Apr 14

National Library Week

National Library Week

National Library Week is upon us! Every year in April, the American Library Association hosts National Library Week to help celebrate the contributions of libraries in communities and to promote library use and support. This year’s theme is: “Lives change @ your library®.” From April 13 to April 19, stop into your Willmar Public Library to participate in events for all ages.

For Adults -

On Wednesday April 16 at 12PM the Lunch Bunch Book Club will be discussing The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty at the Goodness Coffee House. New members are always encouraged and there is no commitment – come when you can. This is a great way to be exposed to new books and to meet new people. Occurring every 3rd Wednesday of the month, we will discuss future book club selections at our May meeting.

For Teens -

Monday and Thursday from 6-8PM – Study Center. We have tutors available to help those in grades 4-12 with their homework. This is an ongoing program every week.

Friday April 18th at 3PM – Come Watch Catching Fire, the second movie of the Hunger Games series.

For Kids -

Ongoing story hours – Story hours for ages 2 ½ – 6 years old are held on Wednesday and Friday mornings from 10-10:45 am. This week’s theme is chicks and bunnies.

On Thursday mornings from 10-10:30 the library holds baby lap sit for ages 6 weeks – 2 ½ years old.

Pick up a form at the library to draw book characters you’d like to meet to receive a coupon to Cherry Berry. You’ll also be entered to win a $5 chip.


For more information on these events and more, give us a call at (320) 235-3162 or stop by the library today!

National Contests:

- ALA is hosting a contest in conjunction with National Library Week. Tweet about how the library has changed your life using #LivesChange or #NLW14 and you could win a Kindle Fire! And make sure to include @WillmarPLibrary in your tweet. Good luck, and get tweeting.

- CNN wants you to share a picture of your favorite library. Go to http://ireport.cnn.com/topics/1114920. Your story could be featured on CNN Travel!

Apr 11

A Poetry Blog/National Poetry Month/Is Happening Now


As promised, a post to help celebrate National Poetry Month (with a haiku title to stay on topic). I’ve listed a few books that your Willmar Public Library has in addition to a couple websites to help you create your own poems. In addition, stop into the library to use our magnetic poetry board at the circulation desk as well as encourage your teens (or maybe you are a teen) to participate in blackout poetry – supplies are located at the information desk.


Cricket Never Does: A Collection of Haiku and Tanka  by Myra Cohn Livingston

In this anthology, Livingston writes a section about each of the four seasons in these Japanese forms of verse, displaying her thoughts and feelings about the world.


The Fireside Book of Humorous Poetry

This collection of 450 humorous poems, (as suggested in the title… I’ll leave the humor judgment up to you), dates back to the 17th century but contains many more titles from the first half of the 20th century as it was published in 1959. This collection also contains illustrations.


Silly Verse (and even worse) by Joseph Rosenbloom

The title of this book says it all. Mostly a collection of children’s poems however adults will get a good laugh (or maybe just a good chuckle) when they read these. These poems would be great for parents to read to kids.



This website is the link to a rhyming dictionary. These are great for creating rhyming poems – or just in everyday life to pass time.


Not feeling so creative? Use this template to create your own poem. The site will prompt you for words using questions and ta-da, your poem is created.


Have a favorite poem? Let us know!

Apr 08

Minnesota Book Award Winners

Read Local Authors!

The 26th Annual Minnesota Book Award Winners were announced this past week. Put on by the Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library and the 3M Library Systems, judges from the literary community (including writers, librarians, teachers, and booksellers among others) pick finalists and winners of books published by Minnesota authors. Below is the list of winners for the various catagories. I have attached the catalog record if we have the book at the Willmar Public Library. More information about the awards and the other finalists can be found here.

Children’s Literature 

Moo! by David LaRochelle

“When Cow gets her hooves on the farmer’s car, she takes it for a wild ride through the country” (From Pioneerland Library System Catalog).

General Nonfiction 

The Nazi and the Psychiatrist: Hermann Goring, Dr. Douglas M. Kelley, and a Fatal Meeting of Minds at the End of WWII by Jack El-Hai

“Ace reportage on the unique relationship between a prison physician and one of the Third Reich’s highest ranking officials” (From Pioneerland Library System Catalog).

Genre Fiction

Tamarack County by William Kent Krueger

“Faced with a series of dark occurrences that are linked to a twenty-year-old murder, private investigator Cork O’ Connor must stop a vengeful force before his family and friends pay the ultimate price”  (From Pioneerland Library System Catalog). Part of the Cork O’Connor series.

Memoir & Creative Nonfiction 

Prairie Silence by Melanie Hoffert

A coming out story about returning home as an adult annd finding self-acceptance and reconciliation along the way.


Modern Spirit: The Art of George Morrison by W. Jackson Rushing III and Kristin Makholm

A catalog of George Morrison’s works, a modernist and Native American artist.

Novel & Short Story 

The Peripatetic Coffin and Other Stories by Ethan Rutherford

A series of stories that explore what we think we know about the world and the sometimes darker side that we may not. The characters in these stories go through events that test their limitations.


Black Aperture by Matt Rasmussen

This series of poems is based upon the author’s experience of dealing with a suicide in his family and trying to find a balance in the many emotions one experiences after losing a loved one.

Young People’s Literature 

Sex & Violence by Carrie Mesrobian

“Sex has always come without consequences for Evan. Until the night when all the consequences land at once, leaving him scarred inside and out”  (Provided by publisher).



Apr 04

Welcome Back! and Plane Crash Reads

Welcome back!

After a short hiatus, YOUR Willmar Public Library blog is back!

As the new Adult Services Librarian, I am excited to hit the ground running. We’ve got a few adult programs in the works for the summer already that will be great and I look forward to planning these and more. In order to best serve the community, take a few minutes and fill out the linked survey if you are so inclined so we can get a better idea of what types of programs you’d like to see at your library.You may also leave comments on this post or contact us through our website. Any and all feedback is helpful!


With that being said, I’m going to begin with a Reader’s Advisory post. I hope to continue these weekly on Fridays along with blogging about events and other cool things going on at the library. Consider yourself connected!

In thinking about the recent news of the missing Malaysian airplane, I have put together a list of books that the library has in our collection related to airplane crashes and survival stories. Who doesn’t love a good survival story (there must be some Lost fans out there). Click on the title and you will be brought to the library catalog record for the book.


Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors by Piers Paul Read

     Alive tells the story of a rugby team from Uruguay that crashed in the Andes mountains. The survivors had to keep themselves alive by turning to drastic measures (cannibalism anyone??). The author interviewed many survivors and their families to keep the book as true as possible.

Wake Up It’s A Crash! by Earl Moorhouse

     Wake Up It’s A Crash! details the story of the first Boeing 747 jet disaster. Written by one of the survivors, those who were lucky enough to escape the disaster recount what happened on that fateful day.

 Airframe by Michael Crichton

     This book follows a VP for an airline company as she investigates an accident requiring the plane to make an emergency landing. During the investigation, the VP must deal with company workers who fear for their jobs. The result of the investigation will leave you baffled and wanting more.

Crashers by Dana Haynes

     When a passenger plane crashes to the ground, a team of experts is assembled to investigate the cause. The author takes the reader on a thrill ride by introducing multiple possibilities and keeps you wanting to find out what will happen next. This also provides excellent insight into how the National Transportation Safety Board investigates plane crashes in the United States.

Total Control by David Baldacci

     Sidney Archer has everything in life, but when a plane she was scheduled to be on crashes, everything changes. Baldacci sends readers into a tangled story involving her husband, a deadly game, a crash investigation, the FBI and so much more.

If you read one of these, let us know what you thought!

Coming up next week – Suggestions to help you celebrate National Poetry Month


Feb 11

Wanna Make a Difference?

Due to a greater need than expected, more volunteer tutors are needed at the library’s Study Center on Monday and Thursday nights from 6-8pm.

The Study Center is open to students in grades K-12 and tutors may come one, or both, evenings and can stay for as long as they would like. No experience is necessary, just a desire to help others reach their academic goals.

For more information, stop by the library and speak with Ryan or Kelly or call us at 235-3162.

Nothing you do for a child is ever wasted. -Garrison Keillor, Leaving Home


Dec 31

Willmar Public Library’s Best Books of 2013

The following were voted on by the public as the best books at the Willmar Public Library in 2013.

General Fiction

Orphan Train

by Christina Baker Kline

Close to aging out of the foster care system, Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer takes a community service position helping an elderly woman named Vivian clean out her home and discovers that they are more alike than different as she helps Vivian solve a mystery from her past.


The Cuckoo’s Calling

by Robert Galbraith

Working as a private investigator after losing his leg in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike takes the case of a legendary supermodel’s suspicious suicide and finds himself in a world of multi-millionaire beauties, rock star boyfriends, desperate designers, and hedonist pursuits.

Science Fiction

The Ocean at the End of the Lane

by Neil Gaiman

It began for our narrator forty years ago when the family lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Dark creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: there is primal horror here, and menace unleashed – within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it. His only defense is three women, on a farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duckpond is ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.


Stealing The Preacher

by Karen Witemeyer

On his way to interview for a position as a preacher, Crockett Archer is forced off the train and delivered to an outlaw’s daughter, who wants Crockett to breathe life back into the abandoned community church.


I am Malala

by Malala Yousafza

Describes the life of a young Pakistani student who advocated for women’s rights and education in the Taliban-controlled Swat Valley who survived an assassination attempt and became the youngest nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Romance Paperback

The Other Side of Us

by Sarah Mayberry

The best thing between Oliver Barrett and Mackenzie Williams is a fence. Ever since Oliver’s new-neighbor gestures were met with unfriendly responses, he’s decided to keep his distance. After all, he’s in this seaside town to get his life on track again. That doesn’t include working hard to get on Mackenzie’s good side, no matter how intriguing she may be.

His intentions are put to the test, however, when his dog becomes infatuated with hers. The two crafty canines do their best to break down the barriers between the properties. And where the dogs go?well, the humans must follow! It doesn’t take long for a powerful attraction to build between Oliver and Mackenzie. They soon discover that the worst of first impressions can lead to the best possible outcomes?

Graphic Novels

Wolverine and the X-Men (Volume 2)

by Jason Aaron; penciler, Nick Bradshaw

 Wolverine tests his luck at a casino to try and secure funding for the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning, while the school’s enemy Kade Kilgore and Wolverine’s foe Sabretooth join forces to target one of the X-Men.

Young Adult

Eleanor & Park

by Rainbow Rowell

Set over the course of one school year in 1986, this is the story of two star-crossed misfits–smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.

Juvenile Chapter Book

Royal Ranger (Ranger’s Apprentice)

by John Flanagan 

A tale that brings the Ranger’s Apprentice arc full circle finds an adult Will struggling with the loss of his beloved wife and reluctantly mentoring the headstrong daughter of Horace and Evanlyn so that she can assume leadership over the floundering Rangers.

Picture Book

The Day the Crayons Quit

by Drew Daywalt

When Duncan arrives at school one morning, he finds a stack of letters, one from each of his crayons, complaining about how he uses them.

Dec 26

Willmar Public Library’s Best of 2013 – Round 3 (Final Round)

Help us decide which books are the Best Books of 2013.   This is the final round, and it will run from December 26th to December 30th.  We will then announce the winners on December 31st.  There are ten categories to vote for:  General Fiction, Mystery Fiction, Science Fiction, Western, Nonfiction, Romance Paperback, Graphic Novel, Young Adult, Juvenile Chapter Book, and Picture Books.

Vote for your favorite book from each category below.

Dec 19

Willmar Public Library’s Best of 2013 – Round 2

Help us decide which books are the Best Books of 2013.  The second round of voting starts today and runs until December 23rd, and the final round will run from December 26th to December 30th.  We will then announce the winners on December 31st.  There are ten categories to vote for:  General Fiction, Mystery Fiction, Science Fiction, Western, Nonfiction, Romance Paperback, Graphic Novel, Young Adult, Juvenile Chapter Book, and Picture Books.

Vote for your favorite book from each category below.


Dec 13

Willmar Public Library’s Best of 2013 – Round 1

Help us decide which books are the Best Books of 2013.  The first round of voting will run from today (December 13th) through December 17th.  The second round of voting will run from December 19th to December 23rd, and the final round will run from December 26th to December 30th.  We will then announce the winners on December 31st.  There are ten categories to vote for:  General Fiction, Mystery Fiction, Science Fiction, Western, Nonfiction, Romance Paperback, Graphic Novel, Young Adult, Juvenile Chapter Book, and Picture Books.

Vote for your favorite book from each category below.

Nov 01

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)

Here are some good reads that were written during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), which takes place every November.  All of the books listed below were also written in 30 days.  For more information on National Novel Writing Month, go to www.nanowrimo.org.

The Night Circus

by Erin Morgenstern

Available at the Willmar Public Library

Waging a fierce competition for which they have trained since childhood, circus magicians Celia and Marco unexpectedly fall in love with each other and share a fantastical romance that manifests in fateful ways.

Click Here for More Details


Shine Shine Shine

by Lydia Netzer

When fabricated aspects of their picture-perfect world are embarrassingly exposed by a car accident, Sunny Mann, a woman longing for an ideal life, and Maxon, her savant astronaut husband, struggle through blame and fear before confronting realities about their deep bond.

Click Here for More Details


How to Knit a Love Song

by Rachael Herron 

Available in the Pioneerland Library System

When Abigail inherits a cottage in Northern California from her mentor, Eliza, she faces problems with Eliza’s nephew, Cade, who owns the surrounding property and does not welcome her presence on his ranch.

Click Here for More Details


Water for Elephants

by Sara Gruen

Available at the Willmar Public Library

Ninety-something-year-old Jacob Jankowski remembers his time in the circus as a young man during the Great Depression, and his friendship with Marlena, the star of the equestrian act, and Rosie, the elephant, who gave them hope.

Click Here for More Details


Self Storage

by Gayle Brandeis

Available in the Pioneerland Library System

A woman who supports her family by selling her yard-sale and self-storage auction acquisitions, Flan Parker embarks on a life-changing odyssey of self-discovery and awareness after bidding on a mysterious box that is empty except for the word “yes.”

Click Here for More Details



by Vanitha Sankaran

Available at the Willmar Public Library

Born with albinism and mutilated after birth so she could not speak the devil’s lies, Auda learns her father’s craft of papermaking and becomes a scribe for local nobility, only to find herself under scrutiny when the papal Inquisition arrives in her medieval city.

Click Here for More Details


Daughter of the Bride

by Francesca Segre

Available in the Pioneerland Library System

When her mom calls to say she’s getting married, Daniella is both thrilled and devastated. Mom, who’s pushing sixty, is about to walk down the aisle for the second time, and Daniella, at twenty-nine, hasn’t come close to saying “I do” once. Even worse, Mom insists Daniella help plan the big bash: white gown, band, caterer, the works.  Between cake tastings, dress fittings, and ring shopping, Daniella struggles to make sense of her own frustrating love life-all while juggling her high-pressure TV job and hectic dating adventures. And it isn’t long before she realizes she’s going to have to make some changes in her own life-or never walk down the aisle herself.

Click Here for More Details



by Hugh Howey

Available at the Willmar Public Library

 In a future toxic landscape, a community that lives in an underground silo is rocked by the desire of Sheriff Holston, who has upheld the group’s rules for years, to go outside, setting in motion events that kindle the fire of revolution.

Click Here for More Details


The Forest of Hands and Teeth

by Carrie Ryan

Available in the Pioneerland Library System

When the fence that surrounds her village and protects its residents from the Forest of Hands and Teeth is breached, danger strikes the only home Mary has ever known and forces her to decide between saving everything she loves or pursuing the life she has always dreamed of having.

Click Here for More Details


Being Henry David

by Cal Armistead

Available at the Willmar Public Library

Seventeen-year-old “Hank” has found himself at Penn Station in New York City with no memory of anything –who he is, where he came from, why he’s running away. His only possession is a worn copy of Walden, by Henry David Thoreau. And so he becomes Henry David-or “Hank” and takes first to the streets, and then to the only destination he can think of–Walden Pond in Concord, Massachusetts.  The only way Hank can discover his present is to face up to the realities of his grievous memories. He must come to terms with the tragedy of his past, to stop running, and to find his way home.

Click Here for More Details 

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