Free eBook Friday: On Writing

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, by Stephen King

“Long live the King” hailed Entertainment Weekly upon publication of Stephen King’s On Writing. Part memoir, part master class by one of the bestselling authors of all time, this superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer’s craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King’s advice is grounded in his vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported, near-fatal accident in 1999–and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery. Brilliantly structured, friendly and inspiring, On Writing will empower and entertain everyone who reads it–fans, writers, and anyone who loves a great story well told.

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Every Friday, we highlight an eBook from our collection at
http://e-inc.lib.overdrive.com
.  Let us know what you think of these selections, and tell us about eBooks you’ve enjoyed – we may feature them here!

Global Warming? Gotcha Covered.

to_cool_the_atmosphere

On September 9, 1896, The Chatham Record reported this patent:

To Cool the Atmosphere

A western inventor recently patented a scheme by which he claims he can artificially cool a whole community at little expense. At certain intervals he would erect skeleton towers-like windmill tower-each having an electric trolley wire running from bottom to top. The wire transports peculiarly made bombs to the top where they are exploded by electricity. The bombs contain liquefied carbonic acid gas, which, when liberated by the explosive, will instantly evaporate and severely chill the surrounding atmosphere.

So there you go. Problem solved.

 

Free eBook Friday: Strange but True

Strange But True, by John Searles

After a mysterious fall from his Manhattan apartment, Philip Chase has moved home with his mother, Charlene, a bitter woman who has never fully accepted the death of her younger son, Ronnie, five years earlier. Numb from watching too much TV and trading snipes with his mother, Philip is in stasis. But everything changes one winter night when Ronnie’s high school girlfriend shows up on their doorstep to deliver the news that she is pregnant … and the father, she claims, is Ronnie.

So begins the startling tale as Philip and his mother confront Melissa’s past and their own. Their search for answers takes them on an emotional journey, placing them in the path of murder and revenge. At once a moving story of redemption and a heart-stopping work of suspense, Strange but True brings to life a cast of characters that no reader will soon forget.

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Every Friday, we highlight an eBook from our collection at
http://e-inc.lib.overdrive.com
.  Let us know what you think of these selections, and tell us about eBooks you’ve enjoyed – we may feature them here!

Root Beer With a Striking Level of Detail

hires_root_beer_6_24_1897

Anyone besides me see that name and think “High Resolution Root Beer”? No? Just me?

Anyway.

“A cool bottle of Hires Rootbeer on a sweltering hot day is highly essential to comfort and health. It cools the blood, reduces your temperature, tones the stomach. Hires Rootbeer should be in every office, in every workshop. A temperance drink, more healthful than ice water, more delightful and satisfying than any other beverage produced.”

I love me some root beer, but I call shenanigans on this ad from the June 24, 1897 issue of The Chatham Record. Maybe high resolution root beer is good for you, but standard root beer is just sodey pop, isn’t it?

That bottle is cool, though.

So’s this mug, and it is in highly disturbing resolution.

hires_in_highres_again

 

Free eBook Friday: The Confidence Code

The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance—What Women Should Know, by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman

Confidence. We want it. We need it. But it can be maddeningly enigmatic and out of reach. The authors of the New York Times bestseller Womenomics deconstruct this essential, elusive, and misunderstood quality and offer a blueprint for bringing more of it into our lives.

Is confidence hardwired into the DNA of a lucky few, or can anyone learn it? Is it best expressed by bravado, or is there another way to show confidence? Which is more important: confidence or competence? Why do so many women, even the most successful, struggle with feelings of self-doubt? Is there a secret to channeling our inner confidence?

In The Confidence Code, journalists Katty Kay and Claire Shipman travel to the frontiers of neuroscience on a hunt for the confidence gene and reveal surprising new research on its roots in our brains. They visit the world’s leading psychologists who explain how we can all chose to become more confident simply by taking action and courting risk, and how those actions change our physical wiring. They interview women leaders from the worlds of politics, sports, the military, and the arts to learn how they have tapped into this elemental resource. They examine how a lack of confidence impacts our leadership, success, and fulfillment.

Ultimately, they argue, while confidence is partly influenced by genetics, it is not a fixed psychological state. That’s the good news. You won’t discover it by thinking positive thoughts or by telling yourself (or your children) that you are perfect as you are. You also won’t find it by simply squaring your shoulders and faking it. But it does require a choice: less people pleasing and perfectionism and more action, risk taking, and fast failure.

Inspiring, insightful, and persuasive, The Confidence Code shows that by acting on our best instincts and by daring to be authentic, women can feel the transformative power of a life of confidence.

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Every Friday, we highlight an eBook from our collection at
http://e-inc.lib.overdrive.com
.  Let us know what you think of these selections, and tell us about eBooks you’ve enjoyed – we may feature them here!

This Ain’t Denmark, People

January_29_1891

This advertisement from the January 19, 1891 Chatham Record seems to take the opposite tack from last week’s entry.

The 60-point type gets your attention: Hello, they’re putting it right out there, aren’t they?

A second look shows what the ad is really up to: “Opium and whiskey habits cured at home without pain.”

Oh, okay.

Free eBook Friday: The Serpent of Venice

The Serpent of Venice, by Christopher Moore:

New York Times bestselling author Christopher Moore channels William Shakespeare and Edgar Allan Poe in this satiric Venetian gothic featuring the irresistibly mischievous Pocket of Dog Snogging, the eponymous hero of Fool.

Venice, a really long time ago. Three prominent Venetians await their most loathsome and foul dinner guest, the erstwhile envoy from Britain who also happens to be a favorite of the Doge: the rascal-Fool Pocket.

This trio of cunning plotters — the merchant, Antonio; the senator, Montressor Brabantio; and the naval officer, Iago — have lured Pocket to a dark dungeon, promising a spirited evening with a rare Amontillado sherry and a fetching young noblewoman. Their invitation is, of course, bogus. The wine is drugged; the girl is nowhere in sight. These scoundrels have something far less amusing planned for the man who has consistently foiled their quest for power and wealth. But this Fool is no fool . . . and the story is only beginning.

Once again, Christopher Moore delivers a rousing literary satire, a dramedy mash-up rich with delights, including (but not limited to): foul plots, counterplots, true love, jealousy, murder, betrayal, revenge, codpieces, three mysterious locked boxes, a boatload of gold, a pound of flesh, occasional debauchery, and water (lots of water). Not to mention a cast Shakespeare himself would be proud of: Shylock; Iago; Othello; a bunch of other guys whose names end in “o”; a trio of comely wenches–Desdemona, Jessica, Portia; the brilliant Fool; his large sidekick, Drool; Jeff, the pet monkey; a lovesick sea serpent; and a ghost (yes, there’s always a bloody ghost).

Wickedly witty and outrageously inventive, The Serpent of Venice pays cheeky homage to the Bard and illuminates the absurdity of the human condition as only Christopher Moore can.

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Every Friday, we highlight an eBook from our collection at
http://e-inc.lib.overdrive.com
.  Let us know what you think of these selections, and tell us about eBooks you’ve enjoyed – we may feature them here!

First One’s Free

Brown's Iron Bitters oct 2 84

This lysergic looking advertisement for Brown’s Iron Bitters appeared in the October 2, 1884 edition of The Chatham Record with these words in bold type:

Brown’s Iron Bitters combines Iron with pure vegetable tonics. It is compounded on thoroughly scientific and medicinal principles, and cannot intoxicate.

On the other hand, many of the resources I visited to learn more about Brown’s Iron Bitters led with this sentence: “This product contained cocaine.”

Maybe it was hard to tell, given that it was delivered in 39% alcohol.

Resource of the Month: Proquest Family Health

2014-09-03_0927In January 2015, many of our online resources currently available through NC LIVE will change. One new resource we’ll be offering is ProQuest Family Health. This database includes magazines and journals covering consumer health topics such as sports injuries, women’s health issues, children’s health, food and nutrition, midwifery, eye care, dentistry, and much more. As with some other databases in NC LIVE, ProQuest Family Health gives you the option to limit your search results to only full text articles, only peer reviewed articles, and other specifications.

ProQuest Family Health is useful for nursing students and those in related health professions. It is also invaluable for families looking for accurate, in-depth information about a variety of health issues. As you probably know, the internet is not always a reliable source of information about health issues, particularly those that are controversial or little-understood. Families who are trying to learn about issues such as ADHD, diabetes, or just what to look for in a pediatric dentist will find that ProQuest Family Health offers a sensible and reliable alternative to much of the “chatter” you might find when looking for information on the world-wide web.

To access this resource, visit www.nclive.org. Scroll down and click on the “Nursing & Allied Health” link. Click on “ProQuest Family Health” (you will be prompted to choose your library and provide your library card number).

Click here to see a complete list of our new databases.

Free eBook Friday: The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry, by Gabrielle Zevin:

A.J. Fikry, the irascible owner of Island Books, has recently endured some tough years: his wife has died, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and his prized possession—a rare edition of Poe poems—has been stolen. Over time, he has given up on people, and even the books in his store, instead of offering solace, are yet another reminder of a world that is changing too rapidly…until a most unexpected occurrence gives him the chance to make his life over and see things anew.

Gabrielle Zevin’s enchanting novel is a love letter to the world of books—an irresistible affirmation of why we read, and why we love.

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Every Friday, we highlight an eBook from our collection at
http://e-inc.lib.overdrive.com
.  Let us know what you think of these selections, and tell us about eBooks you’ve enjoyed – we may feature them here!