KC Public Library Blog

Building A Community Of Readers

Community Builders: Westport Branch and Collection Development

The outside of the Westport branch, located at 118 Westport Road.

The Library is full of movers and shakers, unafraid of change, who are devoted to finding new and innovative ways to make the Library experience better. Our journey begins with the lovely people who choose which books go on the shelf—Collection Development.

Teen Review: Awaken

Book Cover Image

Awaken, by Katie Kacvinsky

Teen Reviewer: Keely McLouth

Imagine a world full of technology, but not like what we have now. Imagine something more, a lot more, different. Where people can't remember what it's like to have human contact with people other than their families. Yes, they are in each other's presence, but they aren't connecting.

Teen Review: The Chaos

Book Cover Image

The Chaos, by Nalo Hopkinson

Teen Reviewer: Abigail Borne

The Chaos is centered on Sojourner, aka “Scotch”, who starts developing black blemishes all over her body. She dreads going to school and fears that somebody might discover her past if she’s not careful. When her parents go out of state, she and her brother Rich see a chance to be free of their overbearing parents.

Program Notes: Another Thin Man (1939)

Another Thin Man movie poster

One of the first things you realize watching 1939’s Another Thin Man is that the mystery hardly matters. Watch it for the sophisticated humor and the superb banter between stars William Powell and Myrna Loy.

Bridge to the Future

Hannibal Bridge, looking northeast from the south side of the Missouri River.

July 3, 1869: Forty thousand people gather along the banks of the Missouri to celebrate the opening of the quarter mile long Hannibal Bridge, designed by Octave Chanute, which makes Kansas City a commercial hub for the railroads that are rapidly expanding to the west.

Eli Wallach Was a Maestro, If Not a Movie Star

Eli Wallach

Eli Wallach wasn’t a movie star. He was an actor. There’s a difference.

The Tony, Emmy, and honorary Academy Award-winning Wallach this week died at age 98.

Starry, Starry Nights

Starlight Theatre

June 25, 1951: Kansas City’s Starlight Theatre kicks off its first season with a performance of The Desert Song.

Program Notes: Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever (1939)

Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever movie poster

It’s difficult for modern viewers to appreciate the immense popularity of MGM’s Andy Hardy films of the late 1930s and early ‘40s. Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever is the seventh release in the 18-film series that began in 1937 and didn’t wrap up until 1958.

Book Reviews

All Joy and No Fun by Jennifer Senior

All Joy and No Fun

As a parent of a seven-month-old, I was curious about All Joy and No Fun as it made the rounds through my friends’ Goodreads accounts. My interest was piqued by friends’ reviews and with Jennifer Senior’s visit to the Library in early June.

Teen Review: Shelter

Shelter by Harlan Coben

Shelter: A Mickey Bolitar Novel, by Harlan Coben

Teen Reviewer: Jade Johann

This book is about a teenage boy named Mickey Bolitar who is facing major life changes. How would you feel if you witnessed your father’s death, had your mom go into rehab, and then have to live with your uncle and move to a different school? These are things Mickey is dealing with. His life is a roller coaster spinning out of control.

Program Notes: In Name Only (1939)

In Name Only movie poster

1939’s In Name Only was made under the Hollywood Production Code. It managed to bend the usual rules out of shape and should have been on the code’s naughty list. How did they get away with it?

A Mess of a Massacre

Union Station

June 17, 1933: The parking lot of Union Station is riddled with bullets as friends of bank robber Frank Nash attempt to free him from federal custody, killing five people, including Nash.

Teen Review: A World Without Princes

Book Cover

A World Without Princes, by Soman Chainani

Teen Reviewer: Abigail Borne

A World Without Princes centers once again on Sophie and Agatha, who are finally home. Having escaped the school master, they can now live in peace…or so they thought.

Teen Review: The Space Between

The Space Between by Brenna Yovanoff

The Space Between, by Brenna Yovanoff

Teen Reviewer: Keely McLouth

Darkly beautiful and twisted, The Space Between is a mysterious story unlike any book I've ever read. With many twists and turns, Brenna Yovanoff's writing continues to surprise me. This book touched my heart with many waves of emotions as Daphne and Truman take on a dangerous adventure to save Daphne's brother from the most threatening duo on Earth.

New Friends: Tales about Friendship

Paul Meets Bernadette by Rosy Lamb

For those of us fortunate enough to have good friends in our life, we understand how important they are! Friends are fun, friends are trustworthy, and friends are there to help you when in need. Here are some fun books about characters creating new friendships!