2013 awash in greens of all shades

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Pantone has dubbed emerald green as 2013’s Color of the Year. A brilliant hue, green often transcends the literal — symbolizing radiance, vitality, spring’s return, ecological awareness and renewal. Readers will find the color green trending through decorating, fashion, environmental and career materials at the Cedar Rapids Public Library Ladd Library and the downtown branch.

In “Color Saves the Day,” Luciana Samu writes that color is a language all its own and “a conversation begins the minute you bring color into a room.” The author depicts the uses of green and other vibrant and neutral shades in home décor. An extensive take on brightening spaces, this source offers some refreshing ideas.

Another book promoting “green” style and substance is “Junk Genius.” It features more than 80 projects — from novice to advanced — that repurpose ho-hum household articles into snazzy jewelry, lampshades, candles, decanters, magnets, furniture and more. Goggin and Sirk’s publication also contains an international resource list and index.

One of the most anticipated aspects of the new Cedar Rapids Public Library’s Grand Opening (tentatively set for Aug. 24) is the green roof. To see how various establishments, including other libraries, have incorporated such beautiful, functional green spaces, read Karla Dakin’s “The Professional Design Guide to Green Roofs.” Despite the formal-sounding title, the book’s casual, informative style of intelligent text combined with incredible photos of these green roofs (for example the Vancouver Public Library roof garden on page 36) makes this a standout selection, found in the Ladd Library’s lighted display on gardening.

Prominent in fashion, home décor and architecture, green living is increasingly becoming popular with youth as well. In “Girls Gone Green” ordinary tweens and teens turn extraordinary when they adopt causes that could change the world. Animal advocate and actress Hayden Panettiere (Juliette Barnes on ABC’s “Nashville”) provides the foreword to stories of budding educators, artists, recyclers, growers, grocers, air/land/water defenders, and environmental scientists. Lynn Hirshfield’s softcover selection is an entertaining, inspiring read for youth and adults alike.

Another form of “greening” takes place in “The Encore Career Handbook” by Marci Alboher. Subtitled “How to Make a Living and a Difference in the Second Half of Life,” this book guides Baby Boomers through the process of career re-invention, assessment, budgeting, networking, presentation, education, and business development. Five appendices delineate such items as the Encore Hot List of prospective careers, sample resumes and bios and further reading and resources.

--- Melia Tatman is a librarian at Cedar Rapids Public Library.

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