Fitness Track?


Do you fitness track? If you have a fitness routine and a tracker, how well do they work together to inform you about your progress?

They’re getting smaller and smaller–I just saw news of an Apple-compatible one that’s simply a ring, yet it does all of the things:


Here’s a review from PC Mag:

If you’re really considering getting a fitness tracker, or a new one, though, or just want to know about how they work, then check out a broader review as Consumer Reports has: 

Personally, I’ve been trying out the BellaBeat. It’s lovely because I do feel more inclined to pay attention to my wellness, and I don’t really mind wearing it. I do feel disappointed though, because I thought it might monitor heartrate, and I didn’t really investigate how it does the things it claims to do. I think I overlooked that “little” detail, and learned, once again, that it’s easy to get caught up in hype or indecision and just make a decision that doesn’t old true to your starting criteria. Now I’m here to encourage #InformedDecisions.

@PCMag, @ConsumerReports, #FitnessTrackers, #ConsumerLiteracy

Suggested Listening March 16, 2018

Hi everyone, here are our five musical recommendations for the week; four streaming suggestions and one recommended album on CD.

(Click on the photo to stream or request the album you want to listen to!)

Freegal Streaming Suggestions*

The Underdog (2015) by Aaron Watson (Genre: Country):

Texas based singer-songwriter Aaron Watson has a modern honky tonk style. The Underdog is his acclaimed 2015 LP and features the songs: That Look, Getaway Truck, Freight Train and That’s Gonna Leave a Mark.

The Essential Lee Dorsey (Genre: R&B, Traditional R&B, Rock, Traditional Rock):

New Orleans singer Lee Dorsey served in World War II and then worked as a mechanic while singing in clubs at night before taking up music as a career in the early 1960s. His music is great upbeat party music in the traditional rock and R&B styles. And this collection features his best known songs and more.

Songs in the collection include: Ya Ya, Working in a Coal Mine, Ride Your Pony, Holy Cow and Get Out of My Life Woman.

They Call Me Mud by Mud Morganfield (Genre: Blues):

Mud Morganfield is the eldest son of the late great McKinley Morganfield who was better known as Muddy Waters. Mud didn’t start playing the blues professionally until after his father’s death in the early eighties. His first album came out in 2008.

They Call Me Mud is Morganfield’s brand new album. Songs on the LP include: They Call Me Mud, Who’s Fooling Who? Howling Wolf, Who Loves You and Oh Yeah.

Lost Soul by Various Artists (Genre: R&B, Traditional R&B, Soul, Pop, 1970s Soul):

Lost Soul features a number of great soul classics from the seventies that aren’t widely remembered today including: One Girl Too Late by Brenda & The Tabulations, I’m Back To Collect by Bill Coday, Lead Me On by Gwen McCrae, Personally by Jackie Moore and Are you Lonely For Me Baby by Freddie Scott.

Bonus Streaming Suggestion:

It Takes A Year (1977) by William Ackerman (Genre: Acoustic, Pop, Instrumental, New Age, Easy Listening):

It Takes A Year is a perfect album for putting you in the relation mode! The LP showcases Windham Hill Records founder and guitarist Will Ackerman’s gently melodious instrumental style. Songs on the LP include the gorgeous The Bricklayer’s Beautiful Daughter, The Townshend Shuffle, The Search for the Turtle’s Navel, The Rediscovery of Big Bug Creek Arizona and Tribute to the Philosophy of James Estell Bradley.

CD of the Week:

Damn The Torpedoes (1979) by Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers:

Damn The Torpedoes was the third album released by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and is one of their very finest LPs and, arguably, their best album.

Songs on this classic American rock LP include: Refugee, Here Comes My Girl, Even The Losers, Don’t Do Me Like That, You Tell Me and Louisiana Rain.

Videos of the Week:

The Look by Aaron Watson

Get Out Of My Life Woman by Lee Dorsey

Working In A Coal Mine by Lee Dorsey

They Call Me Mud by Mud Morganfield

Come See About Me by Don Covay & The Goodtimers

Are You Lonely For Me Baby by Freddie Scott

One Girl Too Late: Single Version Brenda & The Tabulations

The Bricklayer’s Beautiful Daughter by Will Ackerman

Refugee by Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers


Have a great weekend!

Linda, SSCL


Artist Biography & Discography Information:

The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits by Joel Whitburn (Billboard Books. New York. 2009.)

P.S. If you have any questions about how to download or stream free music through the Freegal Music service to a desktop or laptop computer or how to download and use the Freegal Music app let us know! Drop by the library or give us a call at: 607-936-3713

*You must have a library card at a Southern Tier Library System member library to enjoy the Freegal Music Service. Your card can be from any library in the system, and the system includes all public libraries in Steuben, Chemung, Yates, Schuyler and Allegheny Counties and includes our own Southeast Steuben Count Library in Corning, New York!

Library cards are free if you live in our service area. And you can obtain a card by visiting the Circulation Desk and presenting staff with a form of ID that features your name and your current address.

Popular iPhone Features

iPhone questions have recently been flooding in from users who are new to smartphones. What features do people seem to love the most?



Use your phone’s GPS capability to locate where you are, where you want to go, and then listen to route directions as you travel. Learn more at: 


Use your phone’s speech-to-text feature to have your iPhone type the words you are speaking. Here are some tips:


Send brief messages to other cell phones or text services. Here are some starting pointers from apple about the iPhone’s Messages app:

if_tap-screen_1504653HINT: Newer iPhones have fancy features where the force of your touch on the screen matters. If the iPhone is not doing what you intend, then I suggest visiting to learn where the settings are–once there, you’ll see how sensitive your iPhone is to your touch.


Digital & Print Recommended Titles Week of March 12, 2018

Hi everyone, here are our recommended titles for the week.

This list includes ebook titles, available through OverDrive and, five print titles available through StarCat.

(Note: Click on the photo of the item you’re interested in to request it or check it out)

Digital Suggestions For The Week: 

1. The Lost Plot by Genevieve Cogman:

After being commissioned to find a rare book, Librarian Irene and her assistant, Kai, head to Prohibition-era New York and are thrust into the middle of a political fight with dragons, mobsters, and Fae.

In a 1920s-esque New York, Prohibition is in force; fedoras, flapper dresses, and tommy guns are in fashion: and intrigue is afoot. Intrepid Librarians Irene and Kai find themselves caught in the middle of a dragon political contest. It seems a young Librarian has become tangled in this conflict, and if they can’t extricate him, there could be serious repercussions for the mysterious Library. And, as the balance of power across mighty factions hangs in the balance, this could even trigger war.

Irene and Kai are locked in a race against time (and dragons) to procure a rare book. They’ll face gangsters, blackmail, and the Library’s own Internal Affairs department. And if it doesn’t end well, it could have dire consequences on Irene’s job. And, incidentally, on her life…

Book 4 in the Invisible Library Series

2. City of Lies, Counterfeit Lady Series, Book 1 by Victoria Thompson:

An exciting new historical mystery series featuring woman-on-the-run Elizabeth Miles—from the beloved national bestselling author of the Gaslight Mysteries.
Every woman plays a part—but some are more dangerous than others…
Like most women, Elizabeth Miles assumes many roles; unlike most, hers have made her a woman on the run. Living on the edge of society, Elizabeth uses her guile to relieve so-called respectable men of their ill-gotten gains. But brutal and greedy entrepreneur Oscar Thornton is out for blood. He’s lost a great deal of money and is not going to forgive a woman for outwitting him. With his thugs hot on her trail, Elizabeth seizes the moment to blend in with a group of women who have an agenda of their own.

She never expects to like or understand these privileged women, but she soon comes to respect their intentions, forming an unlikely bond with the wealthy matriarch of the group whose son, Gideon, is the rarest of species—an honest man in a dishonest world. Elizabeth knows she’s playing a risky game, and her deception could be revealed at any moment, possibly even by sharp-eyed Gideon. Nor has she been forgotten by Thornton, who’s biding his time, waiting to strike. Elizabeth must draw on her wits and every last ounce of courage she possesses to keep her new life from being cut short by this vicious shadow from her past.

3. Fledgling by Octavia Butler:

Fledgling, Octavia Butler’s first new novel in seven years, is the story of an apparently young, amnesiac girl whose alarmingly un-human needs and abilities lead her to a startling conclusion: she is in fact a genetically modified, 53-year-old vampire. Forced to discover what she can about her stolen former life, she must at the same time learn who wanted–and still wants–to destroy her and those she cares for, and how she can save herself. Fledgling is a captivating novel that tests the limits of “otherness” and questions what it means to be truly human.

4. Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century by Jessica Bruder:

The end of retirement?

From the beet fields of North Dakota to the National Forest campgrounds of California to Amazon’s CamperForce program in Texas, employers have discovered a new, low-cost labor pool, made up largely of transient older Americans. Finding that social security comes up short, often underwater on mortgages, these invisible casualties of the Great Recession have taken to the road by the tens of thousands in late-model RVs, travel trailers, and vans, forming a growing community of nomads: migrant laborers who call themselves “workampers.”

On frequently traveled routes between seasonal jobs, Jessica Bruder meets people from all walks of life: a former professor, a McDonald’s vice president, a minister, a college administrator, and a motorcycle cop, among many others―including her irrepressible protagonist, a onetime cocktail waitress, Home Depot clerk, and general contractor named Linda May.

In a secondhand vehicle she christens “Van Halen,” Bruder hits the road to get to know her subjects more intimately. Accompanying Linda May and others from campground toilet cleaning to warehouse product scanning to desert reunions, then moving on to the dangerous work of beet harvesting, Bruder tells a compelling, eye-opening tale of the dark underbelly of the American economy―one that foreshadows the precarious future that may await many more of us. At the same time, she celebrates the exceptional resilience and creativity of these quintessential Americans who have given up ordinary rootedness to survive. Like Linda May, who dreams of finding land on which to build her own sustainable “Earthship” home, they have not given up hope.

5. Seduced by Mrs. Robinson How “The Graduate” Became the Touchstone of a Generation by Beverly Gray:

Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me. Aren’t you?

When The Graduate premiered in December 1967, its filmmakers had only modest expectations for what seemed to be a small, sexy art-house comedy adapted from an obscure first novel by an eccentric twenty-four-year-old. There was little indication that this offbeat story—a young man just out of college has an affair with one of his parents’ friends and then runs off with her daughter—would turn out to be a monster hit, with an extended run in theaters and seven Academy Award nominations.

The film catapulted an unknown actor, Dustin Hoffman, to stardom with a role that is now permanently engraved in our collective memory. While turning the word plastics into shorthand for soulless work and a corporate, consumer culture, The Graduate sparked a national debate about what was starting to be called “the generation gap.”

Now, in time for this iconic film’s fiftieth birthday, author Beverly Gray offers up a smart close reading of the film itself as well as vivid, never-before-revealed details from behind the scenes of the production—including all the drama and decision-making of the cast and crew. For movie buffs and pop culture fanatics, Seduced by Mrs. Robinson brings to light The Graduate’s huge influence on the future of filmmaking. And it explores how this unconventional movie rocked the late-sixties world, both reflecting and changing the era’s views of sex, work, and marriage.

Print Suggestions For The Week: 

1. The Philosopher’s Flight by Tom Miller:

A thrilling debut from ER doctor turned novelist Tom Miller, The Philosopher’s Flight is an epic historical fantasy set in a World-War-I-era America where magic and science have blended into a single extraordinary art. “Like his characters, Tom Miller casts a spell.” (Matthew Pearl, author of The Dante Club and The Last Bookaneer)

Eighteen-year-old Robert Weekes is a practitioner of empirical philosophy—an arcane, female-dominated branch of science used to summon the wind, shape clouds of smoke, heal the injured, and even fly. Though he dreams of fighting in the Great War as the first male in the elite US Sigilry Corps Rescue and Evacuation Service—a team of flying medics—Robert is resigned to mixing batches of philosophical chemicals and keeping the books for the family business in rural Montana, where his mother, a former soldier and vigilante, aids the locals.

When a deadly accident puts his philosophical abilities to the test, Robert rises to the occasion and wins a scholarship to study at Radcliffe College, an all-women’s school. At Radcliffe, Robert hones his skills and strives to win the respect of his classmates, a host of formidable, unruly women.

Robert falls hard for Danielle Hardin, a disillusioned young war hero turned political radical. However, Danielle’s activism and Robert’s recklessness attract the attention of the same fanatical anti-philosophical group that Robert’s mother fought years before. With their lives in mounting danger, Robert and Danielle band together with a team of unlikely heroes to fight for Robert’s place among the next generation of empirical philosophers—and for philosophy’s very survival against the men who would destroy it.

2. Make Way for Her: And Other Stories by Katie Cortese:

A girl afflicted with pyrokinesis tries to control her fire-starting long enough to go to a dance with a boy she likes. A woman trapped in a stalled marriage is excited by an alluring ex-con who enrolls in her YMCA cooking class. A teen accompanies her mother, a prestigious poet, to a writing conference where she navigates a misguided attraction to a married writer―who is, in turn, attracted to her mother―leaving her “inventing punishments for writers who believe in clichés as tired as broken hearts.”

In this affecting collection, Katie Cortese explores the many faces of love and desire. Featuring female narrators that range in age from five to forty, the narratives in Make Way for Her speak to the many challenges and often bittersweet rewards of offering, receiving, and returning love as imperfect human beings. The stories are united by the theme of desperate love, whether it’s a daughter’s love for a parent, a sister’s for a sibling, or a romantic love that is sometimes returned and sometimes unrequited.

Cortese’s complex and multilayered stories play with the reader’s own desires and anticipations as her characters stubbornly resist the expected. The intrepid girls and women in this book are, above all, explorers. They drive classic cars from Maine to Phoenix, board airplanes for the first time, and hike dense forests in search of adventure; but what they often find is that the most treacherous landscapes lie within. As a result, Make Way for Her explores a world of women who crave knowledge and experience, not simply sex or love.

3. Promise: A Novel by Minrose Gwin:

In the aftermath of a devastating tornado that rips through the town of Tupelo, Mississippi, at the height of the Great Depression, two women worlds apart—one black, one white; one a great-grandmother, the other a teenager—fight for their families’ survival in this lyrical and powerful novel

A few minutes after 9 p.m. on Palm Sunday, April 5, 1936, a massive funnel cloud flashing a giant fireball and roaring like a runaway train careened into the thriving cotton-mill town of Tupelo, Mississippi, killing more than 200 people, not counting an unknown number of black citizens, one-third of Tupelo’s population, who were not included in the official casualty figures.

When the tornado hits, Dovey, a local laundress, is flung by the terrifying winds into a nearby lake. Bruised and nearly drowned, she makes her way across Tupelo to find her small family—her hardworking husband, Virgil, her clever sixteen-year-old granddaughter, Dreama, and Promise, Dreama’s beautiful light-skinned three-month-old son.

Slowly navigating the broken streets of Tupelo, Dovey stops at the house of the despised McNabb family. Inside, she discovers that the tornado has spared no one, including Jo, the McNabbs’ dutiful teenage daughter, who has suffered a terrible head wound. When Jo later discovers a baby in the wreckage, she is certain that she’s found her baby brother, Tommy, and vows to protect him.

During the harrowing hours and days of the chaos that follows, Jo and Dovey will struggle to navigate a landscape of disaster and to battle both the demons and the history that link and haunt them. Drawing on historical events, Minrose Gwin beautifully imagines natural and human destruction in the deep South of the 1930s through the experiences of two remarkable women whose lives are indelibly connected by forces beyond their control. A story of loss, hope, despair, grit, courage, and race, Promise reminds us of the transformative power and promise that come from confronting our most troubled relations with one another.

4. The Kremlin Conspiracy by Joel C. Rosenberg:

New York Times bestselling author Joel C. Rosenberg returns with a high-stakes political thriller set in Russia.

Everything he learned to protect our president, he must use to take out theirs.
With an American president distracted by growing tensions in North Korea and Iran, an ominous new threat is emerging in Moscow. A czar is rising in the Kremlin, a Russian president feverishly consolidating power, silencing his opposition, and plotting a brazen and lightning-fast military strike that could rupture the NATO alliance and bring Washington and Moscow to the brink of nuclear war. But in his blind spot is the former U.S. Secret Service agent, Marcus Ryker, trained to protect but ready to kill to save his country.

5. A Farewell to the Horse: A Cultural History by Ulrich Raulff:

A surprising, lively, and erudite history of horse and man, for readers of The Invention of Nature and The Soul of an Octopus.

Horses and humans share an ancient, profoundly complex relationship. Once our most indispensable companions, horses were for millennia essential in helping build our cities, farms, and industries. But during the twentieth century, in an increasingly mechanized society, they began to disappear from human history. In this esoteric and rich tribute, award-winning historian Ulrich Raulff chronicles the dramatic story of this most spectacular creature, thoroughly examining how they’ve been muses and brothers in arms, neglected and sacrificed in war yet memorialized in paintings, sculpture, and novels―and ultimately marginalized on racetracks and in pony clubs. Elegiac and absorbing, Farewell to the Horse paints a stunning panorama of a world shaped by hooves, and the imprint left on humankind.

Have a great week!

Linda, SSCL

You can request physical items, i.e. print books, DVDs & CDs, online via StarCat:

or by calling the library at: 607-936-3713 x 502.

Have a great day!

Linda, SSCL

Online Catalog Links:


The catalog of physical materials, i.e. print books, DVDs, audiobooks on CD etc.

The Digital Catalog (OverDrive)

The catalog of e-books, downloadable audiobooks and a handful of streaming videos.

Freegal Music Service

This music service is free to library card holders and offers the option to download, and keep, three free songs per week and to stream three hours of commercial free music each day:


Digital magazines on demand and for free! Back issues are available and you can even choose to be notified by email when the new issue of your favorite magazine is available.

About Library Apps:

You can access digital library content on PCs, Macs and mobile devices. For mobile devices simply download the OverDrive, Freegal or Zinio app from your app store to get started. If you have questions call the library at: 607-936-3713 and one of our Digital Literacy Specialists will be happy to assist you.

Tech Talk is a Southeast Steuben County Library blog.

Computer Basics Reference Sheets

When we’re immersed in technology it can be easy to forget that others don’t necessarily immerse themselves. Or if you’re usually on a smartphone or tablet, it might be difficult to use a mouse, track pad/touch pad. Here are some guides I made to share with those who would like a reference at the computer. Do you know someone who rarely uses computers? Let them know our library is interested in helping them out, and/or share these tips:Mouse BasicTouchPad BasicCopy and Paste

Move FilesMS Office Desc

Suggested Listening March 9, 2018

Hi everyone, here are our five musical recommendations for the week; four streaming suggestions and one recommended album on CD.

(Click on the photo to stream or request the album you want to listen to!)

Freegal Streaming Suggestions*

Opus (2018) by Al Di Meola (Genre: Jazz, Classical, Guitar):

Opus is the brand new album by Jazz guitarist Al Di Meola and features a nice collection of Jazz instrumentals.

Songs on the LP include: Milonga Noctiva, Notorious, Frozen in Time, Pomp, Left Unsaid and Cerrento Sannita.

Annie Lennox Collection (2009) by Annie Lennox (Genre: Rock, Pop, Vocal):

A cool collection of some of the best songs recorded by former Eurythmics co-founder Annie Lennox during her early solo years.

Songs in the collection include: Little Bird, Walking On Broken Glass, A Thousand Beautiful Things, Pavement Cracks and Dark Road

Blackjack David (1988) by Dave Alvin (Genre: Folk, Rock, Blues, Country, Traditional Rock, Roots Rock):

California based guitarist Dave Alvin is known as a co-founder of the early eighties band The Blasters and, for playing music that incorporates elements of folk, rockabilly, blues and country and which can broadly described as roots rock. Blackjack David is one of his best albums and features a collection of songs that have a quality one might describe as a mix between down-to-earth accessibility and an eloquent everyday style of intensity – check it out!

Songs on the LP include: California Snow, New Highway, Evening Blues, The Way You Say Goodbye, 1968 and From a Kitchen Table.

Plays Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass (1966) by Dave Lewis (Genre: Rock, Classic Rock, Traditional Rock, R&B, Traditional R&B):

This mid-sixties album by Seattle based keyboardist and vocalist Dave Lewis features twelve instrumentals – new versions of songs that were previously recorded by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass. This upbeat and mellow album is perfect for background weekend music!

Songs on the LP include: Walk, Don’t Run, South of The Border, Spanish Harlem, Let It Be Me, Tijuana Taxi and Love Potion #9

Streaming Bonus:

You’re Driving Me Crazy (2018) single by Van Morrison and Joey DeFrancesco (Genre: Vocal, Jazz):

A great jazzy song from the forthcoming album of the same name which will be available on Freegal on its day of release – April 27, 2018.

CD of the Week:

Soul Be It! (2002) by Deborah Coleman (Genre: Blues):

Soul Be It! is blues guitarist Deborah Coleman’s sixth release and it is a fun and swinging album!

Songs on the LP include: My Heart Bleeds Blue, Don’t Lie to Me, I’m a Woman, You’re With Me and I Believe.

Videos of the Week:

Broken Heart by Al Di Meola

Walking on Broken Glass by Annie Lennox

Blackjack David by Dave Alvin

Walk Don’t Run by Dave Lewis

You Drive Me Crazy Album Trailer by Van Morrison and Joey DeFrancesco

Don’t Lie to Me by Deborah Coleman

Have a great weekend!

Linda, SSCL


Artist Biography & Discography Information:

The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits by Joel Whitburn (Billboard Books. New York. 2009.)

P.S. If you have any questions about how to download or stream free music through the Freegal Music service to a desktop or laptop computer or how to download and use the Freegal Music app let us know! Drop by the library or give us a call at: 607-936-3713

*You must have a library card at a Southern Tier Library System member library to enjoy the Freegal Music Service. Your card can be from any library in the system, and the system includes all public libraries in Steuben, Chemung, Yates, Schuyler and Allegheny Counties and includes our own Southeast Steuben Count Library in Corning, New York!

Library cards are free if you live in our service area. And you can obtain a card by visiting the Circulation Desk and presenting staff with a form of ID that features your name and your current address.

Let’s Talk Games

Talking about games is one of the best parts, I think. It’s the awe, the enthusiasm, the surprise, and the shared experience when you are familiar with a popular game or a really well-made game (Flappy Bird, Angry Birds, Candy Crush, Legend of Zelda, Zork, etcetera–)

If you play games–puzzle, platform-er, roll-playing, multiplayer, online, etcetera–

On your tablet, phone, computer, console, etcetera–

I have a recommendation for you: consider watching Extra Credits. They put a lot of experience, skill, and information into their videos, and I really enjoy watching them. The most recent one I watched was on loot boxes, but I think a great one to start on would be on the game-ification of education, or about how games matter. Oh, and you’ll also find some great history videos by them here!

Extra Credits@ExtraCreditz