Words

Season's Readings

A list for book lovers

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HOW: If you want to read these books before gifting them to others, find them in a variety of formats at your local library. Go to http://www.wcls.org or www.bellinghampubliclibrary.org for more details.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

The leaves have fallen, the hours of daylight grow shorter and there is a cold snap in the air reminding us that year’s end is nigh, and with it, holiday shopping!

Delight the book-lover in your life with these recent releases in adult nonfiction that explore how objects, books and relationships shape us.

Objects can harbor deep meaning and represent the stories that make up our personal mythologies. Books can inspire and help us dream of the kind of people we would like to become. Relationships with the non-humans with whom we share the planet can inspire us to be our best selves.

A chance encounter with a locket at a garage sale caused authors Bill Shapiro and Naomi Wax to ponder what happens when our most treasured objects are removed from the people whose stories they represent. The result, What We Keep: 150 People Share the One Object that Brings Them Joy, Magic, and Meaning, is a collective trip down memory lane, where the famous and not-so-famous share secret histories of their most personal treasures, each beautifully unique.

Stunning photographs of the treasured objects and their people invite entry into these private worlds that harbor the seeds of self. Some “rememberers” are names you will recognize, like Cheryl Strayed, James Patterson, Melinda Gates, and Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Strayed says of her object, “It holds in its very being both the girl I was and the woman I became.” This beautiful book honors the curious connection we have with our special things and delights in our uniqueness.

Even the most avid reader would be hard-pressed to actually read all of the books recommended in 1,000 Books to Read Before You Die: A Life-changing List, but book-lovers can dream!

Encompassing fiction, poetry, science, science fiction, travel writing, biography, children’s books, history and more, this nearly 1,000-page tome manages to be reference book, inspiration and entertainment.
Arranged alphabetically by author to facilitate serendipitous discovery, 1,000 Books invites the reader to open anywhere and fantasize about having endless time to read.

“A Miscellany of Special Lists” suggests reading in categories such as short and long reads, terrific audiobooks, mind-expanding and escapist titles.  Of course, the first thing most bibliophiles will want to do is mark all the titles they have already read in the checklist at the back of the book.

More than a memoir, How to Be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals is a call to deepen our empathic connections with other living creatures. Sy Montgomery writes about her life in the context of 13 animals that taught her things about being a good human being. She describes learning how to play with children from a pig, how she learned about aging gracefully from a border collie and about forgiveness from a wild weasel.

Gorgeous language and Rebecca Green’s lovely illustrations combine to make this a beautiful gem of a book, and a sure pick for anyone who loves animals or feels deeply the connection humans share with all living things.

Lisa Gresham selects these and other adult nonfiction titles for Whatcom County Library System.

FCC Advent
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Virgil Wander
An antidote to what ails us

Leif Enger’s first book in a decade (So Brave, Young, and Handsome was published in 2008) is a gentle, charming antidote to all that ails us as a society these days. 

The title character, Virgil Wander, is the unassuming sole proprietor of a rundown independent movie theater in a…

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Booksellers' Best
The gift of words

Last December, I bought books for everyone on my gift list—whether they were avid readers or not. This required a bit of sleuthing. What exactly were my 20-year-old twin nephews in Missouri interested in these days? I discovered terrific books and, best of all, learned more about the…

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The 57 Bus
Race, class and the justice system

At Whatcom County Library System (WCLS), we believe that the act of reading offers readers a window into other people’s lives, and that reading develops empathy.

We host more than a dozen book discussion groups for the public each month at libraries across Whatcom County (see Events at

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Events
Today
The Giving Tree

10:00am|Village Books

Winter Wear Drive

11:00am|Upper Skagit Library

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

MVHS Holiday Concert

7:00pm|McIntyre Hall

Birding Adventures

9:00am|Skagit Valley

Valley Crafters Holiday Bazaar

10:00am|Deming Presbyterian Church

Literacy Council Seeks Volunteers

10:00am

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Bellingham Public Market

 BHS Showstoppers

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Gifts from Our Gardens

12:00pm|Healthy Connections Room

English Country Dancing

1:30pm|Bellingham Senior Activity Center

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar

4:00pm|Swim Club

Jazz Jam

5:30pm|Illuminati Brewing

The Best Bad Things

7:00pm|Village Books

Spanish Brass Christmas Concert

7:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Balkan Folk Dancers

7:00pm|Fairhaven Library

Astronomy Meeting

7:00pm|Whatcom Educational Credit Union

Noel Noir

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

A Christmas Carol

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

History Holiday Open Mic

7:30pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Annie

7:30pm|Lincoln Theatre

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

7:30pm|Upfront Theatre

Village Books
Tomorrow
The Giving Tree

10:00am|Village Books

Winter Wear Drive

11:00am|Upper Skagit Library

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Birding Adventures

9:00am|Skagit Valley

Literacy Council Seeks Volunteers

10:00am

Valley Crafters Holiday Bazaar

10:00am|Deming Presbyterian Church

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Bellingham Public Market

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar

4:00pm|Swim Club

Annie

7:30pm|Lincoln Theatre

Noel Noir

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

A Christmas Carol

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

Wild Things

9:30am|Connelly Creek Nature Area

Pacific Arts Market

10:00am|Sunset Square

Hot Cider and Cool Art

10:00am|Morgan Block Studios

Story Time with the Grinch

4:00pm|Village Books

Drayton Harbor Shell-abration

4:00pm|G Street Plaza

Food Not Bombs

4:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Tasting and Tour of Lights

5:00pm|Eagle Haven Winery

Saving Christmas Town

7:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

A Charlie Brown Christmas

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Eager Beaver

7:00pm|Village Books

Dances of Universal Peace

7:00pm|Center for Spiritual Living

Reeb Willms and Caleb Klauder

7:00pm|YWCA Ballroom

My Three Ghosts, LOL-apalooza

7:30pm|Upfront Theatre

Northwest Ballet Theater presents The Nutcracker

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

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Saturday
The Giving Tree

10:00am|Village Books

Winter Wear Drive

11:00am|Upper Skagit Library

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Birding Adventures

9:00am|Skagit Valley

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Bellingham Public Market

Valley Crafters Holiday Bazaar

10:00am|Deming Presbyterian Church

Literacy Council Seeks Volunteers

10:00am

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar

4:00pm|Swim Club

Noel Noir

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Annie

7:30pm|Lincoln Theatre

A Christmas Carol

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

Pacific Arts Market

10:00am|Sunset Square

Hot Cider and Cool Art

10:00am|Morgan Block Studios

Story Time with the Grinch

4:00pm|Village Books

Tasting and Tour of Lights

5:00pm|Eagle Haven Winery

Saving Christmas Town

7:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

A Charlie Brown Christmas

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Northwest Ballet Theater presents The Nutcracker

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

My Three Ghosts, LOL-apalooza

7:30pm|Upfront Theatre

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|Ferndale Senior Center

Breakfast with Santa

9:00am|Eaglemont Golf Course

Breakfast with Santa

9:00am|Bellingham Childcare and Learning Center

Coast Salish Winter Festival

9:00am|Lummi Gateway Center

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am| Depot Market Square

Gingerbread Houses

10:00am|Semiahmoo Resort

Mostly Magic with John Walton

11:00am|MBT's Walton Theater

Holiday Craft Bazaar

11:00am|Deming Library

Sleighbells RIng

12:00pm|BelleWood Acres

Fairhaven Winterfest

12:00pm|Historic Fairhaven

Seasonal Side Dishes

1:00pm|Chuckanut Center

Arts and Ales Holiday Market

2:00pm|Aslan Depot

Port Tasting

2:00pm|Siefert & Jones Wine Merchants

Bellingham Community Chorus Holiday Concerts

2:00pm|St. James Presbyterian Church

Comet Sense Signing and Talk

2:00pm|Studio UFO

Altai Kai workshop and concert

2:00pm|Alternative Library

Noel Ensemble

3:00pm|Jansen Art Center

Bowman Bay Holiday

4:00pm|Bowman Bay

Firehouse Holiday Party

5:00pm|Firehouse Arts and Events Center

Tamale Dinner Fundraiser

6:00pm|Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship

Vaudevillingham

7:00pm|Cirque Lab

A Holiday Wish for Paco

7:00pm|Blaine Performing Arts Center

Blue Adobe Comedy

7:00pm|Blue Adobe Bar

see our complete calendar »

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