Julia Has Things Under Control

Jul. 25th, 2014 04:41 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
Misfits, gather ’round. There’s a new picture book just for us, Julia’s House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke, best known for his graphic novel trilogy, Zita the Space Girl. (Each one of those books received a starred review from Kirkus.) It’s scrappy, this entertaining little tale of Julia and her new friends.
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
No one today is making picture books quite like award-winning Australian author-illustrator Bob Graham, who has been doing so for over three decades now. His latest offerings—last year’s The Silver Button, as well as Vanilla Ice Cream, coming this August—are short tales about big things. The Silver Button is about no less than the multiple wonders of life, which span the lives of many (and across miles), literally capturing a moment—one short enough for a young girl to add a final, silver button to her drawing of a duck. It is simply beautiful and always—always—leaves me misty-eyed—the happy kind of misty-eyed, that is. The Kirkus review for the book captured it well: “This apparent slice of the everyday moves quietly into the existential."

ISOO Report to the President

Jul. 21st, 2014 05:51 pm
[syndicated profile] aotus_feed

Posted by David Ferriero

The Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO), established in 1978, is responsible to the President for overseeing the Government-wide security classification program, and receives policy and program guidance from the National Security Council.  ISOO has been part of the National Archives and Records Administration since 1995.  You can learn more about ISOO at www.archives.gov/isoo

The 34th Annual Report to the President covering 2013 was released earlier this month.

ISOO 2013 Report to President

Several positive developments are noted in this report:

  •  The number of persons granted original classification authority continues to decrease and is at its lowest recorded level, standing at 2,269.
  • Agencies reported a 20% reduction in original classification activity
  • ISOO conducted on-site reviews of five agency declassification programs with all agencies receiving a passing score.

Other report highlights:

  •  Agencies reported 58,794 original classification decisions
  • Executive Branch agencies reported 80,124,389 derivative classification decisions
  • Under automatic, systematic, and discretionary declassification review, agencies reviewed 56,332,029 pages and declassified 27,524,342 pages of historically valuable records.

I am proud of the work of our ISOO staff and encourage you to become familiar with this important function here at the National Archives.… [ Read all ]

Living for Today, Twice

Jul. 21st, 2014 04:17 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
High school senior Sabine has two lives: In her Roxbury life, her family is lower middle class, she has a sweetheart of a little sister, she hangs out in record shops and exudes tough-girl attitude; in her Wellesley life, her family is affluent, she has two jerk older brothers, she and her boyfriend, Dex, are the It Couple on campus, and she’s been accepted to Harvard.
[syndicated profile] nara_feed

Posted by Social Media

Today’s post comes from Tim Enas, Chief of Textual Accessioning at the National Archives at College Park.

Staff at the National Archives at College Park are moving approximately 315 cubic feet of personnel related records to the National Archives at St. Louis.  The series being transferred complement the mission, function, and holdings of the National Archives at St. Louis.  These series document personal data and pertain to individuals, rather than organizations; and, logically belong with the records that constitute the core holdings of the National Archives at St. Louis.  This relocation to St. Louis will facilitate more efficient archival research and public access to these records.

The records transferred to St. Louis are:

Series Title: 

Panama Canal, Sailing Lists of Contract Laborers, 1905 – 1910, RG 185, A1, 138 (NARA ID: 7226554)

Panama Canal, Requests for Metal Check Issue Cards, 1930 – 1937, RG 185, A1, 139 (NARA ID: 7226555)

Panama Canal, Applications for Photo Metal Checks, July 1918 – July 1919, RG 185, A1, 140 (NARA ID: 6821421)

Panama Canal, Labor Service Contracts, 1905 – 1913, RG 185, A1, 141

Panama Canal, Records Concerning Individuals (“99″ files), 1907 – 1960, RG 185, UD, 264

Panama Canal, Service Record Cards (Form 177) for Persons Employed by PCC and Its Predecessors, 1904 – 1920, RG 185, UD-UP, 51 (NARA ID: 7226556)

Disinterment Records Files, Gravesite Reservation Cards, Record of Interments, and Grave Cards, RG 319, UD-12D, 2 (NARA ID: 7543569)

Closure Date at the National Archives at College Park:  August 1, 2014

Estimated Date Available for Researchers at St. Louis: September 8, 2014

Please keep in mind that the date listed above for opening the materials is an estimate. If there is a significant change to this schedule we will post it in the consultation areas at the National Archives at College Park. You can also check the status of the records, or request these and other records at the National Archives at St. Louis, by contacting that office in one of the following ways:

E-mail: stl.archives@nara.gov or send a letter to:

National Archives at St. Louis
Attention: RL-SL
P.O. Box 38757
St. Louis, MO 63138-1002


Time-Honored Tales Find New Life

Jul. 18th, 2014 06:05 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
I feel silly even saying this, because if you are a children’s literature fan you likely already know this, but just in case: Do not forget to occasionally (or more than that) check out what The New York Review Children’s Collection publishes. “Time-honored classics for children of all ages” is how they promote what they do, and what it means is that…well, you know those books you read when you were a kid that are no longer in print? Even the really obscure one that no one else remembers and you can’t find online? It’s altogether possible that NYRB has reissued it. I always like to keep my eye on what they are doing.

Trading Places With a Jinni

Jul. 17th, 2014 04:18 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
Zayale is a 15-year-old princess who has just left home forever to marry a prince she’s never met, doesn’t particularly want to meet, and certainly doesn’t want to marry. Najwa is a 15-year-old jinni who has almost completed her training to serve as a spy in the long-running human/jinn war.

John Mason: Prizefighter

Jul. 16th, 2014 10:43 am
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
Sylvester Stallone he was not. Even so, the silver-haired gentleman darted through the banquet hall to the theme from Rocky, clad in an impossibly shiny, red boxing robe and jabbing at the air. And when he got to the microphone, we heard a distinctly English accent that was nothing like Rocky Balboa’s. It was John Mason in one of his trademark star turns as emcee of Scholastic’s dinn er for librarians at the 2014 midwinter meeting of the American Library Association in Philadelphia.John Mason

The Elusive 600

Jul. 15th, 2014 03:22 pm
[syndicated profile] aotus_feed

Posted by David Ferriero

I’m loving Joseph McCormack’s new book, Brief: Make a Bigger Impact by Saying Less.  The focus is on lean communication.  McCormack terms it Six Sigma for your mouth!  “In our attention deficit economy, being brief is what’s desperately needed and rarely delivered.”

People speak at about 150 words per minute, but we have the mental capacity to deal with 750 words per minute.  That leaves a space of 600 words where we drift—think other thoughts, take a mini-vacation, lose focus, etc.

soldier daydreams while coming home from a deployment.

Military Photographer of the Year Winner 1997. Title: Thoughts Elsewhere.
Major Kurt Tek daydreams while coming home from a deployment, 01/01/1997.
National Archives Identifier 6498091

McCormack’s tips for clear, concise, and compelling oral presentations are simple:  map it, tell it, talk it, and show it.  Outline your remarks—background, relevance, information to impart, conclusion, and follow-up anticipating expected questions.  Use narrative storytelling to deliver the message.  Use a controlled conversation rather than a monologue.  And use visuals to increase engagement.  Most importantly, stop talking and give people a chance to process.  “The mind is a processor, and if you keep hitting the send button, the effect can be maddening and futile.”

I was especially taken with his advice on avoiding TL/DR (too long, didn’t read) on email messages:

  • Make it Inviting—a strong subject line
  • Limit to One Screen
  • Embrace the White Space—instead of 8-10 sentence
  • [ Read all ]

Nick Bertozzi

Jul. 15th, 2014 10:29 am
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
Propose a voyage to the South Pole and the general population would laugh and conversely book a trip to Maui. There are a hardy few (some might say foolhardy) who leap at the chance to brave Antarctic climes in the name of knowledge and science—and maybe a bit of notoriety. In the age of Edwardian exploration, Ernest Shackleton was one such luminary explorer drawn southward. In the span of over 20 years, he took part in a series of four expeditions to Antarctica, but it is his third that is arguably the most notable. Author and illustrator Nick Bertozzi has centered his graphic novel, Shackleton: Antarctic Odyssey, on Shackleton’s tertiary triumph, wherein the explorer set out to traverse Antarctica on foot and, against ridiculous odds, survived without losing one single human crew member. 

Goosebumps in Summer

Jul. 14th, 2014 03:40 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
Micol Ostow’s Amity gave me goosebumps, and I read it on a hot summer day in broad daylight. Which is an EXCELLENT quality in a horror novel, and very much in keeping with the reaction my 12-year-old self had while reading Amity’s most obvious inspiration, Jay Anson’s The Amityville Horror. But while many of the details come from the Anson book—the flies, the Red Room in the basement, the layout of the house and grounds*, the specifics of the paranormal phenomena—as a whole, the book echoes and celebrates a much more legendary source: Stephen King’s The Shining.

Book Review: An Appetite for Murder

Jul. 13th, 2014 02:47 pm
[syndicated profile] alaskanlibrarian_feed

Posted by Daniel Cornwall

An Appetite for Murder
An Appetite for Murder by Lucy Burdette
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I found this book as a result of Twitter. As a librarian and author of the Writer’s Guide to Government Information, I sometimes get authors following me.

I don’t always follow back, but @LucyBurdette‘s profile said she was an author of a series based on a food critic living in Key West Florida. I think Key West is beautiful. I also appreciate food and mysteries, so I followed her back and asked what the first book in her series was. I didn’t realize till later that she is also one of the people who write the Jungle Red Writers blog, a blog I enjoy for its friendliness, wit and food references.

An Appetite for Murder has appealing characters, plausible situations and honestly kept me guessing till the murderer was revealed. I also liked how a gay couple was worked into the script as just two more characters. One partner was a psychologist friend of the protagonist who just happened to be gay.

As you would expect from a food based mystery, there are many descriptions of food. These are done well, whether set in a restaurant or if it’s something the main character is making for her friends. As a bonus, a few of the dishes mentioned in the book have recipes at the end.

There was nothing in the story that really set my head shaking and brought me out of the story. It was a great read for a weekend and I will definitely be checking out the other books in the series.

View all my reviews

Filed under: authors, book reviews Tagged: florida, key west, mystery, twitter
[syndicated profile] alaskanlibrarian_feed

Posted by Daniel Cornwall


The following announcement recently came across my desk at work:


The Oral History Program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and the Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council (PWSRCAC) are proud to announce the completion of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Project Jukebox, available online at http://jukebox.uaf.edu/exxonvaldez, People who visit the site can access oral, visual, and written resources that offer a rich understanding of the 1989 Exxon Valdez Oil Spill.

Exxon Valdez tanker leaking oil in Prince William Sound, April 13, 1989. Photo by Charles N. Ehler. Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Collection, ARLIS.

This project highlights conversations with 20 people talking about the oil spill, the impact the spill had on their lives and on the environment, the cleanup response, the long-term effects of the spill, and changes in the oil industry monitoring system.

On this 25th Anniversary of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, Project Jukebox has helped preserve stories from people that may not be well-known and have made them accessible to the public. The information discussed in these interviews will be of interest to local residents of Prince William Sound who were impacted by the spill, to Alaskans who want to know more about the event from the people who experienced it, and to people around the world hoping to prevent similar accidents in their coastal waters.

This project was supported by funding from the Alaska State Library, Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Alaska Resources Library and Information Services, and the Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council.

For more information about this project, please contact:  
Leslie McCartney, Curator of Oral History, University of Alaska Fairbanks

lmccartney@alaska.edu  (907)474-7737

Alicia Zorzetto, Digital Collections Librarian, Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council

alicia.zorzetto@pwsrcac.org   (907)277-7222


Here’s a list of the people included in the Jukebox:

  • Gary Bader
  • Joe Banta
  • Robert Benda
  • Tom Copeland
  • John Devens Jr
  • John Devens Sr
  • Jane Eismann
  • Patience Faulkner
  • Katie Gavenus
  • David Janka
  • Marilyn Leland
  • Bob Linville
  • Craig Matkin
  • Riki Ott
  • Roy Robertson
  • Gordon Scott
  • Jerome Selby
  • Rick Steiner
  • Scott Sterling
  • Jonathan Wills

This effort at preserving Alaska’s history was made possible in part with state and federal grant funds and led by libraries. Your taxpayer dollars at work to save the past so it hopefully doesn’t keep getting repeated in the future.

Filed under: alaska Tagged: exxon valdez, exxon valdez oil spill, libraries, oral histories
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