We are open again and happy to introduce our new Adult Services Assistant, Jenna A. She is moving into Traci’s spot now that Traci has transitioned to her new administrative post. When you see Jenna, be sure and ask her about restoring that 1966 Mustang Coupe!

Hello, my name is Jenna. Having started in December, I have been a member of the O’Fallon Public Library team just over six months. I started as a Page and am currently the newest member in the Adult Services department. I received a triple degree from Illinois College in International Studies, Japanese, and Political Science. I spent one semester studying abroad at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan. I am currently pursuing my Masters Degree in International Relations at Webster University in Webster Groves, Missouri.

My hobbies are practicing Japanese, badminton, watching Japanese television/anime, and reading! One of the things I love to do in my free time is read classic Japanese literature and I also like to help my dad with restoring his 1966 Mustang Coupe.

One of my favorite things about working at the library is discovering new books related to my interests that I did not know previously existed! My grandma used to work at the public library in Breese, so I always had an interest in working in one and discovering the same passion she held towards the library world.

When I was studying in Japan, I visited the historical sites and museums of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They were the most compelling historical monuments/museums I have ever visited. Not only did I learn a great deal about Japan’s opinion and point of view towards the war, I also discovered the haunting truth regarding the effects of nuclear warfare. Despite the destruction that occurred there 75 years ago, those two cities are beautifully built and I would love to return to them. They are definitely included as my favorite places to visit.

If I could go back in time and meet any person, it would be Winston Churchill. I want to know how a leader like himself thought during times of world war. It’s hard to imagine being in a position of such significance and having to make the decisions leaders like him did. I’m also a huge Little House on the Prairie fan, so I would love to meet Laura Ingalls Wilder too.

I am so grateful that the library has reopened and hope everyone stays healthy!

Here are some of my favorite titles:

Kokoro by Natsume Soseki – Kokoro meaning heart-is the story of a subtle and poignant friendship between two unnamed characters, a young man and an enigmatic elder whom he calls Sensei. Haunted by tragic secrets that have cast a long shadow over his life, Sensei slowly opens up to his young disciple, confessing indiscretions from his own student days that have left him reeling with guilt, and revealing, in the seemingly unbridgeable chasm between his moral anguish and his student’s struggle to understand it, the profound cultural shift from one generation to the next that characterized Japan in the early twentieth century.

A Tale For The Time Being by Ruth Ozeki – A time being is someone who lives in time, and that means you, and me, and every one of us who is, or was, or ever will be.” In Tokyo, sixteen-year-old Nao has decided there’s only one escape from her aching loneliness and her classmates’ bullying. But before she ends it all, Nao first plans to document the life of her great grandmother, a Buddhist nun who’s lived more than a century. A diary is Nao’s only solace–and will touch lives in ways she can scarcely imagine. Across the Pacific, we meet Ruth, a novelist living on a remote island who discovers a collection of artifacts washed ashore in a Hello Kitty lunchbox–possibly debris from the devastating 2011 tsunami. As the mystery of its contents unfolds, Ruth is pulled into the past, into Nao’s drama and her unknown fate, and forward into her own future.

Fushigi Yuugi by Yuu Watase (Manga) – The Mysterious Play or Curious Play, is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Yuu Watase. It tells the story of two teenaged girls, Miaka and Yui, who are pulled into The Universe of the Four Gods, a mysterious book at the National Library.

This volume contains the Fushigi yûgi installments from Animerica extra, Vol. 1 through Vol 2, No. 4 in their entirety.

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