Saturday, November 19, 2011

Spirited Graphic Novel

One Soul, by Canadian writer/artist Ray Fawkes, is a graphic novel that tells the story of one soul as it passes through 18 different incarnations. The book came my way after reading a lot of good pre-publication notices, so while I knew a bit of what to expect, I was still pleasantly surprised by it. Using a 9-panel grid, Fawkes gives an impressionistic glimpse of each life in every spread. While their personality characteristics are only briefly sketched out, the arc of their story still manages to convey a full sense of a life lived. By reading across the grid, the reader discovers nice synergies as the different lives find similar experiences. Fawkes presents this well through the occasional repeated layout (p. 14/15) or designed spreads (p. 52/53) that often pack greater impact than the script alone conveys. Additionally, thanks to his strict use of the grid, the reader can also drill through the book, following the story of each life from its beginning to its (often unexpected) end, watching the grid gradually darken as lives come to their end. While the grid did fall apart a bit at the end for me, it's still highly recommended for readers wanting to experience a different storytelling structure; less so if you prefer a thorough insight into your characters.

Dale - Tech Services

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Patron Reviews Are Rolling In (we've got one!)...

The Call by Yannick Murphy explores the emotions and actions of a father who is caring for a son in a coma after a hunting accident.  In balancing the demands of his veterinary practice, caring for his injured son, and meeting the needs of his family the main character struggles to keep up.  While searching for the person responsible for his son’s injuries the main character learns about himself and his family.  Aside from the plot, Murphy includes a lot of veterinary details.   This adds an element of interest as the solutions to various farm animal health complications are presented.

The most striking aspect of The Call is the format.  It is not presented in a traditional form with chapters.  Instead the novel is told in a structure that looks somewhat like field notes.  There are basic headings that are used for each call the veterinarian answers.  The responses, presented in paragraphs, tell the story about the main character and his family.  While at first I found this distracting, after adjusting to this storytelling method this structure that added interest to the novel.  Overall, this is a memorable novel that stands out from others both in regard to plot and the storytelling method used.

Kristin W.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Submit a Review, Win a Prize!

The Spotlight is eager to hear about the books, movies, and music that you have been enjoying lately.  So much so, we want to offer you this swell deal:  you send us a 200-400 word review, and we’ll give you some awesome LPL branded library swag.  Plus, your efforts will be posted on the internet!

You can make your submissions here or email them to:

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Player's Playlist

In Ready Player One, Ernest Cline imagines a grim future where many people live in poverty with out basic necessities such as food and heat. Almost everyone, however, has access to the OASIS, which is a simulated environment where users can learn, work, play, and pretty much live their lives. It provides people an escape from reality. The creator of OASIS died some time ago, and he left a "magic egg" hidden somewhere inside the game. Whoever finds the egg will inherit a vast fortune, and become the owner of the company that controls OASIS.

The book focuses on Wade, a poor young man whose entire life revolves around OASIS and the search for the egg. Not only would the money help Wade create a better life for himself, but he is also determined to stop an evil corporation from finding the egg and shutting down free public access to the OASIS.

Strangely enough, although the book is set in the future, it also manages to make a lot of references to 80's pop culture, movies, and music. Throughout the book, Wade's knowledge of 80's trivia proves to be very valuable. It also made me want to go back and listen to some of my favorite 80's songs and watch some 80's movies.

We have included a few songs that the author, Ernest Cline, mentions on his website. If you are interested in listening to the full "Official Ready Player One Soundtrack" you can visit

Also, if you, like myself, now feel like watching some of the movies mentioned in the book, we do have a lot of them in our collection!

Jenny R - Reference