Category Archives: ebooks and more

Ashleigh’s Digital Book Pile

Title details for The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James - Wait list

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James

“For the odd girls, the nerdy girls, and the murderinos. This one is yours.”
― Simone St. James, The Sun Down Motel

We all know sketchy small-town motels like The Sun Down. It’s not the kind of place you want to be after dark unless you’re a person passing through or a person with a secret, but this is a spot you will enjoy reading about. The Sun Down Motel is a horror/crime novel written from two different perspectives on two different timelines, but the motel is the connective tissue between the two stories and certainly is a character of its own.

Viv Delaney 1982

On her way to New York City, Viv takes the night clerk position at The Sun Down Motel in Fell, NY, but things aren’t quite right. Women in the area are turning up missing and murdered and Viv is hearing and seeing things at the hotel that can’t be real. As Viv delves deep into the mystery of the murdered women in the area, she mysteriously goes missing herself.

Carly Kirk 2017

Carly’s Aunt Viv went missing back in 1982 and it seems to her that no one cared. A true crime aficionado, Carly takes it upon herself to move to Fell, NY and find out what happened to her aunt. When she arrives, strange twists of fate allow her to move into the apartment her aunt had and even pick up the night clerk positon at the place her aunt used to work- The Sun Down Motel. The motel isn’t all it seems though. Was her aunt murdered or was something darker and paranormal at play? 

Title details for Moon of the Crusted Snow by Waubgeshig Rice - Wait list

Moon of the Crusted Snow by Waubgeshig Rice

Rice weaves a truly realistic post-apocalyptic tale in Moon of the Crusted Snow. It leaves plenty to the imagination, but I thoroughly enjoyed Rice’s straightforward writing style, use of the Anishinaabe language, and it’s a fairly quick read- which can be a bonus if you’re absorbed in a story. If you don’t enjoy ambiguous books though, this one may not be for you.

A quick summary: A small Anishinaabe community in northern Canada notices their power is out, this is inconvenient, but not unusual. What is unusual is that the power does not come back, and winter is closing in. It’s not just their community- the electricity is gone. There’s no power, no phones, nothing. We follow Evan Whitesky, a young man with a young family to protect. The tribe knows of their old ways, but can they go back to them well enough to survive the winter on the supplies they have? When a mysterious stranger shows up from the south, and bad things begin to happen, can the community stay unified long enough to survive?

The Return by Rachel Harrison: 9780593098660 | PenguinRandomHouse ...

The Return by Rachel Harrison

“You can’t erase your past when there are pieces of it scattered inside other people.” Rachel Harrison, The Return

Julie is missing and all her friends believe she’s probably dead. Well, everyone except Elise. Elise just knows Julie is still out there. It turns out that Elise is right. Julie turns up two years after she goes missing from a secluded park. After Julie resurfaces, the friends decide to meet up at a remote inn. Apparently, Julie doesn’t remember anything that happened to her. When Elise is reunited with Julie, she knows something isn’t quite right with her friend. She looks terrible, smells terrible, her skin is dull, she’s emaciated, and seems off. Who- or what- is this new Julie? 

This one really had me hooked the entire time. There’s a looming sense of dread that you just can’t shake and you just long to know more. It may walk you in circles a little bit, but it’s worth sticking with and has a great climax. The whole time you’ll be asking “What’s wrong with Julie?” and though you may or may not be surprised, you’ll be thoroughly creeped along the way to discovering the mystery.

I love a good mystery, true crime story, ghost story, or horror novel. All the books in this review reflect that. I thoroughly enjoyed each of these and would recommend them to anyone with tastes similar to my own. My favorite part of the horror genre is constantly wondering what’s going to happen next and the satisfaction of trying to put together what’s going on in a novel. I hope you pick one of these up, you can find them on READS or Audible. I enjoy trying to find the allegory in the creepy and disturbing that you usually find in a good horror story. I enjoy seeing an author hold society up to a carnival fun-house mirror- that’s what horror is to me. But beyond that, I just love a good scary story for the sake of a scary story as well.  

Stay spooky,


eCookbook Reviews: Cooking in Quarantine

I have always enjoyed cooking, and since we are all staying home a little more these days, it’s given us an opportunity to explore that hobby a little more. You’ve probably seen the increase in cooking on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter- all the socials. People are baking bread for the first time or showing off meals that they’ve made with ingredients in their pantry. Cooking is fun and I’m glad we’re all starting to do it more.

I decided to check out some cookbooks on READS and try some new recipes out. My first choice in cookbook was Edwardian Cooking: 80 Recipes Inspired by Downton Abbey’s Elegant Meals by Larry Edwards.

Cover image for Edwardian Cooking

This cookbook was much better than I expected it to be. Usually I am not a fan of themed cookbooks, because the recipes are typically lacking in number and quality. That is not the case here. There are a plethora of (80!) very good recipes with simple ingredients that truly sound delicious. 

The recipe that I decided to try was Abbey Country Wheat Bread. “The Protocol of the abbeys was: If you serve a soup, you must serve a bread. Because all dinners at the abbeys consisted of three courses, with one being soup, bread was a paramount dish” – Larry Edwards. I love bread. I love kneading bread. I love smelling bread. Even more than that, I love eating bread (with butter). This bread was good bread, but it is important to knead the bread for an extended period of time due to the wheat flour- it needs more kneads. It’s worth the extra effort, because this bread is tasty!

The next cookbook I decided to virtually crack open was Quick Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin.

Title details for Quick Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin - Wait list

I don’t know about you, but I never feel like I have enough to time to all the things I need to do. So when I see the words “quick” and “recipe” together in the same title, my attention is sparked. I really thought this cookbook was great and I’m honestly considering buying it for myself after I return it to the library. The things I liked most about it were that the recipes had real, whole food ingredients, the ingredient lists were all short and easy to find, most of the recipes really were quick, and the one I made was tasty!

The recipe I chose was Penne with Spinach and Chickpeas in Garlic Sauce. It was simple and tasty, and I felt like it was pretty healthy. I used wheat pasta instead of regular penne pasta and it didn’t affect the flavor for me. I love garlic and the garlic is strong in this one! It’s also filling and sticks with you, which satisfies a complaint most people have about vegetarian recipes. If you don’t want to make it a whole meal, it would also be good as a side dish in a small amount. 

My final choice in cookbook was One-Dish Vegetarian Meals by Robin Robertson.

Title details for One-Dish Vegetarian Meals by Robin Robertson - Available

To be completely honest, this cookbook wasn’t my favorite, but the recipe I made was yummy, which is really what counts. My complaint is that many of its recipes suffer from what many vegetarian recipes do: long ingredient lists, hard to find ingredients, and unnecessary substitutes. But, like I said, the recipe was tasty and that’s really what counts. 

The recipe I chose to go with was Turkish-Style Stuffed Eggplant with Walnut Sauce. It had 14 ingredients (and if you want to include the salt and pepper, then 16 ingredients), which is more than I usually use to be honest, but they all worked really well together. The dish was flavorful and satisfying. It took me about 25 minutes of prep time and about 40 minutes to cook everything. 

I feel the title of this book might be a little unintentionally deceptive. I thought based on the title of the book, there would be a lot more one-pot meals that you just throw the ingredients in one pot and cook, but they are more involved than that. That can be nice for developing dynamic flavors and falls in line with traditional cooking, but I just thought I would let you know because it may require you to dirty up quite a few dishes in the cooking process. You will be cooking in the skillet and on the oven and using a food processor for many recipes. There’s more than one pan involved in the production of these meals, but the flavor and end result definitely is worth the time you put into them.

I hope you’ll consider checking on an eCookbook in quarantine and giving it a shot! Many of them are surprisingly easy to navigate. I know it’s easy to just Google a recipe, but it’s nice to just browse a cookbook when you don’t know what you’re in the mood for and you may stumble across a new gem that is likely to become a staple in your house. 

Happy cooking,


Crafting as Distraction

In this time of exponentially increased levels of anxiety and stress we are all looking for ways to unwind and calm down. We do our best to work, either from home or in an essential function, care for children – both their education and entertainment, and concern about family and friends, especially those we must keep at a distance. Common wisdom is that meditation and mindfulness will focus our thoughts on the present, decreasing worry about past decisions and apprehension about the future.

Crafting can interrupt our negative thoughts to focus on the task at hand – specifically,
the craft you are undertaking. Personally, in the last two months I have crocheted thirty-four hats. I like to make hats because they are a small enough project to complete without getting bored. I have no idea what I will do with these hats, most likely I will donate them, but they tend to calm me. I have teen aged children that are requesting stuffed animals, so I may investigate Amigurumi crochet (Amigurumi is

Japanese for “knitted or crocheted stuffed toy”). Focusing on these new types of crochet patterns can potentially be relaxing.

Browsing Subjects in Libby, I found over 450 ebooks in Crafts, over 300 of them were available to borrow immediately. I found Creepy Cute Crochet by Christen Haden, Crochet One Skein Wonders by Judith Durant and Edie Eckman, Teach Yourself VISUALLY Crochet by Cicely Keim, and even Crochet Patterns for Dummies by Susan Brittain, all with Amigurumi patterns I could try.

There are many, many other crafting ebooks in Libby – on soap making, beading, duct taping, candle making, quilting, and even building cardboard habitats for cats (Cat Castles by Carin Oliver). Many of these ebooks are guides for beginners, you may already have the items needed to start something new, or things can be acquired online, both JoAnn Fabrics and Michael’s have curbside pick-up.

Another thing I have found to distract my thoughts from the past and the future, making me mindful of the present is coloring. Not children’s coloring, although if you have younger kids you could wrangle one of their books, but I doubt that would lead to tranquility.

According to Dr. Scott M. Bea, PsyD at the Cleveland Clinic, adult coloring can be calming because it focuses your attention on the task, leading to relaxing your brain; with a predictable outcome it is a low stakes activity. I have also found that pulling out the coloring books and colored pencils attracts my teens, one or both may pull up a chair and the shared activity allows us to talk – looking down rather than making eye contact seems to encourage a release of feelings. An inexpensive meditative diversion, a Google search for “coloring pages for adults “resulted a whole bunch of free pages.


Whatever you do to distract and relax your mind can be helpful. Try searching and browsing the available ebooks on crafts in Libby or Overdrive and Hoopla for ideas for starting something new or expanding on your current interests.

by DD in the Reference Department

Read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone Online


Both Hoopla and Overdrive are offering the first book in the Harry Potter series for reading, no waiting.

Williamson County Public Library Closed as of March 16 until further notice

The main priority of the Williamson County Public Library System is the health and well-being of our employees and patrons.  With that in mind, the Library Board of Trustees and Dolores Greenwald, Director of Library Services, are immediately closing the Library facilities until further notice.

Customers who have items checked out during this time will not be charged fines.

While staying at home, please take advantage of our ebooks and online resources such as Hoopla, Reads, TumbleBooks and more.  Visit our website for the Library’s 24/7 resources.Library Closed Temp

How To Use The OverDrive App

Just because the Library is closed doesn’t mean you won’t have access to a vast number of great FREE books until we reopen. With the OverDrive app, you can choose from thousands of eBooks and eAudiobooks for all ages to download to your mobile device from the Tennessee R.E.A.D.S. database. Read on to learn how!  Also check out our blog articles on how to download eBooks, eAudiobooks and comics, stream movies and TV shows, and listen to music with the Hoopla app, or download magazines using the Flipster app.

The OverDrive app can be used on your iPhone/iPad, Blackberry, Android phone, tablet, Kindle Fire, Nook Color and Nook HD with the OverDrive Media Console app.


Go to the Apple App Store, Google Play, or Amazon Appstore. Install the free OverDrive Media Console app ok  to your mobile device.


After you’ve downloaded the free app, you’ll be prompted to sign up for a new OverDrive account. You’ll be given the option to create your account with your library card number, Facebook, or email. We strongly recommend using your EMAIL ADDRESS as demonstrated below.


After you’ve created your account, Overdrive Menu Page opens and you’ll be prompted to ADD A LIBRARY. Click on ADD A LIBRARY.


Enter zip code 37064 in the search box to find Williamson County Public Library’s R.E.A.D.S website and then click SEARCH.


Find the name of your branch on the list and click the name to select it. For the main library, click on Buffalo River Region – Williamson County Public Library, Franklin.


You will only have to complete the above steps the first time you access R.E.A.D.S. using the OverDrive app. After that, you will simply click on the OverDrive app icon ok  on your device and sign in to your R.E.A.D.S. account.



After you click TENNESSEE READS, the R.E.A.D.S. home page opens. Click SIGN IN.


You’ll be prompted for your library name. Choose WILLIAMSON COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY or the name of your branch (BETHESDA, COLLEGE GROVE, FAIRVIEW, LEIPER’S FORK or NOLENSVILLE) from the dropdown menu. Then type in your library card number and PIN and click SIGN IN. Your PIN is the last 4 digits of your library card number unless you have recently changed it.




After you click SIGN IN, the Tennessee R.E.A.D.S. site opens. Click on the screenshot icon to go to your LOANS page, which shows all the items you have checked out. You can touch the  screenshot  icon to view your LOANS at any time.



Click on the menu iconscreenshot  to access your ACCOUNT, which includes links to your HOLDS, WISH LIST, RECOMMENDATIONS, HISTORY and SETTINGS.



Click on SETTINGS to choose your default lending period. We recommend choosing 21 days, the longest lending period allowed. You only have to set your lending period once.




To browse for books, click on the menu icon screenshot to search by SUBJECTS or COLLECTIONS (broad categories such as eBooks or eAudiobooks).



Click the SEARCH icon screenshot to begin a search.  Click in the SEARCH box for a quick keyword search or click on ADVANCED for additional search options such as Title, Author, Subject, Format, Availability, or other criteria.



After your search results are displayed, you can touch a book cover to get a description. eBooks are designated by a book icon underneath the cover image, while eAudiobooks have a headphone icon. The word AVAILABLE above the cover means the book can be checked out immediately, while WAIT LIST indicates the book is currently checked out and can be placed on hold.





If the title you have selected is already checked out, you can be placed on the wait list for that title. Touch PLACE A HOLD.


In the pop-up that opens, enter and confirm your email address. Then click PLACE A HOLD.


When a title you have on hold becomes available, you will receive an email. You’ll have three days to borrow the title. You can then sign in to your R.E.A.D.S. account and go to your HOLDS menu to borrow the title.




To borrow an eBook or an eAudiobook that is available, click BORROW underneath the cover image.


A screen will appear confirming the loan period. You may click on the down arrow to change the loan period. Click BORROW. On the next screen, click GO TO LOANS.



Click DOWNLOAD EPUB ebook if you’re checking out an eBook or MP3 AUDIOBOOK if you’re checking out an eAudiobook. If you are using the OverDrive App on a Kindle Fire, Nook Color or Nook HD, you still need to choose the EPUB eBook format for eBooks.

After clicking DOWNLOAD, you’ll see that the title is being added to the OverDrive App.





In Tennessee R.E.A.D.S., you can find, download, or place a book on hold, but to read or listen to your book, you must go to your OVERDRIVE APP BOOKSHELF. After you’ve added the book to your app as described above, click the OVERDRIVE MENU ICON  screenshot      . The app will usually be in the upper left-hand corner of your screen, although the location may vary depending on which device you’re using.


Click on BOOKSHELF on the OverDrive “My Libraries” box.


The OverDrive Bookshelf opens. Tap on a BOOK COVER to open it and begin reading or listening.




Renewing R.E.A.D.S. titles works differently than renewing physical books. Renewing a R.E.A.D.S title doesn’t extend your lending period. Instead, the title is borrowed again for you immediately after your current checkout expires. If there are existing holds, you will be placed on the wait list.

On your LOANS page, select the REQUEST AGAIN button under the title you’d like to renew. This option does not appear until three days before the title is due to expire.


As soon as your current lending period ends (or your hold on the title is available), you’ll receive a notification email and have three days to borrow it. Sign in to your R.E.A.D.S. account and go to the HOLDS menu and select BORROW next to the title. Go to your LOANS page and download the book again.



Go to the OverDrive BOOKSHELF. Touch and hold the cover of the book you want to return.






That’s it! Enjoy your digital reading!

Stuck at Home? Here’s Free Online Media to Binge from the Library

By Amy Shropshire


While the Williamson County Public Library is currently closed to the public, fighting off the spread of COVID-19, several changes have been made to the existing library policy.

  • We are no longer circulating physical materials. Patrons will no longer be able to place or pick up holds. Holds that have already been placed will be held for when we re-open and not expire.
  • No late fees will be assessed for materials currently checked out. Materials are still currently returnable through the book drop, but keeping them will not incur any fees until after we re-open to the public.
  • Patrons with recently expired cards, or cards expiring soon, have all been renewed until June 2020.
  • Fines will no longer be an impediment to accessing online resources. All patrons with an active and renewed library card should be able to access online materials such as Tennessee READS and Hoopla.
  • At present, staff will return calls and emails for patrons having technical difficulty accessing online resources and/or help answer queries.

So many people at home will need resources for both education and entertainment value, and we can still provide these resources through online media.

Here are some important things to remember when creating an account through our online resources.

  • We are part of Buffalo River Regional Library, so that will be the name you search for when creating an account.
  • The default PIN number is the last 4 digits of the library card number.
  • All library card numbers must be entered with no spaces to access online resources.

For example, Tennessee READS is a great online resource that offers over 100,000 e-books and audiobooks available to our patrons. You can download e-books and audiobooks to a computer, mobile device, and/or tablet. You can access Tennessee READS by downloading the apps, Overdrive and Libby, or you can access it through the library website.



Hoopla is another great resource if you are looking for more audio-visual media such as music, movies, and television shows. Not to mention Hoopla also has a comic book selection as well. Just remember to select carefully, because Hoopla is limited to 3 checkouts per month.

Another perk about Overdrive, Libby, and Hoopla are the accessibility features, which include:

  • dyslexic font
  • adjustable font size
  • adjustable audio speed
  • Hoopla has closed captioning

RBDigital also carries a variety of popular e-books and audiobooks if you can’t find something in Tennessee READS or if you run out of checkouts.

If you are looking for magazines, try Flipster! Flipster is an easy-to-use digital magazine newsstand that has new and back issues. Flipster is accessible via a web browser or the Flipster app which is made specifically for Apple devices, Android devices, and the Kindle Fire tablet. You can also download magazines to read offline, anytime, anywhere.

For something new and different, try the curated lists of the Indie Author Project. Published by Library Journal, the India Author Project pulls together lists by genre of the most talked about independently published work that often escapes notice. You might find your new favorite author there.

Whether you’re keeping up with your educational goals of if you’re wanting to learn something new, EBSCOhost is the online resource for you. EBSCOhost provides a plethora of materials from classics to educational nonfiction. Try our collection of EBSCOhost e-books and audiobooks available for checkout.

Speaking of educational resources, we have computer practice resources and databases full of new learning opportunities you can spend your time on. For example, GCFLearnFree has plenty of tutorials including basic money management, resume writing, computer skills, and technology help to name a few. GCFLearnFree also provides courses on communication skills and the sharing economy too. Feel free to browse their collection of tutorials as well as our other computer training options.

Staying at home is also a great time to finally publish that book you’ve always wanted to write, and we have the resources for that! Create your own independently published book through Pressbooks, and submit your work to the Indie Author Project, both of which make your work shareable.

While some of us may be stuck at home for public safety, this is the perfect opportunity to do the things you’ve never had time to do before. So stay home and read, learn, and create!


Additional Links:

Overdrive app for Android devices

Overdrive app for Apple devices

Libby app for Android devices

Libby app for Apple devices


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