Dog Days of Summer

How our four-legged friends amuse, instruct, and inspire us! Many dog owners have been sufficiently inspired to write books dedicated to their canine companions, and their stories appeal to dog-people and non-dog-people alike. The bond between humans and their dogs is complex and unique, the power of an animal’s ability to change lives is uplifting and hopeful – a perfect combination for summer reading.

Keeping a Reading Log

Do you keep a reading log? People who read a lot inevitably find themselves at the point where they pick up a book and wonder, “Did I already read this?” I know I do! If I had to rely on my memory, I’d be in trouble.

What are the best ways to keep track of your reading? Some write down titles in a notebook, others use index cards. The trouble with those is that it can be cumbersome carrying a big notebook or box or cards around the library or bookstore. That’s why I prefer a digital log.

There are several good ones to try. The following are available as mobile apps as well as desktop sites. That way you can always have your reading log with you!

GoodReads [mobile apps available for Apple & Android devices]. This is the one everyone knows. A free “social cataloging” site where you can search people’s shelves, participate in book discussions, etc.

LibraryThing [mobile app available for Apple devices]. LibraryThing is a little more serious than GoodReads. The social aspect takes a back seat to your bookshelves. Free for up to 200 books, then there is a fee.

aNobii [mobile apps available for Apple & Android devices]. A community for readers allowing you to catalog your books, share reviews, and connect with other book lovers.

Libib [mobile apps available for Apple & Android devices].  A free cloud service that will let you store up to 100,000 titles for free. If you have more than 100,000 books in your home library, better get the paid version.

You can also keep an automatic log of the books you check out from Cheshire Library. Sign in to your account from our website, then select Reading History, then “Save Reading History” from the options in your account. You can sort the list by title or author, even export or print it out.

My BEA Wishlist – New Books I Can’t Wait to Read

I recently attended Book Expo America, an annual conference for booksellers, librarians, and others in the book industry. Held in New York City at a giant convention center, it’s a book lovers’ wonderland of authors and publishers showcasing their upcoming books. For someone like myself who rates authors right up their with rock stars, it’s an intense couple of days of fangirling and serious listmaking of new books that I simple MUST READ! Some of these just came out recently, some are due out later in the year, all look awesome. Let me spread the wealth by sharing a few so you can put them on your list:

Children’s Books:

YA Books:

Adult Books:

Many of these books are listed in our catalog and can be placed on hold right away, some of them are too new to be in our catalog yet, but will be soon!

July is National Grilling Month

July is National Grilling Month and Cheshire Public Library has more grilling and barbecue books than you can shake a spatula at. We’ve got books on grilling steak, burgers, poultry, fish, pork, Italian style, barbecue style and vegan! If you need to purchase a grill or maintain your current one, we can help you there too! Online access to Consumer Reports is just a click away.

Here are just a few of our grilling & barbecue books.

The big-flavor grill : no-marinade, no-hassle recipes for delicious steaks, chicken, ribs, chops, vegetables, shrimp, and fish.

Italian grill

Fire it up : more than 400 recipes for grilling everything

Fresh fish : a fearless guide to grilling, shucking, searing, poaching and roasting seafood

The grilling book : the definitive guide from Bon Appétit

Weber’s charcoal grilling : the art of cooking with live fire

Cooking Light way to cook grilling

Everyday grilling : 50 recipes from appetizers to desserts

Mediterranean grilling : more than 100 recipes from across the Mediterranean

The Kansas City Barbeque Society cookbook

And if you are in the market for a new gas grill or want tips on how to maintenance your current grill, go to the Consumer Reports database, search grills and access Gas Grill Ratings & Reviews, and the CR Buying Guide. Scroll down the page for short CR videos: Grill Buying Guide; How to Maintain Your Grill; Clean Your Grill Safely; and How to Replace a Gas Grill Burner.

Happy Grilling!

Hiking Cheshire and Beyond

Cheshire residents have the good fortune to live in a town that is home to 2,000 acres of open space, much of which is accessible to the public. The Town maintains 10 properties where hiking is allowed. Trail maps of these properties are available at the library, on both the main and lower levels – as well as online at the Cheshire Planning Department web page . The non-profit Cheshire Land Trust also maintains properties in town with hiking trails.

Additionally, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) website features trail maps to state parks and forests, while on the national level, the National Park Service website offers hiking opportunities throughout the country.

Trail maps are available at the library for the following properties: Boulder Knoll, Casertano, Cheshire Park, DeDominicis, Dime Savings, Farmington Canal, Mixville Hills, Quinnipiac Park River Walk, Roaring Brook, and Ten Mile Lowlands. These maps are also available at the Town Hall Lobby.

Cheshire Public Library does offer many trail books about hiking in Connecticut, New England and across the U.S. Summer is the perfect time to enjoy the great outdoors, and here is a sampling of the books available at CPL.

The green guide to low-impact hiking and camping

America’s great hiking trails

Hiking through history : New England : exploring the region’s past by trail

AMC’s best day hikes in Connecticut : four-season guide to 50 of the best day hikes from the Highlands to the coast

Best hikes of the Appalachian Trail : New England

The National Parks Coast to Coast : 100 Best Hikes

Hiking Connecticut and Rhode Island

Happy trails!