Book Talk: What Patients Say, What Doctors Hear by Danielle Ofri

30212603Dr. Danielle Ofri makes the case for empathy in What patients say, what doctors hear. Despite the technological miracles of modern medicine, the single most powerful diagnostic tool is still the doctor-patient conversation. However, what patients say and what doctors hear are often two vastly different things. Anxious patients feel an urgency to make their case, doctors are under pressure to be efficient under a mountainous workload, and add to that unconscious biases, and the communication gulf between patients and doctors widens. Dr. Ofri, a physician at New York’s Bellevue Hospital, and a professor at NYU’s School of Medicine, draws on research studies and interviews with scholars, doctors, and patients to find the challenges in doctor-patient communication, and to reveal how making those exam room conversations better can lead to better health for all of us.

What patients say, what doctors hear by Dr. Danielle Ofri is available to reserve at the Haliburton County Public Library.

*Originally aired in April 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM


Library Moments: Earth Day Nonfiction

Erin Kernohan-Berning, Branch Services Librarian: Hello, I’m Erin Kernohan-Berning from the Haliburton County Public Library and this is Library Moments. Once a week some of us from the library will come and talk about books, upcoming events, or the services we offer at the library.

The first Earth Day was on April 22, 1970, when millions of people took to the streets to protest the negative effects of industrial pollution. That year, the effects of smog were a focus, along with dwindling biodiversity. The same year the Environmental Protection Agency in the US was created. Since then, Earth Day has become the largest worldwide day of civic action – with governments using Earth Day to announce environmental initiatives, and activist advocating for new ones. It’s also a time for people to participate at home, cleaning up their towns and cities, and making efforts to reduce our ecological footprint as much as we can.


One way to participate in Earth Day is to learn more about our planet and it’s environment, and one way to learn more about our planet is to read a book about it. On this week’s Library Moments, Sherrill Sherwood and I will each talk about a nonfiction book that you might want to read on Earth Day.

31159765Sherrill Sherwood, Collection Development Coordinator: Junk Raft: an ocean voyage and a rising tide of activism to fight plastic pollution written by Marcus Eriksen is an exciting account of a scientist’s unusual fight in the growing movement against plastic marine pollution. Over the past several years, the news media has brought the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch”–the famous swirling band of plastic litter in the ocean–into the public consciousness. When Marcus Eriksen and his wife Anna set out to study marine pollution, they found that the reality is even more dire: instead of a stable mass of litter, they discovered that a “plastic smog” of microparticles permeates the world’s oceans, defying simplistic clean-up efforts. What’s more, these microplastics and their toxic chemistry have seeped into the food chain, threatening marine life and humans alike. Far from being a gloomy discourse on an environmental catastrophe, though, Junk Raft tells the exciting story of Eriksen’s fight to raise awareness and solve the problem of plastic pollution, contributing to a fast-growing movement to stem the tide of trash. Eriksen writes of his voyage from Los Angeles to Hawaii aboard his homemade “junk raft,” and along the way he recounts the successful efforts to fight corporate influence and demand that plastics producers take responsibility for a problem they’ve created. Eriksen provides concrete, actionable solutions and an empowering message. This year’s Earth Day is dedicated to providing the information and inspiration needed to fundamentally change human attitude and behavior about plastics.

703527Erin Kernohan-Berning, Branch Services Librarian: Nature Smart is a “best of” compilation of a series of popular craft books from the 1990s by Gwen Diehn, Terry Krautwurst, Alan Anderson, Joe Rhatigan, and Heather Smith. Nature Smart features both crafts you can do at any time of year, and seasonal crafts that require some planning and cooperation from Mother Nature, but all the crafts aim to teach kids something about nature and ecology – whether it’s constructing a jar to gently collect and study insects, creating a sundial to tell time, or making paints out of the dirt around your house, every craft has a natural component. The book is also filled with snippets about the natural world, from insect behaviour, to endangered species, to water conservation. The crafts in this book suit a wide range of abilities – some young kids may be able to do on their own, and others even older kids will need some adult assistance. The nice thing about these crafts is that, in the spirit of reduce, reuse, recycle, they try to use things that may already be in your house and waiting to be put to use. I was particularly interested in the daylily leaf basket craft – since my daylilies seem to spread year after year, I’m sure I’ll have enough leaves to try that one. Exploring our planet encourages us to do what we can to protect it. Nature Smart is a great book for beginning that journey in your own backyard.

We hope we have encouraged you to learn more about the planet we live on. If you’re looking for something to do on Earth Day, join us for a special Earth Day storytime on Saturday, April 21st – 10:30am at our Minden branch, and 1pm in our Dysart branch. There will be a story about our planet, and a craft using recycled materials.

That’s it for this week’s Library Moments. Thanks for listening here on 100.9 CANOE FM.

*Originally aired in April 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM

Book Talk: The Dark and Other Love Stories by Deborah Willis

The Dark and Other Love Stories by Deborah Willis is one of ten titles nominated for 2018’s Evergreen Award, a program that your very own Haliburton County Public Library participates in. There are thirteen masterful and engaging stories in this work of fiction, with characters who exist on the edge of danger, where landscapes melt into dreamscapes and every house is haunted. Full of longing and strange humor, these subtle, complex stories show how love ties us to one another and to the world. The Dark and Other Love Stories announces the emergence of a wonderfully gifted storyteller whose stories enlarge our perceptions about the human capacity to love. So how can you take part in the Evergreen Award? Read one or more of the nominated Evergreen titles and cast your ballot for your favorite in September at your favorite branch of the Haliburton County Public Library.

*Originally aired in April 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM.

Library Moments: April Online Book Club

Sherrill Sherwood, Collection Development Coordinator: Hello, I’m Sherrill Sherwood from the Haliburton County Public Library and this is Library Moments. Once a week some of us from the library will come and talk about books, upcoming events, or the services we offer at the library.


The theme for April’s Online Book Club is “The Great Outdoors”. While at this writing I haven’t seen a whole lot of spring-like weather, I know from previous experience it really will arrive. (Really.) The exciting titles chosen for this month all have wilderness settings. They are; Wildwood by Elinor Florence; The Stranger in the Woods by Michael Finkel; The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah and Wild Life by Molly Gloss. Today Erin Kernohan-Berning and I will each talk about one of the titles.

Erin Kernohan-Berning, Branch Services Librarian: In Wild Life by Molly Gloss, it’s the early 1900s in the Pacific Northwest, the end of the Victorian Era, and Charlotte Bridger Drummond is a woman out of her time. She is single handedly bringing up her five sons, and writing dimestore novels with plucky heroines to support her family. When a child goes missing in the woods, Charlotte is determined to join the search team and succeed where others have failed. However, eventually she too becomes lost and winds up cold and starving in the wilderness.  Eventually,  she is rescued by a group of creatures that blur the line between animal and human, and as she is assimilated into their family, Charlotte begins to question the differences between wilderness and civilization, and what it really means to be human. Wild Life crosses genres, from historical fiction into science fiction, and, written as a series of Charlotte’s journal entries, features rich descriptions of the Pacific Northwest. Molly Gloss won the James Tiptree Jr. Award – an award for exploring and expanding gender in speculative fiction – in 2000 for Wild Life.

34878639Sherrill Sherwood, Collection Development Coordinator: The novel Wildwood is about a single mother, an abandoned farmhouse and an epic battle with the northern wilderness. Broke and desperate, Molly Bannister accepts the ironclad condition laid down in her great-aunt’s will: to receive her inheritance, Molly must spend one year in an abandoned, off-the-grid farmhouse in the remote backwoods of northern Alberta. If she does, she will be able to sell the farm and fund her four-year-old daughter’s badly needed medical treatment. With grim determination, Molly teaches herself basic homesteading skills. But her greatest perils come from the brutal wilderness itself, from blizzards to grizzly bears. Will she and her child survive the savage winter? Will she outsmart the young farmer who would foil her plan to sell the farm? Not only their financial future, but their very lives are at stake. Only the journal written by Molly’s courageous great-aunt, the land’s original homesteader, inspires her to struggle on. Author Susan Juby describes Wildwood as “a delight from start to finish and it offers a fascinating look at homesteading in the Peace River region.”

*Originally aired in April 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM.

Book Talk: Disappointment River by Brian Castner

35138368Disappointment River: Finding and Losing the Northwest Passage by Brian Castner is both a historical narrative and travel memoir that transports readers back to the heroic age of North American exploration. It showcases a rugged but increasingly fragile Arctic wilderness in the process of profound alteration due to globalization and climate change.

Fourteen years before Lewis and Clark, explorer Alexander Mackenzie set off to cross the North American continent with a team of voyageurs and Chipewyan guides to find a trade route to the riches of the East. What he found was impassable pack ice and a river that he named “Disappointment”. Mackenzie died thinking he’d failed in his mission to find a trade route to the riches of the East. In fact, he had found it– he was just over two centuries early.

In this book, Brian Castner not only retells the story of Mackenzie’s epic voyages in vivid prose, he recounts his own adventures retracing Mackenzie’s route in an 1,125-mile canoe voyage down the Mackenzie river, battling exhaustion, exposure, mosquitoes, white water rapids and the threat of bears. He journeys through a world rarely glimpsed in the media, one of tar sands, thawing permafrost, remote indigenous villages and, at the end, a wide open Arctic Ocean that could become a far-northern Mississippi, complete with barges, pipelines and oil money. Here is a world that Alexander Mackenzie dreamed of but could never have fully imagined.

Disappointment River is available to borrow in regular print and in large print at the Haliburton County Public Library.

*Originally aired in April 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM

Book Talk: All We Leave Behind by Carol Off

31379134An incredible work of non-fiction that reads like a thriller, All We Leave Behind by Carol Off is the true story of a family fleeing the death sentence of a ruthless warlord, written by the journalist who broke all her own rules to get them to safety. In 2002, Carol Off and a CBC TV crew encountered an Afghan man with a story to tell. Asad became a key figure in their documentary on the terrible power of thuggish warlords who were working arm in arm with Americans and NATO troops. When Asad publicly exposed the deeds of one of the warlords, it set off a chain of events from which there was no turning back. Asad, his wife, and their five children had to flee their home. The family faced an uncertain future. But their dilemma compelled a journalist to cross the lines of disinterested reporting and become deeply involved. All We Leave Behind: a reporter’s journey into the lives of others is one of ten titles nominated for 2018’s Evergreen Award and can be requested through the Haliburton County Public Library.

*Originally aired in March 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM

Library Moments: Bestseller Lists

Sherrill Sherwood, Collection Development Coordinator:  Hello, I’m Sherrill Sherwood from the Haliburton County Public Library and this is Library Moments. Once a week some of us from the library will come and talk about books, upcoming events, or the services we offer at the library.


Bestseller lists are an easy way to look for the next great book to read. I like to look at Amazon Best Sellers, not only for ideas for myself but to see if there are any titles that we should put in the library collection. There are many other bestseller lists of course; the Toronto Star, the New York Times, and the Globe & Mail, to name just a few.

Today on Library Moments, Nancy Therrien and I will each talk about a book that jumps out at us from all of these lists.

34912895Nancy Therrien, Programming and Community Outreach Coordinator:  The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah has been near the top of the New York Times bestseller list ever since it came on the market in February 2018. The novel tells the story of Ernt, a Vietnam Vet with PTSD and a wicked temper, his beautiful hippie wife Cora, and his 13-year-old daughter Leni, who is just trying to keep the peace in their household and fit in with a new crowd every time they move.

When the family is willed a plot of land in Alaska, they pick up and move again, hoping this will be their salvation. Despite the remote area, there is a tight-knit community spirit and the neighbours are helpful and welcoming. Leni even meets a boy her age and they develop a strong friendship. Unfortunately, the unforgiving harshness of the Alaskan wilderness and the profound isolation during the long winter nights cause Ernt to become unhinged and highly volatile, endangering the entire family.

The Great Alone is a story of wilderness survival and resilience, the insidiousness of emotional and physical abuse, and about finding love amidst it all. The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah is available to reserve at the Haliburton County Public Library.

30257963Sherrill Sherwood, Collection Development Coordinator: Canadian author Jordan B. Peterson’s new title 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos is #1 in Amazon Bestsellers Rank as of this writing. The celebrated psychologist’s answer to “what does everyone in the modern world need to know?” uniquely combines the hard-won truths of ancient tradition with the stunning revelations of cutting-edge scientific research. Humorous, surprising and informative, Dr. Peterson tells us why skateboarding boys and girls must be left alone, what terrible fate awaits those who criticize too easily, and why you should always pet a cat when you meet one on the street. He answers why the ancient Egyptians worshiped the capacity to pay careful attention as the highest of gods and what dreadful paths people tread when they become resentful, arrogant and vengeful. Dr. Peterson journeys broadly, discussing discipline, freedom, adventure and responsibility, distilling the world’s wisdom into 12 practical and profound rules for life. 12 Rules For Life shatters the modern commonplaces of science, faith and human nature, while transforming and ennobling the mind and spirit of its readers.

While the fact that a book is on a bestseller list doesn’t guarantee that you will like it, it is a good readers’ advisory tool and worth the look. If the library doesn’t have a bestseller title that you would like to read, please request it for our consideration to purchase. That’s it for this week’s Library Moments, thanks for listening  here on 100.9 Canoe FM.

*Originally aired in March 2018 on 100.9 CANOE FM