Norman Public Library
This month’s 'Staff Selections' guest columnist is Norman Public Library branch manager Leslie Tabor. A native Oklahoman, Tabor has worked at the Library of Congress, the Fayetteville Free Library in Fayetteville, NY and the Washington County Public Library in Abingdon, VA. She received her library degree from Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY and has been branch manager of the Norman Public Library since June 1, 2011.
“Happy Holidays from all of us in the Pioneer Library System and Norman Public Library! I’m excited to share some fun reads for the season. This time of year is great for curling up with a good book (or e-reader) or watching a DVD with friends and family. Lots of “Best Of” lists are out around the holidays and I love seeing if I agree or disagree with the critics. Plus, the new year always brings great novels by first-time authors, too! Be sure to join our Winter Read program to track what you read this winter and enter to win fabulous prize baskets.”
Holidays are a time for donning your sweatpants (or fancy pants) and celebrating with delicious food. I love Paula’s southern recipes and down home stories. One of my favorite things about libraries is that you can check out incredible cookbooks for free and Norman has a great selection.
Who doesn’t love a parade? And not just any parade – the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade! This award-winning picture book tells the story of the puppeteer who invented the enormously entertaining parade balloons for Macy’s.
I have fond memories of helping my mother make pumpkin bread for my teachers in grade school. Homemade goodies are a great way to say thank you, give as a gift or bring to a party. Unleash your inner chef and whip up some delicious (and fun) recipes that will make people hope they are on your nice list.
The Latke Who Wouldn’t Stop Screaming: A Christmas Story by Lemony Snicket
A hilarious book about Christmas, Hanukkah…and latkes, those delicious and aromatic potato pancakes. Published by the hipster favorite McSweeney’s, old and young will get a kick out of this irreverent and entertaining book about the season.
A Wallflower Christmas by Lisa Kleypas
What better time for romance than Christmastime? I really like Lisa Kleypas, who does a great job writing funny, engaging regency romance novels. She has a four book series that introduces you to “the Wallflowers” and each of their experiences falling in love (with rich, handsome, titled gentleman no less). A Wallflower Christmas celebrates the season with these friends and focuses on American Rafe Bowman as he falls in love with Natalie Blandford. Take a break from the eggnog and get to know the Wallflowers!
Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen by Trisha Yearwood
There are some recipes in here that will be welcome on any dinner table this holiday! She’s also written another cookbook (Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood) if you like the recipes you find in here. Yum!
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Little Women (and the movie version with Christian Bale) always puts me in the mood for Christmas. I’ve adored the story of the resilient March family since I was a little girl and try to read it every other year or so: Jo’s dream of being a writer, Amy’s dream of marrying a rich man, Beth’s quiet spirit. I make sure to watch the movie every Christmas and the library even has the classic version with Elizabeth Taylor and Margaret O’Brien.
Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris
Come for the Macy’s elf story and stay for the rest! Sedaris has a cutting, sarcastic tone that perfectly cuts the sugary sweetness that often comes with the holidays (think Richard Paul Evans). If you have ever survived a holiday season with your sanity and dignity barely intact, this book is for you.
Meet Me in St. Louis (DVD)
It’s not Christmas to me until I watch this musical classic. It follows an affluent St. Louis family as they navigate life and prepare for the 1903 World’s Fair. Featuring Judy Garland performing “The Trolley Song” and “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.”
Bossypants by Tina Fey
Fey is one of the best hyphenates working today (writer hyphenate actress hyphenate comedienne…). Her first book is a hilarious and intelligent collection of stories and essays; you feel like you’re having a drink and a chat with a good friend. It’s one of those books that you wish you had written. Read this if the stress of dressing turkeys and stuffing stockings starts getting to you.
The Snowman by Jo Nesbo
If you enjoyed The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, you might also enjoy the Harry Hole series by Norwegian author Jo Nesbo. For those who like their eggnog spiked.
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
One of the “It” books of 2012, the engrossing story of a woman who goes missing on her fifth anniversary. Wrap up your year with a good mystery.