: I was raised by a white mother and a black father, and so many of the questions this author had about his heritage were also questions I had while growing up. McBride’s memoir is not just an autobiographical tribute to a woman who proved that love breaks all barriers, but it is also a wonderful account of American cultural history.
Zach Ashton, Coastal Student
Suggestion: Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
Why I like it: An awesome start to a wonderful series of books by Rick Riordan. A tale of a young man named Percy Jackson who will soon discover his life is more abnormal then he thought when he discovers the truth about his father. Filled with epic battles, monsters, and Gods. It will have you wondering how Percy and his friends will get out of each situation.
Meggan Brinker, Coastal Student
Interested in the supernatural world and life on the sea? Check out the Vampirates series by Justin Somper. This is the story of the Tempest twins, Grace and Connor, who are lost at sea and are picked up by two very different pirate ships. Connor is picked up by Cheng Li and adjust to pirate life quickly, while Grace is rescued by the Vampirates. This series is an interesting tale of two siblings trying to find their way back to each other. I find this series very interesting because it is an adventure where loyalties are tested, life adjustments are made, and romances form. This is a good series to read or start this summer. Hope you will enjoy the Vampiates series as much as I have. Read on and have an Adventure.
Jessica Drake, Political Science Instructor
I am recommending C.S. Forester’s book Admiral Hornblower in the West Indies. I have read the entire Horatio Hornblower series from Midshipman Hornblower to Lord Hornblower several times, including this the penultimate volume. I will be rereading the series again this summer with my 10 year old son. The series of books follow the career of one British naval officer during the age of sail from his first bout of seasickness in the calm waters of port to his rise to the rank of Lord Admiral of the Fleet. The stories are full of adventure, ethical dilemmas, and history lived out. Sometimes I have to refer to the DK Smithsonian reference book Ship by Brian Lavery to find meanings of the nautical terms and Naval Miscellany by Angus Konstram to explain the naval culture of the day. A&E produced a TV miniseries about Hornblower that is very good but only covers the first couple of books.
Garrison Libby, Librarian
Thought by many to be an inspiration for The Hunger Games and often described a modern day Lord of the Flies, Koushun Takami’s Battle Royale is a hyperviolent dystopian novel which finds a class of high school students forced to fight to the death. The novel follows Shuya Nanahara’s efforts to stay alive and maintain his humanity while his classmates succumb to paranoia and brutality. If you were a fan of Hunger Games and want to see the deathmatch concept pushed to an extreme, this is a great book to read. Just prepare yourself for an intense ride.
Sally Goodman, Director of Library Services
When Maria first told me about The Magicians by Lev Grossman, I thought, fantasy……no, not for me, not my genre! The more she praised the book, I said to myself, maybe I’ll try it. Well, I’m glad I did! I liked it so much that I immediately checked out the second book in the trilogy and am now devouring The Magician King. Lev Grossman writes this fantasy for adults with remnants of Harry Potter (and this is coming from someone who is not a Harry Potter fan!), Edmund from Narnia, and Holden Caulfield from Catcher in the Rye. It ended up being a page-turner for me and that’s saying a lot for this non-fantasy reader!
You can find many of these books on display in the LRC!
Those of you who have been around in the library this past week have probably also unfortunately heard that awful banging and clanging and crashing of books shelves being moved. Once again, we are undergoing a major shift to try to make the library space more comfortable for study.
It seems like it was only yesterday I wrote a post apologizing for all the banging and loud noises going on in the library. Hard to think it’s been almost an entire year since our last major project moving things around.
We have removed two of those big reference shelves on the first floor, which we will use to allow more room for study tables and clear up the main pathway through the library. This, we hope, will make traffic through the library a little less congested. Our goal is to make as much space available as possible for group study downstairs, to help alleviate the burden on our group study rooms, and to make more room for quiet study upstairs.
To those of you who have toughed it out during this movement, we thank you for your patience and apologize for the inconvenience. We know there’s nothing worse than having to listen to all of this noise while trying to study and get homework done. But we also hope that it’s all worth it, and once this is done, the library will be more comfortable than ever.
As always, if you have any comments or suggestions, please let us know. We want this to be the best space possible, so if you have ideas on how to make it a better place to study, work, or relax, shoot us an e-mail.
We wanted to thank you all for your feedback from the LRC survey. Your responses are very important and help us determine what to fix, focus on, or improve in the coming months.
We know that there is still improvement to be made on the noise levels in the library. This past semester, we implemented noise zones to have dedicated areas for both quiet and collaborative study. We will continue to evaluate these noise zones and make changes to ensure that everyone has the study space they need. Already this summer we’ve gotten dirty and dusty shifting furniture around to provide more individual, quiet study spaces upstairs. We have also ordered more tables for group study space. Along with that, we are going to have a staff member stationed upstairs this fall to assist with any concerns.
Computers were also a major topic. We are working with IT to improve the computers in the library. We appreciated the feedback about computer programs you need for classes that we don’t have, and we will work to get as many of those as possible installed on our computers. We are also going to make sure that common programs such as Microsoft Word are more easily accessible so you don’t have to hunt around for them in Windows 8’s weird interface.
We know that computer availability has been an ongoing issue. Believe me, if we could double the number of computers in the library, we would do so in a heartbeat. But your comments have given us more leverage to work with IT and our budget to try to get more computers into the library. We can’t promise anything yet, but just know that we’re doing what we can. In the meantime, don’t forget that the library now has twelve Chromebooks that can be used, and are perfect if you just need to browse the internet or do online coursework.
We also know so many of you want wireless printing, and we do too! That might take longer to get going, but again, your feedback gives us more leverage to go to IT and say “Students want this. Let’s make this happen!” We will keep you updated as we investigate wireless printing further.
There are always more improvements to be made, and you don’t have to wait until the annual survey to suggest changes. If you have any comments, please don’t hesitate to e-mail us and let us know what we can do to make the library better. We are committed to doing everything we can to make this the best place on campus, but to be the best we can, we need to hear what’s best for you.
If you’ve glanced at the LRC home page recently, you may have noticed the haggard-looking llama scrolling past your eyes. Do you feel like this llama? Maybe you’re even starting to get that same look on your face? Then you need to head to the LRC for some stress relief!! Starting tomorrow, Room 109 will be filled with coffee, tea, water, and snacks to help you cope with your end-of-semester assignments and tests. These refreshments will be available during all of the LRC’s operating hours through Monday, May 11. If snacks and drinks don’t get rid of your worries, let Coastal’s Massage Therapy students give you a 15-minute chair massage! They will be in Room 110 (AKA the Bib Room) on May 6, 7, 8, & 11. Sign up for a time slot at our front desk. You won’t regret it! Times are filling up for this week, so be sure to stop by soon!
The entire staff at the LRC wish you GOOD LUCK on your finals! We hope that your semester ends on a positive note.
Try not to feel like the llama:
The LRC staff invites you to fill out our short anonymous survey for the 2014-2015 academic year. We would really love to see your feedback about all aspects of the LRC! You can fill out the survey by following this link. After completing the survey, you’ll have the option to enter a drawing for a $25 Target gift card!!! (I know how easy it is to spend $25 at Target, so you might as well have the LRC contribute to your next Target visit). Your name for the gift card drawing will remain separate from your survey responses. We look forward to hearing from you!
I don’t know about you, but at 4:00 PM today I’ll be skipping out to my car with a big smile on my face because Spring Break will be in full swing! I plan to spend some quality time on my couch. Maybe I’ll even read for enjoyment! We librarians do try to do that from time to time. :) If you’d like to dive into some spring break reading, you have until 5:00 PM today to swing by the LRC and check out one of our wonderful fiction books! We’ve added many new ones lately, too. Travelling for spring break? We’ve got some audiobooks to keep you going through those long drives!
The staff at the LRC hope that you have a wonderful break. We will be closed from Saturday, March 28 through Sunday, April 5. We will reopen at 7:00 AM with our regular semester hours on Monday, April 6.