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Author Archive for Bond Drager



What to Read Instead of Fifty Shades… Part Two – A Video Staff Picks Episode

by Bond Drager on March 27th, 2017

Terri’s back with more author recommendations in erotic fiction and urban fiction.

Modern Reads for Women’s History Month

by Bond Drager on March 6th, 2017

I recently wondered how March came to be National Women’s History Month. Luckily National Women’s History Project had some great information.

If you’re like me and you like to celebrate holidays by nerding out on information overload, here’s a great list of book titles to pick up from ICPL. For this list, I’m choosing to focus on more recent choices that highlight great feminist literature and nonfiction.

My Real Children by Jo Walton

I won’t go into too much detail about this book because I don’t want to give this wonderful book away. If you’re a fan of realistic fiction like John Green and Rainbow Rowell, but you’re willing to read something written for and about adults, you’d like this book. This is a story about what it means to have choices in life, and ultimately how women function and age within society.

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

This book has won a zillion awards for its powerful story of race and identity. Bonus: North Liberty Community Library has selected it for its Bring Your Own Book Club on March 31 at Beer Burger – you’ve still got time to participate.

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay

There’s a reason the City of Literature recently awarded Roxane Gay with the 2016 Paul Engle prize. She’s a tremendous writer doing important work across media and genre. This book of essays is a great introduction to her writing, and it’s also really fun to read.

Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl by Carrie Brownstein

So much of the story of 90s music in the pacific northwest comes from the perspective by and about men, that it’s particularly interesting to read this story of a young woman finding her calling as part of that scene.

Not only is this story riveting, but Brownstein is a just a fantastic writer and I often recommend this as one of the best memoirs I’ve ever read. She not only chronicles her turbulent journey but is impressively self-aware, finding deeper meaning as she looks at her story in hindsight.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

This debut novel from Angie Thomas just came out in February and is already proving very popular. It’s a YA book that everyone should read. The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books describes it as follows: “Ultimately the book emphasizes the need to speak up about injustice. That’s a message that will resonate with all young people concerned with fairness, and Starr’s experience will speak to readers who know Starr’s life like their own and provide perspective for others.”

Video Staff Picks: New & Favorite Cookbooks for Fall 2016

by Bond Drager on November 7th, 2016

Video Staff Picks: New nonfiction for fall 2016 with Terri

by Bond Drager on October 18th, 2016

Jackson Pollock’s Mural: The Transitional Moment

by Bond Drager on October 2nd, 2016

JacketIf you’ve ever been curious to learn more about Pollock’s monstrous work that was heroically saved from the flooded art museum building in 2008, we have some great resources. The book “Jackson Pollock’s Mural: the transitional moment” is written by the conservators at the Getty Center who completed restoration of the painting recently.
One of those conservators, Yvonne Szafran, gave a talk here at ICPL in 2012 about exactly what was done to the painting. It’s a fascinating story, and it’s one of my personal favorite programs we have on The Library Channel.


IPTV recently premiered a documentary about the painting’s history and just which of the many tall tales surrounding it have any truth. That video is on their website: http://site.iptv.org/video/story/24252/jackson-pollocks-mural-story-modern-masterpiece

Even if you aren’t a fan of abstract expressionism, this painting has an incredible story behind it, and it is an important piece of culture at University of Iowa. I look forward to seeing it again in all its glory when the new UI Museum of Art opens.

Kitchens of the Great Midwest

by Bond Drager on August 15th, 2016
Kitchens of the Great Midwest Cover Image

I recently enjoyed the book Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal. I love books about food (Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal Vegetable Miracle is one of my all-time favorites) and Kitchens of the Great Midwest not only vividly captures the sensory experience of some terrific meals, it also evokes memories of my own Midwestern childhood and the foods I grew up with.

It has a unique structure: Each chapter is told from the point of view of a different character, and sometimes there are jumps forward of several years at a go. This left me wanting more with every chapter change.

Here’s an excerpt of Amazon’s synopsis: When Lars Thorvald’s wife, Cynthia, falls in love with wine–and a dashing sommelier–he’s left to raise their baby, Eva, on his own. He’s determined to pass on his love of food to his daughter–starting with puréed pork shoulder. As Eva grows, she finds her solace and salvation in the flavors of her native Minnesota. From Scandinavian lutefisk to hydroponic chocolate habaneros, each ingredient represents one part of Eva’s journey as she becomes the star chef behind a legendary and secretive pop-up supper club, culminating in an opulent and emotional feast that’s a testament to her spirit and resilience.

I didn’t want to put this book down. It was funny and sweet, and I couldn’t wait to find out what happened to the characters.

Enjoy!

New local biography series – Iowa City People: Steve Bridges

by Bond Drager on June 28th, 2016

The first episode of our new biography series, “Iowa City People” has made its debut online and on Library Channel 20. Our guinea pig guest, “Captain” Steve Bridges, has a fascinating story. Most people in Iowa City know him as the morning co-host on KCJJ 1630, but there’s a lot more to his tale.

Video Staff Picks: Summer Reading Recommendations

by Bond Drager on June 9th, 2016

Get tips for some great books and movies to enjoy this summer. Plus take a quick peak at our digital magazine service.

City Lights
dir. Charlie Chaplin

Bazaar of Bad Dreams
by Stephen King

A Study in Charlotte
by Brittany Cavallaro

For more information about
Digital Johnson County
Visit
www.icpl.org/zinio

On Air: Episode 18

by Bond Drager on June 2nd, 2016

Click here to get the episode!

The old gang is back together! Meredith, Brian, Jason, and Melody are chatting about books and travel – destinations they want to visit because of a book or places they’ve actually visited due to reading. They’re also talking about movie adaptations of popular books. Of course, they’ll share ideas of lots of other great books and materials to enjoy.

Books and Travel for Summertime


What we’re reading/watching/listening to

  • 00:41 Jason: The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo by Tom Reiss and Day of the Dead by Various Artists (distributed by 4ad)
  • 03:38 Brian: The Strumbellas
  • 06:50 Melody: Shattered by Kevin Hearne (Iron Druid Series)
  • 08:34 Meredith: Audiobooks from Digital Johnson County

Books and Travel (but not Travel Books!)

  • 12:30 Brian: The Road Headed West: a 6,000-Mile Cycling Odyssey through North America by Leon McCarron, Going Somewhere by Brian Benson, Life is a Wheel by Bruce Weber
  • 20:50 Jason: Sixpence House by Paul Collins
  • 25:05 Melody: Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs
  • 30:25 Meredith: Centennial TV Show/book, Road Food by Jane & Michael Stern

Book to Movie Adaptations

  • 33:45 Brian: Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk
  • 37:50 Melody: Adaptation based on The Orchid Thief by Susan Orlean
  • 39:20 Jason: The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
  • 42:43 Meredith: Love Story by Erich Segal
  • 43:58 Brian: Room by Emma Donaghue

Video Staff Picks: Memoirs, Music, and More with Terri

by Bond Drager on March 24th, 2016

Memoirs, Music, and More (in March!) with Terri




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