Thursday, March 31, 2016

Survey Response : "I Miss ProQuest!"

Recently we administered our annual library survey to gain feedback from students, faculty, and staff. After reading the responses, we've decided to write a short blog post that responds to the concerns and questions that were brought up, as well as talk about some of the decisions and changes we plan to make based on the results.

One item that was mentioned on the survey (and that has been mentioned several times to us in person) was the decision to drop ProQuest databases and subscribe to EBSCOhost databases. People have mentioned how much they miss ProQuest, and we definitely understand that! Although there is overlap in what we had and what we have now, there are some things that can no longer be accessed. In a perfect world, we would have both ProQuest and EBSCOhost products, but unless anyone has a rich uncle who wants to donate annually to our database subscriptions budget, we're unfortunately limited in what we can provide.

We dropped the ProQuest databases in October 2014 due to the ability to add more products (including our Discovery Service, which there will be a future blog posting about) for a comparable cost. At this time, there is no plan to switch back to ProQuest. However, we would love to hear feedback from those who lost specific resources after the changes were made. We can look to see if we have access to those resources in other databases. We can also borrow resources via Interlibrary Loan.

Another comment we have heard is that the EBSCOhost databases are more difficult to use and navigate than the ProQuest databases were. While they do have different search screens, there are many similarities. We offer research consultations to anyone who wants some search tips or ideas about how to maximize their results (contact us through the email link or phone number listed below).

We appreciate all of the feedback we receive about our resources, and I hope this helps clear up some questions that people have had. If you still have more concerns related to ProQuest, please contact us via email or phone (615-547-1299), and we will be glad to talk to you about those. Also, look for the next blog posting in our survey response series.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Book Review: Losing the Light by Andrea Dunlop

We were given the opportunity to read Losing the Light by Andrea Dunlop.  Read below to find out what this book is about and to see what the Vise Library thought about it!

About the book:

A smart, obsessive debut novel about a young woman studying abroad who becomes caught up in a seductive French world—and a complex web of love and lust.

When thirty-year-old Brooke Thompson unexpectedly runs into a man from her past, she’s plunged headlong into memories she’s long tried to forget about the year she spent in France following a disastrous affair with a professor.

As a newly arrived exchange student in the picturesque city of Nantes, young Brooke develops a deep and complicated friendship with Sophie, a fellow American and stunning blonde, whose golden girl fa├žade hides a precarious emotional fragility. Sophie and Brooke soon become inseparable and find themselves intoxicated by their new surroundings—and each other.

But their lives are forever changed when they meet a sly, stylish French student, Veronique, and her impossibly sexy older cousin, Alex. The cousins draw Sophie and Brooke into an irresistible world of art, money, decadence, and ultimately, a disastrous love triangle that consumes them both. And of the two of them, only one will make it home.
Brooke Thompson is on the way to the "perfect life" and is newly engaged.  However, her past has resurfaced when she unexpectedly runs into someone from her past.  That past consists of the summer that she lived in France and her friendships with Sophie, Veronique, and Alex while she was there.  Those friendships are not always easy, which is true to real life.  If you have ever wanted to visit France, then you will be in for a treat by experiencing it yourself.  You will be in for a surprise by the ending and I always think that makes for a great book!  I could not stop reading this book and had to devour it in one sitting.  This book is an amazing debut novel and I expect to see more from Dunlop!

Find it: Amazon Barnes & Noble |

About the author:

Andrea Dunlop is a Seattle-based writer and the social media and marketing director of Girl Friday Productions. Her first novel, Losing the Light, is coming out in February 2016 from Atria Books.
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Book Review: Come Away With Me by Karma Brown

We were given the opportunity to read Come Away With Me by Karma Brown.  Read below to find out what this book is about and to see what the Vise Library thought about it!

About the book:

An unexpected journey leads one woman to discover that life after loss is possible, if only you can find the courage to let go… 

One minute, Tegan Lawson has everything she could hope for: an adoring husband, Gabe, and a baby on the way. The next, a patch of black ice causes a devastating accident that will change her life in ways she never could have imagined. 

Tegan is consumed by grief—not to mention her anger toward Gabe, who was driving on the night of the crash. But just when she thinks she's hit rock bottom, Gabe reminds her of their Jar of Spontaneity, a collection of their dream destinations and experiences, and so begins an adventure of a lifetime. 

From the bustling markets of Thailand to the flavors of Italy to the ocean waves in Hawaii, Tegan and Gabe embark on a journey to escape the tragedy and search for forgiveness. But they soon learn that grief follows you no matter how far away you run, and that acceptance comes when you least expect it. Heartbreaking, hopeful and utterly transporting, Come Away with Me is an unforgettable debut and a luminous celebration of the strength of the human spirit.
Ummm, I don't even know how to form any kind of coherent thoughts right now, let alone a review.  This is such a beautiful, but heartbreaking story about Gabe and Tegan.  They had everything until one car accident changed everything.  They are struggling with the grief of what they have lost and Tegan is struggling with anger towards Gabe.  They decide to take a worldwide trip of a lifetime to cope and hopefully become whole again.  However, they cannot run away from their grief and it does find them.  You will experience some amazing parts of the world as Tegan and Gabe discover themselves in a whole new way.  You will not forget this story once you finish it.  You will be feeling every single emotion this couple experiences and you will hope to read more from Brown in the future.  Well done!

Find it: Amazon Barnes & Noble |

About the author:

KARMA BROWN is an award-winning journalist and freelance writer, who probably spends too much time on her laptop in coffee shops. When not writing, she can be found running with her husband, coloring (outside the lines) with her daughter, or baking yet another batch of banana muffins. Karma lives just outside Toronto with her family. She's the author of two novels: COME AWAY WITH ME (September 2015) & THE CHOICES WE MAKE (July 2016).
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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Book Review: Somewhere Out There by Amy Hatvany

We were given the opportunity to read Somewhere Out There by Amy Hatvany.  Read below to find out what this book is about and to see what the Vise Library thought about it!

About the book:

What happens when two sisters who were torn apart when their young mother abandoned them—and grew up in tragically different circumstances—reunite thirty-five years later to find her? For readers who love Jodi Picoult, acclaimed author Amy Hatvany fearlessly explores complex family issues in her gripping, provocative new novel.

Natalie Clark knew never to ask her sensitive adoptive mother questions about her past. She doesn’t even know her birth mother’s name—only that the young woman signed parental rights over to the state when Natalie was a baby. Now Natalie’s own daughter must complete a family tree project for school, and Natalie is determined to unearth the truth about her roots.

Brooke Walker doesn’t have a family. At least, that’s what she tells herself after being separated from her mother and her little sister at age four. Having grown up in a state facility and countless foster homes, Brooke survives the only way she knows how, by relying on herself. So when she discovers she’s pregnant, Brooke faces a heart-wrenching decision: give up her baby or raise the child completely on her own. Scared and confused, she feels lost until a surprise encounter gives her hope for the future.

How do our early experiences—the subtle and the traumatic—define us as adults? How do we build relationships when we’ve been deprived of real connection? Critically acclaimed author Amy Hatvany considers controversial and complicated questions about childhood through the lens of her finely crafted characters in this astute novel about mending wounds by diving into the truth of what first tore us apart.
Hatvany's story brings us the unique voices of three women that are all connected.  The present voices are of Brooke and Natalie (sisters) and we get a glimpse into the past with Jennifer (their mother).  This isn't just a story about a mother leaving her children, it is a lot more than that.  Jennifer had to make a terrible sacrifice for her children.  Brooke had a rough go by growing up in foster care.  Now that is is pregnant with her own child, she continues to struggle with her past.  She also has to make the decision of what is ultimately the best for her child.  Natalie was adopted and grew up in a loving family.  She has to look more into her past when her own children have questions due to a school project.  Natalie decides to look into her mother and her sister, Brooke.  

This is a depiction of love and loss.  It also shows that sometimes we can appear to have everything, but there can always be something greater missing in our lives, like in the case of Natalie.  This book is very emotional.  Jennifer thought she was doing the best thing for her girls but did not realize that they would be separated from each other.  Even though there is sadness, there is also a lot of hope to go along with it.  Such an amazing look into family and how important it is to cherish it!

Find it: Amazon Barnes & Noble |

About the author:

Amy Hatvany graduated with a degree in Sociology only to discover most sociologists are unemployed. Soon followed a variety of jobs - some of which she loved, like decorating wedding cakes; others which she merely tolerated, like receptionist. 

In 1998, Amy finally decided to sell her car, quit her job, and take a chance on her passion: writing books. Her background in sociology inspires and informs much of her writing as she tackles timely and controversial issues in her novels including mental illness, domestic abuse, and alcoholism. She is the author of BEST KEPT SECRET, OUTSIDE THE LINES (a Target book club pick in 2012 and a Costco Pennie's Pick in 2013), THE LANGUAGE OF SISTERS, HEART LIKE MINE, SAFE WITH ME (a Good Housekeeping pick), and SOMEWHERE OUT THERE (a Target Recommended Read).

Amy lives in Seattle with her husband and children. You can learn more at
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Monday, March 28, 2016

Book Review: The Ramblers by Aidan Donnelley Rowley

We were given the opportunity to read The Ramblers by Aidan Donnelly Rowley.  Read below to find out what this book is about and to see what the Vise Library thought about it!

About the book:

For fans of J. Courtney Sullivan, Meg Wolitzer, Claire Messud, and Emma Straub, a gorgeous and absorbing novel of a trio of confused souls struggling to find themselves and the way forward in their lives, set against the spectacular backdrop of contemporary New York City.
Set in the most magical parts of Manhattan—the Upper West Side, Central Park, Greenwich Village—The Ramblers explores the lives of three lost souls, bound together by friendship and family. During the course of one fateful Thanksgiving week, a time when emotions run high and being with family can be a mixed blessing, Rowley’s sharply defined characters explore the moments when decisions are deliberately made, choices accepted, and pasts reconciled.
Clio Marsh, whose bird-watching walks through Central Park are mentioned in New York Magazine, is taking her first tentative steps towards a relationship while also looking back to the secrets of her broken childhood. Her best friend, Smith Anderson, the seemingly-perfect daughter of one of New York’s wealthiest families, organizes the lives of others as her own has fallen apart. And Tate Pennington has returned to the city, heartbroken but determined to move ahead with his artistic dreams.
Rambling through the emotional chaos of their lives, this trio learns to let go of the past, to make room for the future and the uncertainty and promise that it holds. The Ramblers is a love letter to New York City—an accomplished, sumptuous novel about fate, loss, hope, birds, friendship, love, the wonders of the natural world and the mysteries of the human spirit. 
The three characters (Clio, Smith and Tate) in this book are at a crossroads in their lives.  Just because things appear good on the outside for some, there is definitely some hidden turmoil going on under the surface.  This novel explores themes of divorce, illness and family struggles.  Each character in some way examines their life in order to seek a brighter future.  You will experience this story from multiple points of view which provides a glimpse into the characters' voice.  This book is complex and also makes you sympathize with each character.  This is a great in depth and makes you analyze your own issues.  An amazing read!  

Find it: Amazon Barnes & Noble |

About the author (taken from author's website):

My name is Aidan Donnelley Rowley. I am a novelist living in New York City with my husband and three young daughters, whom I’ve affectionately dubbed the Rowlets (and Big Girl, Middle Girl, and Little Girl on this blog). I was born here in Manhattan and am the middle of five sisters. I studied philosophy at Yale, went to law school at Columbia, and practiced as a litigation associate at a big firm for a short while before jumping ship to write full-time. My first novel Life After Yes was published in 2010 and my second novel The Ramblers will be published by William Morrow in February 2016.
I started this blog, originally called Ivy League Insecurities, in 2009. At the time, I was anticipating the publication of my first book, in the trenches of parenting young kids (my eldest two were 2.5 and five months at the time) and I’d recently lost my father to cancer. Long story short, I was a bit of a mess and came here, to write, and to process my life. For the past six-plus years, I’ve continued to come here and share bits and pieces of myself and my life. I’ve written, and continue to write and ask questions, about identity, parenthood, sisterhood, marriage, loss, presence, alcohol, anxiety, nature, books and more. I cherish this spot and connecting with my readers.
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Saturday, March 26, 2016

Book Review: Crazy About Love by Cassie Mae

We were given the opportunity to read Crazy About prior to its release in June.  Read below to find out what this book is about and to see what the Vise Library thought about it!

About the book:

Single again on Valentine’s Day, struggling actor Alec Tucker agrees to help out his longtime friend—and unrequited love—Theresa Jones by filling in as one of the bachelors for her company’s charity auction. Alec figures it couldn’t hurt to meet someone new. Still, working with Theresa reminds him of all the reasons he never got over her. So it feels a little bittersweet when, out of nowhere, a beautiful young street artist buys a date with him for a whopping four grand.

Little does he know, Theresa’s had a major change of heart. She’s crushed when someone else wins a date with Alec—but she isn’t going down without a fight. After a pep talk from her best friend, Theresa makes a desperate move that goes against her better judgment . . . and things only get crazier from there. But with Alec ready to move on and Theresa afraid she’s pushed him away for good, maybe a little crazy is exactly what they need—before they both miss their shot.
Alec has been in love with Theresa for years.  Little does he know that Theresa has felt the same way, but she has had her reasons for not acting on those feelings.  Alec would do anything for Theresa, like being a participant in a bachelor auction that Theresa is helping organize.  Theresa has the grand plan of winning Alec's auction so that she can finally tell Alec how she feels about him.  However, best laid plans do not go according to plan because someone bids (and wins) on Alec!  It is a a street artist named Rian.  Alec is forced to spend the evening with Rian and he is determined to use this night to get over Theresa.  Theresa is (of course) devastated and her evening is not going according to plan (for multiple reasons, you have to read to find out why!).  Both of them have to use this night to figure out what they really want and find out if it is time to just move on.  This book is very different because it is from Alec's point of view for half of the book and from Theresa's point of view the other half.  However, each section alternates between past and present to show why each character reacts to their current relationship.  This book is funny and very sweet in the fact that you enjoy seeing how Alec and Theresa's past friendship blooms.  I thought this book was great!

Find it: Amazon Barnes & Noble |

About the author:

Cassie Mae (who dons the name Becca Ann on occasion) is the author of a few hundred... okay, maybe not that many... books. Some of which became popular for their quirky titles, characters, and stories. She likes writing about nerds, geeks, the awkward, the fluffy, the short, the shy, the loud, the fun. 

Since publishing her bestselling debut, Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend, she has published and sold books to Random House, Swoon Romance, and Tulip Romance. She has a favorite of all her babies, but no, she won't tell you what it is. (Mainly because it changes depending on the day.) 

Along with writing, Cassie likes to binge watch Teen Wolf and The Big Bang Theory. She can quote Harry Potter lines quick as a whip. And she likes kissing her hubby, but only if his facial hair is trimmed. She also likes cheesecake to a very obsessive degree. 
You can stalk, talk, or send pictures of Dylan O'Brien to her on her Facebook page:
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Monday, March 14, 2016

Where have all of the ebooks gone?

Members of the Vise Library have been working on a tedious project to delete our ebooks (about 100,000 of them!!! WHEW!!!) from our Surpass Catalog System.  Our goal is for the library catalog to only house the physical items that are available for check out.  We hope this frees up some some much needed space in this system for a smoother searching experience for our physical materials.  

This does not mean that we do not have any ebooks available to read or for research purposes.  These items are also housed in our databases and our Discovery Service system (which allows you to search everything in one place!).  Since the ebooks were available in multiple places, we decided to eliminate some redundancy.  

If you are wondering how to access ebooks from now on, please see below!

The first step is going to the library's main page (  You will then need to scroll down to the search bar for our discovery service:

As you can see we have entered the search term dogs (because, why not).  You will then be taken to a log in screen (use your usual log in that is used for Canvas or CAMS).  This will grant you access to the discovery service and our databases.

Since the discovery service searches every database that we have access to, you will need to distinguish what type of item you are looking for (like you would academic journals while doing research).  Since we are looking for ebooks specifically, you will see on the left hand side we have highlighted ebooks.  You will need to click on the box to the left of the word ebooks to filter this option:

After selecting the ebook option, we clicked on the first book that was listed (Dogs : Domestication History, Behavior and Common Health Problems).  To view the book you will just need to click on the PDF option or if you are on a tablet (and have the Bluefire app) then this allows you to download and view the ebook offline.  

We have selected the PDF version of this book.  You can pick which section of the book you want to view from the contents section listed to the left hand side:

Now you are able to read through the book like normal!  

We hope this blog was helpful in locating the Vise Library's access to ebooks.  If you have any questions in the future please email us at or calling 615-547-1299.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Book Review: The Total Package by Stephanie Evanovich

The Vise Library is introducing books (in separate blog posts) that will be available in our catalog soon.  We were given the opportunity to read The Total Package prior to its release in March.  Read below to find out what this book is about and to see what the Vise Library thought about it!

About the book:

The New York Times bestselling author of Big Girl Panties is back with a funny, sweet, and sizzling novel about love, redemption, and second chances.
Heartthrob star quarterback Tyson Palmer has it all: a million-dollar arm, a winning season and the promise of a Superbowl ring. But more importantly, football’s biggest star is the ultimate comeback kid. After an addiction to painkillers nearly derailed his career, Tyson got sober and went from zero to hero in the eyes of the public.
But one person remains unconvinced: Dani Carr, a sports commentator with high ratings and following of her own.
Dani can’t forgive Tyson’s transgressions or forget a single passionate night with him back in college. 
As a rabid reader and sports fan, I devoured this book in one sitting!  This book was spectacular and I loved every minute of it.  Tyson and Dani have a shared past but Tyson is unaware of it after he gets himself clean.  Dani is thrown in his path again and is determined to stay away from him.  She has a major secret she is keeping from him and she is set on protecting that secret at all costs.  However, Tyson shows that he is a different person now.  Dani's secret threatens to harm their new found friendship.  I loved Dani's fiesty attitude and the humbleness that Tyson discovers.  This was a very fast read for me and I think readers will appreciate the growth from both of these characters!  There were many times I laughed out loud (like I always do in Stephanie's books) and I loved every minute of it!  This book will be available in our Popular Collection when it releases March 15!

PS If you have read any of Stephanie's previous books then you will be happy to see some very familiar faces!

About the author:

Stephanie Evanovich is a full-fledged Jersey girl from Asbury Park who began writing fiction while waiting for her cues during countless community theater projects. She attended New York's School of Film and Television and acted in several improvisational troupes and a few small-budget movies, all in preparation for the greatest job she ever had, raising her two sons. Now, a full-time writer, she's an avid sports fan who holds a black belt in tae kwon do.
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