Reading this Summer?

Reading on the Beach

Reading on the Beach by Courtney McGough on Flickr

Last weekend I broke down. I bought a Kindle (a Kindle Paperwhite to be exact). Despite my ambivalence towards e-reading, it’s getting harder for me to deny the conveniences of an e-reader. I’m a reader. Although chasing a toddler around the house has but a kink in my reading style, I still try to get in as much eyeball-to-text time as I possibly can. When I go on a trip, I take as much care and effort packing my reading materials as I do packing my clothes. This little 5 x 7 inch device is making upcoming travel so much more convenient and amazingly less stressful. Instead of trying to squeeze in 3-4 different volumes I can just pop that Kindle in my purse and call it a day. It’s fantastic.

Will I stop buying and checking out print books from the library? No way. In fact, as I type, I have two books on my nightstand from the St. Mary’s County Library. The Kindle is just a new addition to my reading lifestyle and a great way to kick off the summer reading season. If you’re interested in getting your summer reading off right, the SMCM Library can help.


We have 6 different Kindles for SMCM students, faculty, and staff to borrow loaded with all kinds of fantastic fiction. Want to find out what all the Game of Thrones fuss is about? Read it on our Kindle Fire. Curious about Gone Girl or Kate Atkinson’s latest, Life after Life? Read one on a Kindle Touch. For more about our Kindles and the books on them, check out our online Kindle Guide.

Popular Reading Collection

If you’re more of a print-on-paper kind of reader. We have you covered. Our popular reading collection has a great selection of fiction and non-fiction bestsellers to help you take a break from heavy academic reading. Take a walk up to the 2nd floor and hang a left. In the reading area you’ll find a beautiful water-front view and our awesome Popular Reading Collection.

St. Mary’s County Public Libraries

I wouldn’t be doing my due-diligence as a librarian if I didn’t do a little cross-promotion. We are fortunate to have an amazing public library system in our county. If you haven’t visited one of the branches in Lexington Park, Leonardtown, or Charlotte Hall, please do it. Their book, movie, and music selection is amazing! A few weekends ago I picked up Tom Perotta’s The Leftovers, a copy of the Alabama Shakes album, and Dinosaur vs. The Potty, a board book for my son. They have fun summer programming for kids too!

Summer Book Club

Since you’re doing all this reading anyway, you might as well win a prize or two for your efforts. The SMCM Library’s Summer Reading Program continues this year and gives all SMCM students, faculty, staff, and alumni a chance to contribute book reviews to the Summer Reading Blog and win prizes.

Happy Reading,



Ender’s Game

endersgame3The staff book club has selected Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card for May. This Nebula and Hugo Award winning novel is the first in Card’s Ender’s Game series and is considered by many to be a classic in the science fiction genre.


Recruited for military training by the world government, Ender’s childhood ends the moment he enters his new home: Battleschool. Among elite recruits, Ender proves himself to be a genius among geniuses.”

Looking for more than a blurb? Check out the SparkNotes.

At this time you are more likely to find reviews of the film trailer as it is about to become a major motion picture. There is a lot of enthusiasm from fans eagerly anticipating the film’s opening in November as well as concerns about bad press related to Orson Scott Card’s politics.

The book club will meet on May 30 at 12pm in the Library Boardroom. You can also participate online by rating or reviewing the book, attendance is not required.

Want to check it out? The library has copies of the book on the library’s Kindles and in print. You can also borrow it from the St. Mary’s County Library.

— Pamela Mann

And we’re off!!!

sack races start

Photo from Flickr user Matt McGee

Welcome everyone to the 2012-2013 academic year at SMCM!  In the library we were hard at work all summer so that now, you can work smarter!  Below is a brief rundown of just a few of the new toys and services we’re offering in the SMCM Library.  If anyone has any questions, please don’t hesitate to let us know.

New photocopier: We have a brand new photocopier!  It does full color and has an automatic feeder for those long documents.  Prices are 10 cents per black & white copy, 25 cents per color copy.  Please note that the photocopier on the 2nd floor (in the periodicals) is no longer there – there is only the first floor photocopier, which is in the same location.

New scanner: Returning students, staff, and faculty may remember the touchscreen-operated scanner that we had on a trial basis toward the end of the Spring 2012 semester.  It is now a permanent addition to the SMCM Library.  It scans in color or black & white and your scanned images can be printed (print in black & white only), saved to a thumb drive, or emailed immediately to you as a PDF, JPG, PNG, or RTF (MS Word) file.  It also has a leading edge – this makes it very easy to photocopy books & journals without pressing down on the item to get that hard-to-read text in the center!

Kindles: We now circulate Kindles!  We have three Kindle Fires, two Kindle Touches, and a Kindle Keyboard that can be checked out for two weeks (one renewal allowed).  They come preloaded with several e-books for your reading pleasure, including the Hunger Games trilogy, Prisoner of Heaven, and more!  We are actively soliciting requests for new titles for our Kindles, so let us know if you have a request.

Overdue fines: The rumors are true: the SMCM Library has eliminated almost all of our daily overdue fines.  Daily overdue fines remain in effect for:

  • All course reserve items (not e-reserves)
  • All media center items (3rd floor)
  • Anything that comes from another library (Interlibrary Loan/ILLiad or USMAI)
  • Items that have been recalled

Nothing else, I repeat: nothing else is subject to daily overdue fines, i.e. books, DVD’s, VHS, CD’s, laptops (yes, laptops!), headphones, extension cords, ethernet cords, thumb drives, Kindles, etc etc)The complete new SMCM Library fine policy is available on our website here (or, from the Library home page, click on “about the library” then “policies”).

Group Study Room Booking: Now, you can reserve one of our group study rooms for up to three hours per day.  Use this link (or, from the Library home page, click on “library services” then “group study rooms”).  In addition, Group Study Room 221 has been outfitted with a 55” HDTV with a DVD player.  Group Study Rooms 215, 216, & 221 are available for booking.  Group Study Rooms 206 & 217 are open and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Happy Librarying!!!!!