Lunch with Maria Semple

Image of author maria semple

Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation presents a special luncheon with best selling author Maria Semple. Maria is the author of the breakout bestseller, “Where’d You Go, Bernadette“. Her latest novel, “Today Will be Different” takes place over the course of a single day and tells a hilarious and life-affirming story about a woman who wakes up determined to be her best self… until life intervenes.

Before devoting herself to fiction, Semple wrote for television, and was nominated for a prime-time Emmy. The film version of “Where’d You Go, Bernadette will debut in March of 2019 starring Cate Blanchett.
cover image for where'd you go, bernadette

“Today Will Be Different” is in development at HBO, starring and executive-produced by Julia Roberts.

Lunch will be at the Rose Hill Community Center in Mukilteo on Wednesday, September 5, from 11:30 – 1:30 p.m. Maria will give a talk, take questions from the audience and sign books. Bring your own copy or purchase one at the event.

In addition to the ticket price guests will also be encouraged to make a generous donation to the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation.

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Taking Care of a Person with Dementia

by Denise D.

The Loneliest Job?

If you take care of a person with Alzheimer’s Disease or another form of dementia, it’s easy to feel alone. For one thing, the person you are caring for is changing. A relationship that has been a mainstay of your life is no longer the same. Your loved one might not even recognize you.

For another, you might not get out as often as you used to. Maybe you’re not sure how your loved one will act outside the home. (Our society, after all, tends to stigmatize dementia.) And you’re not sure your loved one will be safe at home alone.

Support in Numbers

Although the job feels isolating, you are not alone. In 2017, 16.1 million Americans provided 18.4 billion hours of uncompensated care (valued at over $232 billion) for a person with dementia. Since the number of people with Alzheimer’s disease, which is only one type of dementia, is expected to more than double (from 5.7 million in 2018 to 14 million by 2050) in the next few decades, the number of care partners will only rise.

Support at the Library

With these rising numbers, there is a growing need for information and support directed to care partners. We hope this list helps.

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Child Narrators

by Lindsey A.

NoveList (one of Sno-Isle Libraries’ reading databases) recently added themes to their array of browsable story elements. Different from genre or subject, themes are “popular and recurring plot elements found in fiction.” They describe the overall plot. They have themes for all age groups. A full list may be found in NoveList’s Help section.

Among the themes I’ve seen are chosen family, fish out of waterunreliable narrator, rise of the machines, secret baby, and the one that caught my eye recently: child narrator.

There is a difference between child narrators in adult fiction and child narrators in children’s or young adult fiction. In a 2014 Guardian article, author John Boyne explained the appeal for him: “More often than not they’re optimistic, good-willed, resourceful young people forced to live through an adult experience and through their occasionally naive voices we get to relive a familiar experience in an unexpected way.” Thankfully, not all of the events experienced by these kids are familiar, but they still force us to examine them through a different lens.

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Plot Twists

by Michelle C.

There is nothing quite like leaving a theater after having watched a movie with a plot twist. Half the audience is in shock and awe. The other half loudly claiming that they knew how it would end the whole time. I am in the first half. Even if I know going into a movie that there is a plot twist, I will have forgotten by the end and am always caught unaware. Not surprisingly, when I was a child, my mom would take me holiday shopping and then tell me to forget what I just saw her purchase. It worked every time. I was always pleasantly surprised come December 25.

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Hey, That’s My Jam!

By Kristi S.

My deep love of canning and preserving started four years ago. It was the summer quarter of culinary school and I had just made a high-stress wedding cake when I decided I needed something more relaxing. I opened up The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook and instantly fell in love with the process. I spent a leisurely week stirring vats of fresh jams and sterilizing mason jars while humming a delightful song I’d made up called Kristi’s Jamboree. This was obviously a joy for my fellow students, as well.

Since then, I like to take a Jamboree week every year and can like a maniac. It’s so deeply satisfying to put a few days of labor into something that provides comfort all year. Whether you are a canning expert or newbie, there is always inspiration and advice to be found in books. Continue reading »

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LibraryReads List August 2018

by Lindsey A.

August is the month of women! Every author featured on this month’s LibraryReads list is a woman, and the books themselves are female-focused. Just an observation!

At the top of the list is Vox by Christina Dalcher, a compelling dystopian novel about a future in which women are limited to speaking 100 words per day. I’ve heard rave reviews of this one!

Personally, I am interested in reading A River of Stars by Vanessa Hua, a modern immigration story about a Chinese woman and her daughter, and Rust & Stardust by T. Greenwood, a “disturbing” read about the true events that inspired Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita.

If disturbing crime fiction isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of lighthearted titles on offer, including a new book by Kristan Higgins about friends who met at a summer camp for overweight teens, and the latest mystery in Rhys Bowens’ Royal Spyness series.

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Beyond Bestsellers: Reading the Rainbow – LGBTQIA+

By Kaley C.

I’m so excited to take you all into another month of Beyond Bestsellers. We’re exploring LGBTQIA+ books this round, a personal favorite of mine. These novels and narratives feature folks that identify as LGBTQIA+, but the range of subjects or topics are wide. Here, I’ll share some different genres and titles that’ll pique your interest and have you placing a hold faster than you can shake a pride flag.

Image result for the last place you look bookRecently, I read The Last Place You Look by Kristen Lepionka. I couldn’t put this book down, reading through it in one weekend. Our protagonist is a private investigator named Roxanne Weary, who lives up to her last name. She is reeling from the violent death of her father, a cop who was killed in the line of duty, despite having a strained relationship with him while he was alive. Continue reading »

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Beyond Bestsellers: Now back to your regularly scheduled programming

By Grant P.

The month is nearly over so why not wrap it up with a few more film adaptations. Did you find any new films to watch or books to read?  Discover any new genres or movies? You can always go back and take the quiz, to discover more great adaptations or check out Kim’s great post on Manga/Anime!

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Don’t Know Much About History

by Marie B. 

I was a not a good student when the subject was history.  Oh, I passed those classes in high school, but not due to any fervor on my part for the subject matter.  History always seemed so dry.  In fact, it bored my socks off.  If only my teachers had assigned a good historical fiction novel!

There are some variations on the historical fiction theme so there is something for virtually everyone.

Historical fiction can include story lines that run alongside true events.  In John JakesNorth and South, the lives of two friends play out against the backdrop of the American Civil War.

In clever twists, authors alter history to explore the what-if factor.  What if there was a way to stop the assassination of President Kennedy?  That is precisely the scenario Stephen King explores in 11/22/63.

In biographical fiction, real people appear in fictionalized stories.  A good example of this sub-genre is The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, which plants a plucky (fictional) boy into the lives of Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Leon Trotsky.

The best historical fiction novels are compelling reads that leave me wanting to know more about the people and events of the times.   “Meeting” real people from history within the pages of a novel somehow makes them feel more real.  I don’t have a favorite period in history, though many readers do.  Rather, my reading spans millennia.  Continue reading »

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True Colors

by Emily Z.

A friend once asked me why I have a jar of dried onion skins on my kitchen counter. The mason jars of inky black and rust-red liquid inside my refrigerator have also raised an eyebrow or two, especially from the technician who came by to repair the thing last year.

What’s with all the weird jars? Am I just gross? Have I wildly misunderstood a project from Pinterest?

No, no. Once upon a brief time though, I was a Medieval historical interpreter and my primary shtick was demonstrating how to color wool and linen fabrics with dyes made from plant matter (and sometimes bugs). Botanical dyes and hand-dyeing in general are increasingly popular pursuits these days, if the growing number of books about them are any indication. You don’t need to don a liripipe hood to try them out either, though renaissance fair season is  fast approaching.


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