Off Line

Saddletowne blog banner

Saddletowne Blog

Excellent Books for Awesome Teens

Excellent Books for Awesome Teens

by Alyssa - 0 Comment(s)

For about the last month, we've had a recommendation box in our teen zone at Saddletowne. Our main goal: to see what you've been reading, and what you like. While there were a few books which did not surprise us (many of them by John Green), there were some new recommendations that we hadn't thought of! And if there's one thing we love at Saddletowne, it's new book recommendations. So here is our (growing) list of what teens are reading at Saddletowne:

1. The Maze Runner by James Dashner (our most recommended book by far!)
2. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
3. If I Stay by Gayle Foreman
4. Missing You by Harlan Coben
5. Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
6. Harry Potter by JK Rowling
7. The Shining by Stephen King
8. Cinder by Marissa Meyer
9. Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
10. My Name is Parvana by Deborah Ellis

A few staff recommendations to throw into the mix:
The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan (It's just been released! We are unbelievably excited.....sort of like this)
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Four: A Divergent Collection by Veronica Roth
How to Build a Girl: A Novel by Caitlin Moran

Now It's time for a Halloween Dance Break:

Halloween Haunts at the Saddletowne Library!

Halloween Haunts at the Saddletowne Library!

by Alyssa - 0 Comment(s)

Halloween has arrived at the Saddletowne Library!

In preparation for one of our favourite holidays, we are pulling out the stops to bring you some of the best books and programs that Saddletowne has to offer. Come to the Genesis Centre and check out our spooky swag!

The Horror Fiction Display (adults)
Located at the front of the library, we have everything from H.P. Lovecraft to Stephen King!

Monsters after Midnight (children)
Having trouble finding Halloween books in the Holiday Section? Come check out our new display of picture story books featuring monsters, witches, ghosts, vampires, and anything else that might go bump in the night.......without producing nightmares, of course.

Super Natural to Super Nova (teens)
Here we have a selection of entirely non-fiction items, covering all things super natural and science fiction. Ghost stories, UFOs, monsters, and the occult - find out the truth behind some of our planet's strangest phenomena!

.......but wait! There's more! Be sure to stop by our Halloween Hijinks story time on October 30th @ 2:15 pm! Wear your Halloween Costume! This is a family story time, and registration is required. You can register by calling 403-260-2620, register online here, or just stop by Saddletowne!

Hooray for Halloween!

Breaking your reading routine

Breaking your reading routine

by Alyssa - 0 Comment(s)

A friend of mine had a facebook status last week that read:

I don't know if this is a book slump or a brain slump but I can't get into anything lately and it's bumming me out.

The very next day, a gentleman came into Saddletowne asking for new book recommendations. I asked him what he liked to read. His reply: mysteries, but he also said that he felt like he had read everything in the mystery section....written by a man....with a male protagonist.

The reading slump is an all-too-common occurrence, so if you know what I'm talking about, you're not alone. Symptoms of a reading slump can include: complete disinterest in reading anything at all, lack of inspiration for finding books, over-enthusiasm for a book to where the thought of reading anything else is completely unappealing, or just difficulty focusing on the book you're currently reading.

I have been scouring the internet looking at reading blogs for suggestions on how to break a reading slump. Here are some of my favourite suggestions:

  • Set goals for yourself - much like a New Year's resolution, only for reading. Have you always wanted to tackle a book behemoth like Moby Dick? Now might be your chance.
  • Set aside intentional reading time - I know I am really guilty of not doing this. We are constantly on the go, and when we have free time, it is entirely too easy to fill it with other things. Set aside 20, 30, 45, 60 minutes of reading a day for yourself. Remember, the CBC has reported on the health benefits of reading. Read! It's good for you!
  • Find a palate cleanser - find something really different to read. This suggestion is especially helpful if you have been obsessed with a book series and you're waiting for the next book to come out, like the Heroes of Olympus or Game of Thrones....still.....waiting......
  • Switch genres - if you tend to devour mysteries, try some fantasy. If you read historical fiction, try some young adult books. If you love stories about real life, try some sci-fi. Stretch your comfort zone!

Saddletowne has a new display for the month of October called Break your Routine! Find a wide array of books for you and your family, chosen to help shake up the doldrums of the horrible, no good, very bad reading slump!

I must admit, I've been in a slump of my own. If you read my blog from May 28th, I very ardently and earnestly declared my hatred for books about love. Well, I'm so desperate to end a reading slump of my own, I have acquired a copy of a book called If You Were Mine. A book. About. Love.

This is me, eating my words.


PS - If you're looking for something creative and fun, I just saw Boxtrolls at the movie theatre last night. Fantastic story and animation, based on the book Here be Monsters by Alan Snow. Palate cleanser, anyone?

Here be Monsters!

Snap! Snap! Read a Lot!

by Fernando - 0 Comment(s)

Take a photo of your child reading or holding a book, and submit it for a chance to win a prize.

Submission details

  • Photo dimension: 4” x 6” or 5” x 7”
  • Age limit: up to 5 years old
  • Tell us what your favourite book is
  • Sign a photo release form at the service desk
  • Deadline: Oct. 30, 2014


All photos will be displayed on a poster board at Saddletowne Library.


A draw will be held at the end of the contest, awarding books to three participants.

Islamic History Month: Book Discussion

by Fernando - 0 Comment(s)

Join us for a discussion about the book, Opening the Qur'an: Introducing Islam's Holy Book, by Walter Wagner. Please read the book before the event.

When: Saturday, Oct. 18 from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

Where: Saddletowne Library

No registration required.

Yar maties! Walk the plank with a mighty tome o' the sea!

Yar maties! Walk the plank with a mighty tome o' the sea!

by Alyssa - 1 Comment(s)

Ahoy and avast ye lily-livered lubbers!

Did you know that September 19th is International Talk Like a Pirate Day? I remember this day every year because it coincides with my sister's birthday. I also happen to love pirates. Coincidence? I think not.

A common complaint we hear at Saddletowne is that parents are often stuck re-reading similar books to their children over and over and over again, and while we are glad that children have their favourites, we completely understand that sometimes things just need to be shaken up. Our September solution? Talking like a pirate. Seriously. Many studies and articles indicate that children learn best when they play - and that includes playing with language. Pirate speak is a lot of fun, and will help shake up the monotonous routine! So from us to you, here are some excellent piratical reads that Saddletowne has to offer you this week.

1. Twenty Six Pirates
by Dave Horowitz

Have fun with your kids while they practice and learn the the most scurvy of ways! Horowitz creates twenty-six different pirates for your kids to laugh at and learn from, with passages like "Pirate Brad. Born to be bad!" For any parent familiar with Edward Gorey's Gashlycrumb Tinies, this is a more cheerful, hilarious, and age appropriate book...but chances are good you'll laugh too.

Twenty-Six Pirates by Dave Horowitz

2. Pirate vs. Pirate
by Mary Quattlebaum and Alexandra Boiger

Bad Bart is the "biggest, burliest pirate this side of the Atlantic". Mean Mo is the "Maddest, mightiest pirate this side of the Pacific." So obviously when they run into each other (because the world is round after all, and that's just bound to happen), a competition must take place to see who the badest pirate actually is. A beautifully illustrated and creative book full of pirate jargon and rivalry, Pirate vs. Pirate won't disappoint!

Pirate vs. Pirate by Mary Qauttlebaum

3. Pajama Pirates
by Andrew Kramer

The perfect book for little adventurers who don't like to go to sleep, Pajama Pirates traces the night-time adventures of three siblings who set sail on the seas of their imaginations...and in their imaginations, their mother is "Mama Nature", who tries to keep them on task for bedtime. The perfect book for right before bed, check out Pajama Pirates.

Pajama Pirates

4. Pirateria: The Wonderful, Plunderful Pirate Emorium
by Calef Brown

Pirateria is the ultimate book for delicious pirate lingo! I cannot accurately convey the feel of this book to you in the Queen's English, so here is an excerpt from the book itself: "So climb that rigging and dig for ingots hidden on deserted beaches! You can't beat our breeches! They'll last a lifetime, and the pockets will hold all the gold you can carry. (Though it must be told: Pirates' lifetimes may vary)"

Pirateria by Calef Brown

5. Pirates of the Sea!
by Brandon Dorman

A wonderfully colourful and dynamically classic pirate tale, follow characters like Cap'n Bones, Gunpowder Gus, and Lookout Lee as they spit at sea monsters, search for buried treasure, hangout with mermaids, and take the pirate pledge! This rag-tag crew will make your kids say yo-ho-ho!

Pirates of the Sea! by Brandon Dorman

So g'wan, ye bilge rats! Read some new plunder to yer tiny sailors!! YAR!

Here are a few more articles to read about children, play, and learning:
Different Types of Play Help Children Learn
Learning Through Play - A Child's Job
Building Language and Literacy through Play

Islamic History Month - Film: Journey to Mecca: In the Footsteps

Islamic History Month - Film: Journey to Mecca: In the Footsteps

by Fernando - 0 Comment(s)

Join us for this 2009 film charting the first real-life pilgrimage in 1325 by the Islamic scholar Ibn Battuta, from his native Morocco to Mecca.

When: Saturday, Sept. 27 from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

Where: Saddletowne Library

Build a Rocket with Beakerhead!!

Build a Rocket with Beakerhead!!

by Alyssa - 0 Comment(s)

Hey teens!

On Saturday, September 14th the Saddletowne Library is hosting an awesome program as part of Beakerhead where you can build your own rocket! ....and maybe learn something about physics in the process. Your model will be capable of reaching 200 meters and returning safely!

This is a free program to anyone with a Calgary Public Library card. Spaces are still available - sign up now!

Build Your Own Rocket is for any teens 14 and up.

You can also register by calling 403-260-2620

build your own rocket!

5 programs you can't miss this fall - For adults

by Fernando - 0 Comment(s)

1. Career Basics

This is a series of workshops to help you improve your job interview skills, enhance your job search through social networking, and learn how to create a professional resume.

Workshops are led by professional career practitioners from Bow Valley College's Career Connection.

Register here: Interview Skills » / Resume Development » / Enhancing Your Job Search Through Social Networking »

2. Beakerhead 2014: radio controlled helicopters.

Join volunteers from the Calgary RC Heli Club to learn all about the fascinating world of radio controlled helicopters. Watch them fly, and try your luck on their flight simulator too! This program available for patrons 14 years old and up.

Register here »

3. Fall gardening activities.

Is fall really the end of the gardening year? Make fall activities part of your gardening cycle and combine clean-up tasks and spring preparation to create an ecological garden and a rich gardening experience. Presented by Janet Melrose, Calgary's Cottage Gardener.

Register here »

4. Picture Calgary

Create a mixed media silhouette project celebrating our beautiful city with Mandala Art Centre! This 90-minute project will involve paint, paper, collage and the Calgary skyline and is suitable for all levels.

Register here »

5. Creative dyeing

Create a scarf that is uniquely your own design, easily and with a minimum of fuss, using Sharpie markers and a secret ingredient. Kit provided. Presented by The Fibre Optics Group.

Register here »

97 things to do before you finish high school

97 things to do before you finish high school

by Fernando - 0 Comment(s)

97 things to do before you finish high school by Steven Jenkins is a book about the stuff they don't teach you in high school, like how to host a film festival, plan your first road trip, make a postcast, or write a manifesto. Want to make a time capsule? Spend a day in silence? Learn how to match beats like a DJ? Or shut dowm your house party before the police do?

Because your life doesn't stop at 3pm each day... it just get started. Learn 97 ways to amuse, aducate, and interest yourself.

Place this book on hold here »

12345678910Showing 1 - 10 of 178 Record(s)