Currently viewing the category: "Book/Resource Reviews"

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneThanksgiving is next week, and then we launch into a full period of exams for December. You’ll be up late studying a lot, so what to do in those precious hours you have downtime and want to just relax? Well, how about read (or re-read) the Harry Potter series?

It’s a fun adventure, with magic, hard choices, and a characters not always being what they seem. On top of that, the fact it was written for a slightly younger audience means you can fly through the first few books, getting yourself almost immediately to the parts that made you sad the first time around (don’t lie, you know you felt a few tears leak out, and you know which part is being referred to).

One of the absolute strengths of the series is on Rowling’s ability to bring the world of wizards alive, creating characters that it is impossible not to feel sympathy for (or, in some cases, impossible not to hate. Looking at you, Umbridge).  Between Ron, Harry, Hermione, and Neville, every single reader ends up having a favorite they find themselves rooting for through seven straight books, and it’s a joy to see them each grow and change as more events unfold.

Of course, no discussion of Potter would be complete without pointing out just how much fun the names are to read – Albus Dumbledore, Severus Snape, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasely, Neville Longbottom, Minerva McGonagall, Rubeus Hagrid, Dolores Umbridge, Voldemort, Draco Malfoy – Rowling has a Dickensian way of naming a character perfectly for their personality, making it even more fun to see them running around the castle together.

So pick up a hot Butterbeer Latte from Starbucks (part of their secret menu), crack open Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, and let yourself be taken away down Memory Lane on a broomstick.

And good luck on your exams.

Want to rent the Harry Potter series, starting with Sorcerer’s Stone? You can find that book here, and the full series listing here, both in the HHSL Catalog. Happy Reading!

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Public health encompasses such a wide range of topics that it can be challenging to know where to begin! The public health portal is designed to be your first stop for locating resources focused on epidemiology and public health.

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This portal contains sections that will connect you to key public health journals, article databases, and critical sources of statistical data on the health and well-being of populations.

Because ‘local is global’ (and vice versa!) when it comes to public health, this portal contains both a section featuring United States-specific public health resources and a section featuring resources offering a global perspective on public health-related topics.

The public health portal will also point you towards guides on research writing and using the Hirsh Health Sciences Library.

Have you explored the public health portal? Is something missing? Let us know what you think by giving us an email or call!

Where'd You Go, BernadetteWhere’d You Go, Bernadette is a quirky little novel, full of delightful characters and funny situations. The entire novel is told in pieces, through a combination of e-mails, various reports, and the commentary of our narrator, Bee. Bee’s goal in sharing the story is to piece together the mindset and life of her mother, Bernadette Fox, who becomes harder and harder to understand right up until she vanishes.

The characters sparkle in this book, especially the namesake Bernadette Fox. Everyone feels like people you might know in your neighborhood, and it’s very easy to like or hate them accordingly. But above all, everything that happens is so absurd that it’s impossible not to laugh and enjoy the actions of Bernadette as she handles the public, fellow mothers at her daughter’s school, and even her own husband. A ridiculous yet sympathetic character you will find yourself quickly rooting for.

If you’re looking for something light and fun to distract you from a mountain of work (or to entertain you on your train ride into school), look no further than Where’d You Go, Bernadette.

Want to read Where’d You go, Bernadette? You can check it out at Hirsh! Just click the cover to be taken to the listing in the catalog. Happy reading!

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To quote an old Sesame Street song, “Everybody eats.” Consequently, just about every discipline within the health sciences has a stake in food and nutrition! It is for this very reason that the Hirsh Health Sciences Library has created the nutrition portal.

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The nutrition portal will introduce you to key resources related to food and nutrition. These resources have been selected, not only for people who are specifically engaged in the study of nutrition, but also for those seeking nutrition-related information for application in their own field of study.

Looking for resources that provide a global perspective on issues related to food and nutrition? Check out the “Global” tab, which features resource created by the Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO) and USAID.  Want to know which parts of the USA have limited access to healthy food?  Take a look at the USDA’s “Food Environment Atlas,” which is featured on the “United States” tab.

The nutrition portal will also point you towards policy resources, article databases (including PubMed@Tufts and Web of Knowledge), and guides on research writing and using the Hirsh Health Sciences Library.

Have you explored the nutrition portal? Is something missing? Let us know what you think by giving us an email or call!

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Check out the Dental Medicine portal on the library homepage.

We have picked out our 5 favorites, plus  links to a whole lot more. Drug information, anatomy, board reviews… it’s all there.

Take a look and tell us what you think.

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Have you noticed Leo the Skeleton on the HHSL homepage?

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Click on Leo and get the skinny on top article databases, point of care resources, and electronic books and journals in clinical medicine, as well as drug information and research writing tips and guides.  It’s a quick way for clinicians, medical students, hospital staff and others to access all the clinical medicine favorites, like DynaMed, PubMed, UpToDate, and more.

Any suggestions, questions, or feedback about this portal?  Let us know!

Dog On It is a hugely entertaining book about two private detectives one of whom is a dog. Meet the story’s narrator Chet, a K9 school drop-out rescued by Bernie Little owner of the Little Detective Agency. Chet will tell you that he almost made it through his final test at the police academy but something happened – something he is a little fuzzy on except there may have been a cat involved. That’s OK though because now Chet helps Bernie nab all kinds of “perps”. The plot involves a missing teen named Madison. Bernie, recently divorced and currently a little down on his luck, tells Madison’s frantic mother that they will take the case and find her daughter.

All dog lovers will recognize Chet who adores his partner unconditionally, who knows how to find happiness from the all little things in life and who will always find the Cheerios that have spilled under the kitchen table. Chet’s attempts to try and puzzle out the meanings of various “human” expressions and following his stream of consciousness as thoughts come and go are often hilarious.

This is the first book in the series by Cape Cod author Spencer Quinn and it is a delight to read.

Review by JoAnne Griffin

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Are you a researcher, faculty PI, graduate student and/or post doctorate at Tufts? Have you discovered the Biomedical Research Portal on our homepage?

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The portal is designed to gather important resources in one place so you have what you need to efficiently manage and conduct your research. It contains links to all of our major protocol subscriptions, a quick way to access PubMed and Web of Science, as well as a link to Interlibrary loan so that you can request anything Tufts doesn’t have immediately available.

In the research writing tab you will find helpful links to guides on topics such as where to find help for funding your research, information on writing systematic reviews, helpful information on citation management software and resources to better your writing of grants and articles for publication.

Have you explored the portal? Is something missing? Let us know what you think by giving us an email or call!

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The Night CircusThe Night Circus is a story that sticks with you. Morgenstern’s poetic approach to descriptions of the circus and its denizens dance on the page, and after finishing the book, anything less poetic end up coming off as drab. Really, the circus almost comes alive when you’re reading, and there are moments you begin to wonder if you can smell the popcorn and caramel she continually refers to.

In an odd happenstance, the two characters at the center of the contest that powers the story actually end up feeling a bit contrived by the last page, making the reader wonder how the rest of the book veritably sparkles, and then that can still happen. Still, it doesn’t truly detract from the story in any meaningful way. The issues that the reader may take with certain elements of that piece of the story stand out all the more because of the nearly effortless way the rest of the book pulls itself together.

You can do far worse than picking up The Night Circus, even with so few beach days left to the year. Of course, perhaps the visual and olfactory sensations present on the page will bring the sharp air of the impending autumn into relief.

There’s certainly one easy way to find out.

Want to read The Night Circus? You can check it out at Hirsh! Just click the cover to be taken to the listing in the catalog. Happy reading!

Ready Player One CoverReady Player One ended being a much, much better book than one would assume at face value. On the surface, the story surrounds a gamer named Wade, as he attempts to make friends and find a hidden Easter egg treasure deep within the bowels of the largest multi-player game ever concocted, OASIS. But there are catches: the people he’s friends with are also competing for the prize; a huge conglomerate corporation is trying to steal it out from under them; and the only person who even knew where to find the keys to get to the tests to try to win the prize was the game’s mastermind, who started the contest in his last will and testament.

The prize? $2.4 billion and a controlling stake in his company.

Ready Player One actually tends to make the reader forget that they’re reading about a character playing a game, and when compared to the “real” world, it’s easy to see how that happens. By the point the story begins, Earth has been absolutely ravaged by war and food and fuel shortages, and has become little more than an apocalyptic wasteland where people have to scrape a living together to get by. This is the world OASIS was born into, and this is the world that gave it the distinction of being the biggest game in world history. And then the contest starts.

Cline has littered the book with references to and trivia of pop culture from the last thirty years, so reading the story is almost like an exciting trip through nostalgia. The characters are fun, the story’s engaging, and the stakes are high. Ready Player One becomes a page turner quickly, and definitely deserves the distinction.

Want to read Ready Player One? You can check it out at Hirsh! Just click the cover to be taken to the listing in the catalog. Happy reading!

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