Into the Wilderness

Into the Savage Country by Shannon BurkeIn Wilderness by Diane ThomasThe Surfacing by Cormac James

Into the Savage Country by Shannon Burke

While on a perilous expedition into Crow territory in the 1820s, William Wyeth discovers the depth of loyalty among men and the lengths people will go in order to survive when he becomes trapped in the center of a deadly boundary dispute between Native American tribes, the British government and American trapping brigades. (Publisher Summary)

In Wilderness by Diane Thomas

After she is diagnosed with a terminal illness, Katherine abandons her successful advertising firm and seeks refuge in the solitude of her wilderness cabin. Living off the land in complete isolation brings Katherine peace - until the day she realizes she is not alone, and never was. Katherine's sudden and unanticipated arrival at the cabin unsettles Danny, a Vietnam veteran tormented by the demons of his past, who has been squatting in the previously abandoned cabin. (Publisher Summary)

The Surfacing by Cormac James

Far from civilization, with his ship trapped by Arctic ice while hunting for Sir Franklin's lost expedition, Lieutenant Morgan discovers a stowaway, who will be forced to give birth to his child in the frozen wilderness, unless he can lead his men across the bleak expanse. (Publisher Summary)

The Tiny Life

The Big Tiny by Dee Williams
The Big Tiny by Dee Williams

Dee Williams’s life changed in an instant, with a near-death experience in the aisle of her local grocery store. Diagnosed with a heart condition at age forty-one, she was all too suddenly reminded that life is short, time is precious, and she wanted to be spending hers with the people and things she truly loved. That included the beautiful sprawling house in the Pacific Northwest she had painstakingly restored—but, increasingly, it did not include the mortgage payments, constant repairs, and general time-suck of home ownership. A new sense of clarity began to take hold: Just what was all thisstuff for? Multiple extra rooms, a kitchen stocked with rarely used appliances, were things that couldn’t compare with the financial freedom and the ultimate luxury—time—that would come with downsizing.

Deciding to build an eighty-four-square-foot house—on her own, from the ground up—was just the beginning of building a new life. Williams can now list everything she owns on one sheet of paper, her monthly housekeeping bills amount to about eight dollars, and it takes her approximately ten minutes to clean the entire house. It’s left her with more time to spend with family and friends, and given her freedom to head out for adventure at a moment’s notice, or watch the clouds and sunset while drinking a beer on her (yes, tiny) front porch.

The lessons Williams learned from her “aha” moment post-trauma apply to all of us, every day, regardless of whether or not we decide to discard all our worldly belongings. Part how-to, part personal memoir,The Big Tiny is an utterly seductive meditation on the benefits of slowing down, scaling back, and appreciating the truly important things in life. (Publisher Summary)

Curious about Tiny Houses? Want to see what you could do? Check out this video tutorial from free with Your Community Library Card.
 Designing a Tiny House with SketchUp with Scott Onstott

Exploring New York

The Catskills by Stephen Silverman
The Catskills by Stephen Silverman

A history that demonstrates "the color, charm, and even lunacy that for the past four hundred years have characterized the Catskill Mountains and the people attracted to them." Those who've seen the Catskills will love how the authors capture its magic. Those who haven't will start planning a trip. (Kirkus Reviews)

The Catskills (“Cat Creek” in Dutch), America’s original frontier, northwest of New York City, with its seven hundred thousand acres of forest land preserve and its five counties—Delaware, Greene, Sullivan, Ulster, Schoharie; America’s first great vacationland; the subject of the nineteenth-century Hudson River School paintings that captured the almost godlike majesty of the mountains and landscapes, the skies, waterfalls, pastures, cliffs . . . refuge and home to poets and gangsters, tycoons and politicians, preachers and outlaws, musicians and spiritualists, outcasts and rebels . . .  (Publisher Summary)

This Day in History: the Wreck of the Titanic was discovered; September 1, 1985

Titanic by Beau Riffenburgh
Titanic by Beau Riffenburgh

On April 10, 1912, the Titanic began her first and final voyage—and more than 1,500 of its passengers would never again see land. Titanic explores the complete history of this magnificent ship, from its conception as the most luxurious vessel in seafaring history to the tragedy of its sinking and its enduring legacy. Along with stunning photographs, including the original blueprints for the ship, it features firsthand accounts from those who designed, built, and sailed on the Titanic, as well as telegrams sent during the disaster from some who ultimately perished. (Publisher Summary)

We also have on DVD:
Ghosts of the Abyss Secrets of the Titanic Titanic at 100 Titanic: How It Really SankTitanic's Final Mystery

The Art of Baking Blind by Sarah Vaughan

The Art of Baking Blind by Sarah Vaughan

There are many reasons to bake: to feed; to create; to impress; to nourish; to define ourselves; and, sometimes, it has to be said, to perfect. But often we bake to fill a hunger that would be better filled by a simple gesture from a dear one. We bake to love and be loved. 

In 1966, Kathleen Eaden, cookbook writer and wife of a supermarket magnate, published The Art of Baking, her guide to nurturing a family by creating the most exquisite pastries, biscuits and cakes. Now, five amateur bakers are competing to become the New Mrs. Eaden. There's Jenny, facing an empty nest now that her family has flown; Claire, who has sacrificed her dreams for her daughter; Mike, trying to parent his two kids after his wife's death; Vicki, who has dropped everything to be at home with her baby boy; and Karen, perfect Karen, who knows what it's like to have nothing and is determined her facade shouldn't slip. (Publisher Summary)