Off the Shelves – July 30

AT THE LIBRARY

New items are available at the Hancock County Public Library.

The following items are available at the Hancock County Public Library, 900 W. McKenzie Road. For more information on the library’s collection or to reserve a title, visit hcplibrary.org.

NONFICTION

“BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More than Ever in the Age of Google” by John Palfrey

Libraries today are more important than ever as bulwarks against some of the crucial challenges of our age: unequal access to education, jobs and information, educator and technology expert John Palfrey says. Palfrey argues anyone seeking to participate in the 21st century needs to understand how to find and use the vast stores of information available online, and libraries, which play a crucial role in making these skills and information available, are at risk.

In order to survive our rapidly modernizing world and dwindling government funding, libraries must make the transition to a digital future as soon as possible, he says. It won’t be easy, but as Palfrey argues, modifications are vital if we hope to save libraries and, through them, the American democratic ideal.

FICTION

“Early Warning” by Jane Smiley

Walter Langdon dies suddenly, leaving behind five adult children who are now looking to the future. One remains in Iowa to work the land, while others scatter to Washington, D.C., California, and everywhere in between. As the country moves out of post–World War II optimism into the Cold War, the social and sexual revolutions of the ’60s and ’70s, and then into the wealth — for some — of the early ’80s, the Langdon children each follow a different path.

They have children of their own: twin boys who are best friends and vicious rivals; a girl whose rebellious spirit takes her to the notorious Peoples Temple in San Francisco; and a golden boy who drops out of college to fight in Vietnam, leaving behind a secret legacy that sends shock waves through the Langdon family into the next generation. The saga that began with “Some Luck” will span a century in America, but it also stands entirely on its own as a story of the challenges and rewards of family and home.

DOWNLOADABLE E-BOOK

“Memory Man” by David Baldacci

Decker’s pro football career ends before it had a chance to begin. On the very first play, a violent helmet-to-helmet collision knocks him off the field for good and leaves him with an improbable side effect — he can never forget anything.

Decker seizes his chance to learn what really happened to his family that night. He must endure the memories he would much rather forget and use his remarkable gifts to uncover the truth.

Decker seizes his chance to learn what really happened to his family that night. He must endure the memories he would much rather forget and use his remarkable gifts to uncover the truth.