2013 BOOK AWARDS – Booker, Nobel, Pulitzer !

The votes are in, and the winners have been announced!  Here are the authors and books that received major literary awards in 2013:





Cited as a “master of the contemporary short story”, Munro is the first Canadian to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature.  She is also a three-time winner of Canada’s Governor General’sAward for Fiction.  Her works include:

Dance of the Happy Shades (1968)             

The Progress of Love (1986)

The Love of a Good Woman (1998)

Dear Life(2012)




Johnson is a South Dakota native and Associate Professor in Creative Writing at Stanford University.  He received the Pulitzer for The Orphan Master’s Son.  His works include:


Parasites Like Us (2003)

The Orphan Master’s Son (2012)



McBride is a writer and musician whose 1996 memoir, The Color of Water, was a huge bestseller.  He received the National Book Award for The Good Lord Bird.  His works include:

 The Color of Water (1996)

 Miracle at St. Anna (2002)

 Song Yet Sung(2008)

 The Good Lord Bird (2012)


 THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE – Eleanor Catton


A native of New Zealand, Catton attended the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 2008.  She received the Booker Prize for The Luminaries and is the youngest recipient (at age 28) of that award.  Her works include:

 The Rehearsal (2008)

 The Luminaries (2013)


Many of these titles and various other award-winners are in the East Central Regional Library collection.  Check Evergreen (our online catalog) or contact your nearest ECRL branch library for assistance!

Bob Gray, Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian



Clearer descriptions

When you look for a DVD or book you search our online catalog, using words that describe the title, author, performer, or subject. Your search results depend on how ECRL’s catalogers put the information into the database for each item as it comes in. A new standard is being embraced that uses more descriptive and commonly used words, and less non-intuitive abbreviations. The new standard is call RDA, or Resource Description Access, and replaces the venerated cataloging standard called AACR2.

ECRL’s catalogers attended Minitex training this week to learn how to use RDA and plan to incorporate it into catalog records for new items as we buy them. Since ECRL has over 400,000 item records, you will still see the older terms for quite some time, but hopefully descriptions of new items will be easier to read.

Barbara Misselt, Director


Publishers are gearing up for fall!  New biographies and memoirs are sure to be popular and many will hit the bestseller lists.  Check the ECRL catalog in the coming weeks for the following:
Bruce by Peter A. Carlin – the life of Bruce Springsteen based on interviews with family, band members, friends, and ex-girlfriends

But Now I Seeby Steven Holcomb – the Olympic gold medalist faces possible blindness

Butch Cassidyby W.C. Jameson – the life, exploits, and controversial death of Robert Leroy Parker

Call of the American Wild by Guy Grieve – the author escapes to the Alaskan wilderness and builds a new life

Five Lieutenants by James Carl Nelson — five brilliant young soldiers from Harvard serve their country during WWI

A Gift of Hopeby Danielle Steel – the romance novelist discusses her tireless work with the homeless

The Godfather’s Daughter by Rita Gigante – growing up in the household of Vincent “The Chin” Gigante, head of all five New York crime families

Heisman by John M. Heisman – the first authorized biography of the man memorialized by the Heisman Trophy

Hello, Gorgeousby William J. Mann – Barbra Streisand’s early New York years and her rise to stardom

Killing Kennedy:  The End of Camelot by Bill O’Reilly – focuses on a 20th century assassination shrouded in mystery and conjecture

Lady Bird Johnson:  An Oral History by Michael L. Gillette – 37 newly released oral histories collected over 14 years

Marmee & Louisa by Eve LaPlante – Louisa May Alcott’s relationship with her mother based on recently discovered family papers

Martin Luther King Jr:  A King Family Tribute edited by Angela Farris Watkins – family members share their memories

Pray the Gay Away by Bernadette C. Barton – the extraordinary lives of 50 Bible Belt gays and lesbians

Thornton Wilder:  A Life by Penelope Niven – the life of the great playwright and literary icon based on his personal papers

Titian:  His Life by Sheila Hale – a definitive study of the great Renaissance painter

Twitch Upon a Star by Herbie J. Pilato – Elizabeth Montgomery “Bewitched” thousands of TV viewers in the 1960s

The Voice is All by Joyce Johnson – a groundbreaking portrait of Jack Kerouac as a young artist

Bob Gray
East Central Regional Library


It was the largest and most luxurious ocean liner of its time.  Captained by Edward J. Smith, the RMS Titanic left Southhampton, England, for New York City on April 10, 1912.  Four days later, at 11:40 pm on April 14th, the ship struck on iceberg in the North Atlantic, south of Newfoundland, Canada.  In the early morning hours of April 15th, the Titanic broke in two and sank to the ocean floor.

1517 people perished.

April 15, 2012, is the 100th anniversary of a maritime disaster that continues to fascinate people around the world. 

East Central Regional Library has a wide variety of materials on the Titanic in various formats that can be requested and borrowed from your local branch library.

If you enjoy fiction, consider these novels, all published in 2012:

“By the Light of the Silvery Moon” by Tricia Goyer

“The Company of the Dead” by David Kowalski
“The Dressmaker” by Kate Alcott
“Echoes of Titanic” by Mindy Starns Clark
“Hearts that Survive” by Yvonne Lehman
“Promise Me This” by Cathy Golke

For nonfiction readers, the following 2012 titles should prove interesting:

“Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage” by Hugh Brewster
“Shadow of the Titanic” by Andrew Wilson
“Titanic:  Last Night of a Small Town” by John Welshman
“Titanic in Photographs” by Daniel Klistorner
“Titanic Tragedy” by John Maxtone-Graham
“Voyagers of the Titanic” by Richard Davenport-Hines

For film buffs, the library offers both feature films and documentaries:

“Titanic” starring Clifton Webb and Barbara Stanwyck (1953)

“A Night to Remember” starring Kenneth More and Jill Dixon (1958)
“Titanic” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet (1997)
“Titanic” starring Toby Jones and Linus Roache (2011)
“Titanic:  the Complete Story” (2011)
“Titanic:  100th Anniversary Collection” (2012)
“Titanic:  the Definitive Documentary Collection” (2012)

 These are only a few of the items you’ll find in the ECRL catalog.  For additional materials in various formats (for children, teens, and adults), access our homepage at www.ecrlib.org and click on “ECRL Catalog” on the upper left. 
And remember that library staff are always happy to assist with queries and suggestions!

Bob Gray
Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian

Minnesota’s Own – JUDY GARLAND !

Eighty-nine years ago today, Frances Gumm was born in Grand Rapids, Minnesota.  In 1935, she signed a seven-year contract with MGM, the biggest motion picture studio in Hollywood.  In 1939, she shot to international stardom as Dorothy in “The Wizard of Oz”.

Frances Gumm was better known as JUDY GARLAND.

It was a rough and rocky road for the young girl who first entertained audiences at age two in her father’s theatre.  Musical hits like “Meet Me in St. Louis”, “The Harvey Girls” and “Easter Parade” kept her at the pinnacle of Hollywood stardom in the 1940s, even though she battled personal demons and drug addiction in her private life.  Today Garland is considered one of the great icons of 20th century American entertainment. 

The 36th Annual Judy Garland Festival will be held June 16-18  in Grand Rapids.  Her childhood home is a popular museum and can be visited. For additional information, call 1-800-664-5839 or visit the following website:  http://judynoplacelikehome.org

East Central Regional Library has a wide variety of materials pertaining to Garland that can be requested and checked out.

“Get Happy” by Gerald Clarke is the definitive biography, while “Me and My Shadows” by Lorna Luft is an enlightening, bittersweet memoir written by Judy’s second daughter.

If you enjoy musicals, look no further than our DVD collection.  “Meet Me in St. Louis” (1944) is a gentle, nostalgic look at a Midwestern family during the 1904 World’s Fair.  Judy and Van Johnson play feuding music store clerks destined for romance “In the Good Old Summertime” (1949).  And in “A Star is Born” (1954), she gives the finest performance of her career as a young singer rising to stardom while her husband battles alcoholism.   Garland received her only Academy Award nomination as “Best Actress” for this film.

To find these materials — and more, including music CDs — visit the library’s homepage:  www.ecrlib.org and click on “ECRL Catalog” on the upper left.  Then enter “Judy Garland” as a keyword search.

Staff are always willing to help or make suggestions!

Bob Gray
Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian