Horizon Zero Dawn: 12 Books for the Wilderness Wanderer

Guerilla Games newest release, Horizon Zero Dawn, is a RPG that places the protagonist as a hunter and archer who is living in a world has been overrun by robotic technologies. Many years after the fall of civilization, the remaining humans have regressed to primitive tribal societies. The tribe that your character belongs to, The Nora,  is a society of hunter gathers, similar in many ways to Native Americans, who worship nature and shun the “old technologies” left behind by the Old Ones.

If you’ve played Horizon Zero Dawn, or just are really interested in topics like, the customs of tribal societies, earth post-civilization, artificial intelligence, and hunting, then you should check out some of these books at the Prairie State College Library to see if they are for you!


The world without us
by Alan Weisman
GF75.W4 S5 2007

In The World Without Us, Alan Weisman offers an utterly original approach to questions of humanity’s impact on the planet: he asks us to envision our Earth, without us.In this far-reaching narrative, Weisman explains how our massive infrastructure would collapse and finally vanish without human presence; which everyday items may become immortalized as fossils; how copper pipes and wiring would be crushed into mere seams of reddish rock; why some of our earliest buildings might be the last architecture left; and how plastic, bronze sculpture, radio waves, and some man-made molecules may be our most lasting gifts to the universe.

The World Without Us reveals how, just days after humans disappear, floods in New York’s subways would start eroding the city’s foundations, and how, as the world’s cities crumble, asphalt jungles would give way to real ones. It describes the distinct ways that organic and chemically treated farms would revert to wild, how billions more birds would flourish, and how cockroaches in unheated cities would perish without us. Drawing on the expertise of engineers, atmospheric scientists, art conservators, zoologists, oil refiners, marine biologists, astrophysicists, religious leaders from rabbis to the Dali Lama, and paleontologists—who describe a prehuman world inhabited by megafauna like giant sloths that stood taller than mammoths—Weisman illustrates what the planet might be like today, if not for us.


The hunt for the golden mole : all creatures great and small, and why they matter
by Girling, Richard
QL737.A352 G57 2014

Taking as its narrative engine the hunt for an animal that is legendarily rare, Richard Girling writes an engaging and highly informative history of humankind’s interest in hunting and collecting – what prompts us to do this? what good might come of our need to catalog all the living things of the natural world? Girling, named Environmental Journalist of the Years 2008 and 2009, has here chronicled – through the hunt for the Somali golden mole – the development of the conservation movement, the importance of diversity in the animal kingdom, including humankind within this realm, as well as a hard look at extinction.The Somali mole of the title, first described in print in a text book published in 1964, had as sole evidence of its existence only the fragment of a jaw bone found in an owl pellet, a specimen that seemed to have vanished as Girling began his exploration. Intrigued by the elusiveness of this creature and what the hunt for the facts of its existence might tell us about extinction, he was drawn to the dusty vaults of museums of natural history where the most rare artifacts are stored and catalogued, as he found himself caught up in the need to track it down.Part quest, part travelog, the book that results not only offers an important voice to the scientific debate about extinction and biodiversity it becomes an environmental call to arms.


Voices of the winds : native American legends
by Edmonds, Margot
E98.F6 E26

This wonderfully colorful and appealing anthology gathers more than 130 Native American legends, many told to the authors by elder storytellers and tribal historians. Traditional stories from 60 native cultures of North America are prefaced by brief head notes. Sources include government documents, periodicals, histories, and field research (some conducted by Clark). Native American cultures value an end to isolation and the individual’s return to family and tribe, but there are some striking analogs to Western myths; one Pima story neatly parallels the Noah’s ark tale. Curiosities include “She-Who-Changeth” for the more common “Changing Woman,” gender-exclusive language (” . . . man first appeared . . . “), and a claim that Navajos live today in prosperity. Continue reading “Horizon Zero Dawn: 12 Books for the Wilderness Wanderer”

(Armchair) travel

travel

Photo credit: Matt; shared under the Creative Commons license

With February–arguably the Chicago area’s dreariest month–at a close and spring break just around the corner, it’s tempting to think about a change of scenery.  If a trip out of town isn’t on your schedule this break, you can still escape…with a book!

Check out these titles that are particularly evocative of a time and a place. The location and time period have been listed, but click on the book cover to see the full catalog description. Some are e-books, so you can even read them without coming to campus over the break. Happy travels!

west-africa-travel
Africa, 1897
goldfinch
New York, present day
shadow-of-the-wind
Spain, 1945
heroes-of-the-frontier
Alaska, present day
wild
Pacific Northwest, 1990s
my-life-in-france
France, 1940s-1950s

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8 Books to Read for New and Upcoming TV Shows

Want to be ahead of the curve? Check out these books from the Library before they become TV shows!

The Handmaid’s Tale

The Show

Hulu | April 26, 2017 | Read up on it

The Book

The Handmaid’s Tale

by Margaret Atwood

FIC ATW

Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable.

Offred can remember the days before, when she lived and made love with her husband Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now….


American Gods

The Show

Starz | April 2017 | Read up on it

The Book

American Gods

by Neil Gaiman

FIC GAI

Released from prison, Shadow finds his world turned upside down. His wife has been killed; a mysterious stranger offers him a job. But Mr. Wednesday, who knows more about Shadow than is possible, warns that a storm is coming — a battle for the very soul of America . . . and they are in its direct path. Continue reading “8 Books to Read for New and Upcoming TV Shows”

Check These Books Out!

Need something to read between classes?  The Prairie State College Library is always acquiring new books for our patrons.  The selections below, and many others, can be found on the shelves located outside our Quiet Reading Room.

       
       
       

How Did that Start: Halloween

Sign2015October is upon us and that means it’s that time when the leaves start turning red and gold, days get shorter, and nights get colder. It’s a time where brisk winds bring upon noises you’re not sure you’re really hearing, and where shadows dance around with your fears. With October comes one of the very best holidays, in my opinion, Halloween. Halloween is the one day of the year where everybody confronts their fears and fantasies by dressing up in costumes, sneaking off into the night, and performing mischief. It is also a time where mother nature sets the perfect mood for you to sit down with a scary book or horror film. Likewise, kids get to experience the ultimate of sugar rushes as they go door-to-door collecting gumballs, candies, and gelled popcorn creations. Like most holidays, Halloween did not just spring to life in America; it came to us through thousands of years of growth and change, passing from culture to culture, from the Ancient Irish to the Roman Empire and several others all putting their stamp on it.

For the most part, Halloween was believed to start as part of the Celtic religion’s New Year celebration, Samhain, which occurred on November 1st. It was on the day before Samhain, that the Celtic people believed the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became paper thin and blurred. During this time the ghosts of the dead could return and once again walk the face of the earth. To ward off the spirits, Druids would build huge sacred bonfires and offer sacrifices of corn and animals to the deities. Citizens, likewise, would dress in costumes of animal heads and skins to hide themselves from the spirits. People would also burn effigies depicting their fears, and since the reality boundary was so thin, they felt that it was a prime time for fortune-telling.

In 43 AD, the Roman Empire finished conquering the lands of the Celtic people. Always good for taking someone else’s traditions and combining them with their own, Rome, decided to merge Samhain with two of their own festivals. The first was called Feralia, which usually occurred mid-October. Romans usually took this day to formally commemorate the passing of the dead. The other festival they merged Samhain with was Pomona, a day dedicated to the honor of the goddess of fruits and trees (it is widely believed that the tradition of bobbing for apples on Halloween came from Roman tradition).

When the Roman Empire fell, the holiday that would eventually come to be known as Halloween, once again evolved, this time thanks to the Roman Catholic Church. Early on in the Church’s history they started a day in mid-October to celebrate the saints and martyr’s. Eventually that celebration would move to November 1st and become known as All Saints’ Day; a day to honor the dead. The day before (October 31st) would come to be known as All Hallows’ Eve, and similar to Samhain, people would celebrate with bonfires and costumes. In fact, in France during the 14th and 15th centuries, the tradition of dressing up, evolved into a reenactment of a custom called the Danse Macabre (The Dance of Death) which started during the plague known as Black Death, wherein party-goers would dress up so that demons could not tell who they were.

In the mid-19th century, Halloween, came to America with British and Irish immigrants. One tradition had the adults of families go door to door asking for food or money and people gave gifts because it was thought to be good luck and kept spirits from performing mischief. Later in the early to middle part of the 20th century, Halloween became the secular community-based holiday that we know today, where kids go door-to-door asking for treats and threatening tricks, families display Jack ‘O Lanterns, and both grownups and children dress up in costume and attend parties and dances.

In celebration of the spirit of Halloween, you can find frightful, horrifying, and haunting tales both true and fictitious on the Monthly Book Display.

Staff Favorite: Scott Pilgrim

spcoverThe Library now has the complete collection of the Scott Pilgrim series by Brian Lee O’Malley. If you are unfamiliar with the comic or the 2010 Edgar Wright movie, Scott Pilgrim features Scott, a 22 year old, unemployed slacker, who falls in love with Ramona Flowers, a rollerblading message delivery girl. Unfortunately for Scott, to date Ramona means that he has to defeat her 7 Evil Exes.

Great for anyone who loves video games, anime/manga, or just pop culture in general. Stop by the Library and check them out.  You can also find articles and more information on Scott Pilgrim by using OneSearch.

Books in Bloom: Fresh Titles To Get You Excited For Spring

With winter finally over you might find yourself feeling happier knowing that warm weather and spring are arriving soon.  So why not pop into the library and browse our collection to inspire your next read of the season?  You’ll find great fiction and non-fiction books featuring spring-time stories and beautiful landscapes, flowers, and gardens to get you excited about warm weather and sun!  We have books to help you start that container garden or flower arrangement you’ve been thinking of, or if you’re just looking for a novel with breezy spring themes, we have those too!

Check out some of these recommended reads to get you inspired for spring:

       
       
       

Books to Offer Your Children

A bedtime storyI see many children in the library accompanying their parents and caregivers. You are trying to do your work, and the child needs something to do or be distracted by. Well, this month we are displaying just a few of our children’s books to make you more aware that we have books for your child to look at or read when you bring them in!

For the littlest of children, we have board books – books with pages that they can’t tear so you don’t have to worry about them destroying the books. When they get to the age where they can nicely turn the pages, usually around 2.5 or so, I selected some books to put on the lower shelves that they can reach to browse and view the pictures. Picture books for older children that are learning to read or can read already are on the higher two shelves.

Many of these books are award winners, and all of the ones on display are hand-selected to be diverse and hopefully interesting to some youngsters. Next to the display is a long shelf full of more books for children, including chapter books and novels. Just as you might find books on the shelves with a call number, these books are shelved under JUV for juvenile and then by author’s last name alphabetically.

Not only are these books that the child can browse while at the library, but you can check any of these out with your Prairie State student ID and read them to and with the children at home.

The other good reason to use our collection of children’s books is for our early childhood or education programs. You might take one of these classes: ED 220 Children’s Literature (3), ECED 205 Language Arts for Children (3), EDU 205 Language Arts for Children (3). You can find more about the program here or about the classes here.

So feel free to bring your children next time you have to get work done in the library and show them the benefits of books and libraries! Click on the book covers below to see more about each book. Ask Kelly Mueller or any of the other librarians if you have questions and checkout what we have to offer your little ones!