Posted in Book Talk

Audiobooks for All

New Audiobooks

Over the past few years, I’ve become a devoted audiobook listener. I always have a book that I’m listening to as I get ready in the morning, make dinner in the evening, or drive anywhere that takes me longer than five minutes. It even made repeatedly shoveling out my driveway this winter more bearable. Sometimes, if a book is really good, I try to find more chores to do around my house because I don’t want to stop listening.

Thanks to some generous donations, we’ve recently received a windfall of audiobooks. Check out these new titles and find a book that will make you keep circling the block until you finish the chapter.

New Audiobooks

  • The Other Boleyn Girl by Philipa Gregory
  • Hoot by Carl Hiaasen (Middle Grade)
  • Einstein: The Life of a Genius by Walter Isaacson (Nonfiction)
  • The Murder Book by Jonathan Kellerman
  • Orphan Monster Spy by Matt Killeen (Young Adult)
  • Count to Ten by James Patterson
  • Kill Alex Cross by James Patterson
  • Cross the Line by James Patterson
  • NYPD Red 4 by James Patterson
  • Pax by Sara Pennypacker (Middle Grade)
  • The Gift of Valor by Michael Phillips (Nonfiction)
  • Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult
  • The Pact by Jodi Picoult
  • Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult
  • Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
  • The Athena Project by Brad Thor
  • Sand Castle Bay by Sherryl Woods
  • The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Want to listen to an audiobook, but don’t want to deal with switching the discs? Try RBDigital and OverDrive for digital audiobooks. Both platforms have apps that can be downloaded to your smartphone or other electronic device for a more portable audiobook experience. Call the library or stop in if you need help using the apps or getting into your account.


Posted in Get Connected

Deep Space at Meinders Library

Join the Pipestone Area Schools Arrowbots as they battle it out in Destination: Deep Space.

Today and tomorrow, we will stream the 2019 First Robotics competition live from the Great Northern Regional in Grand Forks. The Arrowbots #3298 is led by the fearless Commander, Travis Dethlefs. Over the course of two days, the Arrowbots will compete in ten qualification matches, hoping to snag a spot in the Quarter Finals.

Arrowbots 2019

  • Qualification match 5          9:36 am Friday
  • Qualification match 17      11:17 am Friday
  • Qualification match 23        1:00 pm Friday
  • Qualification match 28        1:35 pm Friday
  • Qualification match 38        2:45 pm Friday
  • Qualification match 45        3:34 pm Friday
  • Qualification match 54        4:37 pm Friday
  • Qualification match 66        9:23 am Saturday
  • Qualification match 77      10:40 am Saturday
  • Qualification match 84      11:29 am Saturday

Stay connected at the library or by following the Arrowbots #3298 in the Blue Alliance.

Other space events at the library include this weekend’s Launched: Escape Room, and next Friday’s Stargazing with Mike Lynch. These events are free and open to the public!

Posted in Just for Fun

Make Way for the New

Since the beginning of this speech season, I have been haunted (in a good way) by one of my student’s speeches. One line in particular could be the most powerful quote I have ever heard.

It goes something like this, “Death is the single greatest invention of life.”

This sentiment was spoken during a commencement speech by Steve Jobs a year after he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

It is powerful in a way that is hard to explain. Death is inevitable. It is inescapable. It is both feared and revered. Every culture, every generation, and every individual has different thoughts, feelings, and traditions surrounding it.

As hard as death is to experience, whether a pet or the impending loss of a loved one, I choose to look at death as the beginning. As a celebration of what was and what is to come. Not as a replacement, but as an addition.

In my experience, every life cycle ends and begins with renewal.

Just for fun, I challenged myself to engage with the world around me and really see the value of Steve Jobs’ statement. Here’s what I found:

  • snowflakes melting to water in the spring thaw creating life-giving moisture
  • purging flooded basements after that life-giving moisture seeps inside, making way for a clean space and the storage of new memories
  • weeding out old books on the bookshelf to make way for the new ones
  • Jesus’ death making way for eternal life
  • the seeding of flowers, the loss of leaves, the death of a plant to regenerate and bloom into something once again beautiful
  • new babies born on the knees of grandparents and the passage of wisdom from one to another to make each generation stronger

Death surrounds us, but so does life. Or rather, life surrounds us because of the contributions of death.

In this season of rebirth, I am planning to reread From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death. This beautifully appointed book takes readers on a journey across the globe to discover the rituals surrounding the greatest invention of life.

I challenge you, dear readers, to look at the world around you and discover all the joys of making way for the new. To delight in the mess of spring and consider the opportunities it provides in the days to come.

happy reading~ Jody

Posted in Book Talk

Out Of This World Reads

Star Books

With Mike Lynch’s Starwatch on March 22 and our galactic-themed escape room this weekend (March 15-17), we’ve got space on the brain at Meinders Community Library.  Try a book that’s like Titanic set in space (These Broken Stars), a series about lady astronauts (The Calculating Stars), a nonfiction guide to stargazing (Stars: A Month-by-Month Tour of the Constellations), or another book from this list with celestial titles.

Middle Grade Fiction

  • Polaris by Michael Northrop
  • Full Cicada Moon by Marilyn Hilton
  • Hello, Universe by Erin Kelly Entrada
  • The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill
  • The Stars Beneath Our Feet by David Barclay Moore

Young Adult Fiction

  • Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley
  • Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee
  • The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
  • Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza (Series)
  • These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner (Series)

Adult Fiction

  • Stardust by Neil Gaiman
  • Oh My Stars by Lorna Landvik
  • Gunpowder Moon by David Pedreira
  • The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal (Series)
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (Series)


  • Rise of the Rocket Girls by Natalia Holt
  • Go, Flight! by Rick Houston and Milt Heflin
  • We Have Capture by Tom Stafford with Michael Cassutt
  • Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil DeGrasse Tyson
  • Stars: A Month-by-Month Tour of the Constellations by Mike Lynch


Posted in Get Connected

From Science to Science Fiction

And everything in between.

Last spring, PAS science teacher Stacy Popma stopped by the library asking for help. As librarians, we did our best to provide her with books on astronauts for her new astronomy class.

“But,” she said, “I was thinking of having them do something more. Like a project.”

Of course, being the proud parents of our newly hatched maker space, we led Stacy back for the grand tour. Brimming with ideas, we offered to be the guinea pigs for the new class.

I have to admit, I was reluctant to read a book on an astronomer. I’ve never been a big biography reader, and I didn’t anticipate loving this part of my astronomy grade. What I couldn’t wait for was the end product: the creation of a project based on the book (which I ended up loving for a variety of reasons).


Let’s just say that I had a blast, and Ms. Popma launched the idea as part of her curriculum. The product of that class is on display at the library. But the best part isn’t getting to showcase the amazing work these students did, it was watching them tackle the project. You see, they used the STEAM Room each week.

And each week, we got to chat with the teens, listen to their ideas, talk about their books, and generally spend time with a segment of our population who doesn’t get enough credit for being amazing. Case in point, the turn-table theater that highlights multiple scenes in a book or the quilts that took up an astronomical amount of time.

Fast forward to the end of the first semester and Frankenstein ran rampant in the library.  Once again utilizing the tools, supplies, and space of the STEAM Room, Ms. Sullivan’s English 9 classes created some scarily good presentations based on Mary Shelley’s book. Many of these are also showcased in the library, though a few digital projects remain a bit outside our grasp.

Once again, their use of the makerspace afforded us a touchstone with students who had found a way to express themselves (and their education) in unique and fun ways. Connecting with them shapes what we offer to all of our patrons, leading to a more robust space with unique tools and supplies.

And people are taking us up on our offer in amazing ways. On any given week, someone is in the STEAM Room tinkering away. From Promposals to Valentines to physical therapy projects to birthday parties, the public is taking advantage of our makerspace. We’ve already created monsters and stars and the rocket ships to carry us beyond our imagination. What’s next?

That, dear readers, is up to you!

Call the library or stop by to reserve the STEAM Room and get connected with your inner creator. Our makerspace is open to the public outside of school hours.

P.S. If astronomy is your thing, don’t forget to sign up for Launched, our newest escape room. If you prefer ferreting out clues and solving puzzles, you should also join us for an out-of-this world opportunity!