Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Oxford Public Library Fall Book Sale - Please print and Post!

Below is a press release I sent out to local media for the Friends of the Oxford Free Public Library Book Sale.
Some of the same information is on the poster.
As an experiment I tried to upload it as a PDF file to Blogger, but only image files work.
I am putting it here for easy retrieval by supportive librarians, merchants - anyone with a printer and a place to post bulletins - in the hope you will print and post them. Please help us get the word out, and help us help the library. Thank you!
Oxford Library Book Sale starts October 16th.
Oxford, Massachusetts – September 17, 2014 – The Friends of the Oxford Free Public Library are preparing a Fall Book Sale that will be a book lover’s delight.
Thousands of hard and softcover books in all genres, for all age groups, will be on sale Thursday, October 16th from 12 noon to 7 p.m.; Friday, October 17th from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. (extended hours over previous sales); and Saturday, October 18th from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Large Print books, CD’s, DVD’s, audio tapes and VHS tapes will also be available.
The Friends request NO DEALERS PLEASE!!
You can support the Friends and the Library with your donations of CLEAN, gently read books and media. Donations will be accepted until October 13, and can be left downstairs during current library hours.
The Oxford Free Public Library, at 339 Main Street in Oxford Center, is a member of the C/W MARS network and is open to all residents of Massachusetts. The Friends of the Library are volunteers who support the Library with fundraising and promotional activities. Hours and library news can be found at http://oxfordmapubliclibrary.org/.

Harry R. Williams III
15 Daniel Drive
North Oxford, MA 01537
(508) 208-0539


Monday, September 29, 2014

Compelling, addictive mystery and suspense.

This reminds me of the 1960s when I gobbled up James Bond books as quickly as I could get my hands on them.

Ice Run (Alex McKnight, #6)Ice Run by Steve Hamilton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Weird, strange, bizarre - not just the precipitating event but the extended families of bad guys and the history that resonates into the present. Arrayed against this is our flawed hero, Alex McKnight, with his character and courage, and his few friends, solid but merely human. Keeping up with them is exhausting but rewarding - rewarding as always.

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A Wizard's Secrets - densely packed with concepts.

Secret Formulas of the Wizard of AdsSecret Formulas of the Wizard of Ads by Roy H. Williams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

H. R. Williams reviews a book by R. H. Williams - no relative as far as I know. I stumbled across this fascinating book at the Pearle L. Crawford Memorial Library in Dudley, Massachusetts. I was Library Director there 25 years ago when it was in a much smaller building. The cover art and graphics caught my eye and a quick scan of a few pages enticed me to bring it home. I returned it to the library today after getting my own copy so I can read it at my leisure. It is one of those books that is easy to read, with a captivating style, yet so densely packed with concepts that I prefer to take it in small doses to be savored and (hopefully) remembered. Here is a wonderful quote from page 44, Chapter 18, Living with Tarzan in the Jungle, "Though our 100 million sensory receptors enable us to see, hear, feel, taste, and smell the real world, our 10,000 billion brain synapses allow us to relate new data to stored memories and ideas - to experience things that never happened... We are much better equipped for experiences that are contained fully in the mind. We have lived with Tarzan in the jungle, journeyed beneath the sea with Captain Nemo, been stranded on an island with Robinson Crusoe, and sailed with a peg-legged man named Ahab as he pursued a great white whale."

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Monday, September 22, 2014

Stephen King, tormented souls, "real people" in our everyday world

Mr. MercedesMr. Mercedes by Stephen King
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I gave Stephen King's latest five stars. In Goodreads that means "It was amazing." That is not literally true, because there is nothing amazing about Stephen King producing a five-star book. I had to give it more than four stars because "I really liked it" does not begin to describe the pleasure I found in this novel. King does a wonderful job enabling us to suspend our disbelief in stories that involve the paranormal or supernatural, but when he shines his flashlight into the dark corners of tormented souls, down-to-earth "real people" in our everyday world, his magic is even stronger. I rooted for the flawed hero and the innocents he struggled to protect. I woke up, the morning after finishing the book (today, actually) with the villain's name floating in the forefront of my mind. I marveled at an ending that was truly satisfying without feeling the least bit contrived. I also found one of the bleakest bunch of sentences ever, when he described on page 323 the ruminations of the mass murderer contemplating his next atrocity: "Off you go, killers and killed alike, off you go into the universal null set that surrounds one lonely blue planet and all its mindlessly bustling denizens. Every religion lies. Every moral precept is a delusion. Even the stars are a mirage. The truth is darkness, and the only thing that matters is making a statement before one enters it. Cutting the skin of the world and leaving a scar. That's all history is, after all: scar tissue."
Wow! If that doesn't scare (or scar) you away from it, I highly recommend this novel.

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

I enthusiastically recommend Steve Chandler and his works

Time Warrior: How to Defeat Procrastination, People-Pleasing, Self-Doubt, Over-Commitment, Broken Promises and ChaosTime Warrior: How to Defeat Procrastination, People-Pleasing, Self-Doubt, Over-Commitment, Broken Promises and Chaos by Steve Chandler
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Steve Chandler is one of my favorite "gurus." I listen to him when I'm walking and read him when I'm not. The only problem he gives me is that at the end of each book, as I think about what insights to quote, I feel compelled to tell you to "Just read the whole thing - it's all quotable!" He is wise, compassionate, and committed to empowering his reader. He is humble enough to embody his own advice on page 155: "A ruined life is full of funny stories. And if the warrior emerges from it, then all the stories of the past can now help other people in powerful ways." He embodies this by freely sharing, in all of his works, tales of drunken dissipation and ineffective wheel-spinning in his youth, with a focus on lessons learned. I'll share two more quotes. Page 40: “The biggest fallacy there is about making good use of one’s time is that you have to feel like doing something before you can do it. That you have to know how to motivate yourself prior to your action.” Later, on Page 198, he gives the alternative: " I need to stop all thinking about thinking. Stop trying to replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts. All this thinking is overrated as a motivational force. Doing, on the other hand, is underrated. Doing is the most underrated thing there ever was." Even if you have already got life figured out, you may find yourself forgetting and backsliding. Steve Chandler is one of our greatest "reminders." I enthusiastically recommend him and his works.

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Friday, September 12, 2014

TelegramTowns.com - A product of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette

TelegramTowns.com - A product of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette

If this link is to the article about the Grace Flynn scholarship I will add more information about the Friends of the Library and the upcoming book sale.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Harry The Announcer

My first recording (as Harry The Announcer) with a professional producer. I joined Marty & Samantha of Marty's of Dudley in the WORC-FM studio in Worcester, Mass. I wrote & narrated years of weekly "Critic At Large" spots for WGFP-AM in Webster, Mass, producing them myself in WGFP's studio. My recent Brockton Symphony promotions have been produced on computer in my home studio. I am excited for this to be the first of many opportunities for paid professional voice work.