Category Archives: Recommendations

Acupuncture resources at the Library

acupuncture chart

Thankfully, you don’t have to be able to read Chinese to appreciate acupuncture.

Curious about acupuncture, but not sure what exactly it is? Or maybe you’ve thought about getting an acupuncture treatment, but the idea of needles scared you off?

Find out more about acupuncture with these free resources at the Library:

Free public lecture Thursday, Feb. 21, at 6:30 p.m.“The History of Acupuncture” by local acupuncturist Douglas Wingate L.Ac.

Between Heaven and Earth: A Guide to Chinese Medicine (book by Harriet Beinfield) Two of the foremost American educators and healers in the Chinese medical profession demystify Chinese medicine’s centuries-old approach to health.

The Web That Has No Weaver (book by Ted Kaptchuk) The classic, comprehensive guide to the theory and practice of Chinese alternative medicine.

Acupuncture for Everyone: What It Is, Why It Works, and How It Can Help You (book by Ruth Kidson) Dr. Kidson provides a clear understanding of how acupuncturists make their diagnoses and how this determines what treatment they implement.

9000 Needles (DVD) Documentary: Having faced the confines of the American health care system, a forty year old stroke patient travels to Tianjin, China, in search of the rehabilitation he needs.

Wikipedia entry on acupuncture

Mayo Clinic entry on acupuncture

As always, for more information, contact the Reference Desk at 503-682-2744 or

Help libraries get more e-books

So here’s the problem: libraries want to buy e-books and have them available for our users. But many publishers don’t want to sell e-books to libraries.

Let the publishers know that you want e-books at your library with this online petition:

This short (just over a minute!) video explains the situation:

Do you read e-books? Do you check them out from the library? Did you even know that you can check out e-books from the library? Let us know in the comments.

Dewey Talks about Oregon history tonight

Roanoake Inn

Old Wilsonville bar scene at the Roanoake Inn

How much do you know about Oregon history? If you’re like me, you’re lucky to know that we’re the Beaver State (even for those of us who went to the University of Oregon), and that those Lewis and Clark guys came out for a visit sometime around 1800.

Find out more tonight (Thursday, February 2) at 6:30 p.m. with Darrell Jabin. Darrell helped put together the state issued almanac and fact book The Oregon Blue Book as well as a 37-minute video showcasing 100 years of publication and the process to recreate the original Commemorative Edition 1911 Oregon Blue Book.

The video is filled with historical vignettes including women winning the right to vote, the fire that destroyed the Capitol, the 1959 Oregon Centennial celebration, and the Columbus Day Storm.

For that matter, how much do you know about Wilsonville history? (Or perhaps I should say “Boones Landing.”) Discover Wilsonville’s history with these Library resources:

  • See photographs from the early days of Wilsonville and read what local citizens had to say about those early days with the Wilsonville Community Historic Views and Talk on the Library website.
  • For an outstanding collection of photographs from the Wilsonville-Boones Ferry Historical Society, visit the Emery and Alice Aden Digital Image Collection, also on the Library website.
  • Want something more analog? Then drop by the Library on Monday, February 13th, for “Heritage Day” as part of the Library’s 30th birthday celebration week. We will have special exhibits that day of photos and artifacts of Old Wilsonville, as well as “Beginner’s Genealogy” classes to help folks learn how to trace their family tree.
  • And did I mention that we have an outstanding collection of local and regional history in our “Heritage Collection.”  This rapidly growing Collection is well on its way to becoming one of the strongest and most easily accessible public collections for genealogical research in Oregon. Besides shelving for over 2500 books, it includes a couple of large microfilm cabinets, several microfilm readers, and a computer for using CD-ROM databases and accessing genealogical material on the Internet.

For questions about all things historical and genealogical, contact Adult Services Librarian Greg Martin at 503-682-2744 or

What is a classic book?

As part of our Adult Winter Reading Program theme “Cozy Up with a Classic,” we’ve been asked “What is a classic?”

How do you define classic books? Maybe like this:

“Classics are those great pieces of literature considered worthy to be studied in English classes of high school or college.”

Or perhaps this:

“Classics are books your fathers give you and you keep them to give to your children”

 How many of us had to slog through some “classic” in high school and were then immediately turned off? For me, it seemed like every classic novel we had to read in “American Literature” class was a downer – The Scarlet Letter, The Jungle, The Grapes of Wrath, The Great Gatsby, Lord of the Flies, Ordinary People. I asked my teacher if there was some classic that had a happy ending. She thought about it and said no.

And then I started to think about my own question. Are there “classic” books with happy endings? Surely we can’t see depressing books as the only ones worthy of preservation. What would that say about humanity?

Which was when I remembered that yes, indeed, there were classics with happy endings: Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, The Odyssey, The Thousand and One Nights, Shakespeare’s comedies.

So what defines a “classic”? Some would say timelessness, that you can read the book today and still enjoy it. Others would argue for universality, that the book features ideas or situations that we can appreciate as part of the human condition (family, war, love, etc.).  And then some simplify it to a book that “can be read again and again with ever-deepening pleasure.”

I would argue that a classic is one that can be read over and over and each time provide something different but still enjoyable. Time is not a limiting factor for me – there are books written in the past 50 years (or even last year) that I could point to and say, “Yes, that’s a classic.”

For what others have considered as classics, check out the lists below.

Classics for all time

The “Great Books” list to end all lists

The reading list for St. John’s College – the curriculum is focused entirely on the Great Books

The Guardian’s 100 Greatest Novels of all Time

The Telegraph lists their “Perfect Library” of 110 best books

Project Gutenberg – check out their “Top 100″ of most popular classic e-book downloads

NEH list of summertime favorites – classic novels divided by age group

Modern Classics

Entertainment Weekly’s “The New Classics” – The 100 best reads from 1983-2008

Modern Library’s 100 Best Novels

Classics of Science Fiction – a thoroughly researched list by James Wallace Harris

How do you define a “classic” book? What are your favorite classic books? What classics are you ashamed to admit you haven’t read? Let us know in the comments below.

2011 Reading Report

In the January Boones Ferry Messenger, I wrote about how I’ve learned that I need to read, especially to relax. And I felt like I hadn’t had much time to read in 2011, so I vowed to read an hour a day in 2012.

This got me thinking: so what all did I manage to read in 2011? It couldn’t have been much if I felt like I hadn’t been reading at all.

So I counted up the number of entries for 2011 in my “Books Read” list, figuring it had to be insanely low. There were only a few books that I could remember having read, so it must have been around 20 or so. Right?

 The total came to 73. Yup, 73 books in 365 days. That’s a book every five days.

I promptly smacked myself.

Here is how my reading stacked up (so to speak):

Total number of books: 73
Fiction: 43
Non-Fiction: 30
Print titles: 70
Audiobooks: 3
Graphic novels: 1
Male authors: 37
Female authors: 36
Children’s titles: 3
Young adult titles: 5

And now my top seven* fiction and non-fiction reads for 2011 (in no particular order).
*I chose the top seven because I had more than 5 favorites, but less than 10, for each category.
**I also have to thank the anonymous participant in my “How to Write a Novel in 30 Days” Dewey Talk for this suggestion. Let me just say: Wow.
What were your top reads for 2011? Let us know in the comments below.

Staff Pick of the Week: “The Absolute Value of Mike”

For October 17, 2011

Title: The Absolute Value of Mike

"The Absolute Value of Mike" by Kathryn Erskine

"The Absolute Value of Mike" by Kathryn Erskine

Author: Kathryn Erskine
Year: 2011
Age Range: 9-12 year olds
Call Number: J ERSKINE

Mike’s dad loves math, but Mike and numbers are not a good combination. Dad is disappointed, but sure Mike’s math ability will blossom one of these days. The quirky, funny characters in this story always kept me guessing about what would happen next. Will Aunt Moo ever be able to see the road while driving? Will Uncle Poppy ever talk or eat anything besides scrapple? How can $40,000 be raised in 4 weeks towards the adoption of a young boy from Romania? These problems and more need solving as Mike seeks to find his absolute value. Recommended by: Sheila

See current Youth Services staff picks, as well as the archives on the Staff Picks page.

For more information or recommendations, contact the Youth Services Dept. at 503-570-1592 or

Lewis and Clark class canceled

“Lewis and Clark: Journey to Another America” class has been canceled. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Interested in Lewis and Clark? Please visit the Northwest non-fiction section at the Library (Dewey numbers 978 and 979).

We also have DVDs about Lewis and Clark, including the Ken Burns’ documentary “Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery” (VDVD 978.021 BURNS, K) as well as the National Geographic video “Lewis & Clark: Great Journey West” (VDV 978.021 NATIONAL).

You may also be interested in the bicycling blog of our own Youth Services Librarian Terri Wortman. Terri rode the last 400 miles of the Lewis and Clark trail in May and took pictures and videos on her journey.

For more information, contact the Reference Desk at 503-682-2744 or