Hour of Code

hour-of-code-logoComputer Science Education Week is an annual event to inspire interest in computer science. This year it begins on Monday, December 4th and runs through Sunday, December 10th. People all over the world will be participating in Hour of Code events throughout the week and JMRL is hosting several of these events for various ages. People of all skill levels are welcome to attend the events and absolute beginners are encouraged to participate. We hope that you will be able to join us for one of the events listed below.

Hour of Code – Central Library
Monday, December 4, 6-7pm
Have you always wanted to try coding? Learn the basics and gain some experience with help from library staff. Bring your laptop or use one of ours. Ages 14+.

Hour of Code – Greene County Library
Tuesday, December 5, 6:30-7:30pm
Have you always wanted to try coding? Learn the basics and gain some experience with help from library staff. Bring your laptop or use one of ours. Ages 14+.

Hour of Code – Crozet Library
Wednesday, December 6, 4:30-5:30pm
Registration required. Call 434.823.4050 for details.
Have you always wanted to try coding? Come learn the basics and gain some experience with help from library staff. Bring your laptop or use one of ours. Grades 5-8.
Registration begins on November 15.

Hour of Code – Gordon Avenue Library
Wednesday, December 6, 6:30-7:30pm
Registration required. Call 434.296.5544 for details.
Join the global movement and participate in Hour of Code. Learn about coding, start a new project or continue working on your own program. Bring your own laptop/device or call to reserve a library computer. Limited number of laptops available. Start a new project or continue working on your own program. Grades 5+.

8 Books for Wine Lovers

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Benjamin Franklin once said, “The discovery of a wine is of greater moment than the discovery of a constellation. The universe is too full of stars.” The library can help you discover the perfect wine with its broad selection of books on wine history, tasting, and creating.

Here are a few titles that will make the perfect pairing with any glass:

Cork Dork by Bianca Bosker – A professional journalist describes how she left her job to enter into the world of wine tasting, as well her attempts to understand wine culture and what makes people obsessed with this type of drink.

Wine. All the Time.: The Casual Guide to Confident Drinking by Marissa A. Ross – Written in her signature bawdy voice, and accompanied by personal anecdotes, a contributing editor at Bon Appetit helps readers to understand the ins and outs of wine culture.

Around the World in Eighty Wines by Michael Veseth – Inspired by Jules Verne’s classic adventure tale, Mike Veseth takes readers on a journey that will inspire, inform, and entertain anyone who loves travel, adventure, or wine.

Wine Bites by Barbara Scott-Goodman – An inspiring cookbook for those who entertain casually contains more than 60 recipes for simple, tasty snacks and includes suggestions for an accessible wine to pair with each.

Tasting Wine & Cheese by Adam Centamore – A guide to pairing wine and cheese explains how to properly taste the two, pair condiments, and broaden the appreciation of gourmet combinations.

From Vines to Wines by Jeff Cox – From planting vines to savoring the finished product, this guide covers every aspect of growing flawless grapes and making extraordinary wine.

Wine Folly: The Essential Guide to Wine by Madeline Puckette – A hip, new guide to wine for the new generation of wine drinkers, from the sommelier creators of the award-winning site WineFolly.com.

Beyond Jefferson’s Vines by Richard G. Leahy – The complete story of wine in Virginia, from the Jamestown Settlement, to Thomas Jefferson and his vineyard at Monticello, to the thriving world-class wine industry of today.

“Edison gets the audience. Westinghouse gets the excellence. Tesla gets the ideas.”

lastdaysofnightThe Brown Bagger’s discussed Academy-Award winning author Graham Moore’s second novel, The Last Days of Night on November 16. The historical-fiction centered on the light bulb rivalry between inventors George Westinghouse and Thomas Edison. Of course Nikola Tesla had a role in this war of currents, but the novel followed Westinghouse’s young lawyer, Paul Cravath, and his quest to win an impossible lawsuit against Thomas Edison.

Both Westinghouse and Edison wanted their current to provide electricity to America- Edison tried to discredit Westinghouse’s Alternating Current by saying it was dangerous, so that he could supply America with his Direct Current. However, it was proven that A/C current was safer than D/C current. The story itself followed the actual war of currents, in a more compressed time frame. The characters in the story were well-developed- Edison was portrayed as a man who was only interested in name recognition, which he achieved, even at the loss of the company he started. Westinghouse was depicted in a kinder manner, and as someone who wanted to make the best products possible. And, Tesla was portrayed as an eccentric genius who just wanted to invent and did not care about money.

Paul Cravath was fresh out of law school when he took this case, and while he was smart, he was inexperienced and made some mistakes. However, by taking Westinghouse as a client he was introduced to the more glamorous side of New York and meets Agnes Huntington, an opera singer with a mysterious past. Cravath had to take continually bigger risks throughout the lawsuit but doing so meant that he would change as a person, and possibly lose those that he cared about.

The Brown Baggers overwhelmingly loved this novel! Many felt that the book provided a great background on the history of light bulbs and the nuances of patents. The quotes at the beginning of each chapter made the content even more relevant for today’s world and most agreed that the writing was very descriptive- almost as if it were a screenplay. There was a lot of legalese in the book, but not so much that it was hard to follow. Many felt that the novel was both emotional and fascinating- it was a page turner!

Reviews of the novel:
New York Times Book Review
Washington Post

Interview with the author:

Books mentioned during the discussion:
The Riverkeepers by John Cronin and Robert F. Kennedy
Thomas A. Edison, Young Inventor by Sue Guthridge

The Brown Baggers will meet again on December 21 at 12pm to select titles for the next 12 months- bring a treat to share and participate in the *book swap (new this year) if you want!

*Book swap- bring a book or two to trade- any leftover books will be donated to the Friends of the Library Booksale.