Find reading material to cure winter boredom at CCPL

Published 12:42 pm Tuesday, January 16, 2018

By John Maruskin

Last week I encouraged you to make reading for pleasure a New Year non-resolution. You can do that by coming to the library, looking at book displays, wandering through the stacks, picking up a bunch of books, checking them out and returning home to refresh your mind and broaden your horizons.

Many people complain about being bored during winter months. The easiest cure for winter boredom is reading.

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At the library, you can check out a lot of books, try them all, forego the ones that don’t interest you and pursue the ones that do — free!

I had an interesting conversation with a patron at the circulation desk last week. A gentleman came in and checked out seven books. He noticed a notation at the bottom of his receipt that said the books he checked out were valued at $234. He asked me about that notation and I explained it showed how much he saved by checking out those books instead of buying them. He answered he loved the library because it’s great to be able to test-read free-of-charge.

When you come into the library to get books to test read, start, by all means, with the display cases up front. There you will find new books, themed books and staff picks.

One of my favorite places to find a book to read or a video to watch is the octagonal display table near the Fantasy and Science Fiction book section. Circulation Manager Lynn Wills has a wonderful sense for grouping books and videos around various themes, holidays and upcoming library programs. She is great at digging fabulous books out of the stacks and showcasing them on that display table.

One of the treasures she has on display this week will get you jazzed up for Mardis Gras. It’s titled, “The Baby Dolls: Breaking the Race and Gender Barriers of the New Orleans Mardi Gras Tradition.” (call # 394.25 Vaz)

In it, New Orleans author Kim Marie Vaz traces the 100-year history of the “raddy walking, shake-dancing, cigar-smoking, money-flinging” ladies who strutted their way into predominantly male Mardi Gras parades. There is some fine street photography in this book.

Another book on Lynn’s display is “Icons of the Highway: A Celebration of Small-Town America,” by Tony and Eva Worobiec (Call # 978.0022 Woro). This book is a photo-essay of off-the-beaten-path diners, motels, movie theaters, ice-cream stands and donut shops, most of them photographed in the rainbow auras of neon signs. It’s a road trip for your memory and your imagination. If you are a fan of Jim Jarmusch movies, you will love this book.

Take a hint from Lynn. Get into the library stacks and explore. You will find all kinds of reading treasures. There’s something very soothing, almost spiritual, about sitting on a library floor looking at books. If you would like a guide to your particular interest, ask a librarian.

Programs this week?

— At 2 p.m. Wednesday, Kentucky Picture Show presents a 2017 survival film. An adrenaline-seeking snowboarder gets lost in a massive winter storm in the back-country of the High Sierras where he is pushed to the limits of human endurance and forced to battle his own personal demons as he fights for survival. Rated PG-13.

— At 7 p.m. Wednesday, Trivia night at the Engine House Pizza Pub.

— At noon Thursday, Book Lunch attendees discuss an unusual short story by a little known master of American fiction, Hortense Callisher, and an essay bv Robert Louis Stevenson.

— At 10 a.m. Friday, the library’s writing group, Write Local, reads … and writes.

Happy reading trails to you.

John Maruskin is director of adult services at the Clark County Public library. He can be reached at