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    An old man and a woman live in a beautiful house in the countryside, but they are lonely without any other people or animals about. Enter cats. Millions of cats. The gentleman set out to find a cat, and.... lo and behold.... a hill stood before him, abundant with felines. He chose only one, but more and more cats were stealing his heart. He saw so many that he wanted to take, and so he took them all. The felines formed a long line thru the fields following him home. They drank up an entire pond and ate all of the grass that they could see. 

    But when the man took the cats home, the couple realized that they could not afford food for millions of cats. The cats began to argue and fight with each other in such a small space. A solution eluded the people. Which cats could stay, if any?

    Millions of Cats by Wanda Ga'g, 1928

    Books about cats

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    It was fortuitous that I heard Pico Iyer explaining the origins of his first, last and middle names to Krista Tippett on her radio show, On Being. I've been waiting to read whatever his newest book would be ever since I wrote the post on Traveling Vicariously with Pico Iyer.  

    If you are a Pico Iyer reader, and expect that his most recent book would be about travel, surprise, this one does a complete 360-degree turnaround. 

    As I wait to read The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere, I caught a few snippets on the Christa Tippet show that have piqued my interest. One is the point where Iyer comments on  the prevalence of charging stations in airports. He wonders if when people are going on vacations,  if they are as focused on recharging themselves as they are on recharging their devices.  If you  go away  on a relaxing summer vacation, or not, this may just be the refreshing read you've been waiting  for.  Enjoy!

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  • 06/10/15--10:13: New YA from New Authors
  • An intersex teen, a deadly meteor, and an army of the undead… an impressive collection of writers are making their young-adult debuts with these 10 tantalizing reads.

    Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
    A closeted teen is blackmailed into playing wingman.

    Shutter by Courtney Alameda
    Urban fantasy/horror featuring an ancient organization dedicated to fighting the restless undead.

    We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach
    Four Seattle teens’ lives intersect in the days before a meteor is set to pass through the Earth’s orbit.

    The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey
    Seventeen-year-old Echo, raised by a race of magical people with birdlike feathers, may have found the clue to end a century-long war.

    None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio
    An intersex teen’s diagnosis is leaked to the entire school.

    Mosquitoland by David Arnold
    Sixteen-year-old Mim confronts herself on an odyssey-like bus trip from Mississippi to Cleveland.

    The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall
    A family secret takes an heiress chasing for clues across Europe. First in a series.

    Seeker by Arwen Dayton
    Claire believed her many years of brutal training would be used for a noble purpose, but instead she will be used as an assassin.

    Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
    A world-building and character-driven story of revolution.

    All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
    Told in alternating perspectives, the story of an outcast boy and a damaged girl. For readers who loved Eleanor and Park.

    Staff picks are chosen by NYPL staff members and are not intended tobe comprehensive lists. We'd love to hear your picks! Leave a comment and tell us what you’d recommend.

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    StoryCorps participants
    StoryCorps participants

    It's easy for the digital world to seem isolating. Standing, sitting, walking, driving, we're surrounded by faces looking down at their cellphones. Real human connection—and people paying attention to where they're going—are rare. But we have a choice: be distracted, or be enriched, enlightened, engaged.

    If you're familiar with StoryCorps, odds are it's through NPR, which broadcasts selected pieces every week. (Short segments that turn, inevitably, into my Friday morning cry.) Since 2003, they've recorded over 60,000 interviews, going strong on their mission "to provide people of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives."

    All StoryCorps interviews are archived at the American Folklife Center, and we are pleased to announce that the Black LGBTQ Archive is now available for researchers at the Schomburg Center, in the Manuscripts, Archives, & Rare Books Division. Tamara Thompson, Archivist at StoryCorps, describes how the collection came to be:

    We mined the StoryCorps archive and pulled over 200 stories that reflect a multitude of black LGBTQ experiences to add to the Schomburg's In The Life Archive. The StoryCorps interviews complementtheexistingholdings of the In the Life Archive, and work in conjunction with these materials to continue conversations on race and identity. Some recurring themes in the collection include: love, relationships, activism, coming out, and achieving self-acceptance. As we collect more stories from black LGBTQ participants through our OutLoud and Griot initiatives, we will continue to contribute additional interviews.

    MARB Assistant Curator, Steven G. Fullwood, continues:

    These amazing interviews are informative and entertaining, and complicate mainstream beliefs about black non-heterosexual life in the U.S. Much of what exists in archives are the papers of individuals who have passed on, or organizations that no longer exist; one of the great things about this collection is that it showcases contemporary black LGBTQ voices, offering listeners a window into an array of writers, performing artists, intellectuals, and scholars—and everyday people, sharing their unique experiences.

    "Plenty of creatures are intelligent but only one tells stories." If that's true, and we are more properly pan narrans than homo sapiens, the most human thing we can do is to take a moment and listen to one another. The internet is full of people talking, but connection and real understanding—those come only from listening. Thanks, StoryCorps, for reminding us.

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    Drohobycz. Image ID: 1226408

    How did a Jewish writer, who wrote exclusively in Polish and who died in the Holocaust, become practically a cult figure of mid-20th century literature? From Drohobych (in transliteration from Ukrainian; the Polish form is Drohobycz): a small city, once in the province of Galicia in the Austro-Hungarian empire, until 1918; then the Second Polish Republic between the world wars; then occupied first by the Soviets in 1939-41, and subsequently by the Germans in 1941-44; after that, in the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic; and now a city of independent Ukraine. This was the home town of Bruno Schulz (1892-1942), a Jewish-Polish writer whose life, death, and afterlife have become something of a literary myth. “Myth” and words derived from it, in fact, are most often applied to his work. In the standard critical biography, Jerzy Ficowski’s Regions of the Great Heresy,​ the linkage of Schulz and “myth” is made evident. Even a quick look through Ficowski’s work turns up, besides many uses of the basic words, “myth” and “mythology,” one finds “mythic,” “mythologizer,” “mythological,” “mythical,” “mythologically,” “mythologization,” “mythologizing.” This is not only Ficowski’s invention; the idea of “myth” is one generally accepted in connection with Schulz and his writing and art.

    Schulz led a life that was provincial, but he was also, after his “discovery,” deeply involved in the literary world of Poland. He taught arts and crafts in high schools, frequently referring to his “depression” over the burden this placed on his creativity. He was an artist before he was a writer; he was “discovered” by the Polish literary world only in the mid-1930s, only a few years before the outbreak of the Second World War. During the occupation by the Germans, he was forced into the Drohobych ghetto with the rest of the city’s Jews. But he also found a “protector” of a sort, a local Gestapo head, who admired his art and made use of his skills. This did not help him on 19 November 1942, when he was killed by the Germans during a “wild (that is, unplanned) murder action,” and buried in an unmarked grave. The exact site has never been identified.

    The notion of “the book” which holds all of life’s mysteries is one key to Schulz’s fiction. Here begins the first story in his second and last collection of stories, Sanatorium under the Sign of the Hourglass:​

    I am simply calling it The Book without any epithets or qualifications, and in this sobriety there is a shade of helplessness, a silent capitulation before the vastness of the transcendental, for no word, no allusion, can adequately suggest the shiver of fear, the presentiment of a thing without name that exceeds all our capacity for wonder. How could an accumulation of adjectives or a richness of epithets help when one is faced with that splendiferous thing? Besides, any true r​eader—and this story is only addressed to him—will understand me anyway when I look him straight in the eye and try to communicate my meaning. A short sharp look or a light clasp of his hand will stir him into awareness, and he will blink in rapture at the brilliance of The Book. For, under the imaginary table that separates me from my readers, don’t we secretly clasp each other’s hands? (“The Book”).

    Schulz’s legacy can be found in in the works of a number of leading Jewish writers. Cynthia Ozick’s T​he Messiah of Stockholm​ (1987) is probably the outstanding novel extending Schulz’s legacy; he doesn’t actually appear, but his purported last writing, the manuscript of “The Messiah,” does. (This manuscript has never been found and survives as a hoped-for dream among followers of Schulz. It either never existed, or was hidden but still not found, or perhaps destroyed during the Second World War.) He also appears in the Israeli novelist David Grossman’s novel, S​ee under: Love (​1986). Perhaps the most original use is Jonathan Safran Foer’s, T​ree of Codes​(2010). T​he publisher's note states: “In order to write T​he Tree of Codes,​ the author took an English language edition of Bruno Schulz's T​he Street of Crocodiles​ and cut into its pages, carving out a new story." This doesn’t make for readability, but it’s certainly an unusual treatment!

    The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories

    In Schultz’s Letters and Drawings,​we find his views on his first book (known as ​Cinnamon Shops, ​Sklepy cynamonowe, ​in Poland, and T​he Street of Crocodiles ​in the United States):

    To what genre does Cinnamon Shops​ belong? How should it be classified? I think of it as an autobiographical narrative. Not only because it is written in the first person and because certain events and experiences from the author’s childhood can be discerned in it. The work is an autobiography, or rather a spiritual genealogy, a genealogy par excellence in that it follows the spiritual family tree down to those depths where it merges into mythology, to be lost in the mutterings of mythological delirium. I have always felt that the roots of the individual spirit, traced far enough down, would be lost in some matrix of myth. This is the ultimate depth; it is impossible to reach farther down.

    Writing to a potential Italian publisher for Cinnamon Shops, ​Schulz said: “This book represents an attempt to recreate the history of a certain family, a certain home in the provinces, not from their actual elements, events, characters, or experiences, but by seeking their mythic content, the primal meaning of that history” (also in Letters and Drawings)​.

    It seems best to conclude with the last story in Sanatorium.​ The father is a mythic character, struggling with the world, and disappears at the last, in the form of a cooked crab.

    But my father’s earthly wanderings were not yet at an end, and the next installment—the extension of the story beyond permissible limits—is the most painful of all. Why didn’t he give up, why didn’t he admit that he was beaten when there was every reason to do so and when even Fate could go no farther in utterly confounding him? After several weeks of immobility in the sitting room, he somehow rallied and seemed to be slowly recovering. One morning, we found the plate empty. One leg lay on the edge of the dish, in some congealed tomato sauce and aspic that bore the traces of his escape. Although boiled and shedding his legs on the way, with his remaining strength he had dragged himself somewhere to begin a homeless wandering, and we never saw him again. (“Father’s Last Escape”).

    In 2014, the Library bought a first edition of Schulz’s Sanatorium, ​now a great rarity. In 2015, meanwhile, we acquired an edition of a work by the person who served as something of a “muse” for Schulz, encouraging his work: Dvoyra Fogel (Deborah Vogel), A​kacje kwitna: Montaze​ (The Acacias Bloom: Montages).


    Regions of the Great Heresy

    Bruno Schulz, T​he Street of Crocodiles​(published originally in Polish under the title S​klepy cynamonowe/Cinnamon Shops),​ translated by Celina Wieniewska, 1977).

    Bruno Schulz, Sanatorium under the Sign of the Hourglass (Sanatorium pod klepsydra,​ translated by Celina Wieniewska, 1978).

    Jerzy Ficowski, ed., translated by Walter Arndt with Victoria Nelson, L​etters and Drawings of Bruno Schulz with Selected Prose​(Harper and Row, 1988).

    Jerzy Ficowski, Regions of the Great Heresy: A Biographical Portrait,​ translated and edited by Theodosia Robertson (Norton, 2003).

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    I was excited to attend the system-wide summer reading kickoff on June 4, 2015 at the Mott Haven Library. Since I have been a librarian at NYPL, I have never seen this celebration held at one of our smaller branches. Many staff members, parents and kids, NYPL president Tony Marx, City Council Member Andy King, graphic novelist Nathan Hale and the Mott Haven library staff turned out for this event. Also, many community organizations, such as Bronx Art Space, Free Arts NYC, IDNYC, Reach Out & Read of Greater New York, had tables with information for summer reading participants. It is great to get kids and teens involved in summer reading in order to prevent the "summer slide," in which kids lose their literacy skills over the summer due to not reading. Adults can join summer reading, too!

    The celebration began at 10 am on the street outside the Mott Haven Library. Christopher Platt of NYPL introduced Library President Tony Marx. Marx implored kids to read at least 20 minutes per day during the summer. He told kids that they could read as much as they wanted to in June, July and August. There is a book review contest on the summer reading web site, and the winner will get a chance to go to a Yankees game and go out on the field with NYC's sports stars. He thanked the many sponsors that we are lucky to have support summer reading. They include the New York Yankees, HSBC Bank, Bank USA, HBO, the Pine Tree Foundation of New York, and many others, including anonymous funders.

    An HSBC Bank employee said that he was thrilled with the Mott Haven Library, which recently won $20K for a NYC Neighborhood Library Award. Last year, 225,000 kids in NYC participated in summer reading. The employee's mother was a teacher (so was mine), and he grew up with three sisters. The first year that he tried summer reading, he failed it because he did not like the books that he was reading. Then, his parents found some books that appealed to him more. As a child, he discovered a trick that he still uses today. He reads a few pages of a book towards the beginning, middle and end in order to determine if he would like to read the entire book. Ever since then, he has read a lot more.


    Graphic novelist Nathan Hale said that he did not like reading books that other people picked out for him. However, he loves reading books that he discovered on his own. He delighted the crowd by putting paper plates up to his face that showed how he felt when reading different genres of books. Then, he tossed the plates out into the audience for the kids to keep. Different characters allow people to enter new worlds.

    NYC Council Member Andy King started out his speech with a "Reading's cool!" chant to get everyone energized. He encouraged kids to enjoy summer and learn something new from books, magazines and newspapers. Kids can learn by reading. 

    Why Summer Reading is Important

    Tony Marx concluded by thanking the teachers, library staff, parents, and funders that make summer reading possible. They are our superheroes. Kids like books with pictures and without pictures. Books help people learn about the world and imagine a different world. Kids can find out what is possible in the future, and they can read under the covers with flashlights. Since kids have much more free time in July and August, it is terrific to use that time for reading. Also, they will have a chance to go to Yankee stadium and hobnob with the stars. All of the community members want kids to read during this summer, and the kids should have a great time.

    A guitarist performed, and then 6-year-old Jessiah charmed the crowd with his cello playing. He is featured on the cover of the Summer NOW brochure.

    Dancing and Drumming

    Dancers and drummers with West African attire wowed the party-goers. The kids were around 10 to 16 years old, and they were good. Audience members could tell that the kids loved what they were doing, and the teacher was fantastic. They were perfectly in sync, and they were energetic and on target. It was a pleasure to watch art in motion.


    Nathan Hale's Presentation

    Around 11:30, Nathan Hale entertained summer readers by telling a story while he drew it. He likes to recount American history in his graphic novels, and so he told us the tale which included the Louisiana Purchase. He drew stick figures and dogs and the United States. It was interesting to see a graphic novelist in action. He finished by having the kids help him draw the grossest monster ever.

    I really hope that kids read a lot and learn a lot this summer. Happy summer reading!

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    On June 12, 1942 a thirteen-year-old named Anne Frank received a red-and-white checkered diary. Seventy-three years later, this diary is still one of the most widely read primary source accounts of life during the Holocaust. Yet what has made her The Diary of a Young Girl a classroom classic is also Anne's voice, her treatment of the diary as a dear companion. "I hope I will be able to confide everything to you," she wrote on the first page, and for many readers, it's an incredibly charming invitation to "listen" to the text like a friend. 

    Published diaries implode the line between public and private life, allowing us into the interstice where we can seemingly overhear the author, even as part of the thrill derives from the sense that the author might not normally divulge such information. At some point, we might identify with the diary itself, becoming the unchosen confidant. It's nearly a paradoxical pleasure; the reader gains access to the no longer private life of the author, all the while enjoying the timbre of the whispered secret.

    As we remember Anne Frank, we're also thinking about some of our other favorite published diaries. Here are a few author diaries we love. Tell us which ones you like, and share the authors you wish would publish theirs.

    Anne Frank

    Reborn: Journals and Notebooks, 1947-1963 by Susan Sontag
    Sneak Peek: "Does my 'intelligence' need frequent rejuvenation at the springs of other's dissatisfaction and die without it?" August 19, 1948

    The Journals of John Cheever by John Cheever
    Sneak Peek: "As I approach my fortieth birthday without having accomplished any one of the things I intended to accomplish—without ever having achieved the deep creativity that I have worked toward for all this time—I feel that I take a minor, an obscure, a dim position that is not my destiny but that is my fault, as if I had lacked, somewhere along the line the wit and courage to contain myself competently within the shapes at hand." 1952

    The Journals of Louisa May Alcott by Louisa May Alcott
    Sneak Peek: "The principle event of the winter is the appearance of my book 'Flower Fables.' An edition of sixteen hundred. It has sold very well and people seem to like it. I feel quite proud that the little tales that I wrote for Ellen E when I was sixteen should now bring money and fame." January 1, 1855

    The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962 by Sylvia Plath
    Sneak Peek: "I cannot ignore this murderous self: it is there. I smell it and feel it, but I will not give it my name. I shall shame it. When it says: you shall not sleep, you cannot teach, I shall go on anyway, knocking its nose in. It's biggest weapon is and has been the image of myself as a perfect success: in writing, teaching, and living. As soon as I sniff non-success in the form of rejections, puzzled faces in class when I'm blurring a point, or a cold horror in personal relationships, I accuse myself of being a hypocrite, posing as better than I am, and being, at bottom lousy." October 1, 1957

    Diaries 1910-1923  by Franz Kafka
    Sneak Peek: "Finally, after five months of my life during which I could write nothing that would have satisfied me, and for which no power will compensate me, though all were under obligation to do so, it occurs to me to talk to myself again. Whenever I really questioned myself, there was always a response forthcoming, there was always something within me to catch fire, in this heap of straw that I have been for five months and whose fate, it seems, is to be set afire during the summer and consumed more quickly than the onlooker can blink his eyes." 1910

    The Diary of Virginia Woolf 1920-1924 by Virginia Woolf
    Sneak Peek: "Human beings have figure less than the red berries, the suns & moon risings." January 7, 1920

    Notebooks, 1935-1951 by Albert Camus
    Sneak Peek: "A guilty conscience needs to confess. A work of art is a confession, and I must bear witness. When I see things clearly, I have only one thing to say. It is in this life of poverty, among these vain or humble people, that I have most certainly touched what I feel is the true meaning of life. Works of art will never provide this and art is not everything for me. Let it at least be a means." May 1935

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    The following titles on our Recent Acquisitions Display are just a few of our new books, which are available at the reference desk in the Dorot Jewish Division. Catalog entries for the books can be found by clicking on their covers.

    The following new acquisitions are also available to read online by authenticating with your library card number.


    50 Children: One Ordinary American Couple's Extraordinary Rescue Mission Into the Heart of Nazi Germany
    Steven Pressman

    Genesis: Truman, American Jews, and the Origins of the Arab/Israeli Conflict
    John B. Judis

    In Paradise: A Novel
    Peter Matthiessen

    Jerusalem Unbound: Geography, History, and the Future of the Holy City
    Michael Dumper

    Why the Germans? Why the Jews? Envy, Race Hatred, and the Prehistory of the Holocaust
    Götz Aly

    Through Project Muse

    The Clandestine History of the Kovno Jewish Ghetto Police
    Introduction by Samuel D. Kassow. Translated and edited by Samuel Schalkowsky. Anonymous members of the Kovno Jewish Ghetto Police

    Difference of a Different Kind: Jewish Constructions of Race During the Long Eighteenth Century
    Iris Idelson-Shein

    Jewish Interpretation of the Bible: Ancient and Contemporary
    Karin Hedner Zetterholm

    Jewish Sanctuary in the Atlantic World: A Social and Architectural History
    Barry L. Stiefel

    Leaving Russia: A Jewish Story
    Maxim D. Shrayer

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    Lou Gehrig's Retired #4 via Wikicommons

    So June is here, meaning 2015 is very much flying by. Soon July will arrive, and in the baseball world, that primarily means the All-Star break and the non-waiver trading deadline. But in addition to those important occasions, also of note is Hall of Fame weekend, taking place in Cooperstown, New York from July 24 through 27. This time around, hurlers Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, and John Smoltz, alongside 3000-hit club member Craig Biggio, will be on hand to see their plaques hung up in the Hall of Fame's Gallery. Truly there is no greater honor baseball has to offer. 

    But that's not the only way players can be recognized for their greatness in the game. Another way? To have their number retired by one (or in some cases, more than one) Major League Baseball organization. This usually signifies that the contributions by the player were so grand, they're placed on a special pedestal by the organization. There are exceptions to this reasoning of course, but by and large the player's performance between the lines is the principal reason their number has been retired. Jim Looney's book Now Batting, Number...: The Mystique, Superstition, and Lore of Baseball's Uniform Numbers takes a look at not only at baseball's retired numbers, but also at the history of baseball uniform numbers in general (they weren't always in existence!). Here are just a couple of the oddities you'll find inside Looney's fun book!

    Highest number to be retired: That number is actually 455. No no, it was not worn by a player. It's actually the number of sold out ballgames the Cleveland Indians had at Progressive Field from 1995-2001 (then known as "The Jake", Jacobs Field). The 455 is to honor "The Fans" with the two words accompanying the retired number. So in all technicalities, this number is the largest one to be "retired." Next to that? That would be the number 85, however that number doesn't belong to a player either. This retired number belongs to August "Gussie" Busch Jr., who was the longtime president and owner of the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cards retired #85, which was how old Busch was when he received the honor in 1984. The next highest number? Well, we finally get to an actual baseball player, #72 for the Chicago White Sox catcher, Carlton Fisk.

    First number to be retired: The first baseball player to be honored via retired number was the "Iron Horse" Lou Gehrig. The Yankees were the first franchise to issue numbers to the backs of the their players' jerseys in 1929. Their rationale behind their starting lineup's number distribution was simple: assign them the number of the spot they hit in the batting order. Occupying the cleanup spot, Gehrig was assigned the number 4 for which he's become iconic for. After retiring early in 1939 due to his bout with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the Yankees honored the Iron Horse on July 4th by retiring the number 4 forever. It was also this day that Gehrig gave his famous "Luckiest Man on the Face of the Earth" speech for the Yankee faithful. 

    Players who have their numbers retired by two (or more) franchises: It's special enough when your number is retired by one franchise. Imagine how incredible it must be to feel so appreciated by two  franchises. Very few people have that distinction. Their names? Hank Aaron (Braves & Brewers), Sparky Anderson (as a manager for both the Reds and Tigers), Rod Carew (Angels & Twins), Rollie Fingers (Brewers & Athletics), Carlton Fisk (Red Sox & White Sox), Reggie Jackson (Athletics & Yankees), Greg Maddux (Braves & Cubs), Frank Robinson (Indians & Orioles) & Casey Stengel (as manager of the Mets and Yankees). Now while Jackie Robinson's #42 has been retired by all 30 clubs, only one other player has had his number retired by more than 2 teams. That man is Nolan Ryan, whose number has been retired by 3 teams (#30 in Anaheim, #34 in Texas and Houston).

    Looking for more fun surrounding the history of baseball uniform numbers? Definitely be sure to check out Looney's book, Now Batting, Number...: The Mystique, Superstition, and Lore of Baseball's Uniform Numbers!

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  • 06/11/15--13:14: Summer of STEM
  • Scientifically minded kids have some great new nonfiction titles to choose from when they’re looking for a summer read.

    Bright Sky, Starry City by Uma Krishnaswami
    City kids get a real look at the night sky when the power goes out in their urban neighborhood. Budding astronomers learn about light pollution as well as the solar system, telescopes, and more in a comprehensive glossary and extra reading list. (Ages 6-9.)

    Dinosaurs Live On! And Other Fun Facts by Laura Lyn DiSiena
    Cartoons stand side by side with lots of great details about different kinds of dinosaurs, their lives, and their fossils. (Ages 5-8.)

    The Science of an Earthquake by Lois Sephaban and The Science of a Volcanic Eruption by Samantha Bell
    Budding scientists will enjoy these detailed, well-illustrated tales of—well, of earthquakes and volcanoes. (Ages 8-12.)

    Dandy Decimals by Lisa Arias
    Robots liven up a useful rhyming book on handling decimals to their hundredth places. (Ages 8-12.)

    From Sea to Salt by Lisa Owings
    Completest kids will enjoy learning about the origins of the salt on their dinner tables. Part of a  “Start to Finish” series that also includesFrom Sheep to Sweater and From Strawberry to Jam. (Ages 5-8.)

    Staff picks are chosen by NYPL staff members and are not intended to be comprehensive lists. We'd love to hear your picks! Leave a comment and tell us what you’d recommend.

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    After Claude's Harriet is nothing if not offensive.  So, is it wrong to kind of want to hang out with her, if only for a few hours? Last week, we started off with a little bit of background about this 1973 novel, and its author, Iris Owens. This week, let's get into some discussion questions! 

    Greenwich Village, New York City, 1969 contact sheet 1. Image ID: 1621672
    • When After Claude was released in 1973, Leonard Michaels reviewed it positively for the New York Times. He wrote, in part,  "I haven't read a more wittily offensive serious novel lately, certainly none that made me wonder, while laughing if I weren't disgracing myself by laughing." Does this book make readers laugh today? Is the style of humor, which Michaels also compared to Lenny Bruce, a style that still resonates? 
    • This book is set in the New York City of the early 1970s, which, by all accounts was very different from the New York of today. How do you think this novel captures that time? The art house movie theater, the wild taxi ride, the sense of danger, the Chelsea Hotel—if you experienced that time in the city, does it take you back there? And if you didn't, does it make you wish that you had been there, or happy that you weren't? 
    Map of the Greenwich Village section of New York City. Image ID: psnypl_map_352
    • In an interview, Owens' former friend Stephen Koch said that the book's final scene in the Chelsea Hotel "was for her (Owens), everything. The final scene was essential. It couldn’t not be there. Its role was overwhelmingly significant." What do you make of the book's last scene? And what do you think happens after the book ends? Does Harriet join the cult? Or, does she wait in vain for Roger to return for her? 
    • As you read After Claude, are you on Harriet's side? After all, she does some pretty terrible things throughout the book. (Setting up Rhoda-Regina to live out her rape "fantasies"—by surprise—comes to mind!)  Are you still rooting for Harriet as you read these things, and is it important for you to want a character to triumph? 
    • What would Harriet be like, if Owens wrote the book today? Could this book be written today? What books can you compare to it? 

    Please leave your comments in the box below! Next week we will talk a little bit about antiheroines in fiction, and the question of likability in female authors and characters.  

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    He aquí una variedad de libros nuevos sobre personajes importantes, además de casos de la vida real y otros temas interesantes… (Esta lista también está disponible en formato PDF.)


    La cacería
    Mirta Ojito
    “Una historia de inmigración y violencia en Estados Unidos.”

    Los cerezos negros: Novela basada en hechos reales
    Ernestina Sodi Miranda
    Esta novela basada en hechos reales revela uno de los sucesos más crudos de hoy en día sobre el tráfico humano y narra la historia de jóvenes engañados y secuestrados en el mundo de la mafia.

    El cerrador
    Mariano Rivera

    Revela la extraordinaria historia del jugador de los Yankees de Nueva York quién fue trece veces elegido al Juego de Estrellas, y cinco veces campeón de la Serie Mundial.


    La CIA, Camarena y Caro Quintero: la historia secreta
    J. Jesús Esquivel
    Un libro que ayuda a esclarecer un suceso significativo en la historia del narcotráfico y pone en evidencia personalidades públicas involucradas en el crimen organizado.

    Con una granada en la boca
    Javier Valdez

    “Heridas de la guerra del narcotráfico en México.”

    El conde negro
    Tom Reiss
    “Gloria, revolución, traición y el verdadero Conde de Montecristo.”


    41: un retrato de mi padre
    El expresidente George W. Bush habla sobre la vida y carrera de su padre, también expresidente de los Estados Unidos.

    Demente criminal: el extraordinario caso del Dr. Chirinos
    Ibéyise Pacheco
    Este libro que inspiró la serie televisiva Demente Criminal fue el trabajo investigativo de la valerosa autora y periodista quién puso al descubierto la doble personalidad de un psiquiatra y una figura influyente en la política de su país acusado de asesinato y otros crímenes.

    El extraditado: Benjamín Arellano Félix
    Juan Reyna
    La historia de uno de los máximos jefes del crimen organizado durante la época de los noventa es contada por primera vez a través del testimonio del protagonista.


    Sabina Berman

    “Una historia sobre la fama y la infamia.”

    Hasta Martes
    Luis Carlos Montalván

    “Un guerrero herido y el golden retriever que lo salvó.”

    Libre al fin!
    Michelle Knight

    “Cómo recuperé mi vida después de diez años de encierro y oscuridad: memorias de los secuestros de Cleveland.”



    Los milagros existen
    Brian L. Weiss

    Este libro expone el testimonio de varias personas que regresan a sus vidas anteriores las cuales, según el autor, alberga nuestro propósito espiritual.

    El nazi y el psiquiatra: Hermann Göring y Douglas M. Kelley: un encuentro letal de mentes al fin de la Segunda Guerra Mundial
    Jack El-Hai
    Reporta la relación especial entre un médico de la prisión y uno de los más altos funcionarios del Tercer Reich del imperio militar Nazi.

    El secreto de Selena
    María Celeste Arrarás

    “La reveladora historia detrás de su trágica muerte.”



    Los señores del narco
    Anabel Hernández
    La autora tuvo acceso a una amplia documentación que le permitió exponer las evidencias de la complicidad entre el círculo político y gubernamental con el crimen organizado.

    El último narco
    Malcolm Beith

    Este libro habla sobre el fugitivo más buscado del mundo, después de Osama Bin Laden, y su captura en febrero del 2014.

    Yo soy el hijo del Cartel de Cali
    William Rodríguez Abadía

    Familiares de uno de los fundadores de una de las organizaciones criminales más temidas en la época de los noventa cuentan el testimonio de sus vidas.

    Esta lista también está disponible en formato PDF. Algunas de estas y otras obras también pueden estar disponibles en diferentes formatos. Para más información sírvase comunicarse con el bibliotecario de su biblioteca local. Síganos por ¡Twitter! Para información sobre eventos favor de visitar: Eventos en Español. Más Blog en Español.

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    I attended BEA for the first time and it was amazing. The Jacob Javits Center is a huge facility. The exhibit floor had many in-booth signings. The autographing area also had many popular signings. The lines at the autographing area were longer than the in-booth signing area. BEA is the “largest publishing event in North America” it is a great place open to authors, publishers, and bloggers.

    I had the great opportunity to meet one of my favorite authors, Richelle Mead, and I got an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of her much anticipated standalone title, Soundless.Soundless will be published November 10, 2015. Soundless is the story of Fei a girl who lives in a village where no one can hear. Fei's village depends on food that comes via zipline from the mysterious far away kingdom of Beiguo. When villagers begin to lose their eye sight and the food from Beiguo becomes scarce Fei fears her family will die, until one day Fei wakes up with the ability to hear sound, which becomes her weapon. With her new found ability Feir travels to Beiguo in search she will a truth can change everything.

    I got to meet Scott Westerfeld author of Uglies, which is one the first dystopian book I remember reading. He was signing copies of his upcoming book Zeros which was written with Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti. Zeros will be published September 29, 2015. In Zeros "six Californian teens have powers that set them apart. Take Ethan, a.k.a. Scam. He’s got a voice inside him that’ll say whatever you want to hear, whether it’s true or not. Which is handy, except when it isn’t—like when the voice starts gabbing in the middle of a bank robbery. The only people who can help are the other Zeroes, who aren’t exactly best friends these days. Enter Nate, a.k.a. Bellwether, the group’s “glorious leader.” After Scam’s SOS, he pulls the scattered Zeroes back together. But when the recue blows up in their faces, the Zeroes find themselves propelled into whirlwind encounters with ever more dangerous criminals. At the heart of the chaos they find Kelsie, who can take a crowd in the palm of her hand and tame it or let it loose as she pleases."

    David Levithan was also there signing advance readers of Another Day which is the much anticipated companion to Every Day. Every Day is the story of a guy who wakes up in a different body every day and a different life but always in love with the same girl. Another Day will be published August 29, 2015. I also had the opportunity to meet Jennifer Niven, author of All the Bright Places and Margaret Stohl who was signing advance readers of Black Widow: Forever Red which will be published October 13, 2015. Author Rae Carson was signing her upcoming title Walk on Earth a Stranger which will be published September 22, 2015. The advance readers for Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo were very popular. Six of Crows is the first title in a new series that will come out September 29, 2015. In Six of Crows "Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz's crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction-if they don't kill each other first."

    I left BEA with a haul of 30 books and got 13 of them signed by authors. BEA is a great experience for all book lovers. I saw many great authors there and had a great time.

    The difference between BEA and BookCon is that BEA is only open to literary professionals, while BookCon is open to the general public.

    “BookCon is the event where storytelling and pop culture collide.” Book Con is an amazing event for all book lovers. It was very exciting for me to see so many people excited about new book releases in one place. I had the opportunity to see another of my favorite authors there, Sarah J. Maas. She was very nice and humble.

    I left BookCon with a haul of 16 books. I got a copy of Captivated by You signed by Sylvia Day, author of the Crossfire series, she was just lovely and I got a beautiful poster signed by Sarah J. Maas.

    BEA and Book Con are great events to find out about upcoming titles, meet authors, publishers and bloggers. Also, there are many informative panels.

    Other blogs about BEA and BookCon 2015:

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    George Chalmers was a sore loser. Born in Scotland in 1742, Chalmers came to Maryland in 1763 and practiced as an attorney until 1775. Hostilities between Britain and its colonies drove the ardent loyalist to leave North America for London. In England, Chalmers began amassing documents and writing histories about colonial North America and British imperial policy in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

    George Chalmers (1742-1825) National Galleries of Scotland

    The George Chalmers Collection is an exhaustive archive of Chalmers’s historical work and thinking. In over twenty volumes, the Collection contains Chalmers’s hand-written copies of colonial-era documents along with some original manuscripts. The sheer size of the collection belies just how carefully Chalmers curated the volumes. He never intended his collection to be some unbiased chronicle of important moments and documents in early American history. Rather, Chalmers included documents that would best serve his two main, and interconnected, arguments about colonial American history and of the origins of the American Revolution. First, Chalmers criticized British policy makers for being too lenient on colonists. Second, he argued that the colonists grew aggressively independent and increasingly willing to flout British authority during the eighteenth century, which should have justified more stringent regulations.

    For brevity’s sake, I’ll focus on some of the documents related to New York in the second quarter of the eighteenth-century, a somewhat forgotten era of American history. Flipping through the first New York volume, I was struck by Chalmers’s interest in a dispute over the salary paid to Lewis Morris, the Chief Justice of the colony. Though the New York Assembly—the legislative house elected by the colonists—owed Morris a salary of £300 in 1726, they decided only to pay him £250. Beginning with a speech he gave to the Assembly, in that same year, Morris fought that decision with language that fit Chalmers’s overarching arguments. In his initial speech, Morris questioned the Assembly’s motives for docking his salary. Since they had never complained about his performance, he intimated that something else was afoot.

    Chalmers also included a letter from Morris to an imperial official in London, in which Morris suggested that the Assembly’s action was a thinly veiled power grab. He argued that the Assembly merely wanted to assert their power over judicial officers, who were appointed by the King or his ministers. Controlling salaries might give the colonists power over royal officials. The Assembly’s actions could thus have far-reaching consequences. Chalmers underlined a passage from the letter—he did this regularly to highlight what he thought was important about a document—in which Morris wondered “How mischievous in its consequences, such an example may be to the rest of his Majesty’s plantations and of what dangerous tendency to lessen … their dependence on the British government.” If Morris was correct, then the Assembly punished a perfectly capable judge simply to augment their authority. For Chalmers, this seemingly minor salary dispute demonstrated the irrational lengths to which the colonists would go to assert their independence.

    Morris Speech
    Governor Morris’s speech on the attempts of the Assembly to be independent, 1726-30

    Chalmers also believed that British policies compounded the problem and enabled the colonists’ independent streak. Another set of documents in the volume deal with a period of instability running from when New York Governor William Cosby died in 1736, to 1743 when his successor was finally appointed. In the interim, Lieutenant Governor George Clarke acted as the Governor, a wishy-washy status that did not command the necessary authority to control the colonists. In a statement Chalmers again underlined for impact, Clarke wrote that “an unruly spirit of independency and disaffection has at last got to such a height in that province that he, found the weight and authority of a Lieut. Governor … [not] able to subdue it.” It seemed evident to Clarke that British officials should have been vigilant in clamping down on the independent-minded colonists. But Clarke’s letter suggests that his superiors in England did not seem to understand the severity of the situation in New York. Their indecision hamstrung the King’s ranking agent in the province.

    The pièce de résistance for Chalmers was a speech by Clarke to the assembly in 1741. Clarke’s address coincided with a series of suspicious fires that broke out across New York City during March and April. New Yorkers sensed a conspiracy. Clarke seems to have hoped that he could harness the climate of fear to rein in the Assembly, especially their aggressive actions regarding salaries. He began his speech by shaming the colonists.

    Speech of Clarke
    Speech of Lieutenant-governor Clarke to the Assembly of New York, telling them that a jealousy had for years gone forth in England that the colonies were not without thoughts of throwing off their dependence, 1741.

    According to Clarke, New York was “more highly favored than any other of his Majesty’s Provinces.” Despite this, the Assembly’s “lust for power” led them to usurp the authority over the salaries of government officials. Clarke understood this was an effective route to power because “men are naturally servants of those who pay them.” In asserting themselves, New Yorkers had “subverted the constitution, assuming to themselves one undoubted branch of his Majesty’s prerogative.” In the process, the Assembly came close to confirming the “jealousy which has for some years obtained in England, that the plantations are not without thoughts of throwing off their dependence on the crown of England.” In light of the crisis in Manhattan, Clarke hoped New Yorkers would take stock of the dangers that might follow if they actually became independent. Who would prevent future conspiracies?

    Given that Clarke raised the salary issue in the midst of what was surely the most trying moment of his governorship, Chalmers’s focus on salaries seems well founded. But how do we understand Chalmers’s obsession with an arcane 1740s salary dispute in terms of his broader arguments about the Revolution? The issue of what governmental body controlled the salaries of royally-appointed colonial officials had resurfaced in force during the Townshend Duties crisis in the late 1760s. The Townshend Acts taxed consumer goods—glass, lead, paper, paint, and tea, among other things. Colonists opposed the taxes stridently less because of what they taxed, and more because the tax revenue would support the “administration of justice, and the support of civil government.” In essence, the Empire would use the revenue from the act to pay the salaries of officials in all the colonies they wanted.

    To British officials, men like George Clarke, this provision amounted to a reclamation of a traditional royal prerogative that the colonists had unjustly seized, and a means to restore the balance of power in the imperial relationship. Colonists, though, would decry this as the usurpation of a power that traditionally fell to their elected representatives in the colonial assemblies. Since colonists already lacked representation in Parliament, losing their power over appointed officials would effectively deprive them of the ability to influence colonial policy whatsoever.

    In short, salaries were integral to debates over the legitimacy of both British policies in the 1760s and 1770s and colonists’ reactions to them. Chalmers collected these particular documents because they called into question whether the colonists ever rightly possessed the power over salaries. In the process, these documents undercut a central justification for rebellion. Eighteenth-century American historians—namely the South Carolina doctor, David Ramsay—made essentially the opposite argument. The Revolution, in their view, was an attempt by colonists to regain rights, liberties, and independence that they had long enjoyed. The very legitimacy of the American Revolution and the foundation of the United States hung in the balance of these historical debates.

    History is written by the winners. In American history, loyalists are the ultimate losers. Nevertheless, the Revolution’s losers shaped the history written by its winners. Despite Chalmers’s loyalist political sensibilities, his historical work deeply influenced nineteenth-century American writing about the colonial and revolutionary eras. In 1844, the most famous and most patriotic American historian of his generation, George Bancroft, was accused of plagiarizing Chalmers. Bancroft denied the accusation. But he and many other historians of his generation did rely heavily on Chalmers’s research. They often used the sources that Chalmers complied, only to draw the opposite conclusions. Through his collecting, Chalmers, a loyalist historian, established a narrative that infected the writing of even the most nationalistic and celebratory generation of American historians. That the NYPL has made the collection widely available to a new generation of historians begs the question: how might Chalmers’s research influence future writing on the American Revolution? The digitization this collection invites us to rethink assumptions about the power of history’s losers to shape their own stories, as well as even more basic assumption about how historical narratives come into being.

    Further Reading

    Chalmers’s first publication about the American Revolution, which criticized Edmund Burke and other MPs who supported the rebellious colonists’ position, was Answer from the Electors of Bristol to the Letter of Edmund Burke (London: T. Cadell, 1777). Chalmers’s two major works on American history were Political Annals of the Present United Colonies, from their Settlement to the Peace of 1763 (London: Printed for the author: and sold by J. Bowen, 1780); and An Introduction to the History of the Revolt of the Colonies: Giving from the State Papers, a Comprehensive View of their Conduct, from the Successive Settlement of Each, to their Declaration of Independence (London: Printed by Baker and Galabin, 1782). Chalmers never completed the proposed second volume of Political Annals. However, in 1868 the New-York Historical Society published a continuation of the Annals based on Chalmers’s handwritten manuscripts, which is available in Collections of the New York Historical Society for the Year 1868 (New York: Printed for the Society, 1868).

    For more on Chalmers’s life, see Alexander Du Toit, “Chalmers, George (bap. 1742, d. 1825),”Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edition, May 2011. On Chalmers’s influence on American historical writing in the nineteenth century, see Eileen Ka-May Cheng, “Plagiarism in Pursuit of Historical Truth: George Chalmers and The Patriotic Legacy of Loyalist History,” in Remembering the Revolution: Memory, History, and Nation Making from Independence to the Civil War, ed. Michael A. McDonnell, Clare Corbould, and Frances Clarke (Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 2013), 144–61.

    On early historical writing about the American Revolution, see Peter C. Messer, Stories of Independence: Identity, Ideology, and History in Eighteenth-Century America (DeKalb, IL: Northern Illinois University Press, 2005); Eileen K. Cheng, The Plain and Noble Garb of Truth: Nationalism & Impartiality in American Historical Writing, 1784-1860 (Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 2008); Michael A. McDonnell, Clare Corbould, and Frances Clarke, eds., Remembering the Revolution: Memory, History, and Nation Making from Independence to the Civil War (Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 2013); and Michael D. Hattem, “Historical Charts and David Ramsay’s Narrative of Progress,”The Junto, May 26, 2015.

    About the Early Manuscripts Project

    With support from the The Polonsky Foundation, The New York Public Library is currently digitizing upwards of 50,000 pages of historic early American manuscript material. The Early American Manuscripts Project will allow students, researchers, and the general public to revisit major political events of the era from new perspectives and to explore currents of everyday social, cultural, and economic life in the colonial, revolutionary, and early national periods. The project will present on-line for the first time high quality facsimiles of key documents from America’s Founding, including the papers of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison. Drawing on the full breadth of the Library’s manuscript collections, it will also make widely available less well-known manuscript sources, including business papers of Atlantic merchants, diaries of people ranging from elite New York women to Christian Indian preachers, and organizational records of voluntary associations and philanthropic organizations. Over the next two years, this trove of manuscript sources, previously available only at the Library, will be made freely available through

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  • 06/12/15--11:51: Rock 'n' Read: Crocodiles
  • Crocodiles band
    © Bon Duke 2014


    "Frank O'HaraPatti SmithStevie SmithRichard Brautigan—these have always been my angels in times of writer's block."

    Crocodiles are a fuzzed-out garage rock band hailing from San Diego, California. The band is headed by Charles Rowell and Brandon Welchez, and recently released their fifth full-length album Boys on May 12. Crocodiles's 80s post-punk influences are apparent in one listen, and after interviewing Brandon Welchez, it's clear just how much of an impact literature and poetry has had on the band, too. Read on to learn more, and rock 'n' read forever!

    What role did libraries play in your youth?

    Libraries played a big role—both my parents were big readers. They read to me before I could read to myself and they enrolled me in a program to learn how to read prior to 1st grade so I'd have a head start. I'm terrible at math and science but always was good in English and creative writing classes and that's what I attribute it to. We would do weekly library trips to stock up as a kid. 

    What was your favorite book growing up? How do you feel about this book today?

    I remember really loving this book Seven At One Blow which I think was just a slightly updated version of the Grimm Brothers' Valiant Little Tailor. I haven't read it again since I was a kid but I suppose it's a good lesson to teach children: brains are more important than money, power and might. 

    Has any one book in particular had a lasting effect on you?

    The Brothers Karamazov

    When I was a teenager and becoming politically aware I used to read stuff like Noam Chomsky and really anything from AK Press that looked interesting. I don't know that any one of those books changed my life completely but they certainly helped me see the world and our country differently than if I was just getting my information from my teachers and from mainstream news media. 

    What is a classic that you've never gotten around to reading but would like to one day?

    Oh there are so many! The Brothers Karamazov, Don Quixote, stuff like that. Hopefully I have plenty of time to do that. 

    What genre do you prefer? Are there any you can't get into? 

    I prefer literary fiction and poetry. I can't really get into fantasy. A lot of science fiction rubs me the wrong way but there are a few I love. 

    Suicide Levé, Edouard

    What are you currently reading? If nothing at the moment, what was the last book you read?

    I'm about halfway through Henry Miller's The Air-Conditioned Nightmare. He's definitely one of my favorite authors. 

    Are you looking forward to any books to be released soon?

    I readSuicide and Autoportrait by Edouard Levé and was blown away by both, particularly Suicide. A collection of his poetry is supposed to be published in English soon and I am eagerly awaiting it. 

    While on tour, are you able to get much reading done?

    Yes, I get tons of reading done on the road. At home I maybe average a novel a week or week and a half but on the road it's easily three a week depending on how long the drives are.  

    Richard Brautigan

    Do you have any tour memories involving books or libraries?

    We produce our own poetry chapbooks and sell them alongside our records and t-shirts. If we sell 5 on a whole month long tour it's a smash success. As Richard Hell says "No one reads poetry." 

    Do you do any other writing aside from songwriting? 

    Yes we both write poetry and short stories and occasionally participate in readings around NYC. 

    Have any specific authors, books, and/or poems influenced your songwriting in any way?

    When I'm writing lyrics I'm also constantly reading poetry and other people's lyrics for inspiration. Frank O'Hara, Patti Smith, Stevie Smith, Richard Brautigan—these have always been my angels in times of writer's block. I even stole a line from Mayakovsky once haha...

    John Lydon Rotten

    Do you have any favorite memoirs by musicians?

    Patti Smith's Just Kids, John Lydon's Rotten, Miles Davis's autobiography.

    Have any liner notes stayed with you over the years? 

    The used copy of Nation Of Ulysses's 13-Point Program to Destroy America that I bought had a copy of their zine Ulysses Speaks! in it and as a kid I found it very intriguing and entertaining. I still love looking at it when I'm listening to that record. 

    Do you prefer physical books, e-books, or no strong opinion either way?

    I strongly prefer physical books but I don't have any problem with e-books or anything. I just like the feel and smell of the paper in my hands.

    Do you have a library card? If so, which library system are you a member of?

    I actually don't have a library card but it's because, like records, I am an avid collector. I like owning the books I love and sharing them with friends and trading them. And if I buy something I don't like I sell it for credit to used book shops. I'd save a lot of money if I had a library card but I can't help but hoard them. 

    NYPL currently carries four CDs by Crocodiles. Place a hold on one or all albums, and see if you can catch  the "stolen" Mayakovsky line!

    Crocodiles Summer of Hate
    Summer of Hate
    Crocodiles Sleep Forever
    Sleep Forever
    Crocodiles Endless Flowers
    Endless Flowers
    Crocodiles Crimes of Passion
    Crimes of Passion

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    Eleven-year-old Annie, 9-year-old "Rew" (Andrew) and Gran reside together in a country house adjacent to the Zebra Forest. That is, white birch trees interspersed with darkness makes the trees reminiscent of a zebra's stripes. Annie and Rew love the Zebra. They also adore acting out Treasure Island and enjoying other books. 

    Gran cannot emerge from bed most days... so Annie is tasked with paying the bills and buying groceries for the family. Rew just seems angry, like the man that killed the father. Adele is the social worker who asks about Gran, but she does not want to break the family up.

    One day, a mad man emerges from the kids' beloved forest. An escapee from prison, he locks down the house and takes the three bewildered people hostage. Hours turn into days, which turn into weeks; the man is waiting for something, but who knows what? Annie, Rew and Gran are terrified and at a loss of what to do. 

    Zebra Forest by Adina Rishe Gewirtz, 2013

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    Eataly, an artisanal Italian food and wine marketplace, will present a recruitment on Monday, June 1, 2015, 10 am - 12 pm, for a Restaurant Floor Manager, at  200 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10010 (Entrance is on 23rd Street - check in at the Guest Relations Desk).

    The Virtual Career Fair will be held on Tuesday, June 16, 2015, 10 am - 3 pm for job seekers in the Capital, Hudson Valley, Long Island, Mohawk Valley, NYC, Southern Tier and Western Regions.

    NYC Fire Department will present an information session for career opportunities: EMT,Firefighter, Paramedic on Tuesday, June 16, 2015, 10 am - 2 pm , at the NYS Department of Labor, Queens Workforce 1 Career Center, 168-25 Jamaica Avenue, 2nd  Floor, Jamaica, NY 11432.

    Towne Nursing  Staff, Inc. will present a recruitment on Tuesday, June 16,  2015, 10 am - 2 pm, for Certified Nurse Aide ( 50  openings), Registered Nurse (10 openings), Licensed Practical Nurse (30 openings), at the Bronx  Workforce 1 Career Center, 400 E. Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 10458. 

    SAGEWorks  Workshop - Tips on How to Best Market Yourself in an Interview on Tuesday, June 16, 2015, 11 am - 12 pm  at The SAGE Center, 305 7th Avenue, 6th Floor (Conference Room 2), New York, NY 10001.  SAGEWorks assists people 40 years and older in learning relevant, cutting-edge job search skills in a LGBT - friendly environment.

    EATALY USA  will present a recruitment on Wednesday, June 17, 2015, 10 am- 2 pm for Line Cook (10 openings), Restaurant Host (4 openings), Restaurent Floor Manager (1 opening), Mozzarella Maker (1 P/T opening), Housewares Sales Associate (1 P/T opening), Sous Chef (1 opening), Barista (6 openings), Restaurant Stocker (3 openings), at the  New York State Department of Labor, 9 Bond Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201.

    SAGEWorks Workshop - LinkedIn Essentials: Strategize to Maximize Your Potential on Wednesday, June 17, 2015, 6:15 pm- 7:45 pm at The SAGE Center, 305 7th Avenue, 15th Floor (Cyber Center), New York, NY 10001.  SAGEWorks assists people 40 years and older in learning relevant, cutting-edge job search skills in a LGBT - friendly environment.

    LM Wireless will present a recruitment on Thursday, June 18,  2015, 10 am - 2 pm, for Electronic Technician (20 openings)  at the New York State Department of Labor. Workforce 1 Career Center, 250 Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201.

    SAGEWorks  Workshop - How to Uncover the Hidden Job Market on Thursday, June 18, 2015, 2:00 pm  - 3:30 pm at The SAGE  Center Bronx, 260 East 188th Street, Bronx, NY 10458.  SAGEWorks assists people 40 years and older in learning relevant, cutting-edge job search skills in a LGBT - friendly environment.

    First Annual Veteran's Job and Career Fair on Friday, June 19, 2015, 10 am - 3 pm, at the Bronx Library Center, 310 East Kingsbridge Road, Concourse Level, Bronx, NY 10459.  On site interviews conducted.  Bring copies of your resume and dress in business attire.

    Workforce 1 Industrial and Transportation will present a recruitment on Friday, June 19, 2015, 10 am - 1 pm for CDL & Non-CDL Drivers (10 openings), at the Bronx Workforce 1 Career Center, 400 E. Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 10458.

    Apprenticeship Opportunities in New York  City.             

    affiche le pour

    The New York City Employment and Training Coalition (NYCE&TC) is an association of 200 community based organizations, educational institutions, and labor unions that annually provide job training and employment services to over 750,000 New Yorkers, including welfare recipients, unemployed workers, low-wage workers, at-risk youth, the formerly incarcerated, immigrants and the mentally and physically disabled. View the NYCE&TC Job Listings.

    Digital NYC is the official online hub of the New York City startup and technology ecosystem, bringing together every company,  startup, investor, event, job, class, blog, video, workplace, accelerator, incubator, resource, and organization in the five boroughs. Search  jobs by category on this site.

    St. Nicks Alliance Workforce Development provides Free Job Training and Educational Programs in Environmental Response and Remediation Tec (ERRT).  Commercial Driver's License, Pest Control Technician Training (PCT), Employment Search and Prep Training and Job Placement, Earn Benefits and Career Path Center.  For information and assistance, please visit St. Nicks Alliance Workforce Development or call 718-302-2057 ext. 202. 

    Brooklyn Workforce Innovations helps jobless and working poor New Yorkers establish careers in sectors that offer good wages and opportunities for advancement. Currently, BWI offers free job training programs in four industries: commercial driving, telecommunications cable installation, TV and film production, and skilled woodworking.  

    CMP (formerly Chinatown Manpower Project) in lower Manhattan is now recruiting for a free training in Quickbooks,  Basic Accounting, and Excel. This training is open to anyone who is receiving food stamps but no cash assistance.  Class runs for eight weeks, followed by one-on-one meetings with a job developer. CMP also provides Free Home Health Aide Training for bilingual English/Cantonese speakers who are receiving food stamps but no cash assistance. Training runs Mondays through Fridays for six weeks and includes test prep and taking the HHA certification exam. Students learn about direct care techniques such as taking vital signs and assisting with personal hygiene and nutrition. For more information for the above two training programs, email:, call 212-571-1690, or visit. CMP also provides tuition-based healthcare and business trainings free to students who are entitled to ACCESS funding.

    Nontraditional Employment for Women (NEW) trains women and places them in careers in the skilled construction, utility, and maintenance trades. It helps women achieve economic independence and a secure future. For information call 212-627-6252 or register online.

    Grace Institute provides tuition-free, practical job training in a supportive learning community for underserved New York area women of all ages and from many different backgrounds.  For information call 212-832-7605.

    Please note this will be revised when more recruitment events for the week of June 14  become available.



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    During our last several Teen Advisory Group meetings at Kingsbridge, we looked over the books on the 2015 teen summer reading lists for middle school and high school students. Then we discussed which ones we liked the best and which ones we were looking forward to reading. Check out the titles we picked, and see if you agree with us!

    Which books on our summer reading list would you recommend?

    ChangersChangers Book One: Drew by T. Cooper & Allsion Glock-Cooper [middle school fiction]
    If you like Every Day by David Levithan, you’re going to like this book! It’s a great book if you like adventure. It’s a great book because Ethan doesn’t know a lot about girls, but then in this book he gets to experience a girl’s life. It’s difficult for him, and he has to change everything because his body is transformed!

    The Riverman by Aaron Starmer [middle school fiction]
    What’s weird about this book is that you’ll wonder ... is it a fantasy? Is it made up? Is it real? It’s extremely suspenseful, and you’ll actually enjoy reading every page. It has a good combination of horror and fantasy, like The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black!

    The Shadow HeroThe Shadow Hero by Gene Luen Yang [high school graphic novel]
    This graphic novel is about an Asian-American superhero. It's very funny (especially the part about Hank's mother bossing him around) and it has a lot of action!

    Michael Vey by Richard Paul Evans [high school series]
    A boy gets bullied, and accidentally shows off his supernatural powers. This is a good science fiction book for readers of the Divergent series. It has romance, science fiction, adventure, and other things that teens like. You can’t stop turning the pages!

    The Pregnancy ProjectThe Pregnancy Project: A Memoir by Gaby Rodriguez [high school nonfiction]
    This is a weird book because it’s about a fake pregnancy. This girl was known around the school, and pretending to be pregnant damaged her reputation. I could NEVER imagine doing something like that myself!

    Which books on our list would you like to try reading this summer? Which ones look good to you?

    Okay, that’s all for this post, and that’s all from our Teen Advisory Group until the fall. Happy summer, and happy reading! And don't forget to sign up for NYPL's summer reading club at!

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    Emma Taylor is rich and famous... the dream of any teen, right?

    Acting is definitely a vocation that she adores, but the attention of the tabloids is not. It seems as if every move of her life is recorded and misrepresented.

    Enter Jake, Brett, and Rachel in Emma's real-life drama. Rachel is crazy over Jake, and she thinks the her bff Emma is helping her in this regard, even though Jake barely seems to realize that she is alive. Meanwhile, Brett is swooning over Emma, and Rachel helps the process along, not necessarily to Emma's delight. Rachel envies what Emma has, and their friendship is on the rocks.

    Parties, false moves recorded on video and then played in slow motion. It is a movie star's life.

    Not in the Script by Amy Finnegan, 2014

    It was great to get a fictionalized glimpse into the lives of the rich and the famous.

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  • 06/15/15--10:23: What Would Olivia Pope Read?
  • It’ll be three long months until Scandal returns to TV. In the meantime, your NYPL librarians picked out some books—science fiction to political thrillers to self-help to romance—that everyone’s favorite D.C. fixer might read to pass the time.

    Olivia would love The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Troubled computer hacker Lisbeth Salander is just her kind of recruit. —Rosa Caballero-Li, Ask NYPL

    Republic of Thieves

    If scandalous politics is what they're after, I recommend The Republic of Thieves by Scott Lynch. Forced to help a powerful mage in the city of Karthain, a polis similar to Venice, Locke Lamorra and his best friend must use all the skullduggery at their disposal to rig a political campaign. Unfortunately, Locke’s long-lost love runs the opposing operation. (This is the third book in the Gentlemen Bastards series. Readers may want to pick up the first two for the full background. [Editor’s note: Olivia would definitely want all the details before she got involved.]) —Joshua Soule, Spuyten Duyvil

    Freedom from Toxic Relationships

    Olivia is a fixer, so I’m sure she recognizes that she needs to fix a few things in her own life. While she may not read these books all the way through she would have them stacked by her bed for whenever she needs validation that she's not the crazy one: The Narcissist Next Doorby Jeffrey Kluger, Emotional Blackmail: When People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation and Guilt to Manipulate You by Susan Forward, andFreedom from Toxic Relationships by April Carruthers. —Anne Rouyer, Mulberry Street

    Ms. Pope, that thoroughly tough political animal, famously believes that love should be life-shattering—that it should hurt. Though she might uncork a fine Bordeaux after a long day and curl up with some Fifty Shades, I think that's too fluffy for her. Instead, I imagine her reading something a little heavier that skews philosophical, like the Marquis de Sade's Letters from Prison. —Nancy Aravecz, Mid-Manhattan

    I agree with Nancy: When Olivia's done for the day, she needs something to take her away! I bet the Crossfire quartet by Sylvia Day is on her Kindle or piled on her nightstand. She probably also reads J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood novels, maybe on her phone—nothing like a sexy non-Twilight vampire to take a girl's mind off all the bloodsuckers on the Hill. And since she really does believe in love, goodness and fairness in the world, she reads or watches Pride & Prejudiceat least once a year. —Leslie Tabor, East Manhattan Libraries

    I Wear the Black Hat: Grappling with Villains (Real and Imagined)  by Chuck Klosterman: An exploration of the concepts of anti-heroes and villany.

    And anything on our political fiction book list, including Scandalmonger by William Safire. —Jenny Baum, Jefferson Market

    As a political fixer, Olivia would appreciate Thomas Cromwell's masterful work behind the scenes of Henry VIII's reign as fictionalized in Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. Mantel conveys Cromwell's intelligence and heart even when he is doing the dirty work for his king, something Olivia Pope and Associates could relate to with their commitment to “walk in the sun” even when surrounded by bloody bodies and political backstabbing. —Caitlyn Colman-McGaw, YA Programming

    I think Olivia Pope would read Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, because it is a classic. It's the story of Raskolnikov, a poor student who endures mental and physical punishment for a crime he committed. —Lilian Calix, Hamilton Grange

    I don't know if there's anyone left who hasn't read Gone Girl, but Olivia would definitely relate to the devious mind of Gillian Flynn! —Ronni Krasnow, Morningside Heights


    Politics, schmolitics. Like Ms. Pope, authors Jane Hyun and Audrey S. Lee recognize that changing people’s behaviors in the workplace has its challenges: “In life and in business, all great relationships are built on the essential principles of trust and respect.” Flex: The New Playbook for Managing Across Differencesoffers cogent tips for navigating the power gap and leveraging diverse thinking from teams. —Miriam Tuliao, Selection Team

    She would read All the King's Men—and she’d act contemptuous of the rural accents but secretly be taking notes. —Barbara Cohen-Stratyner, Library for the Performing Arts

    Sex and the Single Girl

    I think Machiavelli’s The Prince would be on her reading list, although she doesn't seem to have taken all his advice to heart. Maybe also Helen Gurley Brown’s Sex and the Single Girl, an early entry (1962) in the “having it all” advice section and considered quite scandalous in its day. —Mary Jones, General Research Division

    I think Olivia would like to go back to a more innocent time in her life and read about another smart, intellectual woman, like Kestral in The Winner's Curse and then follow her adventures in The Winner's Crime. Like Olivia, Kestral has a strong father, follows her heart, and has a great mind for political intrigue. —Sandra Farag, Mid-Manhattan

    Staff picks are chosen by NYPL staff members and are not intended to be comprehensive lists. We'd love to hear your picks! Leave a comment and tell us what you’d recommend.

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