February 2013

What to Read? Belk Library's March Recommend Reading

Posted by on Tuesday, February 26, 2013 - 5:51pm
March Recommended Reading

Need a book break? Belk Library recommends books to reinvigorate your brain from the hard study and stress of March, midterms, and making Spring Break memorable. Grab your hammock or a comfy chair near the Fox Popular Reading Room's fireplace and take a tiny journey.


Librarian Megan: Canada by Richard Ford.

Read it because: The first sentence is "First, I'll tell about the robbery our parents committed. Then about the murders, which happened later."



  the diary of Olive Dame Campbell

Library Technician John D.: Appalachian Travels :  the diary of Olive Dame Campbell edited by Elizabeth M. Williams.

Read it because: Edited by our wonderful librarian Betsy Williams, this moving, detailed account of life coming to the Southern Appalachian region a hundred years ago as an outsider gives a rare, personal perspective of our mountains and people back when ASU was just a ten-year-old teacher's college. 


Librarian Georgie: Heat : an amateur's adventures as kitchen slave, line cook, pasta maker, and apprentice to a Dante-quoting butcher in Tuscany by Bill Buford.

Read it because: Bill Buford leaves The New Yorker to work as a line cook at Mario Batali’s restaurant, then goes to Italy to study pasta-making and butchering, and ends up telling the history of Italian cooking and its impact on high cuisine today – funny and brilliant food writing.


In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan
Librarian Jennie: In Defense of Food : an eater's manifesto by Michael Pollan.

Read it because: Open up your eyes about what you put in your mouth! Simple rules for healthier eating - it changed the way I eat.



 Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Librarian Lisa: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

Read it because: The plot twists and turns make this thriller difficult to put down.



Riders of the Purple Sage by Zane Grey

Library Technician Jason: Riders of the Purple Sage by Zane Grey.

Read it because: Wrote the way that cowboys actually spoke in the old days, with intrigue, romance, and action. Good western and intro to Zane Grey.



 Drop Dead Healthy by A.J. Jacobs

Librarian Jon M.: Drop Dead Healthy : one man's humble quest for bodily perfection by A. J. Jacobs.

Read it because: It is a funny, lighthearted look at living healthier through a barrage of food fads, exercises, mental techniques and experiments.



Kingdom of Shadows by Alan Furst

Librarian John W: Kingdom of shadows: a novel by Alan Furst.

Read it because: Beautiful.  Evokes pre-WWII Europe.  But later on asking myself, "Why so depressed?"  It's that the Nazis are coming, of course.



  This is How you Lose Her by Junot Diaz

Librarian Amanda: This is how you lose her by Junot Díaz.

Read it because: I could not put down Junot Díaz's latest collection of short stories. Díaz's prose is enticing, poetic, and at times raw. The charming and tragic narrator Yunior will melt your heart as he navigates immigrant life, Dominican culture, love and loss.



Need more? See the 1st floor Reference Desk for a rotating selection of literature loving librarians to lead you on your way. We also have access to the book review and readalike database Novelist Plus here.

Film Screening: Prince Among Slaves

Posted by Allan Scherlen on Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 1:26pm
Prince Among Slaves movie cover

The award-winning film Prince Among Slaves will be shown Tuesday Feb 26, 2013 at 7:00 PM in Belk Library room 114.

The event is presented by ASU Library in conjunction with the ASU Humanities Council with grant funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. This is the first in a series of programs that compose the 2013 Muslim Journeys Program.  It is also shown in celebration of Black History Month. The film will be introduced by ASU Instructor, Ray Christian, who will also lead discussion following the film.

Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Time: 7:00pm

Location: Belk Library, room 114

Admission: Free, open to the public

The film is based on the true story of Abdul Rahman Ibrahima Sori, an African prince and devout Muslim slaved in the American South.

In 1788, the slave ship Africa set sail from West Africa, headed for America with its berth laden with a profitable but highly perishable cargo—hundreds of men, women, and children bound in chains. Six months later the survivors were sold in Natchez, Mississippi. One of them, a twenty-six-year-old man named Abdul-Rahman made the remarkable claim to the farmer who purchased him at the auction that he was an African prince and that his father would pay gold for his ransom. The offer was refused and Abdul-Rahman did not return to Africa for another forty years. During his enslavement he toiled on the Foster plantation, married, and fathered nine children. His story also eventually made him the most famous African in America, attracting the support of powerful men such as President John Quincy Adams.

After forty years of slavery, Abdul-Rahman finally reclaimed his freedom, but he defied the order to return immediately to Africa, and instead traveled throughout the northern states, speaking to huge audiences in a partially successful attempt to raise enough money to buy his children’s freedom. Finally at the age of sixty-seven, and after raising funds to free two of his children, Abdul-Rahman returned to Africa, only to fall ill and die just as word of his arrival reached his former home of Futa Jalloo in present-day Guinea. Abdul-Rahman survived the harsh ordeals of slavery through his love of family and his deep faith as a Muslim.

For more information, please contact Allan Scherlen, scherlnag@appstate.edu, 828-262-2285.

U.S. State Department Grant Awarded to Librarian

Posted by John Boyd on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 - 8:45am
Xiaorong Shao

Dr. Xiaorong Shao, Information Literacy Librarian at Belk Library and Information Commons, and two colleagues from the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, Dr. Xiaofei Tu and Dr. Wei Xie, have been awarded a $100,000 grant from the United States State Department to share English reading and film resources and lectures on US politics and culture with students and faculty at Northeastern University (NEU) in Shenyang, China.

The team’s work with Northeastern University will revive a partnership initiated in 1981. Besides funding development of an English reading and film library at NEU, stocked with material relevant to American politics and culture, the grant will support lectures by a total of ten speakers (five American scholars from Appalachian and five scholars from China) on different topics relevant to American studies and will help fund student and faculty exchanges between NEU and App State.

Dr. Shao hopes that the people who have been involved with the program will be its enduring legacy. “We hope that that faculty members and students that have taken part in the lectures and exchanges will maintain an appreciation of the relationship between Chinese and American culture, and continue informing the public through their work.”

Show Your Library Love

Posted by on Monday, February 11, 2013 - 12:31pm

It's February, and you know what that means--it's time to show your library love.


Meet our matchmakers!

Our subject experts can give you advice on a wide range of topics.  These librarians can introduce you to interesting and attractive information in your field of study or any subject you adore.

There's nothing wrong with online dating.

It can be hard to figure out the best way to get books and articles.  See our article databases and e-research tools to find the best databases for you or try APPsearch, our new research tool, to find books, media and articles.

Need some one on one time?

Schedule a RAP session for personalized research assistance.

Not ready to commit?

We don't have to meet in person.  You can chat or text a librarian any time.

Love libraries?

We know you love us (and we love you!), but if you want to get books and articles from other libraries, we're totally cool with that.  ASU students and faculty can borrow materials from other libraries through interlibrary loan.

Whisper sweet nothings.

Have ideas, suggestions or compliments?  We'd love to hear them. Tell us all about it. We can't promise that we'll give you the best dating advice, but we're great at helping you find the perfect article or book.

Map It Now Available in APPsearch

Posted by on Friday, February 8, 2013 - 9:42am
Map It is now available in APPsearch

So many of you asked us, "Why is there no Map It option in APPsearch!?" We're sorry for the delay. When making a major software migration like this, there are inevitably a few bumps along the way. But we have worked with our vendors and are happy to announce that MapIt! is now appearing in APPsearch.

One difference you may notice is that the Map It button does not appear on the initial results listing screen, as it does in the Classic Catalog. However, if you click on the title of any item, you will be taken to a page that does include the Map It button. The button will open a map of the library with the shelf highlighted where your book is located.

Many thanks to our friends at StackMap for getting this working for us!

NEH Grant to Provide New Islamic Studies Resources

Posted by on Monday, February 4, 2013 - 2:56pm
Islamic Studies image

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) in collaboration with the American Library Association (ALA) has awarded Librarian Allan Scherlen and Kim Hall (P&R, and chair of ASU Humanities Council) the Bridging Cultures Bookshelf Muslim Journeys Grant.

This grant provides Belk Library with books, video, and a Islamic Studies e-resource (valued at approximately $2500) to enhance the library's capacity to engage audiences in reflection on and conversation about Muslim cultures and to address the public's need and desire for trustworthy and accessible resources about Muslim beliefs and practices and the cultural heritage associated with Islamic civilizations.  In complying with requirements of the grant, the recipients (in primary collaboration with the ASU Humanities Council and further collaboration with the Watauga Public Library, the ASU Lifelong Learning Institute, and the Muslim Students Association) will host a series of talks, forums, film showings and book discussions to be held during 2013.

Stay tuned for more information on the events planned.

Map It Coming to APPsearch

Posted by on Friday, February 1, 2013 - 5:02pm
Where oh where did Map It go?

Many of our users have been missing the Map It! functionality in our new search tool, APPsearch. Map It is a tool in our classic catalog that shows the location of each book on a floorplan map of the library. It makes finding a book in the rows and rows of stacks much easier!

We're currently working hard to incorporate this functionality into APPsearch. Our web developers and vendors are doing everything they can to make it happen, and we hope to be able to offer Map It! in APPsearch soon. We'll keep you posted!