Introducing Cleo!

Is this the start of the best new middle grade series? We hope so.

Cleo Edison Oliver will be your boss someday. For now, she attends the fifth grade, endures her mom's health food experiments, and dreams up new businesses. She also wonders about her birth parents; Cleo is adopted, and has two adopted younger brothers. How should Cleo react when kids at school tease her for being adopted? And what makes her family her family? 

Cleo's world is warm and supportive, and readers will appreciate the strong depiction of a multiracial family: her father and brothers are African-American, her mother is White, and Cleo herself is Filipina and African-American. Readers who love the Clementine series by Sara Pennypacker will love Cleo, too, for her scrapes and flashes of inspiration.

CLEO EDISON OLIVER: PLAYGROUND MILLIONAIRE is by Sundee T. Frazier, and just launched this week, so keep an eye out for her! OPL has already ordered copies, and you can

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What's New in Nonfiction

New nonfiction titles on OPL shelves.

If you're looking for fresh nonfiction titles, check out OPL's new collection of essays, memoir, biography and general nonfiction. Just click on the book cover to learn more about each title and to place a hold.

Drawing Blood     Democracy in Black    

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#Winning: the 2016 ALA Youth Media Awards

A banner year! Check out this year's Newbery, Caldecott, and other medal winners.

Big news from the 2016 ALA Youth Media Awards! This year's Newbery Medal went to LAST STOP ON MARKET STREET, a picture book by Matt de la Peña--notable because the Newbery is the award for outstanding writing, not illustration. There's only been one other picture book in the almost-100 years the award has existed that beat every novel released that year for the esteemed prize.

de la Peña, who's most known for his young adult novels, is also the

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Emma turns 200

"Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich."

December marked the 200 anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen's EmmaThe title page of the John Murray first edition reads "1816" but the book was actually released on December 23, 1815, making this brief tribute both timely and belated. 

Emma Woodhouse, the heroine that Austen declared, "no one but myself will much like," is the headstrong and indulged younger daughter of a Henry Woodhouse, a country gentleman. Unlike Austen's other heroines Elizabeth Bennet and Elinor Dashwood, Emma is rich and therefore not in need of a husband to provide her with financial security. Her entitled position in the little town of Highbury has set Emma up at the age of twenty as an unchecked meddler in the lives of her neighbors, especially in their love lives. Complications ensue, some painful. All is resolved happily in the end.

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Preschool Adventure : Exploratorium

Discover & Go with the preschool and under set. Indoor, FREE fun during the winter.

If you have encountered me at all, chances are I have talked your ear off about OPL's Discover and Go service. It is one of my favorite services!

Museum passes for FREE! How can you not like that?!?!

If you have been raising a preschooler in California, they have spent their whole lives in drought weather, and this rainy, wetter than usual winter is driving your household crazy. 

What do you do when you can't run them ragged at the park? How are you going to expend their energy?

My answer: Discover & Go Adventure Days

This month, I'll share our Exploratorium adventure with you.

Reserving an Exploratorium

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New Year, Old Me.

This year, instead of changing into someone new, resolve to embrace the old you, and celebrate your uniqueness.

Last year my New Year’s Resolution was to give up dieting. Surprisingly, keeping this was harder than it sounds. Nonetheless it was the first New Year’s resolution I kept until bathing suit season. So with this whole “new year new you” mantra upon us again, I am asking myself, what is the point? Seriously, why should I try to change anything? What if I believe the old me is pretty cool and I don’t need to change anything? Would embracing the old me change how I raise my kids? Would accepting the old me help  my child embrace his uniqueness and understand he is special in his own way?  Maybe instead of a new year’s resolution that rejects the old me for the new, this year I’ll resolve to embrace the old me.

I invite you to join me. Instead of trying to change your future, why not try looking in your past and maybe you will realize just how awesome you are. Share with your children who are our future just why the past makes them so special. Here is what I’ll be sharing with mine: 

 

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10 Great Reasons to Read Fiction in January 2016

Start the year out right with one of these fantastic books. Your hold list will thank you!

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How well do you know the Oakland Public Library?

Take a short quiz about the library and win a chance for a prize. All answers can be found in the new Oakland Public Library Annual Report 2014-15.

To celebrate the publication of the Oakland Public Library's 2014-15 Annual Report, we're having a contest!  Answer seven questions correctly and be entered into our weekly drawings for a $20 gift certificate to the Friends of the Oakland Public Library's Bookmark Bookstore in Old Oakland (721 Washington Street). 

Drawings will take place at noon on January 8, 15, and 22, 2016.  All eligible entries with 100% correct responses will be entered into each of the drawings -- there is no need to resubmit each week. 

Do you need a hint or two?  Check out our 2014-15 Annual Report.

Have fun!

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Oakland Public Library Staff’s Favorite Books of 2015

OPL staff look back on their favorite books of 2015.

It's that time of year when everyone publishes their best of the year lists. I look forward to seeing what the New York Times has to say on this matter, but I think my colleagues at Oakland Public Library always come up with the best reading suggestions! Here are some of our favorites from 2015. 

We'd love to hear from you, too--please share your favorites of 2015 in the comments. 

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Has this happened to you?

No one wants to talk about accidentally damaging a library book, but it happens to everyone, even librarians.

Yesterday one of our children's librarians told me this story:

"Today a young child came to me with her mother carrying a book. Eyes downcast she explained that her three-year-old sister learned how to use scissors and handed me this":

Cut Book

"I laughed and told her the story of my library book when my three-year-old sister discovered crayons. I asked her if she kept her temper,  she admitted she lost her temper "a little, but she deserved it!"  The girl promised to keep her library books in her backpack next time. Luckily I had a back-up copy in storage anyway. The child is relieved, the mother is happy, and they checked out several more chapter books."

Baby Eating Book

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