May We Suggest

May We Suggest?This blog provides customized book recommendations to our patrons. To get your own, just fill out the May We Suggest form and you can expect results within 10 days. You can also like May We Suggest on facebook.

The Spur Awards are annual literary prizes awarded by the Western Writers of America (WWA). The Spur Awards honor writers for distinguished writing about the American West. The Spur awards began in 1953, the same year the WWA was founded.

Historical Fiction Winner

Biography

National Poetry Month Biographies

Celebrate National Poetry Month by getting to know more about the lives of some of our greatest poets:
 

Longfellow: a rediscovered life by Charles C. Calhoun

 

 

Yeats's ghosts: the secret life of W.B. Yeats by Brenda Maddox

 

 

 

 

Dylan Thomas: a new life by Andrew Lycett

 

 

 

 

From noon to starry night: a life of Walt Whitman by Philip Callow

 

 

 

 

Rough magic: a biography of Sylvia Plath by Paul Alexander

 

Angela's ashes : a memoir by Frank McCourt

Carlos Eire's National Book Award-winning memoir of his childhood in 1950s Havana and the overnight upheaval of his world in January 1959, when the Batista government was toppled.

April is Cultural Diversity Month! Check out one of the following YA titles to discover a different culture, or perhaps find a reflection of your own experiences.

Culture: Native American

Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

A big dose of lucky by Marthe Jocelyn

Culture: Canadian Aboriginal

Malou has just turned sixteen—hardly old enough to be out in the world on her own—and all she knows for sure is that she’s mixed-race and that she was left at an orphanage as a newborn. Beyond that, it’s a mystery—a mystery that takes her to the little town of Parry Sound, where she finds lots of young brown faces like hers. Are these her relatives, and why doesn’t anyone want to talk about it?

The bitter side of sweet by Tara Sullivan

Culture: Ivorian (Ivory Coast)

They only wanted to make some money during the dry season to help their impoverished family; instead they were tricked into forced labor on a plantation in the Ivory Coast. For two years what has mattered are the number of cacao pods Amadou and his younger brother, Seydou, can chop down in a day. Then Khadija comes, the first girl who has ever come to camp, and she’s a wild thing. She fights, but the bosses break her. Now the three band together as family and try just once more to escape.

Explore our resources for instruction and inspiration for your poetry writing. More advanced titles can be found at the bottom of the list.

Photographs and text introduce techniques and tips for writing poetry inspired by pictures and images, discussing word choices, and examining layout, metaphores, and related topics.

Katie and her friends explore writing different kinds of poetry about themselves and their surroundings.

Maybe you're not feeling like a poem, but a nice fiction book about a poet sounds appealing. Try one of the following titles.

A poet's bird garden by Laura Nyman Montenegro

After Chirpie the bird escapes from her cage and flies into a tree, a group of poets decides that the best way to entice her down is to create a garden full of seeds, water, hiding places, and materials for building a nest.

The poet upstairs by Judith Ortiz Cofer

When a poet moves into the apartment above hers, young Juliana asks to meet her and together they write poems of tropical birds and a river that flows to the sea, typing out words that change the world, if only for a while.

Tugg and Teeny by J. Patrick Lewis

Tugg, a gorilla, helps his best friend Teeny, a monkey, in her attempts to become a musician, an artist, and a poet.

Learn about real life poets and their work. The stories included below are shelved in the adult department.

Also available in: e-book

The extraordinary life of the woman behind the beloved children's classics Goodnight Moon and The Runaway Bunny comes alive in this fascinating biography of Margaret Wise Brown. 

A powerful memoir of a Hmong song poet who sacrificed his gift for his children's future in America. 

This sweeping, epic biography of Henry David Thoreau sees Thoreau's world as the mystic himself saw it: filled with wonder and mystery; Native American myths and lore; wood sylphs, nature spirits, and fairies; battles between good and evil; and heroic struggles to live as a natural being in an increasingly synthetic world. 

Below you will find a suggestions of crossover titles. Stories that are told in verse: not rhyming poems and not dense prose, these books live in their own category. Click on each title for description and availability.

Another day as Emily by Eileen Spinelli

Susie is jealous when her brother is deemed a town hero, so she finds solace in the poetry and reclusive lifestyle of Emily Dickinson.

Little cat's luck by Marion Dane Bauer
Also available in: e-book

A little cat named Patches manages to push out a window screen and leave her house, chasing a falling leaf, and sets out to find a special place to call her own.

A biographical novel in verse of three different girls in three different time periods who grew up to become groundbreaking scientists.

Explains the meaning of Japanese culture which is found in eight traditional handicrafts and provides instructions for creating them. Includes a list of materials needed.

Presents step-by-step instructions for creating nine handicraft projects inspired by Indian art, including ankle bells, a henna key chain, and a Diwali bowl.

Presents step-by-step directions for drawing the national flag, a castle, a stork, and other sights and symbols of Germany.

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