Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Phillip Margolin and Frontier Justice

Oregon author Phillip Margolin comes to the Newport Public Library on Sunday, May 4, at 2:00 p.m. to discuss his recently published novel, Worthy Brown’s Daughter.

Known for his contemporary legal thrillers, Margolin explores intriguing new territory in this work, a compelling historical drama set in nineteenth-century Oregon. Based on a true story, it combines a heartbreaking tale of slavery and murder with classic Margolin plot twists.

One of a handful of lawyers in the new state of Oregon, recently widowed Matthew Penny agrees to help Worthy Brown, a newly freed slave, rescue his fifteen year old daughter from their former master, a powerful Portland lawyer. Worthy's lawsuit sets in motion events that lead to Worthy's arrest for murder and create an agonizing moral dilemma that could send either Worthy or Matthew to the hangman.

A New York native, Margolin spent 1965 to 1967 in Liberia, West Africa as a Peace Corps volunteer, then graduated from New York University School of Law in 1970. His first job following law school was a clerkship with Herbert M. Schwab, the chief judge of the Oregon Court of Appeals, and from 1972 until 1996, he was in private practice, specializing in criminal defense at the trial and appellate levels.

Since 1996 he has been writing full-time. All of his novels have been best sellers. His first novel, Heartstone, was nominated for an Edgar for best original paperback mystery of 1978 by the Mystery Writers of America. His second novel, The Last Innocent Man, was made into an HBO movie. Gone, But Not Forgotten, sold to more than 25 foreign publishers and was made into a mini-series starring Brooke Shields. Wild Justice and Lost Lake were both Oregon Book Award Finalists.

Margolin will sign copies of his books after the program, which will be sold by Canyon Way Bookstore. Sponsored by the Newport Library Foundation, this program is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the library at 541-265-2153 or visit its website,

Monday, April 28, 2014

Ashley "Iguana" Lowe and the PCT

Newport resident Ashely “Iguana” Lowe will give a presentation about her Pacific Crest Trail hike at the Newport Public Library on Tuesday, April 29 at 7:00 p.m.

The Pacific Crest Trail spans over 2,600 miles. It starts in the vast desert of California, unfolding into the mountainous wilderness of the High Sierras and ending in the pristine volcanic peaks of the Cascade Range in Washington.

In 2011, Iguana hiked the entire span of the PCT. It took her 6 months and a day. She is currently planning a thru-hike of the Continental Divide Trail from Montana to New Mexico.

Everyone who hikes the trail has a different story to tell. Varying weather challenges, changing trail conditions, personal obstacles and different preparation techniques makes each hiker’s experience unique. Hiking long distances can be an extremely rewarding achievement for everyone who tries. Iguana will share videos, photos, anecdotes and advice. This presentation will have something for everyone; those planning their own long distant hike, beginning hikers, and armchair travelers.

For more information, contact the Newport Public Library at 541-265-2153 or go to

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

How to read a shelf

Ever wonder how to find the one special book you seek among all the books in the library? Maybe you found the Call Number in the online catalog, but aren't sure where to go from there.  Most of us know that there are fiction and non-fiction sections, which are supposed to separate the real from the not-real, each in its place. Then again, some non-fiction concepts seem pretty unbelievable, and anyone who has gotten lost in a great fiction story knows how real a story can seem.  But I digress!

Adult fiction books are found upstairs and sorted by genre - fiction (F), science fiction and fantasy(SF), mystery (M), romance (R), and western (W.)  If your Call Number says R ROBERT NORA, you'll need to go to the Romance section and look alphabetically for ROBERT.  Young Adult fiction is also organized alphabetically upstairs in its own little corner, but the genres are mixed together, so science fiction and romance and realistic fiction can live on the same shelf.  And Children's fiction is organized in the Children's Room, alphabetically and by age group, so that picture books are separated from Early Readers are separated from chapter books.

Nonfiction is different.  Newport Library uses the system originally developed in 1873 by librarian Melvil Dewey; hence, the Dewey Decimal System.  Every book is assigned a number that fits into broad classifications in whole numbers, and finer sorting by decimal numbers.  Adult and older children's books are shelved together downstairs in the nonfiction area, while younger children's nonfiction is shelved along one wall in the Children's Room.  There are signs on the shelving to help you find your Call Number, and if you can't -- just ask a librarian!

Keeping all these books in the right place requires careful shelving, to ensure they can be found when needed.  Newport Library is blessed to have dedicated shelvers who return books to their places on the shelves. Without them the mountains of books on the returned-item carts would overflow to the counters and (heaven forbid) the floors. Thank you to all our wonderful volunteers – without you what a mess we would be!


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Bob Welch's Cascade Summer

Oregon author Bob Welch will be in Newport to discuss this year’s Newport Reads! selection Cascade Summer: My Adventure on Oregon’s Pacific Crest Trail.  Welch will answer questions and sign books after his presentation. He will also debut his latest children’s book, Keyboard Kitten 2, which features elements of Newport. Welch speaks Thursday evening, April 24, at 7:00 p.m. in the auditorium of the Hatfield Marine Science Center.

Bob Welch is the award-winning writer of nearly 2000 columns for The Register-Guard, author of 15 books and of articles published in anthologies and leading magazines, founder of the popular Beachside Writers Workshop in Yachats, and head of Pebble in the Water Inspiration. Cascade Summer was released to rave reviews in 2012.  Jay Bowerman, Principal Research at Sunriver Nature Center says, “This is no travelogue of a trail, but a human adventure that brings into play unexpected challenges, unexpected heroes, and an unexpected ending. A gold-star read.”

Over 90 readers have checked out copies of Cascade Summer in the two months since the Newport Public Library Foundation announced it as this year’s Newport Reads! Many copies of the book are still available to be checked out from the library, local bookstores have the book on sale, and additional copies will be on sale at the author event.

 Earlier in the day, Welch will talk about the craft of writing to students at Newport High School. In the afternoon he will read from his children’s book, Keyboard Kitten to students at Sam Case Elementary School.

The Newport Public Library Foundation hosts Newport Reads 2014! with support from the Sylvia Beach Hotel and the Elizabeth Street Inn. For more information, check with the Newport Public Library, 35 NW Nye, 541-265-2153,

~ Wyma Rogers

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Destroyer Angel by Nevada Barr

Many mystery aficionados are already familiar with Nevada Barr’s brusque and outdoorsy Anna Pigeon, whose grief over the loss of her fiancé and subsequent retreat into the bottle drove her to a career with the National Park Service. Time after time, Anna has been reassigned to different parks, crisscrossing the U.S., and time after time she stumbles upon murder and corruption.

Her latest adventure, Destroyer Angel, is not so much a mystery as a survival story, set near the Fox River in northern Minnesota. This time Anna is camping with two other women, introverted inventor Leah Hendricks and paraplegic Heath Jarrod, and their teen daughters, Katie and Elizabeth. The party is attacked and captured by four thugs who know their names and are seemingly intent on kidnapping the two Hendricks’ for ransom. Anna is at the river enjoying a moment alone when the attack occurs, and the others convince the bad guys that the expected fifth member of their party never showed up.

 Hearing the attack before she betrays her presence, Anna calculates that help is just too far away. It would take more than a day for her to reach civilization and get aid, and during that time, her friends would be in the hands of killers and rapists. If she wants to keep them alive, she must use the few assets she has—no weapon, no food, no cell phone, only her survival skills—to neutralize the bad guys.

What follows is excruciating. Anna and her friends are seemingly powerless. One is in a wheelchair, another nearly catatonic with fear. Two are teenage girls; one a spoiled city girl, the other the past victim of a psychopath.

Destroyer Angel is a harsh, violent story of struggle and heroism despite overwhelming odds, told so vividly and with such human characters that I was unable to put it down. It might have extra resonance with female readers because it’s about women triumphing over misogynistic, scum-of-the-earth men, but male readers who like survival epics will enjoy it too. Nevada Barr’s 18th entry can be read on its own, even if you haven’t read the rest of the series, and I highly recommend it.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Lapham's Quarterly

One of Newport Libraryʼs newest magazines is Laphamʼs Quarterly. Each issue focuses on a particular theme and the amazing editors at Laphams in New York City collect essays, artwork, poetry and short fiction from all over the world and across three thousand years of world history to illuminate and expand on that theme.

The Winter 2014 issue is entitled “Comedy” and features over 220 pages with short, humorous contributions from almost 100 different writers, including Mark Twain, Woody Allen, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Chris Rock and Homer (the Greek one). Thereʼs even a collection of jokes from 15th century Florence! The issue also includes over 200 works of comedic visual art: Japanese wood block prints, sculpture both ancient and modern, photography by Annie Leibovitz and Henri Cartier-Bresson, paintings by Goya, Velazquez, and many, many others.

Laphamʼs Quarterly is an ambitious and thought-provoking new journal of ideas and culture and history. Itʼs quickly become one of my favorite magazines in our collection. You can reserve it here.

And an especial thank-you to the patron who suggested we carry this title!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Hiking and History

Cascade Summer: My Adventure on Oregon’s Pacific Crest Trail by Bob Welch is the Newport Public Library's Community Read for 2014.  Programs for learning more about the Pacific Crest Trail and its history take place this coming weekend.

Local naturalist Linda Brodeur will lead a short and easy family hike through Mike Miller Park on Sunday, April 13, at 1:00 p.m. Meet where the park adjoins the Community College parking lot; the hike ends at the Community Room of Oregon Coast Community College with trail mix, hot cocoa, and cookies.

After refreshments, National Park Service historian Stephen R. Mark presents “John Breckenridge Waldo – Oregon’s Own Thoreau.” Waldo hiked the Cascades in the early 20th century. Pages from his hiking journal are featured in Cascade Summer. That’s at 2:30 p.m. on April 13 in the OCCC Community Room. Newport Reads Cascade Summer! is sponsored by the Sylvia Beach Hotel, the Elizabeth Street Inn, and the Newport Public Library Foundation.

For more information, contact the Newport Public Library at 541-265-2153 or go to

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Mango teaches Spanish, English, Russian, French, and many more!

Buenos dias, salut, and goedendag!  Mango Languages has come to Newport Library, and boy are we excited!

Mango offers introductory courses in fifty-seven languages from Arabic to Yiddish.  It also includes English as a second language.  Mango leads you through memory building and critical thinking exercises to help the new language stick, and interactive audio helps you learn to speak well and understand what you hear. The courses are self-paced, and begin with useful phrases and conversations rather than vocabulary lists and grammar.  Cultural notes are interspersed throughout.

Learning a language is a great way to stimulate your brain and enrich your life.  If you’d like to give it a try, Mango can be accessed online from our website on your home computer.  Have your library card with you and know your PIN number, and you’ll be asked to make a new account using your email or your Facebook.  You can also download Mango for devices like tablets or smartphones from the iTunes store or the AppStore for Android.  Please call us at 541 265 2153 with any questions.

Monday, April 7, 2014

For Whom the Bell Tolls

The Newport Public Library will show the film For Whom the Bell Tolls at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 8.

This 1943 film is based on Ernest Hemingway's 1940 novel set during the Spanish Civil War. Hemingway handpicked Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman to play Robert Jordan, an idealistic American teacher who joins the Republicans, and María, a woman abused by Nationalist soldiers.

The film was nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Katina Paxinou won the Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

This movie will be shown at no charge in the McEntee Meeting Room of the library.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Librarian-Approved Reads

Interested in a great source for what's hot in new books? If not, you better find something else to read because that's what this post is about. Fair warning.

A relatively new site called LibraryReads gathers the most librarian-recommended books being published in the current month. (As noted in a previous post, librarians can use their wiles to gain copies of unreleased books.) I've been following the site for a few months and I've been impressed by my colleagues' ability to spot the good ones from a plethora of the not-so-goods.

April's top pick is The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin. Go ahead, put a hold on it or another one of April's LibraryReads picks to see if the librarians are right. Happy reading!