Jan 2016
Volume 6, Issue 1
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Aitkin Branch Librarian to Retire

Congratulations to Branch Librarian Mary Beth Woodrow on her retirement after 25 years at the Aitkin Library. During her time at Aitkin, the library moved into its new building from the original Carnegie Library. Then in 2014, another building project expanded the library by 50%.

Mary Beth shared her experiences with colleagues at the recent Branch Librarian meeting. She said that as the Aitkin Librarian she made acquaintance with people she never would have otherwise met and that she would most miss the people who came to the library. She is looking forward to reading all the books she didn't have time for - after her scheduled 15 day vacation in Maui. She also plans to dance with her grandchildren. 
New Officers for ECRL Board

The first meeting of the new year for the Board of Trustees for East Central Regional Library was held Monday, January 19th.  All members reaffirmed their oath of office: " . . . to see that adequate funds are obtained for good library service; to promote the best possible use of all library resources in the area; and to improve library service to those not previously served."

The newly seated officers of the Board are President - Commissioner Mike Warring, Vice President - Karen Lee, Secretary - Barbara Kruschel, and Treasurer - Richard Byrne.

The ECRL Board meets the second Monday of each month at 9:30 a.m. Meeting agendas are posted on the ECRL website.
Staff Reviews

Avenue of Mysteries  by John Irving (Print)

If you are a John Irving fan, this book won't disappoint or surprise you.  As usual, Irving has created unforgettable quirky characters and situations that will make you laugh and cry.  The book begins in Mexico with the main character in the poorest of conditions.  But, he teaches himself and eventually becomes successful as an author who lives for a time in Iowa and then, the Philippines.  Irving explores the magic of vivid and imaginative dreams and circumstances some of which might be shocking to some.  In all, it is, as is usual for Irving, a book that will not be forgotten for long.  

Jeanne Coffey, Sandstone Branch Librarian

Kitchens of the Great Midwest by Ryan Stradal (print, Bk on CD)

(Audio Review) Set in the Midwest, namely Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa, and read with a mid-western accent, this story focuses on food and cooking.  Lars Thorvald is left to raise his daughter, Eva, on his own and is determined to pass on his love of food to her. She eventually finds comfort and solace in the flavors of her native Minnesota. The story introduces new characters each chapter while winding in the previous characters so everything comes together in the end.  A very nice tale. 

Betty Evans, Milaca Library Assistant

The Drowning by Camilla Lackberg (print, Bk on CD)
"One by one, they will pay for their past..."
Those were the words that grabbed my attention and held me in rapt fervor as I raced through this contemporary psychological thriller.  
Crime writer Erika Falck, who discovered Christian's talents, learns that he has been receiving anonymous threats via letters.  And Christian's childhood friend has gone missing; could his disappearance be connected to the sinister letters and Christian's refusal to discuss his past? Erika delves into his past life in another town and discovers disturbing information.  Swedish author Camilla Lackberg is new to me, but I am greatly looking forward to reading more of her books.
Nancy Kramer, Chisago Lakes Branch Assistant

Playing With Fire by Tess Gerritsen (Print, Large Print, Bk on CD, eBook, eAudio)

I love Gerritsen's Rizzoli and Isles series, but this book was just as enjoyable.  Julia, an accomplished violinist, purchases a piece of music entitled Incendeo while performing in Italy.  From the moment she first plays the piece in front of her young daughter, her life is changed forever.  Historical events from WWII are woven into this haunting mystery.

Vickie Sorn, Youth & Community Services Librarian
Just a Reminder:
Limited 2015 Tax Documents at East Central Regional Library

As much as we hate to think about it, tax season is upon us. Tax forms usually start to arrive at the ECRL branch libraries in late January.

East Central Regional Library has received notice that  the Minnesota Department of Revenue will no longer provide state tax forms and instructions to libraries beginning January 1, 2016.  The Minnesota Department of Revenue is making this change  in order to ensure taxpayers are filing with the most up-to-date tax forms and instructions, which are on available online or by calling 1-800-652-9094.

In addition, ECRL has received notice that, for the seco nd  year,  branch libraries will receive a limited supply of federal tax forms from the Internal Revenue Service.  As a result of the increasing number of taxpayers using software to prepare their federal tax returns (95% electronically filed last tax season), the IRS continues to decrease the number of tax products available to public libraries. 

Please read a more in-depth article with links to tax forms and instructions along with information about tax assistance on our ECRL Blog.
               Upcoming Legacy Programming
  (events funded with money from Minnesota's              Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund)

Scrapbooking at the Library 
Chisago Lakes Area Library  scrapbook-cover.jpg
Tuesday, January 26 - 6:30-8:30 pm

The Chisago Lakes Area Library branch of ECRL will be offering a beginning scrapbooking workshop.  This is a basic beginner's class for those who are interested in learning the art of scrapbooking.  The workshop will last 2 hours and be led by MN Historical Society educator, Kerri Teske.

The program is free and open to the public, however, class size is limited.  Please pre-register at the Chisago Lakes Area Library by calling 651-257-2817 or stopping by.  

Plus check out all the other activities going on throughout ECRL. 
Simply check any of the following spots on our website:  NewsBits at www.ecrlib.org, Google calendar, ECRL Facebook page or follow us on  Twitter@ecrlib.


For employment opportunities at ECRL, visit our Jobs page - http://www.ecrlib.org/jobs.html

ECRL's Mission
To strengthen communities by connecting people with resources, spaces, and educational experiences that enrich and empower their lives.


*East Central Regional Library is funded by the counties of Aitkin, Chisago, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs and Pine. ECRL also receives state and federal funds.  


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Overdrive Titles
 (Search for any these in the Overdrive catalog)
eBook Titles

*Angel by Her Side by Ruth Reid
*Blue:  A Novel by Danielle Steel
*Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown
*Coal River by Ellen Marie Wiseman
*Four to Score by Jane Evanovich
*The Homesman by Glendon Swarthout
*Let's Kill Mom by Donna Fielder
*Most Inconvenient Marriage by Regina Jennings  
*Mountain Man by Diana Palmer
*Troublemaker:  Surviving Hollywood and Scientology by Leah Remini

eAudio Titles

*Ape House:  A Novel by Sara Gruen
*Christmas Bliss:  Southern Series, Book 4 by Mary Kay Andrews
*The Guilty:  Will Robie Series, Book 4 by David Baldacci
*Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham
Forthcoming Adult Non-FicitionTitles in the ECRL catalog
Search for any of t hese in the ECRL catalog

*75 Colorful Hexagons to Crochet by Leonie Morgan
*Always Hungry?  by David Ludwig
*Container Theme Gardens by Nancy Ondra
*Creating Really Awesome Free Things by Jamie Dorobek
*Dalai Lama's Big Book of Happiness by Dalai Lama XIV
*Herbs for Men's Health by Rosemary Gladstar
*In a Different Key:  The Story of Autism by John Donovan and Caren Zucker
*J. K. Lasser's Small Business Taxes 2016 by Barbara Wellman
*No Grain, No Pain:  a 30-Day Diet by Peter Osborne
*When Hitler took Cocaine and Lenin Lost His Brain: History's Unknown Chapters by Giles Milton
Forthcoming Print Fiction in the ECRL catalog
Search for any of these items in the  ECRL catalog

*Boar Island  by Nevada Barr
*The Cavendon Luck by Barbara Taylor Bradford
*Crimson Death  by Laurell Hamilton
*Emperor's Revenge  by Clive Cussler
*End of Watch  by Stephen King
*Fast and Loose  by Fern Michaels
*Liberty's Last Stand  by Stephen Coonts
*Mercy  by Daniel Palmer
*Tall Tail:  A Mrs. Murphy Mystery  by Rita Mae Brown
*Which Way Home? b y Linda Byler
Forthcoming Music CDs in  the ECRL Catalog
Search for any of these titles in the ECRL Catalog:

TOP 40

*2016 Grammy Nominees (various artists)
*Blackstar (David Bowie)
*Enough (The Mrs.)
*Nine Track Mind (Charlie Puth)
*Wildfire (Rachel Platten)


*In America (Dianna Corcoran)
*It's About Time (Hank Williams, Jr.)
*Fifteen (Great River Ordinance)
*Nothing Shines Like Neon (Randy Rogers Band)
*Pawn Shop (Brothers Osborne)
New Teen Titles in the ECRL catalog
Search for any of these in the ECRL Catalog:

*Anna and the Swallow Man by Gavriel Savit
*Great Hunt by Wendy Wiggins
*The Isle by Jordana Frankel
*Lady Midnight by Clare Cassandra
*Lady Renegades by Rachel Hawkins
*Last Leaves Falling by Sarah Benwell
*Lumberjanes 3 by Noelle Stevenson
*Memory of Light by Francisco X Stork
*Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
*Thicker Than Water by Kelly Fiore
ECRL Holiday Closings

The following branches and HQ will be closed on Monday, January 18 in honor of Martin Luther King Day:
Aitkin, Cambridge, Chisago Lakes, Mora, North Branch and Princeton.  There will also be no Braham Outreach that day.  

The followig branches will be closed on Tuesday, January 19 in honor of Martin Luther King Day:  Hinckley, McGregor, Milaca, Mille Lacs Lake, Pine City, Rush City, Sandstone & Wyoming.