All posts by Kasey K

Kasey K

About Kasey K

Kasey is a Youth Services Information Assistant at the Vellore Village Library. Kasey can be a bit all-over-the-place, but is especially interested in horror, science fiction, psychology, and social justice. They are also a cross-stitcher, an occasional gamer, and a parent.

Booklovers in quarantine – how are you coping?

a tag yourself style meme, titled "booklovers in quar". The six types are: 1) crisis duck - twitter counts as reading, animal crossing counts as reading, read 10 pages of a book on week 1 and wants to read more but is worried they don't know how to read anymore, crying counts as reading 2) senorita fluff - reading poetry just to feel something, sadposting poetry on insta to make others feel something, "I should read Anne Carson", 3) quackers - actually reading through that stack of books they've been meaning to get to for years, innocently asking their friends what they're reading in Quar, how are you doing this quackers what is your secret, 4) The Quack PhD - reading a bunch of leftist theory, "you know what would hit the spot rn? going absolutely ape on Haymarket Books ebooks", getting really mad and having to make a soup to calm down, 5) Keeping It Together Duck - if we throw books at the emotional difficulty it's like the emotional difficulty isn't even there, 6) Maureen - exclusively reading emotional supprt children's books from their teenhood and/or escapist genre fiction

 

I’ve been thinking about this meme from Uncharted Books since I saw it a couple of weeks ago. Confession: I’ve mostly been in crisis duck mode these last two months (with the exception of all those picture books my kid gets me to read her), which has been making it hard for me to know what to write. But, I realized today that no matter where you fit into this meme, VPL’s got resources for you, and I can help you find them!

Let’s start with crisis duck: Continue reading

Transgender artists you should check out today!

I’ve got to admit, I’ve been to come up with inspiration for things to write about here this last week. For starters, I really haven’t been reading, well, anything (except for the same picture books over and over again) in the last two months. I keep finding myself staring guiltily at the book I’ve left unfinished, without actually picking it up or opening it.

Cover image for Danial Mallory Ortberg's book, Something that May Shock and Discredit YouIt’s Daniel Mallory Ortberg’s Something That May Shock and Discredit Youa book I’d been anticipating for months before its release, since reading an excerpt in Slate (where Ortberg writes the Dear Prudence advice column). From what I have read so far, it both is and isn’t what I hoped it would be: a strange mix of niche literary analysis/satire (too niche for me and my only-a-minor-in-English-Lit, it turns out)  and autobiographical musings straight from the depths of gender transition.

If that happens to sound like its right up your alley, while we don’t have any digital copies available, as of this writing there is a copy sitting in each of our resource libraries, so you may be able to snag one with a curbside pickup appointment!

But today, as I stared at the book, I started thinking about many of my other favourite transgender artists (across many forms of media!), and I figured why not boost some of them? Continue reading

Feel-better reads (and listens) to keep you going

Although it looks like Ontario is approaching the hump on this wave of COVID-19, we’ve still got a while to go before social distancing begins to loosen up (and even then, it won’t be by much right away!) In the meantime, I know a lot of us are starting to feel the days drag, and it’s getting harder to feel motivated to do… anything sometimes. I’m not huge on self-help books in general, but I do read a ton of advice columns (which can often scratch a similar itch of providing a calming, positive perspective on life) and  back when I listened to audiobooks compulsively, I did hit upon a few self-help-like books that gave me a better view on life and the world.

Here’s a few that you can access with your VPL library card:

Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection

None of us is perfect (of course!), but most of us are also our own worst critics, magnifying our own flaws so much we forget about everything else. In this book, Brown provides 10 reframing tools for approaching ourselves with more kindness and compassion, and rediscovering our self-worth. Available in ebook form on OverDrive, but since I also find Brene’s narration of her books calming in and of itself, you might also want to check out Daring Greatly and Rising Strong.

 

Cheryl Strayed’s Tiny Beautiful Things

I can’t say enough good things about Cheryl Strayed’s approach to the advice column! When she took over Dear Sugar, she blew all conventions out of the water by meeting her advice-seekers with raw vulnerability of her own. This collection of some of her best and most widely relevant, evergreen columns is touching, heart-wrenching, and satisfying to read. Available in ebook or audiobook on OverDrive (and you get more of Cheryl’s great advice on the Dear Sugar podcast, where she partners with fellow former Dear Sugar author Steve Almond to give some more off-the-cuff advice.)

Alison Green’s Ask A Manager

Ok, this may not seem particularly relevant at the moment, but while Green’s advice is career- and work-focused, her no-nonsense additude and clear sense of what’s fair and just always helps me feel grounded, no matter what I’m struggling with in any given moment. Her column lately has been about as depressing as you might imagine under the circumstances, so that’s why its the perfect time to revisit this collection of classic advice, available to VPL users in ebook and audiobook through our partnership with Markham Public Library on OverDrive

I’d love to hear what your favourite advice writers or self-help experts are! Give me your recommendations in the comments 🙂