About Amber

Public Information Officer and Adult Programming Coordinator

Readaloudathon

On the first Wednesday of March every year, World Read Aloud Day calls global attention to the importance of reading aloud and sharing stories. The Cedar Rapids Public Library celebrates this each year with a Readaloudathon on March 4 at the downtown library.

Readers will begin reading stories out loud at 9 am, when the library opens, and continues until the library closes at 9 pm. For those twelve hours someone will always be reading. Everyone is invited to come listen to the stories and share in the fun.

Schedule:
9:00 Chris Earl (KCRG), Marcy Jones (KGAN), Dara Schmidt (CRPL), and
Cedar Rapids Mayor Ron Corbett
9:30 Children’s Stories from the Family Connections Library
11:00 It’s Just Right, Goldilocks and the Three Bears in Five Languages
NOON City Leaders Tell Tall Tales
1:00 Classics in the Commons
3:00 Cedar Rapids Roller Girls “Bridge to Reading”
4:00 Teen Angst in the Union
5:00 Theater and Speech Selections from area High School Students
6:00 VoiceBox Poetry
7:00 Poetry Slam

10 From 26: The ABC Family Reading Program

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One of the prized pieces of the Zerzanek Collection is this original illustration by Maurice Sendak.

The cold weather means a lot more time for indoor activities! The Library wants to help you read and play together with “10 From 26: The ABC Family Reading Program.” This inter-generational reading program is designed to get you and your little one’s reading together!

Visit the Library and check out a bag of 10 family-friendly books, read them together, and receive a prize! Each book was hand selected to fit 10 of the 26 letters of the alphabet.

This reading program is being done in conjunction with the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art’s newest exhibit: “The ABCs of Children’s Book Illustrations” highlighting the Zerzanek Collection of the Cedar Rapids Public Library.

The program and exhibit run through May 17. For more information on Evelyn Zerzanek and the amazing collection of illustrations, click here.

ABOUT THE EXHIBIT

Unbeknownst to many in the Cedar Rapids community, the
Cedar Rapids Public Library possesses an extraordinary collection
of original children’s book illustration. Starting in the 1950s, an
exceptional children’s librarian, Evelyn Zerzanek, asked children’s
book authors and illustrators to donate a work for the children
of Cedar Rapids. Over the course of fifteen years, the collection
grew to more than 1,400 pieces, representing various scenes and
characters from childhood classics. The Cedar Rapids Museum
of Art, which has housed the collection since 2008, is partnering
with the Library to present a major exhibition of this little-known
collection to a much broader audience.

The ABCs of Children’s Book Illustration presents several works
from the Zerzanek Collection of Original Art from Children’s
Literature. The exhibition is organized not by artist or date of
production but rather in the form of an ABC book, spread out on
the wall. While most of the illustrations are from published books,
others were drawn specifically for the Library and have never been
published. Still others were made for well-known books but for
one reason or another were not included in the final version. Also
in the exhibition are some pieces of correspondence that include
original drawings, for example a letter from H. A. Rey with an image
of Curious George, and another from Dr. Seuss with an original
drawing of his dog Owlser. On display are also a few retirement
wishes Miss Zerzanek received from various authors and illustrators,
again including original artwork. In all cases, these works exemplify
a golden age of children’s literature and illustration and are truly a
treasure of this community.

This exhibition is made possible by Rockwell Collins, the Program
Grant Fund of the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation,
members of the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, and contributors to
the Museum’s Annual Fund.

STEM Festival February 24

The downtown Cedar Rapid Public Library will be buzzing on Tuesday for the STEM Fair STEM logofrom 4 – 8 pm. Over 40 exhibitors and community presenters will be on hand demonstrating STEM technology and careers. Representatives from Rockwell Collins, Iowa BIG Academy, the City of Cedar Rapids, and so many more organizations will be on site to show how STEM education can lead to a career you may have never considered.

Activities are geared at kids of all ages, from Pre-K through high school. Robots will be taking over the first floor of the library. A portable planetarium will invade the Whipple Auditorium. Students can try CAD technology in our Tech Classroom. Or come to the YA library to learn how to code! This is just a small sample of the fun we’ll be having.

There’s no need to register and no fee to attend. Just drop by and check out all the amazing activities for yourself!

Thanks to the sponsors:
The University of Iowa
Kirkwood Community College
Southeast Iowa Region Governor’s STEM Advisory Council

Linn Area Reads Announces 2015 Title: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

The planning committee for the annual community reading program known as Linn Area Reads has selected One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by author Ken Kesey for the 2015 edition of the program.

Linn Area Reads is a program of the Metro Library Network, which is made up of the Cedar Rapids, Marion, and Hiawatha Public Libraries. All Linn Area Reads events are free and open to the public.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken KeseyOne Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is a novel based largely on the author’s experience with mental patients. Published in 1962, the novel is set in a mental ward and features its inhabitants, especially the tyrannical Nurse Ratched and Randle Patrick McMurphy, the loud-mouthed and fun-loving inmate who opposes her. The novel is told through the eyes of Chief Bromden, a seemingly mute half-Native American patient.

“This book is more than 50 years old, but the themes are still valid today,” said Amber Mussman, Community Relations Manager with the Cedar Rapids Public Library and member of the selection committee. “We are excited to engage the community in a discussion of the state of mental health and wellness treatment as well as services for our veterans in 2015, and how these compare to the picture painted in this classic novel.”

In addition to the programs listed below, the Linn Area Reads committee is excited to announce a new effort to encourage book clubs to participate in the community-wide reading program. A limited number of free book club kits will be available at each of the Metro libraries for groups that wish to participate.

Book Club Kits will be given on a first-come, first-served basis. Kits do not need to be returned. Each kit includes eight paperback copies of the novel, a discussion guide, and information on programs. Kits will be available starting February 15.

“We are grateful to both the Mercy Medical Center Foundation and the Cedar Rapids Public Library Foundation for their support of this new program,” said Mussman. “They are making it possible for us to give these kits away at no cost to book clubs.”

Linn Area Reads 2015 programs include:

  • The State We’re In: A Picture of Mental Health in 2015. March 10, 7 p.m., Whipple Auditorium at the Cedar Rapids Public Library, 450 5th Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids.
  • Moderated Book Discussion. March 24, 6:30 p.m., at Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 333 Collins Rd. NE, Cedar Rapids.
  • Movie Screening: “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”, March 31, 6:30 p.m., Whipple Auditorium at the Cedar Rapids Public Library, 450 5th Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids.

For more information about programs, visit our Event Schedule.

ALA Announces 2015 Youth Media Award Winners

Each year, the American Library Association (ALA) announces the winners of the most  prestigious youth book, video and audio book awards during its annual mid-winter conference. The winners for 2015 were announced today. Look for these and past award winners at the Cedar Rapids Public Library.

A list of all the 2015 award winners follows:

John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution the crossoverto children’s literature:

“The Crossover,” written by Kwame Alexander, is the 2015 Newbery Medal winner. The book is published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Two Newbery Honor Books also were named:

“El Deafo” by Cece Bell, illustrated by Cece Bell and published by Amulet Books, an imprint of ABRAMS.

“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children:ypl_woodson_Brown_Girl_Dreaming

“The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend,” illustrated by Dan Santat, is the 2015 Caldecott Medal winner. The book was written by Dan Santat and published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

Six Caldecott Honor Books also were named:

“Nana in the City,” illustrated by Lauren Castillo, written by Lauren Castillo and published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

“The Noisy Paint Box: The  Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art,” illustrated by Mary GrandPre, written by Barb Rosenstock and published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc., New York.

“Sam & Dave Dig a Hole,” illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett and published by Candlewick Press.

Viva Frida,” illustrated by Yuyi Morales, written by Yuyi Morales and published by Roaring Brook Press, a Neal Porter Book.

“The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus,” illustrated by Melissa Sweet, written by Jen Bryant, and published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

“This One Summer,” illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, written by Mariko Tamaki and published by First Second.

Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award recognizing an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults:

“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson, is the King Author Book winner. The book is published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Three King Author Honor Books were selected:

Kwame Alexander for “The Crossover,” published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing.

Marilyn Nelson for “How I Discovered Poetry,” illustrated by Hadley Hooper and published by Dial Books, an imprint of Penguin Books (USA) LLC.

Kekla Magoon for “How It Went Down,” published by Henry Holt and Company, LLC.

Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award:

“Firebird,” illustrated by Christopher Myers, is the King Illustrator Book winner. The book was written by Misty Copeland and published by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Two King Illustrator Honor Book were selected:

Christian Robinson for “Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker,” by Patricia Hruby Powell, published by Chronicle Books LLC.

Frank Morrison for “Little Melba and Her Big Trombone,” by Katheryn Russell-Brown, published by Lee and Low Books, Inc.

Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Author Award:

“When I Was the Greatest,” written and illustrated by Jason Alexander, is the Steptoe winner. The book is published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division.

Coretta Scott King – Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement:

Deborah D. Taylor is the winner of the Coretta Scott King – Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement. The award pays tribute to the quality and magnitude of beloved children’s author Virginia Hamilton.

Taylor’s career in public service began more than 40 years ago with the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, where she is currently coordinator of School and Student Services. Her career has been spent as mentor, educator and literacy advocate for young adults. As an inspiring young adult librarian, leader in national associations and university instructor, she has been distinctly effective in introducing young people and her professional colleagues to the outstanding work of African American authors.

Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults:

“I’ll Give You the Sun,” written by Jandy Nelson, is the 2015 Printz Award winner. The book is published by Dial Books, an imprint of Penguin Group USA, a Penguin Random House Company.

Four Printz Honor Books also were named:

“And We Stay,” by Jenny Hubbard, and published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc., a Penguin Random House Company.

“The Carnival at Bray,” by Jessie Ann Foley, and published by Elephant Rock Books.

“Grasshopper Jungle,” by Andrew Smith, and published by Dutton Books, an imprint of Penguin Group USA, a Penguin Random House Company.

“This One Summer,” by Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, and published by First Second.

Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience:

“A BOY AND A JAGUAR” written by Alan Rabinowitz, illustrated by Catia Chien and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, wins the award for children ages 0 to 10.

“RAIN REIGN” written by Ann M. Martin and published by A FEIWEL AND FRIENDS BOOK, is the winner of the middle-school (ages 11-13).

The teen (ages 13-18) award winner is “Girls Like Us,” written by Gail Giles and published by Candlewick Press.

Alex Awards for the 10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences:

“All the Light We Cannot See,” by Anthony Doerr, published by Scribner, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

“Bellweather Rhapsody,” by Kate Racculia, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

“Bingo’s Run,” by James A. Levine, published by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of the Random House Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

“Confessions,” by Kanae Minato, translated by Stephen Snyder, published by Mulholland Books, an imprint of Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

“Everything I Never Told You,” by Celeste Ng, published by The Penguin Press, a member of Penguin Group LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

“Lock In,” by John Scalzi, a Tor Book published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.

“The Martian,”  by Andy Weir, published by Crown Publishers, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

“The Terrorist’s Son: A Story of Choice,” by Zak Ebrahim with Jeff Giles, published by TED Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

“Those Who Wish Me Dead,” by Michael Koryta, published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

“Wolf in White Van,” by John Darnielle, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Andrew Carnegie Medal for excellence in children’s video:

Paul R. Gagne and Melissa Reilly Ellard, Weston Woods Studios, Inc., producers of “Me…Jane,” are the Carnegie Medal winners. This transcendent adaptation of Patrick McDonnell’s 2012 Caldecott Honor draws viewers into the childhood of a young Jane Goodall who, with beloved stuffed chimpanzee, Jubilee, is transformed by what she observes in her own backyard, a “magical world full of joy and wonder.”

Laura Ingalls Wilder Award honors an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made, over a period of years, a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.

The 2015 winner is Donald Crews, whose award-winning works include “Freight Train,” which was a Caldecott Honor Book in 1979, and “Truck,” a Caldecott Honor Book in 1981. He has been consistently excellent with a wide range of titles, such as “Harbor,” “Parade,” “Shortcut” and “Bigmama’s,” all published by Greenwillow Books.

Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults:

The 2015 winner is Sharon M. Draper, author of more than 20 books, including: “Tears of a Tiger” (1994), “Forged by Fire” (1997), “Darkness Before Dawn” (2001), “Battle of Jericho” (2004), “Copper Sun” (2006), and “November Blues” (2007), all published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing.

2016 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture Award recognizing an author, critic, librarian, historian or teacher of children’s literature, who then presents a lecture at a winning host site.

The 2016 Arbuthnot Lecture will be delivered by Pat Mora. Pioneering author and literacy advocate Pat Mora has written more than three dozen books for young people that represent the Mexican American experience.

Mildred L. Batchelder Award for an outstanding children’s book translated from a foreign language and subsequently published in the United States:

“Mikis and the Donkey” is the 2015 Batchelder Award winner. The book was written by Bibi Dumon Tak, illustrated by Philip Hopman, translated by Laura Watkinson, and published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

Two Batchelder Honor Books also were selected:

“Hidden: A Child’s Story of the Holocaust,” published by First Second an imprint of Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership, written by Loic Dauvillier, illustrated by Marc Lizano, color by Greg Salsedo, translated by Alexis Siegel.

“Nine Open Arms,” published by Enchanted Lion Books, written by Benny Lindelauf, illustrated by Dasha Tolstikova, translated by John Nieuwenhuizen.

Odyssey Award for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States:

“H. O. R. S. E. A Game of Basketball and Imagination,” produced by Live Oak Media, is the 2015 Odyssey Award winner. The book is written by Christopher Myers and narrated by Dion Graham and Christopher Myers.

Three Odyssey Honor Recordings also were selected:

“Five, Six, Seven, Nate!” produced by AUDIOWORKS (Children’s) an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster, Inc., written by Tim Federle, and narrated by Tim Federle;

“The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place,” produced by Listening Library, an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, written by Julie Berry, and narrated by Jayne Entwistle;

“A Snicker of Magic,” produced by Scholastic Audiobooks, written by Natalie Lloyd, and narrated by Cassandra Morris.

Pura Belpre (Illustrator) Award honoring a Latino writer and illustrator whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience:

Viva Frida,” illustrated by Yuyi Morales, is the Belpre Illustrator Award winner.  The book was written by Yuyi Morales and published by Roaring Brook Press, a Neal Porter Book.

Three Belpre Illustrator Honor Books were named:

“Little Roja Riding Hood,” illustrated by Susan Guevara, written by Susan Middleton Elya, and published by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

“Green Is a Chile Pepper,” illustrated by John Parra, written by Roseanne Greenfield Thong, and published by Chronicle Books LLC.

“Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation,” illustrated and written by Duncan Tonatiuh, and published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of ABRAMS.

Pura Belpre (Author) Award honoring Latino authors whose work best portrays, affirms and celebrates the Latino cultural experience:

“I Lived on Butterfly Hill” is the 2015 Pura Belpre (Author) Award winner. The book is written by Marjorie Agosin, illustrated by Lee White and published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division

One Belpre Author Honor Book was named:

“Portraits of Hispanic American Heroes,” written by Juan Felipe Herrera, illustrated by Raul Colon and published by Dial Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award for most distinguished informational book for children:

“The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus,” written by Jen Bryant, is the Sibert Award winner. The book is published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

Five Sibert Honor Books were named:

“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson, and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

“The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, & the Fall of Imperial Russia,” written by Candace Fleming, and published by Schwartz & Wade Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

“Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker,” written by Patricia Hruby Powell, illustrated by Christian Robinson and published by Chronicle Books LLC.

“Neighborhood Sharks: Hunting with the Great Whites of California’s Farallon Islands,” written and illustrated by Katherine Roy, and published by David Macaulay Studio, an imprint of Roaring Brook Press.

“Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation,” written and illustrated by Duncan Tonatiuh and published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of ABRAMS.

Stonewall Book Award – Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award given annually to English-language children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience:

“This Day in June,” written by Gayle E. Pitman, Ph.D., illustrated by Kristyna Litten and published by Magination Press, an imprint of the American Psychological Association, is the winner of the 2015 Stonewall Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award.

Three Honor Books were selected:

“Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out,” by Susan Kuklin, photographed by Susan Kuklin and published by Candlewick Press.

“I’ll give you the sun,” written by Jandy Nelson, published by Dial Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress,” written by Christine Baldacchio, pictures by Isabelle Malenfant, published by Groundwood Books / House of Anansi Press.

Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for the most distinguished beginning reader book:

“You Are (Not) Small,” written by Anna Kang and illustrated by Christopher Weyant, is the Seuss Award winner. The book is published by Two Lions, New York.

Two Geisel Honor Books were named:

“Mr. Putter & Tabby Turn the Page,” written by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Arthur Howard, and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

“Waiting Is Not Easy!” written by Mo Willems, illustrated by Mo Willems, and published by Hyperion Books for Children, an imprint of Disney Book Group.

William C. Morris Award for a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens:

“Gabi, a Girl in Pieces,” written by Isabel Quintero, is the 2015 Morris Award winner. The book is published by Cinco Puntos Press.

Four other books were finalists for the award:

“The Carnival at Bray written by Jessie Ann Foley and published by Elephant Rock Books.

“The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim” written by E.K. Johnston and published by Carolrhoda Lab™, an imprint of Carolrhoda Books, a division of Lerner Publishing Group.

“The Scar Boys” written by Len Vlahos and published by Egmont Publishing.

“The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender” written by Leslye Walton and published by Candlewick Press.

YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults: 

“Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek,” written by Maya Van Wagenen, is the 2015 Excellence winner. The book is published by Dutton, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group.

Four other books were finalists for the award:

“Laughing at My Nightmare” written by Shane Burcaw, and published by Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan’s Children’s Publishing Group.

“The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia” written by Candace Fleming, and published by Schwartz & Wade, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.

Ida M. Tarbell: The Woman Who Challenged Big Business—and Won!” written by Emily Arnold McCully, and published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers.

“The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights” written by Steve Sheinkin, and published by Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group.

ABOUT THE AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION YOUTH  MEDIA AWARDS: Recognized worldwide for the high quality they represent, ALA awards guide parents, educators, librarians and others in selecting the best materials for youth. Selected by judging committees of librarians and other children’s experts, the awards encourage original and creative work.  For more information on the ALA youth media awards and notables, please visit www.ala.org/yma.

February is Teen Fitness Month

The Cedar Rapids Public Library will celebrate Teen Fitness Month in February with free teens-7and fun exercise programs. Throughout the month, teens will be able to participate in any of the three sessions:

Boot Camp
Tai Chi
Kick Boxing

Each class is taught by a trained professional. Registration is required and a waiver must be signed in order to participate. For more information, call (319) 261-READ.

Free + Legal = Freegal

The Cedar Rapids Public Library is excited to share Freegal® with our library card holders. freegalFreegal is a free music service from the library. All you need is your library card number and PIN and you can access to nearly 8 million songs, including Sony Music’s catalog of legendary artists, and over 15,000 music videos. In total the collection is comprised of music from over 28,000 labels with music that originates in over 100 countries. There is no software to download, and there are no digital rights management (DRM) restrictions.

Freegal is a free and legal way to download and keep music directly on your digital device! Each library card holder is allowed access to five songs per week. The library pays for the rights to download each song, much in the same way we purchase books and cds for you to check out from our physical library.

If you would like assistance in using Freegal or any of our digital services, give us a call at (319) 261-READ. We’ll be happy to help!