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My Favorite Albums of 2018

This was a superaltive year for music, particularly by female artists such as Janelle Monae, Kacey Musgraves and Cardi B, who made many music critics' top of albums of the year lists.  While my list is still mostly female-centric (well done, ladies!), I tend towards the indie and depressive in taste.  Below are my five favorite albums of the year, definitely worth checking out whether you share my lugubriousness or not:

Robyn- Honey

Tai Chi @ Dundee Library

Looking for a new way to relieve stress and stay fit this winter?  Attend our Monday night Tai Chi classes at the library which start at 6 PM. Tai Chi (TIE-CHEE) is a Chinese marital art with a series of slow, focused movements that are accompanied by deep breaths.  Once developed for self-defense,   Tai Chi is a gentle form of exercise now mostly practiced for its fitness and relaxation benefits.  Instructor Jarett Sanchez leads an hour long class including joint warmups, standing Qi Gong (CHI-GUNG), and Tai Chi mechanics and movements. 

Recommended Listen: To the Sunset by Amanda Shires

Singer-songwriter and violinist Amanda Shires is mostly known for her work supporting great men- including her husband Jason Isbell and folk superstar John Prine.  However, Shires shows that she is a star in her own right with this phenomenal album, which will be appreciated by fans of folk rock acts like Neko Case, Ryan Adams, and Sharon Van Etten. 

Anthony Bourdain, 1956-2018

I was deeply saddened to hear of the passing of chef Anthony Bourdain on June 8th.  He was one of my favorite food writers and television personalities.  A drug addict early in his cooking career, Bourdain turned his life around and became one of the most successful food personalities in America starting with his memoir Kitchen Confidential published in 2000.  With his success, Bourdain frequently advocated for the underdog.

Catching Up with the Classics: Howards End by E.M. Forster

Most of the classic novels I have read came to me as assigned reading in high school and college, which skewed heavily towards an American author bias.  Which is why, despite loving all the Merchant-Ivory-Jhabvala adaptations of Forster’s work, I hadn’t ever read one of his novels.  However, the recent BBC adaptation of H

New catalog coming on April 17th!

During the week of April 16, Fox River Valley Public Libraries and our 24 partner libraries will be transitioning to a new library catalog. You’ll see a new look as you search for library materials, and will be introduced to new features as we work to improve your library experience.

Our 24 partner libraries 

New Features:

Artists We Love: Jason Isbell

Since Valentine’s Day is coming, I wanted to highlight an artist who has written some of my favorite love songs of late.  Jason Isbell is a singer songwriter with a folky-country bent, think Townes Van Zandt, Ryan Adams, or Patterson Hood (of Isbell’s former band Drive-By-Truckers).  He frequently collaborates with his wife, violinist and fellow singer-songwriter, Amanda Shires, who is the inspiration for many of his most romantic songs.  

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