Book Review – Percy Jackson: The Olympians Series

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“Being a half-blood is dangerous. It’s scary. Most of the time, it gets you killed in painful, nasty ways. You might be one of us. And once you know that, it’s only a matter of time before they sense it too, and they’ll come for you. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.” – Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book One: The Lightning Thief, page 1

Plightningthiefercy Jackson tries to be a good kid. Sure, he has trouble in school: Percy has dyslexia and ADHD, both of which make it hard for him to concentrate in class and crazy things seem to happen to Percy, often resulting in detention, suspension, or even expulsion from school. And sure, he has trouble at home, too: Percy has never met his father and he doesn’t get along particularly well with his stepfather, often sparking fights between his mother and her new husband. But Percy tries to be a good kid; he really does.

So, when Percy joins a school field trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he vows to behave. Of course, despite his best intentions, Percy is attacked by his pre-algebra teacher and in vaporizing her with a pen-turned-sword, Percy ultimately discovers the reason he seems to attract trouble: Percy is a demigod. With the help of his best friend – who is actually a satyr – Percy travels to Camp Half-Blood, home to other demigods like him. At Camp, Percy learns Greek mythology, archery, sword-fighting, and other skills that he will need to survive. Percy is comfortable at Camp; it is the only place he has ever felt truly at home. However, when Percy discovers that the Titan lord Kronos is attempting to rise from the pit of Tartarus and it becomes clear that another demigod from Camp is helping Kronos do this, Percy leaves the safety of Camp, embarking on a quest to not only prevent a war among the gods, but to save the entire world in the process.

This five-book series offers everything an epic saga should have: heroes, monsters, magic, friendship, betrayal, love, war, and death. The characters within the series are relatable, the language is consistent and is written in the vernacular used by the targeted age group, and despite working within an imaginative setting that combines the belief system of ancient Greece and the day-to-day life of New York, the series effectively blends fantasy with reality to create a believable sequence of events. The Percy Jackson and the Olympians series is a coming-of-age tale, made that much greater by the distinctly Grecian – and yet still modern – themes found throughout.

Does the Library Have My Textbook?

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As a general rule, academic libraries don’t buy textbooks, but read on to see how the library can help you find yours.

textbooksIn the United States libraries like ours don’t usually buy textbooks because they are highly specialized and new editions come out often. So, be careful, because if we do own a copy of your textbook it is likely to be an older edition than your professor wants. Also, even if we own your textbook, you probably won’t be able to check out the book for the whole semester.  However, there are a number of ways you can search to see if you can access the textbook you need through the library.

Check Reserves to See if Your Professor Made a Copy of Your Textbook Available
Sometimes professors put a copy of the class textbook on reserve for you at the Circulation Services Desk. You can search Course Reserves for your professor’s name or the course you are taking. Course materials can be checked out from the desk for a few hours or a few days depending on your professor’s instructions.

Search the Library’s Catalog for Your Textbook
You can search the library’s catalog by title or author name to search for your textbook. Again, the library is not likely to have the most recent edition of your textbook.

Search PASCAL For Your Textbook
If Clemson does not have the book you need, you can check out books from other libraries in South Carolina using PASCAL Delivers. You will need your Clemson ID and password to request a book from PASCAL and it typically takes 3 business days to get to Clemson. Once your book is here, you can pick it up from the Circulation Services desk.

Other Options for Getting Your Textbook
Remember, the Clemson bookstore sells textbooks and has options for renting copies of textbooks to students. Contact the bookstore for more information.

Welcome!

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Week of Welcome tableWelcome to all new students and welcome back to everyone returning!

Stop the welcome table in the lobby of Cooper Library! Play some Plinko! Ask us any questions you have:

  • Where’s Brackett Hall?
  • How many books can I check out?
  • Can I check out a camera?
  • Where’s Java City?

We have loads of information and prizes for anyone who stops and talks to us!

The Welcome Table will be in the lobby from 10am until 2pm, Monday-Thursday, August 18-21.

New Look for Library News

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As you visit the library’s blog today, you’ll notice something different–we’ve had some work done! It’s been years since we’ve updated our look and we decided now was the right time to really re-do things.

The new look is more modern, matches Clemson’s brand and colors, has an easier-to-read font size, and makes it super easy for you to share our stories with your Facebook friends and Twitter followers. Just check out our share icons at the top of each post. You can even email stories to everyone in your contact list.

Looking for the daily photo? You’ll find it in the sidebar to the right of our main content. You can still find them all on our Flickr site.

We are especially happy that the blog was redesigned to be responsive so it should look great on all your mobile devices!

If you have us bookmarked or in a feed reader, here’s our new URL: http://library.clemson.edu/depts/news/.

So come see us and let us know what you think! Love it? Hate it? Leave a comment, here or on Facebook, or tweet us and tell us how you really feel.

Main Door to Special Collections Closed Due to Flooding

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STI door blocked floodThe Strom Thurmond Institute building has been severely affected by the flooding from this past weekend. Water and mud was about 1 foot above the stage in the Self Auditorium. The lobby, elevator, and internal staircase also flooded with water and mud. Clean-up is currently happening. The Special Collections Library did not suffer any major flooding.

Currently, the main entrance into the Strom Thurmond Institute building is closed. Patrons can enter the building on the second floor outside entrance for the offices on that floor. For access to the Special Collections Library, the door west of the main entrance is open. If you are planning a visit, please use the outside staircase on the west side. Signage is in place to help direct you to the entry ways.

If you have questions about materials located in the Special Collections Library or need other assistance, please call (864) 656-3031.

We Love Books, but We also Love Movies!

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book vs movie book display (1)smBecause of this, we have created a display of movies and the books on which they are based. Come check out what you haven’t seen or read; you may find a few new books to add to your cinema-inspired reading list, and you may also discover a new movie or two, based on a book that you already love.

The display is located on the New Books shelf and will be up throughout the month of August. All items on display are available for check-out at the Circulation Services Desk.

Check out this guide to our current displays as well as the ones we’ve had in the past.

Researcher of the Month – Dr. Karl Dieter

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dieterProfessor and Department Chair, Organic Chemistry

Since joining the Clemson University faculty in 1985, Dr. Dieter has made significant contributions in research, mentoring, and leadership. He has authored more than one hundred scientific publications and his work receives an average of sixty-six citations a year. In 2002, he received the Provost’s Award for Scholarly Achievements. He has also received awards from the College of Engineering and Science for mentoring (2004) and faculty achievement (2005). Last fall, he was named chair of the Clemson Chemistry Department. This semester, Dr. Dieter is teaching Research Problems and Organic Chemistry and will also direct students conducting postgraduate organic chemistry research.

To get to know him better, we asked Dr. Dieter some fun questions. We have to admit we were most excited about his choice for favorite spot on campus – Cooper Library! When asked his favorite book, he couldn’t pick just one. Favorites include Siddhartha (for novels), Quantum Reality: Beyond the new physics (for science), and The Closing of the American Mind (for sociology). His favorite hobby is flatwater kayaking and he does it a lot; he’s been 4,800 miles in eight years! When asked what the Library has done for him lately, Dr. Dieter responded, “Helped me set up a scavenger hunt for the freshmen chemistry majors to find a journal article in the stacks. Give the current generation the sensual experience of touching, seeing, and smelling a bound journal.”

Current students, faculty, and staff of Clemson University are eligible for recognition. For more information about the program and the nomination form, visit our Researcher of the Month LibGuide.

What’s New with Photocopiers & Scanners

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During the summer, we’ve made several changes to our faxing, photocopying, and scanning services.

We now have photocopiers that are for copying only and ones that are for scanning only.

Here’s a quick guide to where you can find what you need.

4th floor 

5th floor

1 machine – scan only
1 machine – copier only
1 machine – will be scan only (in progress)1 machine – scan only
1 machine – copier only

Also, the photocopier located on the east side of the 5th floor is now next to the photocopier near Java City.