Skip to content

County of Los Angeles Public Library
twitter  facebook  instagram pinterest  flickr 
career online high school

Dec 2017/Jan 2018 Collection Spotlight

Here are some great titles for your reading and viewing pleasure as selected by the staff of Collection Development Services. Selections include children’s picture books and fiction about mistakenly eating a friend’s lollipop, celebrating shared moments, and encountering a new nanny. Nonfiction for kids include a graphic novel about a dinosaur in NYC. Kids will also learn about the 1961 Freedom Rides and about the jazz legend Nina Simone. Our A/V selections include DVDs about achieving a healthy lifestyle through the Daniel Plan and kicking up your workout with Zumba Gold. Teen Fiction selections include the stories of two teen girls, one who is an Indian Muslim American that happens to have the same last name (completely unrelated) as a terrorist and the conclusions wrought from that; the other involved in a dark and suspenseful search to find the truth about the Hinterland. Adult fiction titles include historical fiction from 1969 and the 9th century. Adult nonfiction titles include learning how to be civil in the workplace and in life, the twenty-eight month manhunt to find Dr. Timothy Leary, and the manufacturing of clean meat. Spanish titles include Carrie Fisher’s last memoir written and Isabel Allende’s latest novel.

Find more reading suggestions at Books & Media.

 Little Penguin and the Lollipop book jacket

Little Penguin and the Lollipop by Tadgh Bentley

Little Penguin has a problem. His friend Kenneth is upset and it’s all because Little Penguin ate Kenneth’s deliciously yummy razzle dazzle seaweed lollipop!

Picture Book

 Ming and Her Poppy book jacket

Ming and Her Poppy by Deirdre Sullivan

Celebrates the special bond between family members as Poppy and Ming take the time to appreciate such simple moments in life as sharing stories and secrets, jumping sidewalk cracks, shadow dancing, and greeting old friends and making new ones. Also available in: eBook.

Picture Book

 Mr. Gedrick and Me book jacket

Mr. Gedrick and Me by Patrick Carman

After his father's death, Stanley and his family get help from a strange new nanny named Mr. Gedrick. Also available in: eBook.

Children's Fiction

 Bolivar book jacket

Bolivar by Sean Rubin

Sybil knows that there is something off about her next door neighbor, but she can't seem to get anyone to believe her. Everyone is so busy going about their days in the busy streets of New York City that they don't notice Bolivar. They don't notice his odd height, his tiny arms, or his long tail. No one but Sybil sees that Bolivar is a dinosaur.

Children's Nonfiction

 Twelve Days in May: Freedom Ride 1961 book jacket

Twelve Days in May: Freedom Ride 1961 by Larry Dane Brimner

On May 4, 1961, a group of thirteen black and white civil rights activists launched the Freedom Ride, aiming to challenge the practice of segregation on buses and at bus terminal facilities in the South. The Ride would last twelve days. Also available in: eBook.

Children's Nonfiction

 Nina: Jazz legend and Civil-Rights Activist Nina Simone book jacket

Nina: Jazz legend and Civil-Rights Activist Nina Simone by Alice Brière-Haquet

An introduction to Nina Simone, jazz-music legend and civil-rights activist. Shared as a lullaby to her daughter, a soulful song recounts Simone's career, the trials she faced as an African American woman, and the stand she took during the Civil Rights Movement. Also available in: eBook.

Children's Nonfiction

 The Daniel Plan book jacket

The Daniel Plan

This small group Bible study from Rick Warren, Dr. Daniel Amen, and Dr. Mark Hyman is an innovative approach to achieving a healthy lifestyle that is both transformational and sustainable because it is about abundant choices, not diet deprivation. (3 DVDs)


 Zumba Gold Live It Up book jacket

Zumba Gold Live It Up

This workout teaches participants how to break down exciting salsa, merengue, flamenco and cumbia moves. Step by Step DVD; Cardio DVD; and Gold-Toning DVD. (3 DVDs)


 Love, Hate, and Other Filters book jacket

Love, Hate, and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed

American-born Maya Aziz wants a different life from the one her traditional Indian Muslim parents have chosen from her. While she’s trying to figure out how to help them understand that, a terrorist attack in a nearby city – committed by someone with the same last name as Maya – changes her life overnight, as the small community where she lives is overcome by suspicion and fear. For teens who like honest, thought-provoking realistic fiction that’s not just about relational drama. Starred Review

Teen Fiction

 The Hazel Wood book jacket

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

17-year-old Alice has never had contact with her grandmother Althea, a reclusive writer of sinister fairy tales set in a place called the Hinterland; nevertheless, Althea’s death sets off a chain reaction of dark events in Alice’s life. Her mother Ella disappears, and Alice begins to receive frightening messages and to see shadowy figures who seem to be from the world of her grandmother’s fairy tales. With her classmate Ellery – a Hinterland fanboy she doesn’t truly trust – Alice desperately searches for her mother, and the truth about the Hinterland. A dark and suspenseful read for fans of Holly Black and Vassa in the Night. Starred Review

Teen Fiction

 The Immortalists  book jacket

The Immortalists  by Chloe Benjamin

In the summer of 1969, the Gold siblings visit a psychic on Manhattan’s Lower East Side who predicts the date each of them will die. The prophecies shape the lives of all four siblings, and Benjamin uses their stories – covering four decades – to explore fundamental questions about destiny and the human condition. Publisher’s Weekly describes The Immortalists as “a moving meditation on fate, faith, and the family ties that alternately hurt and heal.” Starred Review

Adult Fiction

 Fools and Mortals book jacket

Fools and Mortals by Bernard Cornwell

The author of the The Last Kingdom series turns from 9th century Saxons to actors in Elizabethan London – specifically, to Richard Shakespeare, the little-known brother of William Shakespeare. When the script to A Midsummer Night’s Dream is stolen, William blames his ambitious, jealous brother, and Richard is forced to search for the real thieves himself to clear his name. Booklist calls Fools and Mortals a “boisterous behind-the-scenes romp through the often sordid world of the Elizabethan theater.” Starred Review

Adult Fiction

 Treating People Well: The Extraordinary Power of Civility at Work and in Life book jacket

Treating People Well: The Extraordinary Power of Civility at Work and in Life by Lea Berman and Jeremy Bernard

Former White House social secretaries Lea Berman, who worked for George and Laura Bush, and Jeremy Bernard, who worked for Michelle and Barack Obama, have written an entertaining and uniquely practical guide to personal and professional success in modern life. This is not a book about old school etiquette; this book is for you if you feel unsure of yourself in social settings, if you’d like to get along more easily with others, or if you want to break through to a new level of cooperation with your boss and coworkers. They give specific advice for how to exude confidence even when you don’t feel it, ways to establish your reputation as an individual whom people like, trust, and want to help, and lay out the specific social skills still essential to success - despite our increasingly digitized world.

Adult Nonfiction

 The Most Dangerous Man in America: Timothy Leary, Richard Nixon and the Hunt for the Fugitive King of LSD book jacket

The Most Dangerous Man in America: Timothy Leary, Richard Nixon and the Hunt for the Fugitive King of LSD by Bill Minutaglio and Steven L. Davis

On the moonlit evening of September 12, 1970, an ex-Harvard professor with a genius I.Q. studies a twelve-foot high fence topped with barbed wire. A few months earlier, Dr. Timothy Leary, the High Priest of LSD, had been running a gleeful campaign for California governor against Ronald Reagan. Now, Leary is six months into a ten-year prison sentence for the crime of possessing two marijuana cigarettes. Aided by the radical Weather Underground, Leary's escape from prison is the counterculture's union of "dope and dynamite," aimed at sparking a revolution and overthrowing the government. Spanning twenty-eight months, President Nixon's careening, global manhunt for Dr. Timothy Leary winds its way among homegrown radicals, European aristocrats, a Black Panther outpost in Algeria, an international arms dealer, hash-smuggling hippies from the Brotherhood of Eternal Love, and secret agents on four continents, culminating in one of the trippiest journeys through the American counterculture.

Adult Nonfiction

 Clean Meat: How Growing Meat Without Animals Will Revolutionize Dinner and the World book jacket

Clean Meat: How Growing Meat Without Animals Will Revolutionize Dinner and the World by Paul Shapiro

Here’s the wild story of the race to create and commercialize cleaner, safer, sustainable meat—real meat—without the animals. Since the dawn of Homo sapiens some quarter million years ago, animals have satiated our species’ desire for meat. But with a growing global population, raising massive numbers of farm animals to meet increasing demand is woefully inefficient and takes an enormous toll on the planet, public health, and certainly the animals themselves. But what if we could have our meat and eat it, too? Enter clean meat—real, actual meat grown (or brewed!) from animal cells—as well as other clean foods that ditch animal cells altogether and are simply built from the molecule up. Whereas our ancestors domesticated wild animals into livestock, today we’re beginning to domesticate their cells, leaving the animals out of the equation. From one single cell of a cow, you could feed an entire village. And the story of this coming “second domestication” is anything but tame. Also available in: eBook and eAudiobook.

Adult Nonfiction

 El diario de la princesa  book jacket

El diario de la princesa  by Carrie Fisher

Written by the late Carrie Fisher, this book documents her recollections of what happened during the filming of the original Star Wars. Escrito por la fallecida Carrie Fisher, este libro documenta sus recuerdos de lo que sucedió durante el rodaje de la original Guerra de las Galaxias.

Spanish Nonfiction

 Más allá del invierno book jacket

Más allá del invierno by Isabel Allende

The newest novel by Isabel Allende tells the story of three people who are brought together by chance and must cope with the challenges of the plight of immigrants. La novela más reciente de Isabel Allende cuenta la historia de tres personas que son reunidas por casualidad y deben enfrentar los desafíos de la difícil situación de los inmigrantes.

Spanish Fiction