Spot-Lit for April 2021

Rejoice! It’s not every month that offers new fiction from 20th-century maestro Marcel Proust, or a pertinent novel on race and policing by Richard Wright from 1942 that only now is getting published, or a new translation of what is described as the most accessible novel by Brazilian phenom Clarice Lispector.

In terms of local color, Willy Vlautin’s latest looks at greed, hardship, and gentrification in Portland, and Joanne Tompkins’ intense Washington-set debut focuses on loss and connection.

April also brings us new titles by Haruki Murakami, Jhumpa Lahiri, Helen Oyeyemi, and Paula McCain along with much-buzzed debuts from Kirstin Valdez Quade, Sanjena Sathian, and Donna Freitas.

Click here to see all of these titles in the Everett Public Library catalog, where you can read reviews or summaries and place holds. Or click on a book cover below to enlarge it, or to view the covers as a slide show.

Notable New Fiction 2021 (to date) | All On-Order Fiction | 2021 Debuts

Seattle Style with Clara Berg

When you think of the Pacific Northwest, is fashion the first thing that comes to mind? If you are like many, you might think of trees, salmon and lots of rain before considering clothing and style as something that defines us. But maybe it is time for a rethink. Let Clara Berg, curator of collections at MOHAI in Seattle, change your mind by attending her virtual Crowdcast program Seattle Style this Thursday, March 25th at 6 pm

Can’t attend on the day? Always remember that you can view all of our program recordings at your convenience on our Crowdcast channel after the event.

Berg will be giving an informative and entertaining lecture on Pacific Northwest fashion, based on her book Seattle Style: Fashion/Function. Her book highlights how elegance and practicality coexisted and converged in Seattle wardrobes, providing new insights into local clothing, ranging from couture, to outdoor gear, to denim. 

If you think her book is only chock full of evening gowns, though there are plenty of interesting ones, you will be pleasantly surprised. There are detailed sections on quintessential Pacific Northwest duds such as REI hiking boots, one piece ski suits from the 1980s, wool mackinaw cruiser jackets, Eddie Bauer skyliner down jackets and, of course, lots and lots of raincoats. 

So join us for this fascinating look at the fashion of the Pacific Northwest, as Clara Berg breaks down Seattle Style, live on Crowdcast this Thursday evening

Spot-Lit for March 2021

These titles – from established, new, and emerging authors – are some of the most anticipated new releases of the month, based on advance reviews and book world enthusiasm.

Click here to see all of these titles in the Everett Public Library catalog, where you can read reviews or summaries and place holds. Or click on a book cover below to enlarge it, or to view the covers as a slide show.

Notable New Fiction 2021 (to date) | All On-Order Fiction | 2021 Debuts

Writer’s Live: Tiffany Midge, Madeleine Henry & Jennifer Bardsley

The great virtual programs just keep coming here at the library. There are so many in fact that we wanted to point out two author talks you can attend next week so you wouldn’t miss out. The presentations are part of our Writer’s Live series, which is dedicated to highlighting talented writers and their works. Both programs are free, open to the public, and you can register to attend on our Crowdcast channel. Read on to find out more. 

Tiffany Midge on Bury My Heart at Chuck E. Cheese’s 

Tuesday, March 2, 2021 @ 6:00 PM  

Why is there no Native woman David Sedaris? Or Native Anne Lamott? Humor categories in publishing are packed with books by funny women and humorous sociocultural-political commentary—but no Native women. Well, it’s time to meet Tiffany Midge, the author of Bury My Heart at Chuck E. Cheese’s

Midge’s book is a smart and funny collection of essays on life, politics and identity as a Native woman in America. Spend an evening laughing, thinking, and talking about anything and everything—from politics to pumpkin spice—as Midge shares stories and insights from her book. 

Madeleine Henry in conversation with Jennifer Bardsley 

Saturday, March 6, 2021 @ 5:00 PM 

Madeleine Henry is the author of two novels, The Love Proof and Breathe In, Cash Out. She has appeared on NBC, WABC, The Jenny McCarthy Show, and Inspire Living. She has been featured in the New York Post, Parade, and Observer Media. Previously, she worked at Goldman Sachs and in investment management after graduating from Yale.  

Madeleine will be joined by Jennifer Bardsley for a conversation about The Love Proof. Spanning decades, The Love Proof is an unusual love story about lasting connection, time, and intuition. It explores the course that perfect love can take between imperfect people, and urges us to listen to our hearts rather than our heads. 

Jennifer Bardsley lives in Edmonds, Wash., and her newest book, Sweet Bliss, will be published by Montlake Romance in 2021. Jennifer also writes under the pen name Louise Cypress. Jennifer has written the “I Brake for Moms” column for The Everett Herald since 2012. 

Daudi Abe at the Library (Virtually)

The library has so many great virtual programs in the mix these days, there is a danger that some events can get lost in the shuffle. To prevent that, we want to make you doubly aware of an excellent program that is happening on our Crowdcast channel this Thursday ,February 11 at 6pm: 

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Principal’s Office? with Daudi Abe 

Simply sign in on the library’s Crowdcast page and you can watch it live. If the timing doesn’t work for you, never fear. The program will be accessible for a week after the presentation. 

Here is a brief synopsis to pique your interest:  

Beginning as early as preschool, Black students are disproportionately suspended and expelled from school. As many of these students reach adulthood, these punishments can lead to legal trouble, creating what some call the “school-to-prison pipeline” that affects many Black communities. 

Why are Black students punished more than others in the classroom? Based on his extensive research and teaching experience, Abe demonstrates that the racial achievement gap cannot be solved without first addressing the discipline gap. In communities across the state, crucial questions must be faced: What is the difference between subjective and objective forms of discipline? What is “academic self-esteem” and “Cool Pose?” And in a state where 90% of teachers are White and the student body is only 56% White, would a more diverse teaching staff help? Does the discipline gap affect other communities of color? And what solutions can we can learn to help ALL students succeed? 

Daudi Abe is a professor, writer, and historian who has taught and written about race, gender, education, hip-hop, and sports for over 20 years. His books include the forthcoming Emerald Street: A History of Hip-Hop in Seattle, and his work has appeared in The Stranger and The Seattle Times as well as the Crosscut and Blackpast websites. Abe holds an MA in human development and a PhD in education from the University of Washington. 

So join us on Thursday, or in the days to come, for this exciting and important program. 

Spot-Lit for February 2021

These titles – from established, new, and emerging authors – are some of the most anticipated new releases of the month, based on advance reviews and book world enthusiasm.

Click here to see all of these titles in the Everett Public Library catalog, where you can read reviews or summaries and place holds. Or click on a book cover below to enlarge it, or to view the covers as a slide show.

Notable New Fiction 2021 (to date) | All On-Order Fiction | 2021 Debuts

Fuse Your Brain

When it comes to learning a new topic or finding a job, it is hard to deny the power of one-on-one tutoring. It is great to have lots of resources at your fingertips but having a person to guide and critique your actions is invaluable. But how do you get that kind of help in the ‘virtual only’ world we have been living through recently? The library has one answer to that question in the form of a great new service we have just made available: Brainfuse

Simply put, Brainfuse provides live virtual tutoring for students and adult learners as well as job coaching to help you land a new position. All you need is an Everett Public Library card to gain access.

To get you started, it is good to know that Brainfuse has two distinct areas based on the kind of one-on-one help you need.

Brainfuse HelpNow is the place to go if you are a student or adult learner. The HelpNow Resource Center gives you access to live tutoring for homework help, skills building and test preparation. You can also access The Writing Lab and the 24/7 Center to submit assignments that will be reviewed and commented upon by tutors who are experts in many academic fields. There are also many study and collaboration tools to take advantage of, as well as an adult learning center.

Brainfuse JobNow is where you can interact with live online job coaches to brush up on interview techniques or get live online interview practice as well as job tips and strategies. You can also submit a resume any time and a job coach will send it back within 24 hours with detailed feedback and suggestions for improvement. You are also able to download resume templates and enjoy 24/7 access to a carefully selected library of job resources.

So whether you are studying for an exam, looking for a job or wanting to build your skill set, take advantage of Brainfuse at the Everett Public Library.

Spot-Lit for January 2021

These titles – from established, new, and emerging authors – are some of the most anticipated new releases of the month, based on advance reviews and book world enthusiasm.

Click here to see all of these titles in the Everett Public Library catalog, where you can read reviews or summaries and place holds. Or click on a book cover below to enlarge it, or to view the covers as a slide show.

Notable New Fiction 2021 (to date) | All On-Order Fiction | 2021 Debuts

Best of List Bonanza

As this strange, at times chaotic, and unprecedented year comes to an end, take heart (or not) in one constant that cannot be altered: The best of (insert year here) book list. 2020 has produced a bumper crop of these lists, maybe because many of us have had more time at home to read this year.  

Whatever the reason, wading through them all can be daunting. If you want to dip your toe in the ‘best reads of 2020’ waters, here is a selection of the major lists that have come out so far. And never forget, almost all of these titles are available from the Everett Public Library

First and foremost, and admittedly we could be a little biased here, you need to check out our very own Spot-Lit posts on A Reading Life. Every month, Spot-Lit highlights some of the most anticipated new fiction releases based on advance reviews and book world enthusiasm. You can access all of the 2020 recommendations, complete with links to the catalog, from the Notable New Fiction 2020 list. 

Newspapers and news outlets are the mainstay of the Best of Lists, and this year is no exception: 

New York Times 100 Most Notable Books 

Washington Post Best Fiction and Best Nonfiction 

Los Angeles Times 10 Best Books of 2020 

USA Today Best Books of 2020 

NPR Staff Picks of 2020 

Magazines and media figures have also been busy compiling: 

Oprah Magazine Best Books of 2020 

Time Magazine 100 Must-Read Books of 2020 

Vanity Fair 15 Best Books of 2020 

Bill Gates 5 Good Books for a Lousy Year 

New Yorker The Best Books We Read in 2020 

And, of course, the literary & book world outlets have plenty of lists to peruse: 

Publishers Weekly Best Books 2020 

Library Journal Best Books 2020 

Literary Hub Our 65 Favorite Books of the Year 

Book Riot Best Books of 2020 

Pacific Northwest Booksellers 2021 Book Awards Shortlist (all published in 2020) 

Finally, it can be fun to view Best of Lists from other countries to gain a different perspective: 

The Guardian Best Books of 2020 

Canadian Broadcast Company Best Canadian Fiction of 2020 

BBC The Best Books of the Year 2020

So can anything good be said of this wretched outgoing year? Perhaps not. But at least it produced some great books for us to read as we move onward and upward. 

Testing Testing 1,2,3

While we love to emphasize all of the fun and enjoyable things we have here at the library, sometimes you just gotta get serious. It would be great if we could all just read a great book, watch the latest TV series, or play a cool video game all day, every day. Sadly the adult world always comes knocking.  

And nothing is more adult than taking a crucial test, or learning a new skill in order to advance a real world career. While you might not think of the library as the first place to look when it comes to test prep and skill learning, we actually have a lot of great resources to help you: even in this mostly online world. Read on to learn about four of them, and make sure to check out our Job, Career & Test Prep page for even more. 

Learning Express 

This excellent and comprehensive database has lots of targeted practice guides that can help you do well on specific exams in several fields. The High School Equivalency Center covers the GED (in both English and Spanish), HiSet and TASC exams. The College Admissions Test Center has test prep for the ACT, SAT, PSAT, AP, TOEFL and many more. The Career Preparation Center has tons of test prep in many career areas including Cosmetology, the CDL license, Military, Nursing, and Teaching to name but a few. Be sure to check out the Welcome page for even more resources.  

GCF Learn Free 

This resource is all about improving your computer and technology skills through tutorials both specific and general. Specific tutorials to make you proficient in programs such as Microsoft Office, including Excel and Word, web browsers, email and computers in general are included. In addition there are tutorials on core math, reading and work skills to get you up to speed. 

Khan Academy 

The Khan Academy does provide great resources for studying for specific tests but really shines in providing full blown courses and in depth skill building on a wide range of topics. These are all very detailed but allow you to study and complete them at your own pace. Just click on the Courses button on the top left to see the huge diversity of topics and subject areas, from basic to in depth. 

Driving Tests 

While it would be nice if public transportation could get us everywhere we needed to go, being able to drive is actually a crucial skill when it comes to getting and keeping a job in Washington State. Finding good study materials for the driving test, however, can be difficult. This database fills in the gap with extensive study material and test prep for getting your driver’s license. It also has study material for a CDL license and all is available in both English and Spanish.