Thursday, April 17, 2014

Library Showcase: From Book to Big Screen

Source: Wikimedia Commons
Whether they are action-packed blockbusters like The Hunger Games, quirky comedies like Marley and Me, or enduring classics like Gone with the Wind, many of our favorite films were books before they were movies. Sometimes we may not even realize that a popular movie was first a novel.

This month the library showcases books that have been adapted into movies, so come by the library and check out the featured books display! You can find books from all different movie genres, so whether you like romantic comedies, epic fantasies, or action thrillers, we have a book for you!

The Hobbit -- 75 years before Peter Jackson turned The Hobbit into an epic film trilogy, the story was published as a children’s book that has captured imaginations around the world for generations.

The Great Gatsby -- Fall back into the 1920s and experience the decadence and extravagance of Jay Gatsby’s world as he tenaciously and recklessly pursues luxury, love, and the American dream.

V for Vendetta -- Alan Moore’s gripping story of a revolutionary in a dystopian future England is a must-read for graphic novel fans. 

Marley and Me -- This entertaining and heartwarming book will be appreciated by anyone who’s ever raised a puppy or loved a pet.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo -- A mesmerizing thriller of murder, mystery, conspiracy, and corruption.

No Country for Old Men -- Cormac McCarthy’s intense novel is a riveting portrayal of greed and violence. The Coen Brothers’ film adaptation won Best Picture at the Academy Awards in 2008.

Atonement -- Complex, compelling, and full of perfectly realized characters, this masterpiece by Ian McEwan is anything but a simple narrative.

The Time Traveler’s Wife -- An unconventional love story of a romance that defies time itself!

The Help -- Discover the lives of three exceptional women living in Mississippi during the 1960s in this novel full of friendship, hope, and humor.

Gone with the Wind -- A huge cinematic and literary success, Gone with the Wind is celebrated as an American classic. Margaret Mitchell’s epic romance between Scarlet O’Hara and Rhett Butler plays out against the backdrop of the American Civil War.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone -- Today Harry Potter is the best-selling book series and the highest-grossing film series in history; read the book that started it all!

The Lovely Bones -- Beautiful and chilling, this lovely novel describes the life, death, and afterlife of teenager Susie Salmon.

Life of Pi -- When the ship Pi and his family are traveling aboard sinks, Pi finds himself stranded in a lifeboat with a small group of unexpected animal companions.

The Children of Men -- This thrilling novel takes a bleak look at the world at the end of the human race; in 2006 it inspired Alfonso CuarĂ³n’s stunning film adaptation.

The Hours -- The stories of three women are subtly intertwined in this graceful book that has at its center Virginia Woolf’s classic novel, Mrs. Dalloway.

True Grit -- This famous western has been adapted for the big screen not once but twice!

The Color Purple -- Alice Walker’s powerful story and extraordinary characters will make this novel unforgettable for any reader.

A Clockwork Orange -- Thought-provoking and darkly satirical, this book envisions a nightmarish future dominated by violence and has long been considered a work both monumental and controversial.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower -- A unique story about growing up and the hardships and comedies that one boy faces along the way.

The Pursuit of Happyness -- This inspiring memoir tells the story of a father who battles homelessness and unemployment and never lets go of his mission to provide a better life for his son.

The Kite Runner -- A haunting coming-of-age story set in war-torn Afghanistan that depicts an unlikely and ultimately life-changing friendship between two young boys.

Mockingjay -- Don’t miss the action-packed conclusion to the Hunger Games trilogy!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Mathville Puzzles: The New Associate


The biggest and most famous attorney firm in Mathville is that of Balinksi & Young, located at 1 Adams Circle in downtown Mathville. Recently they found themselves on the market for a new associate attorney. After interviewing several applicants, Mr. Balinski and Ms. Young decided to hire Ms. Versine Vector, Esq., a graduate of the prestigious Benford Law School. They offered Ms. Vector a choice between two salary programs:

A.      MV$8000 for the first year, and a raise of MV$1000 per year afterwards; OR
B.      MV$4000 for the first six months, and a raise of MV$250 every six months afterward.

Which offer should Ms. Vector take, and why? Explain your reasoning. 
MV$=Mathville dollars.
 

Contest Rules
  • You must send the solution via email to Laura Skinner at lskinner@pvcc.edu.
  • Solution due by Wednesday, April 30th at 11:59 p.m. Solutions sent after the deadline will not be considered.
  • You must email the solution from your PVCC email address.
  • You must explain how you arrived at the solution -- that is, you must show your work, explain your reasoning. 
  • Only correct solutions with explanations of the reasoning used to arrive at the solution will be considered.
  • Three entries will be drawn from all the correct solutions, to determine a first, second and third place.
  • The first place prize will be a $30 gift certificate to the PVCC Bookstore.
  • The second place prize will be a $15 gift certificate to the Mermaid Express coffee cart.
  • The third prize will be a big Hershey’s milk chocolate bar.
  • Drawing will be conducted on Friday, May 2nd. Winners will be notified by email, and their names will be published on a blog post. 
  • The solution to the puzzle will be published on the blog after winners have been announced.
  • Winners must pick up their prizes by Thursday, May 8th at 9 p.m., or they forfeit their prizes. Prizes must be picked up in person. Please present your student I.D.
Would you like another chance to solve a puzzle and win a prize? Check out the puzzle posted outside of Room 160 in the main building by Mu Alpha Theta, the Math Honors Society.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

New books are here!

We have been busy little beavers here in the library! Lots and lots of books have recently been cataloged. There were so many interesting ones; I had a hard time choosing which ones to highlight.

What caused the recent economic recession? Not just Wall Street, according to Robert Reich in Aftershock: The Next Economy and America's Future, but also increasing social inequality.

Are you cooking as economically and efficiently as possible? If not, learn how in An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace by Tamar Adler.

Battle for Ground Zero: Inside the Political Struggle to Rebuild the World Trade Center by Elizabeth Greenspan

Breakpoint: Why the Web Will Implode, Search Will be Obsolete, and Everything Else You Need to Know About Technology Is in Your Brain by Jeffrey Stibel

Are you a JFK buff? Then check out: Camelot's Court: Inside the Kennedy White House by Robert Dallek, or The patriarch: the remarkable life and turbulent times of Joseph P. Kennedy by David Nasaw.

Ever wondered what life was like for those who lived in the Mongol Empire, or Rome or the Industrial Age? Then check out our Daily Life In series. They make for fascinating reads!

He was a master hacker, and this is his tell-all: Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World's Most Wanted Hacker by Kevin Mitnick. 


Learn practical classroom strategis in How Learning Works: Seven Research-based Principles for Smart Teaching by Susan Ambrose. 


The history of medicine in under 400 pages! Kill or Cure: An Illustrated History of Medicine by Steve Parker. 


The 5th edition of D&D will be released in the summer. Be ready; read Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It by David Ewalt.

The Amazon FireTV just launched yesterday, and it's getting a lot of press. See what makes Amazon work in The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

And the winners are ...

The winners of the March Mathville Puzzle are:

  • 1st. place, winner of a $30 gift card to the PVCC Bookstore: Patrice West

  • 2nd place, winner of a $15 gift card to The Mermaid Coffee Cart: Valerie Pors

  • 3rd place, winner of a big Hershey's milk chocolate bar: Richard Lorensen

Winners, please pick up your prizes  by Thursday, April 3rd at 9 p.m., and please bring your student I.D. 

Congratulations to the winners! Thank you to all who played, and please play again next month!

And now for the solution:


After reading the clues, we can rule out Mayor Abscissa Adams, as she is the victim and has no motive to steal an uninsured item she owns herself. That leaves us with 5 suspects.

One of the clues tells us the thief drives a black Nissan.
 
We know that the person who drives a black Nissan wore blue shoes, so we know the thief wore blue shoes.

We know that the person who wore blue shoes weighs 190 lbs., so we know that the thief drives a black Nissan, wore blue shoes, and weighs 190 lbs. 

We know that the person who weighs 190 lbs. does not have curly hair, so we know that the thief drives a black Nissan, wore blue shoes, weighs 190 lbs., and does not have curly hair.  

Bob Beacham is eliminated because he weighs 210 lbs.

Chris Cavanaugh is eliminated because he drives a green Toyota.

Ella Eames is eliminated because she wore brown shoes. 

Francis Fairfield is eliminated because he has curly hair. 

The only person left is Dale Davidson, and he is the thief. 


Join us in April for another Mathville puzzle! 

In the meantime, if you would like another chance at solving a puzzle for a prize, check out the puzzle posted outside of Room 160 in the main building by Mu Alpha Theta, the Math Honors Society.


Thursday, March 20, 2014

The Mathville Puzzles: The Heirloom Salt Cellar



One thing everyone knows in Mathville is that Mayor Abscissa Adams hosts excellent dinner parties for the members of her cabinet. Fine food, champagne and good conversation combine to make a memorable evening. One Friday evening, as a thunderstorm brewed outdoors, Abscissa and her guests sat in the dining room, eating and chatting. The conversation focused on a beautiful salt cellar, which everyone knew had been in the Mayor's family for generations and was usually placed on the table during elegant dinners.

Suddenly, a flash of lightning lit up the night sky outside, followed by deafening thunder. The lights went out for less than 5 minutes and then returned. After a few moments, the conversation resumed, until the Mayor noticed that her salt cellar was missing. The police were called, and after a couple of hours, the detective in charge arrested the thief.

Can you figure out who stole the salt cellar? Here are your clues.
  • Only these people were present in the Mayor's house at the time of the robbery: Mayor Abscissa Adams, Bob Beacham, Chris Cavanaugh, Dale Davidson, Ella Eames and Francis Fairfield.
  • No one else was in the house. 
  • No one entered or exited the dining room. 
  • For the duration of the brief power outage, the house was in complete darkness.
  • The stolen item was not insured. 
  • No two people have the same weight, hair color, car color or make, shoe color, or scarf color.
  • The person who drives a purple Dodge wore tan shoes.
  • Abscissa Adams has grey hair.
  • The person who drives a black Nissan wore blue shoes.
  • The person who weighs 180 pounds drives a green Toyota.
  • Dale Davidson was wearing a purple scarf.
  • Francis Fairfield has curly hair.
  • The person who weighs 150 pounds wore tan shoes.
  • Bob Beacham weighs 210 pounds.
  • Chris Cavanaugh drives a green Toyota.
  • The person who weighs 190 pounds wore blue shoes.
  • The person who was wearing a red scarf is not the one who wore black shoes.
  • The thief drives a black Nissan.
  • The person who drives a white Ford is not the one who weighs 170 pounds.
  • Ella Eames wore brown shoes.
  • The person who weighs 190 pounds does not have curly hair.
The clues above contain all the information you need to figure out the identity of the thief. 

Contest Rules
  • You must send the solution via email to Laura Skinner at lskinner@pvcc.edu.
  • Solution due by Thursday, March 27th at 11:59 p.m. Solutions sent after the deadline will not be considered.
  • You must email the solution from your PVCC email address.
  • You must explain how you arrived at the solution -- that is, you must show your work, explain your reasoning. 
  • Only correct solutions with explanations of the reasoning used to arrive at the solution will be considered.
  • Three entries will be drawn from all the correct solutions, to determine a first, second and third place.
  • The first place prize will be a $30 gift certificate to the PVCC Bookstore.
  • The second place prize will be a $15 certificate to the Mermaid Express coffee cart.
  • The third prize will be a big Hershey’s milk chocolate bar.
  • Drawing will be conducted on Friday, March 28th. Winners will be notified by email, and their names will be published on a blog post. 
  • The solution to the puzzle will be published on the blog after winners have been announced.
  • Winners must pick up their prizes by Thursday, April 3rd at 9 p.m., or they forfeit their prizes. Prizes must be picked up in person. Please present your student I.D.
Would you like another chance to solve a puzzle and win a prize? Check out the puzzle posted outside of Room 160 in the main building by Mu Alpha Theta, the Math Honors Society.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Library Showcase: Fun With Art!

Example of line art. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Oscar Wilde wrote that "art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known." Art plays a big part in our lives, even if we are not aware of it. Art is present in great buildings, in music, in books, in comics, in drawings, in paintings, in photographs, in doodles, in food...in a word, everywhere. It can be solemn or irreverent, orderly or chaotic. It can be anything. What does art mean to you?

This month the library showcases art in all its forms: digital photography, comics, calligraphy and much more! Come on over and take one of these books home!

The Art and Wonder of Origami -- Learn origami, the traditional Japanese art of paper folding.  Beautiful origami patterns, clear instructions and a CD will help you become proficient in this beautiful art in no time. 

The Art of Polymer Clay: Millefiori Techniques -- Millefiori are intricate patterns from the world of Venetian glass-making. Learn how to recreate these designs with polymer clay.

Art of Sketching -- Covering essential techniques for creating a variety of sketches, this book will help you hone your skills and learn how to work with shadows, textures, contrast and more.

Beginner's Guide to Animation -- If you have a computer, a digital camera and some basic software, you are ready to learn the basics of animation!

Calligraphy Bible -- Calligraphy has been in use since ancient times, enhancing and beautifying other art. Besides exploring the history of calligraphy, this book offers instruction and practice for gilding, illuminating, flourishing and more. Learn how to apply this art to uses such as wedding invitations, letterhead, posters, etc. 

The Complete Guide to Coloured Pencil Techniques -- Whether you are a budding colored pencil artist or further along the way, this book will have something for you. Concise but thorough, it includes technique, helpful Q&A sections and many interesting projects.

The Creative Drawing Course -- A step-by-step book that covers the skills and techniques needed to learn how to draw. Includes many practice exercises. 

Digital Photography: An Introduction -- Easy to read and devoid of jargon, this book will give you a good introduction to mastering the essentials of digital photography.

Drawing with Your Artist's Brain -- This book argues that anyone can draw as long as they fully engage with the creative side of the brain. If you have always been curious about learning to draw, this book will give you a different approach to try.

Drawing Basics and Video Game Art -- Want to design video game graphics? This book will teach you how, from fundamentals to advanced drawing concepts, anatomy, elements of design and more. 

Drawing Words and Writing Pictures -- Do you like comics? Would you like to create comics? Learn the art of visual storytelling in 15 lessons and master "the alchemical language of comics."

Graphic Design School -- Would you like to learn graphic design? This book is structured as a course, and offers tips, techniques and projects, covering all the major fields in graphic design (magazines, books, packaging, advertising and corporate design.) 

How to Make Animated Films -- Become a student in Tony White's master animation class, and learn animation secrets from one of the greats. Includes hands-on tutorials.

Life Drawing Class -- This book introduces techniques, media and strategies for drawing from life, and includes many photos as well as text instructions.

Making Comics -- A comic book about the art of creating comics. Covers all topics, from broad concepts to important technical details.

Painting with Pixels -- You don't need a paintbrush to produce amazing paintings. This book will tell you what you need to use your computer to enter the world of digital art. 

The Pastel Book -- A comprehensive guide to pastels and pastel technique, this book covers  materials and tools, color, using mixed media such as pastels and watercolors, and working with oil pastels.

Polymer Clay Color Inspirations -- This book teaches the polymer clay artist how to create beautiful color palettes for stunning designs. 

The Pop-up Book -- Create amazing 3-D paper art. This book will tell you what you need and how to get started. Numerous photos accompany each project.

Stained Glass Basics -- Learn how to create stained glass objects, from lampshades to hanging decorations, to the traditional windows. 

The Tao of Sketching -- Learn traditional Chinese art techniques to use materials such as brushes and inks, pens, pencils, watercolors, and more, to create beautiful sketches.

Watercolour Landscapes -- This book includes the outlines of five paintings that can pulled out from the book and transferred to watercolor paper. Technique is shown via photos and text instructions. If you have wanted to learn to paint with watercolors but drawing was an obstacle, you should try this book's approach.

You Can Draw! From Pencil to Pastels in 15 Easy Lessons -- This book will teach you how to draw, covering many techniques and offering photos and text instructions. It starts with very basic techniques and gets more complex as it goes along.