Eragon is the first book to the Inheritance series by Christopher Paolini. The book focuses on 15-year-old farm boy Eragon, who thinks farming is all he’s ever going to be able to do. Until one day when he finds a dragon egg. Later on when the egg hatches he’s paired up with a dragon. As events turn he learns he’s destined to be a dragon rider and to help save many.

eragon

This feels like many other popular fantasy titles and while the books get thicker as you go along, the story just keeps getting better. There are dragons here, and not all of them friendly. If you like fantasy and dragons as well as war, give this book a try.

Heather: I started the series years ago, but never finished it. I still haven’t finished it, but I’m halfway there and I’ve got a copy of book three sitting on my shelves at home. One of these days I’ll get around to actually reading the thing.

This time, rather than highlighting some books, I’m just highlighting the author in general. Mr. King has too many books to choose from. Not that other authors don’t, I just can’t choose.

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Photo used under Creative Commons licensing. Credit and copyright to Flickr user Anne Ruthmann.

Stephen King is best known for his works of horror and psychological thriller/horror. With works such as Cujo, a story about a dog that gets rabies, Under the Dome, a story about a town that gets trapped under a giant dome without prior knowledge that it was going to happen, and It, a story that makes readers rethink what fear really is and how we face our fears (that led the way for the movie that gives us all reason to fear clowns), when you hear the name Stephen King you think horror.

In the mood for a little scare this summer? Check out one of his books from our NIDL collection or stop by the library and pick one up. They’re almost sure to terrify you.

Heather: I didn’t start reading King myself until after a friend let me borrow her copy of On Writing, King’s memoir and book about writing. Before that I’d watched the movie for his book It, but that was about it. Once I read his memoir I wanted to read his work. I think Cujo was my first official King read. I recommend the book, but while I recommend the movie if you really want to watch it, I highly recommend reading the book long before you watch the movie. And if you have a dog, keep an eye on him or her while watching. Mine sat on the couch and watched with me. Only slightly creepy.

Goosebumps is a series originally written by R.L. Stine, a man frequently called the “Stephen King of children’s literature”. While he does have other books and series out there, he’s most known for the Goosebumps books.

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Of the ones we have in our NIDL collection, The Werewolf of Fever Swamp is one I always recommend. Grady and his sister have just moved with their parents and they’re right next to a swamp and not so close to town. Why did they move? So their dad can do scientist work on studying swamp deer.

One day Grady finds a dog that looks a lot like a wolf. The dog quickly becomes his best friend and Grady’s mood starts to improve. Especially once his parents let him keep the dog when no one in town answers their found dog flyers.

But suddenly there’s a rabbit that’s found mutilated. And swamp deer start getting spooked a lot more frequently. And there’s this awful howling at night. Especially during the full moon. Grady meets another kid who seems to come out of the swamp, but something doesn’t seem quite right. Especially when he starts telling Grady stories of the werewolf in the swamp. Is Grady’s new dog the werewolf? Is there a werewolf?

Sound interesting? Why not read it? Or another of Stine’s other books.

Heather: I was easily scared as a child and R.L. Stine was the first “scary” author I could read. And I could read him at night before bed and not have intense nightmares. I was thrilled to watch the T.V. show Goosebumps because I knew the books so well by the time I started watching it. Now, I’m a bit of a horror nut. I still love reading Goosebumps books. Thank you, Mr. Stine.

You’ve never seen a library like this. At least, I don’t think you have. The Unshelved books are collections of the comic strip by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum. Bill is a cartoonist, Gene is a librarian, and they’ve been publishing this strip since 2002. And that information comes straight from the website unshelved.com.

unshelved 1 unshelved 2

I don’t remember how I came across this comic, but I’m glad I did. Whenever there’s a new strip it makes me laugh. That’s what it’s meant to do! Main character Dewey (doomed from birth, perhaps?) is the Mallville Library Teen Librarian (according to his character description on the website, at least). Tamara is the extremely bubbly Children’s Librarian, and Mel is the manager. Mel deals with all the insanity that Dewey brings her way. She also can’t state an opinion without the opposite happening (“It’s so quiet today.” and suddenly there’s a marching band through the library).

The strip is hilarious and if you like comics give it a try. Or you can visit their website and start at the beginning.

Heather: I do enjoy this strip and I signed up for getting e-mails. On Fridays they have book recommendations. It’s a total blast and the Eckhart Public Library does have some of the books that they’ve recommended over the years. I’ve noticed it just browsing along the shelves or even looking up titles if I’m really curious. They recommend a variety of materials.

The Baudelaire siblings, very close to their parents, find out suddenly that they’re now orphans. Violet, aged 14, is fantastic with gadgets. Klaus, aged 12, is a voracious reader and has wisdom far beyond his years because of such. Sunny, still an infant eating from a bottle, has dangerously sharp teeth and if she doesn’t like you, you’re going to know it.

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Starting with book 1, The Bad Beginning the children learn their parents are now dead and they are being carted off to go live with relatives. People they don’t even know. Their only choice is to stick together, now more than ever.

Their first relative is Count Olaf. A member of a theatre troupe and nothing but nasty. One night the kids are assigned to make dinner for the troupe and when the troupe gets back Olaf is demanding roast beef. When the children remind him he never requested it to begin with he strikes Kalus. Olaf is only after the Baudelaire fortune.

There’s mayhem, a theater play, and so much more happening in this book that it keeps your attention. And you want to know what happens next when the kids get away from nasty Count Olaf. Let’s go to The Reptile Room, shall we? Uncle Monty is waiting.

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In The Reptile Room the kids are sent to live with distant relative Dr. Montgomery Montgomery, herpetologist. He’s a very friendly man who treats the kids with kindness and love. And the kids are fascinated with the snakes! But soon enough… Things aren’t so good. There’s a new assistant in the picture, Stephano. Count Olaf is back!

I’d love to tell you more about this book and the series as a whole, but it’s best if you read for yourself. The best part? It’s going to be a Netflix original series. Why not give it a read? All 13 books are available on NIDL in eBook format.

Heather: I fell in love with this series years ago before they were all published. The occasions I would get to go to the bookstore with my parents I might be able to get one or two books as a child and I’d be reading in the back of the car, at night, no light, and get through a fair portion of the book before we got home. It’s touching, it’s sweet, it’s painful, and you feel for the kids. You want to adopt them. Protect them. At least, I did. I can’t wait for the series and I will likely be rereading the books very soon.

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Young, urban vampires. Not Twilight. Sarcasm and romance. Christopher Moore brings it all in this book. Bite Me.

There’s not a ton I can say about this story without giving some really cool things away. What I can say is this book is funny. It was the first of Moore’s work that I read and whenever I think about it I laugh. Vampires and want-to-be vampires (yes, wanting to be vampires) in San Francisco trying to figure things out. The perspective is weird, but it works.

Christopher Moore writes with sarcasm and a lot of hilarious happenings. His stories are dark, but you’ll smile reading them. Give him a try.

Heather: This is one of my favorite stories. I read it years ago and back then I was not the type of person who would laugh out loud in public at a book. This changed that. Without a doubt one of the weirder things I’ve read it’s something that makes me laugh when I think about it. Great for Halloween!

Does anyone remember that movie Horns starring Daniel Radcliffe where he wakes up in a drunken stupor trying to forget that the love of his life is dead and the whole town blames him? Or the post I wrote about the book before the movie came out? I’m back on a Joe Hill kick, especially with his new book The Fireman being out.

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Let’s go back a few years to one of his earlier books, Heart-Shaped Box.

Meet Judas Coyne. He’s a collector of the macabre with things like a cookbook for cannibals, a used hangman’s noose, and a snuff film in his collection the aging death-metal rock legend is always looking for more. One day while on a bidding site he sees something that he can’t buy fast enough. Someone selling a suit that belonged to her step-father. Nothing unusual there, except his ghost is attached to it. After constantly battling his own ghosts Judas isn’t the least bit afraid to invite one into his home. But then the ghost is everywhere. Behind doors, on the T.V., in Jude’s car, outside the window… All the time with a razor blade dangling by a chain from his wrist.

This is just one of the stories Joe Hill has worked on. He’s also done graphic novels, edited and compiled short story collections, and written with other authors (like Stephen King).

Can’t find what you’re looking for on NIDL? Towards the bottom of your results there should be a button that says something along the lines of “Add titles you can recommend”. When you click on that you’ll get a list of related results that you can request for the collection. If it’s something you truly want make sure you place a hold on the item. If you have trouble with this or anything on NIDL stop by and see us. We’ll be glad to help you out. Looking for a little more in-depth help? Contact us to set up an appointment with one of our Technology Tutors. We’re happy to help you.

Heather: I’m not even entirely sure how I got started reading Joe Hill anymore. Maybe it was the buzz around Horns when the movie was in production? Or reading something by him and Stephen King? I don’t remember. All I know now is that I love his work and I’m excited whenever a new book comes out.

allegiant

The last book to the Divergent series, the movie was released in March and is coming to DVD in July!

Unfamiliar with the series?

Starting with Divergent you meet Beatrice Prior, age 16. On a chosen day each year every 16 year old goes in for a test, but it’s not a normal test like we hear of in schools. This test helps you find out what faction you belong in. Forever. Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). Later on the teenagers must decide what faction they will spend the rest of their lives in. For Beatrice the choice is unclear. Her test doesn’t give her a definite answer. She’s special. She’s a Divergent. The person administering her test turns off the equipment and tells her she cannot let anyone know what she is.

Instead of staying in the faction her parents are in and where she was raised, Beatrice (Tris) goes with one completely opposite and finds out more than she ever thought she would.

With each book you find out more and more about the world Tris lives in and just how hard she has to fight to survive and what evils she hopes to change. Want to read it before you watch it? Allegiant is available both as eBook and Audiobook on NIDL.

Heather: I’m still way behind in this series. I enjoyed book 1 and I saw the movie, but I haven’t read book 2 so I haven’t watched the movie for Insurgent yet. I might just cave and watch Insurgent before reading the book. Thoughts? Something you’d like to see? Stop on by and give us some recommendations or suggest things in the comments.

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Until I started driving a lot more than I used to I didn’t think I could ever get into Audiobooks. This was one of the first series to prove me wrong on that.

In Of Poseidon you meet Emma and her friend Chloe while they’re on vacation in Florida. Suddenly Emma runs right into this gorgeous guy and they both feel sparks.

Emma has a special gift that she isn’t fully aware of and her mom hides a secret from her about who she is.

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Of Triton continues the series and dives deeper into things that while I want to give you details about would spoil the story if I said them now.

The story line keeps you wanting more, but it doesn’t get super crazy or start talking about things that are beyond confusing. They’re just fun to read.

While we might not have book 3 on NIDL, we do have the physical books at the Eckhart Public Library.

ree drummond

Ree Drummond (better known as The Pioneer Woman) is well-known for her cooking show and books, but something she’s not as well-known for involves the dog, Charlie.

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That’s right, Ree Drummond not only cooks, but she writes Children’s books too!

On NIDL you can find some of the cookbooks as eBooks and some Charlie the Ranch Dog books in Audio format.

For those wondering, the Eckhart Public Library does have her cookbooks in the collection if you prefer physical cookbooks to digital ones.

Heather: I learned about the Pioneer Woman through my mother who is always looking for a new recipe to try. Sometimes the recipes Ree shows aren’t what we’re into, but she does have some great recipes and she shares amazing tips not only on cooking and baking, but on family life and homeschooling her kids.