Every December, the editors of the New York Times pick their top adult fiction books of that year. Below is the list of titles for 2013 that we have available at the Solon Public Library.
• “The Goldfinch” by Donna Tartt. A young boy in New York City, Theo Decker, miraculously survives an accident that takes the life of his mother. Alone and abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by a friend’s family and struggles to make sense of his new life. In the years that follow, he becomes entranced by one of the few things that reminds him of his mother: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the art underworld. Composed with the skills of a master, “The Goldfinch” is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of almost unbearable acuity and power. It is a story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the enormous power of art.
• “Life After Life” by Kate Atkinson. What if you could live again and again until you got it right? On a cold and snowy night in 1910, Ursula Todd is born to an English banker and his wife. She dies before she can draw her first breath. On that same cold and snowy night, Ursula Todd is born, lets out a lusty wail, and embarks upon a life that will be, to say the least, unusual. For as she grows, she also dies, repeatedly, in a variety of ways, while the young century marches on towards its second cataclysmic world war. Does Ursula’s apparently infinite number of lives give her the power to save the world from its inevitable destiny? And if she can, will she?
• “Tenth of December” by George Saunders. A collection of stories that includes “Home,” a wryly whimsical account of a soldier’s return from war; “Victory Lap,” a tale about an inventive abduction attempt; and the title story, in which a suicidal cancer patient saves the life of a young misfit.
Storytime is a library program that takes place every Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. for children ages 2 through 5. Each themed session includes stories, songs and rhymes followed by a craft. Younger siblings are always welcome to attend. The themes for the January Storytimes include “Winter Animals,” “The Letter C,” and “Birds.”
On school early-out days, the library offers free programming for school-aged children. On Thursday, Jan. 9, we will be showing a recently released popular movie sequel about a group of blue creatures who team up with their human friends to fight an evil sorcerer. This movie is rated PG, and the program will be from 1 until 2:45 p.m. Popcorn will not be allowed in January. The early-out activity for Jan. 23 will be a craft made with playing cards called a card creature.
Babygarten helps to nurture the bond between caregiver and child, increase eye-hand coordination, and develop body awareness. This rhythmic program will enrich your child’s life from the very beginning and provide an excellent foundation for the future. Each session will feature music, board books and toys and is intended for children ages birth to 24 months.
Our next Babygarten program will run on Fridays from Feb. 7 through March 14 at 9:30 a.m. Registration is free and can be done by calling the library at 319-624-2678.
It is almost time again for the semi-annual used book sale sponsored by the Friends of the Library. Member volunteers are busy sorting and boxing thousands of books for the sale on Feb. 1. Sale hours will be 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., with friends members allowed to enter at 9 a.m. If you’re not a friends member and want to start your shopping early, there will be a $5 early admission fee.
The Solon Public Library will forgive your outstanding fine with a donation of one nonperishable food item for every $1 in fines. “Food for Fines” will run from Jan. 15 through 31, and all donated food will go to the Solon food pantry. The pantry requests donations of canned meat, canned soup (not tomato), canned fruit, and canned vegetables (not corn or green beans). Please, no expired items. The “Food for Fines” program does not apply to lost materials or fines above $20.