“Perception is sometimes exaggerated,” comments Pastor Gordon Anderson of New Life Church. “We look forward to re-engaging the library in what it has to offer.”
I recently met with Gordon over coffee to talk about a perception among some members of his congregation — as well as the wider churchgoing community — that the library had a policy against purchasing new Christian-oriented materials.
“We live in a pluralistic world. Our congregation just wants to see our values reflected in the library collection,” Gordon explains. “Creston is an amazingly diverse community, and the library collection should reflect all of this wonderful diversity.”
As your librarian, I want to affirm that Creston and District Public Library is committed to providing the widest possible variety of materials in order to meet the educational, informational and recreational needs of the community. In the past month, we have acquired titles by Christian fiction writers Karen Kinsbury, Rosalind Lauer, Wanda Brunstetter and Tamera Alexander, to name a few. We will continue to acquire these types of books as long as you keep checking them out.
We also continue to acquire many more titles that do not necessarily reflect a Christian worldview. As librarians like to say, we have something here to offend everyone!
If there are titles that you want to see in the collection, please let us know. And if you see gaps in any area of our collection, tell us! We do our best to buy what we think you will want, but we don’t presume to know everything. We have budgeted over $5,000 this year for direct patron requests. If you request it, chances are that we will buy it.
You can request items by clicking on “Book Recommendations” on our website, or come in and talk to us in person.
New to the library is Musicophilia and An Anthropologist on Mars author Oliver Sacks’ latest mind-bender, Hallucinations, just arrived on the new books shelf. Seasoned with personal anecdotes describing his own experiences with hallucinations — brought on through migraine headaches and liberal quantities of psychedelic drugs — Dr. Sacks explores the varieties and causes of hallucinations from both a medical and historical perspective.
As you may know, one of our staff members, Cassandra Viers, moonlights as a breadmaker, selling her family’s delicious homemade creations at the Creston Valley Farmers’ Market. For her sake, I hope none of you read William Davis’ Wheat Belly Cookbook, a follow up to his bestselling Wheat Belly. Davis claims that what we call wheat is a distant relative to what our grandparents called wheat, and that these new strains of wheat are a catalyst for a laundry list of ailments, including cataracts, dementia, wrinkles, coronary artery disease, cancer and arthritis. Wheat Belly Cookbook includes 150 dishes for any occasion, plus an entire wheat-free baking chapter.
On a lighter note, The Runaway Princess is the latest from Little Lady Agency writer Hester Brown. An anonymous librarian blogger (yalibrariantales.com) writes, “I had to have been its target audience because OMG, it is all about a royal wedding, about a commoner falling in love with a prince, and finding a way to make it work. YOU DO KNOW HOW MUCH I ADORE WILL AND KATE RIGHT??? Well, Amy and Leo are the perfect fictional couple to read about! Fairy-tale romance indeed!”
And last but not least, tax season has once again arrived to disrupt my otherwise blissful life. Evelyn Jacks’ Essential Tax Facts (2013 edition) will tell you everything you need to know to make lots of money and die rich. Meanwhile, Gordon Pape explains how tax-free savings accounts can make you rich in the aptly titled Tax Free Savings Accounts: How TFSAs Can Make You Rich.
On a related note, the library is once again hosting a “community volunteer” tax consultant available to assist low-income individuals and families with preparing income taxes. The service is free of charge (income thresholds apply). Call us at 250-428-4141 to book an appointment.
Happy lunar new year, everyone!
Aaron Francis is the chief librarian at the Creston and District Public Library.