In this issue:

  • First Saturday recap
  • Charitable giving
  • Summer beach reads
  • Young adult spotlight

June First Saturday Recap

Our June First Saturday program featured Carmel Valley resident Steve Davis, a Chief Officer of the U.S. Forest Service who spent his 50-year career observing and responding to California wildfires.

Steve's presentation was specific and informative.  He pointed out that throughout the USA, wildfire season has been lengthening due to drying conditions.  In California alone there are 40 million dead trees, mostly conifers, as the result of our ongoing drought.  Steve explained the meanings of firefighting terms such as hot shots, burn outs, back fires, and fuel breaks, and illustrated what is meant by the “ember flow” responsible for the loss of homes because it can ignite long after the initial fire is extinguished.


Steve emphasized personal responsibility to safeguard one's own home by creating defensible space, and brought a number of tools to demonstrate fire safety, including a water-spray backpack. He also gave out free field guides that describe the burn properties of many local plants.

 photo from

Accompanying his talk, the Buckeye hosted an exhibit of extraordinary photographs of the 2008 Basin Complex Fire shot by Carmel Valley photographer Warren 'Pete' Poitras.  Stop by the library soon to check out these amazing photos.
Thanks very much to Steve Davis and Pete Poitras for reminding us of the danger and destructive power of California wildfires.

Charitable Giving

By Barry R. Harrow, Attorney at Law and

Member of the Board of Directors of The Friends of the Carmel Valley Library

How does The Friends of the Carmel Valley Library help the Library? The answer is, primarily through the thoughtful application of money to help fund various aspects of the Library’s activities that are not fully funded by the county budget. What is the source of that money? The answer is, individuals who make charitable contributions to the Friends.

Charitable contributions can be made in small amounts or large amounts of money. You can make a charitable contribution at any time. You can make it during your lifetime or you can make it when you pass away through your Estate Plan.

Why make a charitable contribution? The reason to do so is that your charitable contribution makes it possible for the Friends to carry out its purpose. If you’re reading this, you probably believe in supporting the Library. Gifts are easy to make. Just write a check, payable to The Friends of the Carmel Valley Library. Gifts made when you pass away take a little Estate Planning and can be done through such devices as a Will, a Living Trust, or a Charitable Remainder Trust. It is always a good idea to explore the possibilities for charitable giving in your Estate Plan. You just need to be sure to have the contribution go to The Friends of the Carmel Valley Library.

A Charitable Remainder Trust is an interesting way to give money to charity. You can take a highly appreciated asset, such as stock or art, and contribute it to a Charitable Remainder Trust. The Trust can sell it without incurring any capital gain (that’s a nice savings right there). The Trust can then pay you (and other individuals, such as your spouse and other family members) a regular income for life from the proceeds. Ultimately, when the income beneficiaries pass away, the balance of the Trust would go to The Friends of the Carmel Valley Library.

A nice feature of making a charitable gift is that the IRS allows you to take a charitable deduction against your income. This results in an income tax savings for you because there is a public policy to support charities and it is written into the Internal Revenue Code.

Everyone's tax situation is different, so you should check with your accountant or lawyer about what is right for your situation. The Friends of the Carmel Valley Library thanks you for your support.

Summer Beach Reading

Summertime means beach reading … or cabin reading, or tent reading … it actually doesn’t matter where, as long as you’re reading.  Here are some recommendations for spending a lazy summer day in your favorite relaxing setting:
Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll.  First there was Gone Girl, then came The Girl on the Train … and the latest entry in “addictingly suspenseful page-turners with Girl in the title” is this one by Knoll, which is rich with secrets and crime.  This is the kind of book you might start after breakfast and not go to sleep until late at night after it’s finished.
Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan. Equal parts coming-of-age memoir, adventure travel story, and love letter to the ocean, this book will immerse you in the world of surfing and help you appreciate how the sport creates such passion and reverence among its millions of devotees.
Barkskins by Annie Proulx.  If you’re looking to tackle an ambitious, meaningful novel, you won’t find any better than this three-family saga that Publisher’s Weekly says will be remembered as Proulx’s finest work.
Dietland by Sarai Walker.  Stressed about how you look in that swim suit?  Take refuge in Walker’s sharply critical and delightfully funny novel that rages against the beauty industry, gender inequality, and America’s cultural obsession with being skinny.
Inferno by Dan Brown.  Read it this summer so you can complain about all the parts they left out in the upcoming movie adaptation.  This sequel to The Da Vinci Code will star Tom Hanks returning as Robert Langdon to thwart another international scheme that involves more puzzles and codes than you can possibly keep track of.


Readin' It Teenstyle: Young Adult Spotlight

Sophia's a girl who knows a lot.  She knows a lot because she reads a lot.  Each month she reviews one of her favorite young adult titles. Here is her book recommendation for May.

Some of you may have become aware by this point that I love fairy tales. So it may not come as a surprise that this month’s book is another reimagined fairy tale. E. D. Baker’s ​The Frog Princess was the inspiration for the Disney movie ​The Princess and the Frog: everybody knows the story of an enchanted prince who turns back into a human when kissed, but what happens when it goes wrong? Princess Emeralda (Emma) finds herself transformed into a frog after kissing the enchanted frog Prince Eadric, and despite initially irritating each other they learn how to work together in their quest to undo the enchantment. Told from the wise and witty perspective of Emma, the narrative has been one of my favorites for a long time. (Basically, it’s a toad­-ally awesome book.)
Thanks for your support of the Carmel Valley Library - now go read something!
There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully as those we spent with a favorite book.  
- Marcel Proust
Copyright © 2016 Friends of the Carmel Valley Library, All rights reserved.

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