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Topekans share their Beatles memories…

“I thought it was going to be a novelty act” “We begged our landlady to let us come to her apartment and watch them on her TV” “Everyone said Paul was the cute one, but when I saw George Harrison through the binoculars …”. These are quotations from some area residents who were sharing their […]

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Ornaments Bring Special Memories to Collectors

A holiday ornament can be more than a pretty bauble to hang–it can be a treasured part of a collection that may not be worth much but  that brings to mind priceless memories.  When asked “are there holiday ornaments that you have collected that are of worth to you?” here is how some people responded: […]

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Tough Times And Spiritual Journeys: Inspirational Historical Fiction

Deb recently read a couple of books that she suggests to readers who like to experience history while reading about people who are on a journey of faith. Her Mother’s Hope by Francine Rivers Rivers is a favorite author of mine and she does not disappoint with this tale about a woman named Marta who […]

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Caught Between Two Worlds–Meet Willa Obenchain from Burning Sky by Lori Benton

Review of Burning Sky by Lori Benton “I am the place where two rivers meet, stilted with upheaval and loss“.  So begins the narrative of Willa Obenchain–also known as Burning Sky–with these words spoken to herself as she is on her way to her first home.  Taken from that home when she was 14 by […]

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Don’t Throw Away That Cowboy Hat…Western Fiction lives on

For those who have been reading and re-reading  Zane Grey, Ernest Haycox, Max Brand, Luke Short, Will Henry, and of course, Louis L’Amour, here is a list of other Western novels to explore.  Some are more traditional, some have a strong element of romance, and some combine fantasy with the Western theme. Camp Ford by Johnny Boggs […]

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See a piece of History: Carry Nation Memorabilia

Ron Lopez Reese remembers that it was the combination of a class at school and a trip to Silver Dollar city that got him interested in Carry Nation.  The class at school was about Kansas history, and at Silver Dollar City he went to a stage show where they reenacted one of Nation’s famous saloon […]

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An Inside Tip: Searching for eBooks from Christian Publishers

Our e-book collection contains many books by popular authors from Christian publishers, such as Beverly Lewis, Karen Kingsbury, and Max Lucado.   However I have found it difficult to browse the selection of Christian fiction and non-fiction unless I am searching for a specific author.  Here is a method I have found helpful when trying […]

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The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

The cracks of bats and the thumps of balls hitting gloves have signaled the start of another baseball season.   After recently listening to The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach I find myself thinking about those sounds in a slightly different way because of experiencing a vivid portrayal of the consequences of the pressure to succeed on the […]

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The Great Gatsby Through the Eyes of a Collector

I’m sure there are many things you could get out of reading The Great Gatsby for our Big Read program, but as I read the book I was entranced by all of the objects mentioned in it. The clothes, jewelry, telephones, perfume bottles, and other items are a visual treat for those that like collecting […]

gentle fiction for harsh times

Gentle Fiction for Harsh Times

Fiction can take us to a place where kindness, gentleness, and a sense of community prevail. Try one of these books when you feel like escaping from the harsh realities of life. Dearest Dorothy Are We There Yet by Charlene Ann Baumbich Introduces the colorful inhabitants of Partonville, a small farming town in southern Illinois, including […]

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Favorite Tales of Survival

I’m addicted to tales of survival, whether real or fiction, that show the power of the human spirit to overcome all sorts of obstacles and challenges and live to fight another day.  Here are some of my favorites: Real Life Black Wave: A Family’s Adventure at Sea and the Disaster That Saved Them by John […]