Sean Stewart Wins Teen Video Challenge!

The Alliance Public Library Staff would like to congratulate Sean Stewart for winning the American Library Association Nebraska Teen Video Challenge for 2011!

The video had to promote the 2011 Teen Summer Reading Program and inclue the theme “You Are Here”. By winning the competition, the library will be awarded $100 for the Teen Summer Reading program and Sean will receive $250!

Great Job Sean – we knew you’d win!


The Nebraska Book Festival

The Nebraska Book Festival is an annual event for Nebraska readers and writers. This year’s theme is Cultivating Creativity and will be held May 21st at the Nebraska History Museum, 15th and P St., Lincoln. This event is free and open to the public! I attended the festival as a college student in Lincoln, and it is a rather nice affair and a wonderful way to connect with other readers and writers across the state. Activities include:

  • A reading by Nebraska authors
  • A keynote panel featuring Ted Kooser, Virginia Smith and Paul Amandes
  • The award ceremony for the winner of the Mildred Bennet Award
  • Writer’s workshops
  • Author signings

For more information, visit the Nebraska Book Festival homepage at or their facebook page at

April Book Club

This month’s selection for the Community Book Club is Storm Front by Jim Butcher. The books is available at circulation, and a return postage fee of $2.75 is needed at checkout. Book Club will meet on Tuesday, April 26th at 1pm and Thursday, April 28th at 4pm. All are welcome!

My name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Conjure by it at your own risk. I’m a wizard. I work out of an office in midtown Chicago. As far as I know, I’m the only openly practicing professional wizard in the country. You can find me in the yellow pages, under Wizards. Believe it or not, I’m the only one there.

With rent past due and a decent meal becoming an issue of some importance, Harry needs work, and soon. A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago.

Winter’s Bone Book Review

After watching the Academy Awards and seeing the movie Winter’s Bone was nominated for the best adapted screen play award, I decided to read the book written by Daniel Woodrell, and boy was I glad I did.

In Winter’s Bone, a young sixteen-year-old girl named Ree finds herself responsible for her two young brothers and insane mother and living in extreme poverty after her meth cooking father goes missing. She is visited by the county Sheriff who informs her that her father placed the house up for bond after his last drug charge. The family will lose the house if he does not show up for court, so Ree sets out looking for her father, intent on finding him at all costs.

Woodrell possesses a stark, crisp and informed writing style that compliments every part of this hauntingly beautiful story. From his dialogue to his narration, Woodrell paints such a complete and cohesive reality that the reader finds himself moving off the page and into the heart of the poverty and crime stricken Ozarks where family blood is stronger than whiskey and stints in the state penitentary are prepared for the way most high schoolers prepare for college. His characters are so vividly realized that the story becomes not just words on paper, but flesh and bone. Highly recommended. I will be looking to read more of Woodrell’s work.

The book is available for checkout in our collection.

Based on the Book

Water for Elephants, based on the novel by Sara Gruen, hits theatres this month. The novel comes highly recommended by both staff and patrons!

As a young man, Jacob Jankowski was tossed by fate onto a rickety train that was home to the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. It was the early part of the great Depression, and for Jacob, now ninety, the circus world he remembers was both his salvation and a living hell. A veterinary student just shy of a degree, he was put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie. It was there that he met Marlena, the beautiful equestrian star married to August, the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. And he met Rosie, an untrainable elephant who was the great gray hope for this third-rate traveling show. The bond that grew among this unlikely trio was one of love and trust, and, ultimately, it was their only hope for survival.