Category: Book Reviews

Summer 2014 Coffeehouse Series

Announcing the 2014 Summer Library Coffeehouse Series! The Mudd coffeehouses provide an opportunity to come to the library, enjoy a snack, and learn something interesting.

Wednesday, July 9: Summer Reads
What is summer in a library without reading? Come to this popular session to hear about the library staff’s favorite summer reads, and please share yours with us!

Wednesday, July 23: “Strength through Union:” Exploring the Consolidation
2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the consolidation of Lawrence and Milwaukee-Downer colleges. Do you have questions about why or how the consolidation took place? Join us to learn more about the events leading up to the consolidation, about how it was carried out, and about how it continues to shape our present and future.

Wednesday, August 13: Special Sneak Peek: Films from the Archives!
A number of 16mm films from the Archives have recently been digitized, and we are so excited to share them! A public showing is planned for the fall, but attendees at this session will get a first look at two promotional films from the set: “A River, A College, A Town” (1957) and “This is Lawrence” (1972).

Coffee

Where and When?
All coffeehouse sessions will take place on the first floor of the Mudd Library. They will begin at 10 a.m. and last until 10:45 a.m. Coffee and some variety of yummy refreshment will be provided at each session. All Lawrence faculty and staff are welcome to attend.

Visit our coffeehouse guide for more details about this summer’s sessions and to learn about past coffeehouses.

The Art of Video Games at the Smithsonian

Today is the opening day of the new exhibit, The Art of Video Games, at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Not able to visit this weekend for the opening festivities? The Mudd Library can help you out.  We have a variety of materials about video games and art as well as some primary source materials (i.e. video games).  Below is a selection of resources for those interested in video games and art.

KRAZY: The Delirious World of Anime + Comics + Video Games +Art: Catalog of an exhibition held at the Vancouver Art Gallery.

The Art of the Video Game: Explores the artistry of a variety of video games.

The Art of Alice: The Madness Returns: Book of concept art and stories behind the creation of the macabre art of this video game, based on Lewis Carroll’s, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

The Art of Video Games: From Pac-Man to Mass Effect: Companion book to the Smithsonian exhibit. Will be available on the Mudd Library shelves soon.

The Orange Box: A collection of five popular video games, including the very popular, Portal.

Want to learn more about games and scholarly research and the gaming community on the Lawrence University Campus? Take a look at our Why Gaming? research guide.

Some Great New Resources

Like elves in a workshop, your friends at the Mudd Library have been busily preparing all kinds of great new stuff during winter break.  We’d like to take a moment to highlight a few.

JSTOR Arts & Sciences VIII: This set has been added to our existing JSTOR electronic database collection.  By adding this collection, we have increased our JSTOR access to core humanities journals, as well as new titles in philosophy, classical studies, and music.  In addition to modern journals, it also contains “a group of rare 19th and early 20th century American Art periodicals digitized as part of “a special project undertaken with the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Frick Collection, and the Brooklyn Museum of Art.”

Interested in watching some classic musicals?  We now have DVDs of some of the best, including (but not limited to) Fiddler on the RoofBye Bye Birdieand Annie Get Your GunSpeaking of classics, we have also just added the entire set of the original Japanese Godzilla movies.

We’ve recently acquired some very interesting books from a wide variety of genres. Read Tonight No Poetry Will Serve, written by one of the “essential voices of our time,” Adrienne Rich.   Our collection of dance resources has been greatly expanded with titles such as, Envisioning Dance on Film and Video. Learn about the archaeological field of prehistoric warfare with Warfare in Prehistoric Britain. Need something to reinforce your fears of a zombie apocalypse?  Check out the most recent volumes of the terrifying and amazing, The Walking Dead.

We’ve also added some new video games, including what has been referred to as, “the Wii game we’ve been waiting for,” The Legend of Zelda : Skyward Sword.   Three Xbox 360 games have also been purchased, and will soon be ready for checkout.

Of course, this is just a small sampling of some of our new acquisitions.  After you’ve enjoyed your winter holiday festivities, stop by the library and take a look!

The Scholarly World of Harry Potter


Now that the last Harry Potter movie is in theaters, are you looking for something to fill that Harry Potter-sized void?  Here at the Mudd Library, we have shelves of books dedicated to a wide variety of research relating to the Harry Potter books, characters, and world.

Here is a  small sampling of our collection:

Harry, a History by Melissa Anelli:   Written by the webmistress of the popular fansite, The Leaky Cauldron, this book explores the Harry Potter fan culture.

The Wisdom of Harry Potter by Edmund M. Kern: An exploration of the morality in the Harry Potter book series.  This book’s author is Associate Professor of History here at Lawrence University.

The Magical Worlds of Harry Potter by David Colbert: A collection myths and legends behind many of the names, stories, and magical beings used in the Harry Potter book series.

Harry Potter: The Story of a Global Business Phenomenon by Susan Gunelius: A look at the successful strategy behind the marketing of Harry Potter.

Graphic Novels at the Mudd

The popularity of graphic novels has been growing not only among young adults, but adults as well.  At the Mudd Library, we’ve been adding a lot of new materials to our graphic novel collection- a couple of which are featured below.

Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel: An amazingly candid and engaging autobiography of Ms. Bechdel’s childhood and early adulthood, particularly relating to her father. This graphic novel has basically become a community read among library staff.

Duncan the Wonder Dog by Adam Hines: A story of a world in which animals have the ability to speak, and how they use that ability to empower themselves against humans.

Our collection also includes classics such as, Watchmen and The Sandman series, as well as the very popular Scott Pilgrim Vs the World series.

Check our library catalog to browse our entire collection of graphic novels.

Reading Period Book Suggestions

The Murderer’s Daughters

"The Murder's Daughters"

This debut novel by Randy Susan Meyers is a powerful story about sisters whose alcoholic father murders their mother in front of them and then tries, unsuccessfully, to kill both younger daughter Merry and himself.  What follows is a 30 year journey of older sister Lulu and Merry from an orphanage to adulthood.   Ultimately “a crisis that eerily mirrors the past forces Lulu and Merry to confront what happened years ago.”

The Dance of the Dissident Daughter

"The Dance of the Dissident Daughter"

Sue Monk Kidd (The Mermaid’s Chair, The Secret Life of Bees), describes her spiritual  journey from her strict Southern Baptist upbringing to her “nontraditional feminist spiritual experience.” At the heart of the book is a critique of patriarchal Christianity, but the book is written for all audiences interested in spiritual awakening. (And yes, Gents, there is a lot you can learn from this book despite its feminist bent). What Kidd ultimately tackles is her “fear of dissension, confrontation, backlash, a fear of not pleasing, not living up to sanctioned models of femininity.”

Both books are available at the Appleton Public Library.