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Shorelines August 2016
Upcoming Programs
All programs sponsored by the Friends of Benzie Shores District Library

Circle Time : Mondays from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m.
Infants and toddlers and their parents/caregivers will have fun rhyming and moving with Miss Char. With a focus on repetition, children build their repertoire each week of rhymes, both old and new.

Fun Friday : August 19th & 26th from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m.
NOTE: Last Fun Fridays until October
The library is lively on Friday mornings during "Fun Fridays." Stories, songs, and dance with Miss Vickie and Miss Clarissa. This program is designed for preschool age children and a caregiver; however, all are welcome. Meets outside the library near the shuffleboard courts.

Breakfast Book Share : Wednesday, September 20th at 9 a.m.
Bring your own coffee or tea and talk about books. Share what you have read recently and find out what fellow community members have been reading. This is a great way to discover new books!

Friends of the Library Annual Book Sale : Saturday, August 20th
Thousands of books available for purchase at our annual Friends of the Library Book Sale! Sale starts at 9 a.m. The "bag sale" (buy a bag and fill it for $3) begins at 3 p.m.

BSDL Board Meeting : Monday, September 12th at 9:30 a.m.
Board meetings are open to the public. Agenda is available at the library.
Reminder to all Summer Reading Program participants: Saturday, September 3rd at 3 p.m. is the last day to turn in reading logs to redeem prizes. All prizes expire Monday, September 5th.
After School Homework Support Needed for the 2016-2017 School Year

If you have an interest in helping the youth of the Frankfort community through after school homework help programs, we'd love to hear from you. We have a fantastic team of volunteers, and would like to add more members to our team. You do not need to be a certified teacher.  The primary qualification is an interest in academics and helping students reach their potential. We are in need of all grade levels and subject areas - especially Math and Science. If you would like to join us or if you need to know more, please contact Erin Melcher at

Looking forward to working and learning with you this year!

Books, Books, Books

     Adult and children’s books, both classics and current fiction, abound with children who, for one reason or another are parentless and are brought up by people who aren’t their “real” parents. Sometimes the children are orphans, but in other cases, there are circumstances in which the parent or parents find it impossible to raise their own children. There are stories about adopted, abducted, disowned, lost or abandoned children. The theme of stories about children growing up without parents is always powerful and emotional.
     As you can imagine, there are numerous mysteries featuring missing kids or children who have been switched at birth. In Kate Atkinson’s STARTED EARLY, TOOK MY DOG the story focuses on three children each of whom was abducted under very different circumstances. Their search for identity is the crux of this incredibly good mystery.
     Kidnapping of children by totalitarian regimes is a theme in science fiction. In ENDER’S GAME by Orson Scott Card, for instance, a young boy, who shows promise of developing certain skills, is taken from his family and institutionalized for the purpose of brainwashing and training.
     Literary orphans are prevalent in recent fiction, possibly because stories of orphans are often stories of transformation; the children’s lives are changed and so are the lives of the adults who end up raising them.
     PLAINSONG by Kent Haruf is set in a small town whose inhabitants’ lives are full of poignant stories. When a teenager falls pregnant and is thrown out of her home, two elderly brothers take her in and although it is not always easy, this act of kindness subtly changes lives.
     In CROW LAKE by Mary Lawson four children are left to fend for themselves after the tragic death of their parents. The older children, at great personal sacrifice, raise their younger siblings. It is a lovely story of love and misunderstanding.
     Every time I read the ICE QUEEN by Alice Hoffman I am struck by the incredible beauty of Hoffman’s writing and her amazing imagination. This story opens when an 8-year old girl makes a wish that her mother would disappear and her mother does. The little girl, raised by a grandma, grows up fearful and guilt-ridden. Then she makes another wish…and that one comes true, as well!
     Ellen, in Kaye Gibbens’ ELLEN FOSTER, is an orphan who misunderstands the term foster family. She thinks that it means a family named Foster and christens herself Ellen Foster. Ellen, who at age 11 has already had a chaotic childhood, takes her life into her own hands. This is a gem of a book.
     In Ivan Doig’s LAST BUS TO WISDOM Donal Cameron, who is being raised by his grandma, is sent east to stay with his great aunt and uncle while his grandma has surgery. His aunt is a total terror so Donal runs away. His uncle decides to escape with him. The two of them get into scrapes, adventures and meet a variety of quirky and engaging characters.
     Sherman Alexie’s FLIGHT is the story of one of the worst case scenarios for a boy in foster care. The story is bizarre and heart-rending. This author always surprises and shocks while also making the reader think.
     In FOUR CORNERS OF THE SKY by Michael Malone a father deserts his young daughter, leaving her with relatives (and an airplane), and shows up 20 years later, expecting a favor to be granted.
    One of the interesting aspects of CLOVER by Dori Sanders is that Clover, a 10-year old African American girl, ends up being raised by her white step-mother. This is perhaps, not an unusual scenario, except that Clover’s father died hours after the wedding and Clover had only just met her new step-mother. This is a fine story with an endearing main character.
    Although Kiran Desai’s THE INHERITANCE OF LOSS is a sorrowful story about a little girl in India whose parents are killed, it is full of hope. She is raised by a grandfather who doesn’t want her and keeps her at arm’s length, emotionally.
     BEAN TREES by Barbara Kingsolver is the story of a child who was abandoned for her own protection. A very young woman rescues the girl and is completely blind-sided by the overwhelming responsibility of unexpected parenthood…and the randomness of love. Kingsolver writes from the heart.
     Classics such as THE SECRET GARDEN, HEIDI, ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, REBECCA OF SUNNYBROOK FARM, LITTLE PRINCESS, OLIVER TWIST, POLLYANNA and THE JUNGLE BOOK all have children who are orphaned in some way and end up in compelling circumstances. These touching stories are still enjoyed by readers of all ages!
     As one character in STARTED EARLY, TOOK MY DOG points out “A child who is found,” Julia said. “Isn’t that the best thing in the world?”

Happy Reading,

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Benzie Shores District Library
630 Main St.
Frankfort, MI 49635

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