Tag Archives: Fake News

New Children’s Books for December

Catch My Breath by Paul Briggs

33785186Breath… it inspires so many silly sayings: Let me catch my breath. You take my breath away. I need a breath of fresh air. And how did little white flowers come to be known as Baby’s Breath? Breath is a mystery in more ways than one. And this story is all about breath: losing it, trying to find it, even trying to buy it. In the imagination of Paul Briggs, a boy’s breath becomes personified, and it zooms away through farm, forest, and sea, returning only when the boy least expects it.

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Hilda and the Runaway Baby by Daisy Hirst

34051901-_uy630_sr1200630_.jpgIn her truly authentic and original voice, Daisy Hirst introduces two endearing, unforgettable new characters — and a friendship like no other. Hilda the pig lives in a small tin house at the foot of a hill. Life is peaceful, if a bit uneventful, and she is always exactly where she expects herself to be. At the top of the hill lives a curious baby who is never where people expect him to be, which is why he is known as the Runaway Baby. When a chance escape in his stroller brings the Runaway Baby zooming full-speed toward Hilda, their worlds collide, and the beginnings of an unlikely friendship promise to make Hilda’s life a little less quiet and a lot more interesting.

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Pine and Boof: The Lucky Leaf by Ross Burach

pineandboofOne blustery day, Boof the bear’s lucky red leaf gets swept away by the wind. Fortunately for him, Pine the porcupine just happens to walk by with his lucky compass–and the two set off on an adventure to find the lost leaf, only to discover true friendship in the process. In a tale both silly and sweet, Pine & Boof: The Lucky Leaf tells the story of an unlikely friendship through highly original characters and vibrant illustrations that are impossible not to love.

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The Nantucket Sea Monster by Darcy Pattison and Peter Willis

nantucketDo you believe everything you read in the newspaper? Early in August 1937, a news flash came: a sea monster had been spotted lurking off the shore of Nantucket Island. Historically, the Massachusetts island had served as port for whaling ships. Eyewitnesses swore this wasn’t a whale, but some new, fearsome creature. As eyewitness account piled up, newspaper stories of the sea monster spread quickly. Across the nation, people shivered in fear.Then, footprints were found on a Nantucket beach. Photographs were sent to prominent biologists for their opinion. Discussion swirled about raising a hunting party. On August 18, news spread across the island: the sea monster had been captured. Islanders ran to the beach and couldn’t believe their eyes. This nonfiction picture book is a perfect tool to discuss non-political fake news stories.

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William’s Winter Nap by Linda Ashman and Chuck Groenink

williams-winter-napJust when William is ready to fall asleep in his cozy cabin, there is a tap on his window. A chilly chipmunk asks to stay, and Will scooches over in bed. “There’s room for two–I’m sure we’ll fit.” The chipmunk is just the first in a parade of mammals, each bigger than the last, until the bed is full. Then a note is slipped beneath the door: “Do you have room for just one more?” William tugs the door to see who’s there . . . only to find a great big BEAR! Is there enough space to spare? Will the other animals be willing to share? Kids will delight at each new guest’s arrival and enjoy counting along as the animals keep scooching over to fit in William’s bed. Linda Ashman’s clever rhymes set up each page turn with suspense and humor, and the expressions on Chuck Groenink’s characters are perfect. This is must reading for the dark time of year when everyone wants to hibernate!

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The Smear

How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What You See, What You Think, and How You Vote

5114jqvksfl-_sx328_bo1204203200_By Sharyl Attkisson
Call Number: PN4888.C6 A85 2017
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Behind most major political stories there is an agenda: To destroy an idea or the people advancing it. Maybe you watched someone on the news report that Donald Trump is a racist misogynist, read that Hillary Clinton used a body double, or heard that Bernie Sanders cheated in the primary. Regardless of accuracy, the themes get repeated until they become accepted by many as the truth. It’s called “the smear.” Sophisticated operatives work behind the scenes to establish narratives, manipulate journalists, and shape the images you see every day. Nothing is by accident. Now investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson takes you behind the scenes of the modern smear machine, exploring how operatives from corporations and both sides of the political aisle have manipulated a complicit mainstream media to make disinformation, rumor, and dirty tricks defining traits of our democracy. Pulling back the curtain on the shady world of opposition research, she reveals how those in power create well-funded, organized attack campaigns to take down their enemies and influence your opinions, offering an examination of the think tanks, super PACS, LLCs, and nonprofits that have become the hidden backers of some of the biggest smears in American politics. And she doesn’t just tell stories — she names names, sharing her account of how smears take shape and who their perpetrators are — from Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal to liberal political operative David Brock, who, along with his expansive Media Matters for America empire, has been rewriting the rules of the smear game for decades while raking in millions of dollars in generous compensation. In addition, Attkisson reveals transactional journalism and exposes scandalous emails behind the smear industrial complex, showing how Campaign 2016 became the exclamation point on the thirty-year evolution of the smear machine. Dissecting the most divisive, partisan election in American history, she explores how both sides used every smear tactic as a political weapon, culminating in Donald Trump’s hard-fought victory, even as his detractors have continued their smears against him into the Oval Office. What emerges is an assault on the mainstream media’s willingness to sacrifice ethics for clicks, and the cynical politicians and high-paid consultants who exploit this reality. A critical discussion for this perilous moment, The Smear is a look at how the black market serving professional propagandists really works.