Friday, December 21, 2012

52 Nonfiction Books in 52 Weeks: 2013 Dewey Decimal Challenge

Hello, Bradley Beach! 

At the Library, we just recently added labels to the shelves in our adult non-fiction section to make our books easier to browse! These labels reflect classifications included in the Dewey Decimal System (more about this system below).

In order to highlight all of the wonderful books in our non-fiction collection (which doesn't seem to get as much love as our fiction section), I've decided to participate in a 2013 Dewey Decimal Reading Challenge starting on January 1, 2013, and ending on December 31, 2013.  The goal of this challenge is to read one nonfiction book per week that represents one of the classifications within the Dewey Decimal System. In total, I’ll be reading 52 non-fiction books. Each week on Monday, I’ll post my book review on this blog!

If you're interested in participating in this reading challenge (it should be fun!), please e-mail me ( the review for the book that you've chosen each week so I can include it in our blog! This is a great way to discover new interests and new authors! It's also a great way to force yourself to step away from the Netflix and step into a book. : )

I'm excited to begin this adventure! And, to be honest, I'm also a little nervous about finding the time to sit down and read each week. I guess I'll just have to curb my Hulu. com addiction and get cracking. 

Happy Reading!

Sharlene Edwards
Program Director

A little about the Dewey Decimal System: 

The Dewey Decimal System is the way in which many libraries organize their non-fiction books. It was created in 1876 by Melvil Dewey and has been revised and expanded throughout the years. The Dewey Decimal System groups subjects, keeps similar books together, and aids in browsing. Numbers represent the different subjects within the collection. If you want to learn more about the Dewey Decimal System, you can check out this Wikipedia article:

The Dewey Decimal System has ten main classifications with many more subcategories within these ten main categories. For each of the main categories, I will select five books to read over the course of five weeks. This will equate to a total of 50 books. The remaining two books will be selected randomly.

Categories & Subcategories:
000 Generalities
000 Computers, Loch Ness, Bigfoot, UFO’s, Aliens
020 Libraries, Encyclopedias & World Record Books
030 Encyclopedias & World Record Books
060 Museums
070 Newspapers

100s Philosophy
130 Ghosts, witches, & the supernatural
150 Optical Illusions, Feelings
170 Emotions, Values, Animal Rights

200s Religion
220 Old Testament Bible Stories
230 New Testament Bible Stories
290 Mythology, World Religions

300s Social Sciences
300 Social Issues
310 Almanacs
320 Government
330 Careers
340 Court System, Famous Trials
350 Armed Forces
360 Drugs, Environmental Issues, Titanic, Police, Firefighters
370 Schools
380 Transportation
390 Holidays, Folktales, Fairy Tales

400s Language
410 Sign Language
420 Dictionaries, Grammar
430 German Language
440 French Language
450 Italian Language
460 Spanish Language
490 Hieroglyphics, Japanese Language

500s Science and Math
500 Science Experiments, Science Sets
510 Mathematics
520 Stars, planets, astronomy, space
530 Physical Science
540 Chemistry, Atoms & Molecules, Rocks & Minerals
550 Volcanoes, Earthquakes, Weather, Hurricanes, Tornadoes
560 Dinosaurs, Prehistoric Animals, Fossils
570 Forests, Rain Forests, Deserts, Mountains, Oceans, Evolution
580 Plants, Flowers, & Trees
590 Animals & Insects

600s Applied Science
600 Inventions
610 Human body, Health
620 Rockets, Trains, Cars, Trucks
630 Farming, Farm Animals, Cats, Dogs, Pets, Horses
640 Cookbooks, Sewing
650 Secret Codes
660 How Food is Made
670 Paper Making
680 Woodworking
690 Building

700s Art
710 Art Appreciation, History of Art
720 Houses, Buildings
730 Origami, Paper Crafts
740 Drawing, Crafts
750 Painting
760 Printing
770 Photography
780 Music
790 Sports, Games, Magic, I Spy, Camping, Fishing, Racing, Hunting

800s Literature
810 Poetry, Plays, Jokes, & Riddles
820 Shakespeare
860 Poetry in Spanish

900s Geography and History
910 Explorers, Atlases
920 Flags, People (Biography)
930 Archeology, Ancient Civilizations
940 Knights, Castles, World War I & II, European Countries
950 Asian & Middle Eastern Countries
960 African Countries
970 North & Central American Countries, Native American Tribes, American History, States
980 South American Countries
990 Pacific Islands, Australia, Hawaii 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

This startling, brief  book -- originally, a one-woman show--  imagines Mary in Ephesus looking back on her life.
In The New York Times Book Review, author Mary Gordon said:
"It takes its power from the surprises of its language, its almost shocking characterization, its austere refusal of consolation. The source of this mother's grief is as much the nature of humankind as the cruel fate of her own son."

The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking

Oliver Burkeman has written a wonderful book that provides an alternative to the "positive thinking" "get happy" schools of thought. He investigates his intuition  that self-help programs could actually prevent you from being successful. He explores several tradition that embrace "negative" thoughts and comes up with a negative path for happiness that works for him.

Beautifully written, meticulously researched, provocative and...there's even a video trailer. Check it out!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Meet the Candidates

The Library was proud to join the Chamber of Commerce in sponsoring this year's Meet the Candidates night at the Firehouse on October 22.

More than 100 people came out to hear all four Mayoral candidates -- Wayne May, Mark Nemjeh, Harold Cotler and Gary Englestadt -- answer questions about their plans for Bradley Beach. "It was clear that all the candidates, and the people in the audience, really care about Bradley Beach," said Library Director Janet Torsney. "It was wonderful to be part of a discussion that was more heat than light."

Don't forget to vote on November 6th!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Save the Date: October 14

Did you know that the Bradley Beach Library has been at 511 Fourth Avenue for 85 years?

To celebrate our anniversary, we are going to have a Sunday afternoon tea to thank all the people who have been so supportive of the Library. It will be on October 14 from 2 to 4 pm.

Details to follow!

Chicago in Bradley Beach

This month, the large-print book club is reading Devil in the White City, a true-life story about murder and the magnificent 1893 World's Fair in Chicago.

And our newest book club is reading Divergent, a  young adult novel about a dystopian Chicago of the future.

Are book clubs in Chicago reading about Bradley Beach? Hmmmm

Friday, August 17, 2012

Every Day in Tuscany

Nanci Bachman recommends the audiobook EveryDay in Tuscany: Seasons of an Italian Life, which was written and read by Frances Mayles.

She said it was a great listen and has a fabulous  bonus: the last CD includes delicious recipes that can be printed out, cooked and eaten. She particularly liked the final recipe. "All that's left," she said, "is the trip to Tuscany!"

Friday, August 10, 2012

Mid-Year Report

We don't have an All-Star break. But, just like the baseball players, we like to check our stats.

Here are the highlights from the year to date:
·         We currently have 6.400 members. Last year, we had 6,256.
·         We have had more visits in the first sixth months (22,273) than all of last year (19,000).
·         More people have participated in our programs during the first sixth months of 2012 (1,798) than all of 2011 (1,705).
·         Circulation for all of 2011 was 22,000; we have already reached 14,337.
Go, Bradley Beach Library!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Gone Girl Review

Maureen Fitzsimmons on Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

"This is an incredibly interesting read. I found myself empathizing with wife and then with husband and back again to wife, etc. The ending was so realistic as people who are bound up in dysfunctional relationships often cannot find a way out! A real page turner!"

Thanks for your review, Maureen. Has anyone else read this book? What did you think?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Forever in Peace May It Wave!

Have you seen the big, beautiful flag outside the Library? We're so proud of it, especially because the last place it flew was over the US Capitol. On July 18. Congressman Pallone, Jr. arranged for the flag to be flown to honor the Library's 85th anniversary. Thank you, Congressman Pallone and Happy Anniversary, Bradley Beach Library!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Congratulations, Basket Winners!

Last night, we picked the winners of the three beautiful baskets that the Friends of the Bradley Beach Library have been raffling off since May. Drumroll please.... The winners are Shirley Bongiovanni, Tom McGrorry and Kathy McGrorry. Congratulations to the lucky winners and thanks to everyone who bought tickets to support the Library. We are so grateful to the people who contributed more than $900 worth of gifts and services for the baskets! Special thanks to our fabulous Friends who are always coming up with new ways to support the Library.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Keep Your Eye on the Birdseye

I just finished Birdseye: The Adventures of a Curious Man by Mark Kurlansky. It's a fascinating look at the life of a man who genuinely revolutionized food in America.

While he was, personally, what we would now call a localvore, he made processed food possible for millions. 

There are lots of adventures -- in the Arctic, Peru and NJ -- as this "can do" guy finds his inspiration. 

Besides, what's better for a hot summer day than a bio about the invention of frozen food?

Friday, July 6, 2012

Bradley Beach E-Book Top 10

Since we added e-books to our collection this Spring, we have nearly 40 titles that are available only to Bradley Beach library members.

So far, the most popular Bradley Beach titles are:
  1. The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings
  2. The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
  3. Death of a Nag by MC Beaton
  4. Fifty Shades of Grey by EL James
  5. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by JK Rowling

The most recently added books include:
  • The Game of Thrones by George RR Martin
  • The Affair by Lee Child
  • Snatched by Karin Slaughter
  • The Vow by Kim Carpenter
  • Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich
Happy reading (e and otherwise) to all our members!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Louis L'Amour and the Large Print Ladies

My father-in-law was a Louis L'Amour fan so I've bought a few of his books. But I hadn't read any until the Large Print Book Club picked Comstock Lode for the June selection.

I really enjoyed reading about the adventures in the new West and mining that are covered so vividly in this book. I especially enjoyed that the bad guys were so rotten and the good people were so good. It was comforting to have some certainty in the world.

His life was just extraordinary: he worked on cattle ranches, saw mills, lumber camps and mines. He was a   professional boxer, merchant seaman and served in the Army during World War II. Once he settled to writing, he was incredibly productive. He still has 105 titles in print and remains one of the most populat American authors.

Thanks to the Large Print Book Club for opening my eyes to this American icon.

Any ideas for other books for the Large Print gang? Any other book clubs you'd like to see at your Library?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Send Us Your Reviews!

Marilyn Rosen sent us this review:

"I just read several books.   One was short and meaningful.  It is not new - For One More Day by Mitch Albom  who wrote Tuesdays with Morrie.  

Charlie Benetto had a drinking problem along with other life's problems.   He was planning to commit suicide.   What would you do if you had one more day with someone who passed away.   Charlie gets that one more day with his Mother.
Needless to say, this changed his life - a fast, good read."

Have you read this book? What did you think?

What books do you reccomend?
Marilyn Rosen

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Seuss is on the Loose

We'll be celebrating the wacky, wonderful Dr. Seuss on Friday, March 2 at 11 am and 3:30 and, again, on Saturday at noon. There will be celebrity readers sharing their favorite stories. 

"We'll also be playing games and enjoying some sweets,"says Program Coordinator Sharlene Edwards.  "Reading is a serious thing, but it can also be fun! That's the way Dr. Seuss would want us to celebrate his birthday." 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Arts at the Beach Poster Contest

On Saturday, kids from Bradley Beach and surrounding towns will have a chance to show their skills. Between 10 am and noon at the Carmen Biase Center, they can pick up materials and share ideas about posters that illustrate this year's theme: THE BEACH...What you love about it and how to keep it beautiful!

Everyone who attends the workshop will receive the materials they need to make their poster. The posters will be displayed in the windows of local businesses. For more details, check out the website: ttps://

Prizes will be awarded for the best posters by 1st-2nd grade, 3rd-5th grade, & 6th-8th grade. There will also be a GRAND PRIZE of a $50 savings bond and a tree planted in your name.

Posters must be submitted on Saturday, Feb 25th between 11am and 2 pm at Boro Hall Meeting Room (701 Main Street). The Award Ceremony will take place on Friday, March 16th at 7 pm at the Bradley Beach Elementary School.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Festive Flutes at the Library

There was beautiful music at the Library on Sunday afternoon. A fantastic program -- everything from Vivaldi and Schumann to Gershwin and Berlin -- was enjoyed by kids and grownups alike.

"The Festive Flutes brought such beauty to our Library," says Program Coordinator Sharleen Edwards. "We are grateful they chose the Bradley Beach Library to kick off their spring season." This event was the first in a series of programs, entitled "A Flute Garden," that will be taking place in libraries throughout Ocean and Monmouth County.

Enjoy the Festive Flutes performance at the Library last year by following this link.

The Festive Flutes are Emma Korolik, Gwendolyn Morris, Stephanie Sun and Carol Wasserman under the able direction of Founder Marjorie Koharski. For more information about the Festive Flutes, go to their website