Today is World Book & Copyright Day, a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world. Did you know that this date was picked because it in important day in world literature. April 23rd is a symbolic date for world literature. On this day in 1611, Miguel de Cervantes, William Shakespeare and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega died. It is also the date of birth or death of other prominent authors such as Maurice Druon, Haldor K.Laxness, Vladimir Nabokov, Josep Pla and Manuel Mejía Vallejo. Share your love of reading by stopping by the library to pick up a new book, read to your child, and donate any old books for our book sale. What’s your latest favorite read?
Posted in book group; reading group;, books, Cervantes, Nabokov, Shakespeare, UNESCO, Vallejo, World Book Day
Tagged books, Cervantes, Nabokov, reading, Shakespeare, UNESCO, Vallejo, World Book Day
Atul Gawande tackles one of the hardest conversations we have in society today–what to do at the end of our lives? Many in the medical profession have always tried to prolong a life at any cost and at a huge detriment to the patient at hand. When should physicians stop the innate need to save the body but lose the essence of the person? As a physician, Gawande is in a unique position to ponder this as he studied over 200 people as they tackle the end of the life cycle. Many in the medical field have a hard time talking about their patient’s anxieties and just provide them with facts and false hopes. The author has discovered that sometimes not only are we not prolonging lives , but shortening it. He not only talks about this issue but the general aging process itself. What are the different housing and living options that are available for today’s elderly? What can we do to make the last years of our lives about our living and not about our dying? Read Being Mortal and you’ll have some ideas for you and your loved ones.
Posted in aging, Atul Gawande, books, family relationships, nonfiction, reflective, science writing, thought provoking
Tagged aging, Atul Gawande, books, family relationships, nonfiction, reflective, science writing, thought provoking
Posted in books, fiction, literary fiction, nonfiction
Tagged American Library Association, Andrew Carnegie Medals Shortlist 2015, books, Carnegie Corporation, fiction, historical fiction, literary fiction, Newburgh Free Library, nonfiction
If you became enamored with the quirky lovable character of Professor Don Tillman in The Rosie Project you should continue on and read The Rosie Effect by Graeme C. Simsion. Honeymooners, Tillman, a genetics professor, has been married for ten months to the beloved Rosie, medical student/bartender. Don whose personality is very similar to Sheldon Cooper’s Big Bang Theory persona, is trying to adjust to the the idea of being married. It is hard enough for the average Joe to assimilate to marriage but Don is extremely used to routines and order and is doing his best to do things a bit more spontaneously in marriage. Sometimes, that isn’t the easiest thing for him to do and Don is sent into a tailspin when Rosie announces she is pregnant. How will this addition change the relationship between Rosie and Don? Will he be supportive throughout the pregnancy? Author Simsion has continued with his winning formula in The Rosie Effect and leaves the reader laughing and smiling throughout this charming read.
I love the fact that Twitter is lighting up with the hashtag #womeninfiction. Started by Preeti Chibber, manager of Harper Collins Children’s Books, Chibber started tweeting about women authors and women heroines in the world of fiction. Check out her Storify where everyone from Hermoine Granger to Jane Eyre is mentioned in an outpouring of love to strong women characters. I started to think of my favorite women characters in history that I’ve read in the past few months and these two titles came to mind.
Ivoe Williams is the main character of LaShonda Katrice Barnett’s Jam on the Vine. The young well-educated African American woman helps found the first female-run African American newspaper during the turbulent times of the Jim Crow era.
Aaliyah Saleh, the complex woman in Rabih Alameddine’s extraordinary work, The Unnecessary Woman, nominated for a National Book Award. How could I not fall in love with the cantankerous septuagenarian Lebanese woman whose love of books is at her essence and the transformative power in her life. If you haven’t read these two titles, you should add them to your to be read pile. More importantly, who are your recent favorite women protagonists?
Posted in African American Fiction, book group; reading group;, books, jim crow, literary fiction, National Book Award, Women in Fiction
Tagged African American Fiction, Harper Collins Children's Books, Hermoine Granger, historical, LaShonda Katrice Barnett, literary fiction, national book award, Preeti Chibber, strong women, Twitter, women in fiction
Last week the iconic and beloved fantasy author, Terry Pratchett, lost his battle with early onset Alzheimer’s disease and began his walk with Death. Writer of over 70 novels, Pratchett is perhaps best known for his series of books set in Discworld, a flat planet balanced on the back of four elephants where the seas pour over the sides. Discworld was a place ever evolving, becoming more convoluted and somber in Pratchett’s later works, perhaps the result of Pratchett’s diagnosis. The author had written over 40 novels based in this fantasy world — and one of those characters was Death himself. If you have never read anything by Pratchett, a good place to start might be A Blink on the Screen, a collection of shorter fiction by Pratchett that spans his illustrious career. You will see how Pratchett evolved from a young high schooler to the finesse and witticisms of his latter work. In another of his books about Death , Reaper Man, Pratchett wrote “no one is actually dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away”. Please give a work by Pratchett a try so his ripples live on for many more years.
Posted in Alzheimer's Disease, Discoworld, fantasy, fiction, science fiction, short stories, Terry Pratchett
Tagged Alzheimer's Disease, Discworld, fantasy, fiction, science fiction, short stories, Terry Pratchett
A Raisin in the Sun debuted on Broadway on March 11, 1959, The play, written by Lorraine Hansberry, was the first play written and acted by African Americans to appear on the Broadway stage. The play tells the classic story about a struggling African American family living in an apartment on Chicago’s South Side. The premise of the play revolves around the younger family matriarch who is due a life insurance check that could change the family fortune. When the curtain rose on March 11th, Hansberry was worried about its success. It later went on to win the New York Drama Critics’ Circle and was nominated for 4 Tony Awards. Frank Rich of the New York Times wrote that A Raisin in the Sun changed American theatre forever. If you’ve never read or watched this iconic story, please give it a try.
Posted in African-American, books, Broadway, dvds, New York Drama Critics' Circle, play, Tony Awards
Tagged African American literature, books, Broadway, dvds, New York Drama Critics' Circle, play, Tony Awards
The Village Voice recently published an article on lesser known titles for Black History Month, other than the usual recommended classics. Here are the titles we have available at Newburgh Free Library. Take them out and give them a read.
Posted in African American Fiction, black history month, books, fiction, jim crow, nonfiction, slavery
Tagged black history month, books, fiction, jim crow, nonfiction, slavery