Cedar Rapids’ new downtown library is about to open its doors. Patrons are going to love what they discover inside this beautiful, functional building, years in the making.
People visiting for the first time will likely be drawn to the new materials (books, movies, CDs), a larger mediabox and new computers. But where folks will want to browse, savor, and linger the most are the core collections of fiction, non-fiction, mystery, sci-fi, etc. All new copies in sections marked by whimsical and thoughtful signage, these are the areas that form the heart of the Cedar Rapids Public Library Downtown.
On the first floor in the mystery area, find Ellen Crosby’s “Multiple Exposure: A Sophie Medina Mystery.” Author of the popular Wine Country series, Crosby has launched a new series focusing on photojournalist Sophie Medina and her husband, Nick, a CIA operative. When Nick disappears, Sophie becomes embroiled in international intrigue, political maneuvering, and danger. Crosby creates appealing characters who move at a fast pace from one glamorous setting to another as suspense builds. As different as this one appears to be from her previous series, readers of “Multiple Exposure” are likely to enjoy it as much.
A large part of the library’s second floor houses an extensive non-fiction collection that includes cookbooks like “Simply Satisfying: Over 200 Vegetarian Recipes You’ll Want to Make Again and Again.” Jeanne Lemlin’s recipes range from breakfast favorites to appetizers, salads/dressings to soups and frittatas, savory pies and pasta. Menus for informal, elegant, summer, breakfast and brunch are listed. Full-page pictures complement the text. “Simply Satisfying” contains an array of recipes for veggie-lovers and those interested in becoming vegetarians.
If you can’t hop the pond for a trip to the Louvre Museum, Erich Lessing and Vincent Pomarede have provided the next-best thing: their book titled “The Louvre: All the Paintings.” Readers can take a virtual tour of the famous art institution just by leafing through the pages. Descriptive text complements each photo in a huge publication well worth perusing.
A new Lego program will be offered by the library’s Children’s Programming Department later this year. One cool book about Legos is the latest edition of “The Unofficial Lego Builder’s Guide” by Allan Bedford. From basics to Brickopedia, this publication shows and describes how to construct sculptures, mosaics, figures, and buildings big and small. Children and adults will enjoy the trendy fun.
Young Adults have a great new area on first floor dubbed the Union. There’s a media room as well as a gaming room. One great book in the young adult fiction section about games is Ned Vizzini’s “The Other Normals.” Best-selling author of “It’s Kind of a Funny Story,” this is a funny and highly readable tale of a teen absorbed by the world of games. Until he goes to summer camp, that is. Then it’s a challenge to adapt his gaming skills to the real world.
Melia Tatman is a librarian at Cedar Rapids Public Library.