Friday, April 18, 2014

Gabriel García Márquez: Nobel Prize-Winning Author Dies At 87

Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the Nobel laureate whose novels and short stories exposed tens of millions of readers to Latin America's passion, superstition, violence and inequality, has died at home in Mexico City. He was 87.

Known to millions simply as "Gabo," Garcia Marquez was widely seen as the Spanish language's most popular writer since Miguel de Cervantes in the 17th century. His extraordinary literary celebrity spawned comparisons with Mark Twain and Charles Dickens.

The Autumn of the Patriarch
Chronicle of a Death Foretold
Collected Stories
The General in His Labyrinth
In Evil Hour
Innocent Eraeendira, and Other Stories
Leaf Storm, and Other Stories
Living to Tell the Tale
Love in the Time of Cholera
Memories of My Melancholy Whores
News of a Kidnapping
Of Love and Other Demons
One Hundred Years of Solitude
The Story of a Shipwrecked Sailor
Strange Pilgrims: twelve stories

2014 Pulitzer Prize Book Winners

Fiction: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
History: The Internal Enemy: slavery and war in Virginia, 1772-1832 by Alan Taylor
Biography: Margaret Fuller: a new American life by Megan Marshall
Poetry: 3 Sections: poems by Vijay Seshadri
General Nonfiction: Toms River: a story of science and salvation by Dan Fagin

Friday, April 11, 2014

"Library" Books

April is a month to celebrate one of the best places on the planet: THE LIBRARY!  April is School Library Month, and then there's National Library Week (April 13 through 19), National Library Workers Day (on April 15) and National Bookmobile Day (on April 16).

To help you library lovers, here is a list of books featuring libraries, cats, librarians, Dracula, archives, time travelers, and...books.
Do you have a favorite that we've missed?

The Lost Art of Reading: why books matter in a distracted time by David L. Ulin
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
Library at Night by Alberto Manguel
Dewey: the small-town library cat who touched the world by Vicki Myron
It's a Book by Lane Smith
The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick
The Grand Complication by Allen Kurzweil
The Bad Book Affair by Ian Sansom
Running the Books: the adventures of an accidental prison librarian by Avi Steinberg
The Dewey Decimal System of Love by Josephine Carr
The Borrower by Rebecca Makkai
Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
Free for All: oddballs, geeks, and gangstas in the public library by Don Borchert
People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
A Gentle Madness: bibliophiles, bibliomanes, and the eternal passion for books by Nicholas Basbanes
Ex libris: confessions of a common reader by Anne Fadiman
In the Stacks: short stories about libraries and librarians edited by Michael Cart
The Giant's House by Elizabeth McCracken
The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett
The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett
Rex Libris, Volume 1: I, Librarian by James Turner
Quiet, Please: dispatches from a public librarian by Scott Douglas
This Book is Overdue!: how librarians and cybrarians can save us all by Marilyn Johnson
The Archivist by Martha Cooley
Four Past Midnight (The Library Policeman novella) by Stephen King
The Librarian: a novel by Larry Beinhart
Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman
Here Lies the Librarian by Richard Peck
Libraries in the Ancient World by Lionel Casson
The Most Beautiful Libraries in the World by Jacques Bosser
Love Overdue by Pamela Morsi
The Book on the Bookshelf by Henry Petroski
Library: an unquiet history by Matthew Battles
The Camel Bookmobile by Masha Hamilton
The World's Strongest Librarian by Joshua Hanagarne
The Inner Circle by Brad Meltzer
The Geographer's Library by Jon Fasman

Friday, April 4, 2014

Have YOU read "The Grapes of Wrath" yet?

April 2014 marks the 75th anniversary of the publication of Steinbeck’s crowning literary achievement.

First published in 1939, Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize-winning epic of the Great Depression chronicles the Dust Bowl migration of the 1930s and tells the story of one Oklahoma farm family, the Joads, driven from their homestead and forced to travel west to the promised land of California. Out of their trials and their repeated collisions against the hard realities of an America divided into haves and have-nots evolves a drama that is intensely human yet majestic in its scale and moral vision, elemental yet plainspoken, tragic but ultimately stirring in its human dignity.

A portrait of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless, of one man’s fierce reaction to injustice, and of one woman’s stoical strength, the novel captures the horrors of the Great Depression and probes the very nature of equality and justice in America. As Don DeLillo has claimed, Steinbeck “shaped a geography of conscience” with this novel where “there is something at stake in every sentence.” Beyond that—for emotional urgency, evocative power, sustained impact, prophetic reach, and continued controversy—The Grapes of Wrath is perhaps the most American of American classics.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Just the Facts: Book Discussion Recap from March 27

Is it ever going to get warm? Is it really spring? Anyway, thirteen people withstood the rigors of a chilly March evening to participate in the book discussion. Many thanks to those who attended.

Our book was The Rise of Rome: the making of the world’s greatest empire by Anthony Everitt. The book chronicles the complete history of Rome, from the refugees from the Trojan War landing in Africa and then Italy, the myth of Romulus and Remus, the early kingdoms, the many wars and absorption of the vanquished, the creation of the republic, and then Pompey and Julius Caesar and the rise of the empire. It contains short biographies of the scores of men and women who contributed to and opposed Rome, as well as descriptions of the battles, both military and political, that enabled Rome to conquer and rule the known world. The book is dense with facts, people and information. Our discussion was interesting and varied, covering the events in the book itself, but also the use of elephants in early warfare, the different forms and definitions of slavery at the time, the conflict between the aristocracy and the common people, what it means to be a citizen, the influence of Rome on the modern western world, the importance of Latin, the role model Rome provided for the nascent American republic, the importance of myth in nation building, and much more. It was a very enjoyable evening.

Our next meeting will be on Thursday, April 24, 2014 at 7:00 pm. The book to be discussed, The Graves are Walking: the great famine and the saga of the Irish people by John Kelly, is available at the Circulation Desk. All are welcome.