Categories
Recommendations staff favorites

Lots of Love

by Public Service Associate Juliana

I was fourteen years old and obsessed with Kurt Cobain. His song, “Heart-Shaped Box”, inspired me to dump my Valentine candy into a bag and use the empty heart-shaped box for safekeeping. Shiny red, about the size of a dinner plate, it was perfect for love notes, by which I mean literally notes of “Things I Love.”

As a teenager, I kept my eye out for lovely things, jotting them down on scrap paper to store in my heart-shaped box. A kid skipping up the sidewalk at the beginning of the school day. The underwater kiss scene in Romeo and Juliet. The end of art class when we cleaned our paintbrushes, colors swirling down the sink. 

I try to think of that box often, to be on the lookout for (more) things to love. It’s not hard when you work at a library – the fiction stacks, poetry collections, movies, CDs and soundtracks are chock-full of things to love. Films like This Beautiful Fantastic, The Photograph, Only Lovers Left Alive. Sufjan Stevens’ song, “The Mystery of Love”, featured in Call Me by Your Name, is so full of love you will weep. If it’s aching love you’re after, Jane Campion’s understated romantic drama, Bright Star, will surely deliver.

I personally like to linger over those perfect last lines of Nicole Krauss’ The History of Love: “He fell in love. It was his life.” 

Come by and ask us what we’ve fallen in love with lately. We have plenty of recommendations.

  • Romeo and Juliet dir. by Baz Luhrmann (1996) | dvd
  • This Beautiful Fantastic written & dir. by Simon Aboud (2017) |dvd
  • The Photograph written & dir. by Stella Meghie (2020) | dvd
  • Only Lovers Left Alive written & dir. by Jim Jarmusch (2014) |dvd
  • Call Me by Your Name dir. by Luca Guadagnino (2018)| dvd / soundtrack
  • Bright Star written & dir. by Jane Campion (2009) | dvd
  • The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (2005) | book
Categories
Recommendations staff favorites

Festive Reads to Help You Enjoy the Holidays!

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Shorter days make me nostalgic for the winter evenings I sat on a low stool, my back warm in front of a fire that my mother built with logs my father stacked all summer. We’d decorate the tree after Thanksgiving with multicolored lights, salt dough angels and crocheted snowflakes. 

Categories
Recommendations

Further Reading: Leonora Carrington

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Photo: Leonora Carrington by Katie Horna

Earlier this month the library hosted award-winning poet Rikki Santer for a reading from her new poetry collection, Resurrection Letter: Leonora, Her Tarot, and Me. Her new work is a rich homage to the vision and joy of surrealist painter, Leonora Carrington.

Categories
Book Spotlight Recommendations staff favorites

Book Spotlight: Aug 9–Fog

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Aug 9–Fog by Kathryn Scanlan (2019) | print

Spare • Experimental fiction • Literary realism

Welcome to another Book Spotlight! Today’s feature, Aug 9–Fog, will appeal to those who gravitate toward literary realism.

Literary realism: a literary movement that represents reality by portraying mundane, everyday experiences as they are in real life. (Master Class)

All the books currently checked out on my library card contain the subject “everyday life”, books by Tove Jansson, Virginia Woolf, Kathryn Scanlan. These books highlight the beauty of the day-to-day, the minutiae of real life. This results in leisurely paced narratives that focus on character rather than plot; nothing much happens; characters talk about the weather, daily routines and what they’ll watch later on TV.

Categories
Recommendations

Host a Spectacular Movie Night with Help from Your Library

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Image from Walt Disney Studios

Are you looking for a fun way to get together with family and friends? A movie night might be the ticket. Keep it simple with pizza, popcorn and candy, or create a menu based on your movie choice. You and your guests might enjoy it so much that you plan to do it on a regular basis.

Categories
Recommendations

How to Enhance (or Extend) Your Next Vacation

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Planning a trip to somewhere particularly literary? As we inch closer to summer I’m thinking of how to savor time off. Truth be told, a vacation from the first through the fifth sounds like a five day vacation, right? But factor in flights and time zones, it could be more like an evening and three days. This was my recent experience visiting Los Angeles. Day one we arrived in time for dinner, spent three blissful days in the sun, and day five we left before breakfast.

Categories
Recommendations staff favorites

Six Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month

by Public Service Associate Juliana

It’s time to celebrate poets! Do you find poetry intimidating? Does your experience extend beyond Shakespeare’s sonnets you read in high school? This April is the perfect time to give poetry another chance. Read on for six ways to infuse your month with an appreciation for verse.

Categories
Recommendations staff favorites

Celebrate Pi Day with Pizza!

by Public Service Associate Juliana

“Pi Day is celebrated on March 14th (3/14) around the world. Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant — the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter — which is approximately 3.14159. Pi Day is an annual opportunity for math enthusiasts to recite the infinite digits of Pi, talk to their friends about math, and eat pie.” (PiDay.org)

I’m not really a math person, but I’m definitely a pizza person. This Pi Day I suggest a BYOP party! Yep, you read that right. It’s like BYOB except with pizza. A dear friend of mine once threw a party where she invited everyone to bring their favorite pizza from their favorite pizza place to share with everyone. BYOP. Essentially a pizza potluck, plentiful in both variety and quantity. I can’t get over what a great idea this is. Pizza is often a matter of convenience as well as taste preference. BYOP is a way to get to try some of the best that may be outside your normal range.

Categories
Recommendations

A World of Books: The Gilmore List

by Public Service Associate Juliana

I live in two worlds. One is a world of books. I’ve been a resident of Faulkner’s Yoknapatawpha County, hunted the white whale aboard the Pequod, fought alongside Napoleon, sailed a raft with Huck and Jim, committed absurdities with Ignatius J. Reilly, rode a sad train with Anna Karenina and strolled down Swann’s Way. It’s a rewarding world, but my second one is by far superior.
– Rory Gilmore

As someone who works at a library it’s no surprise that my favorite conversations are about books and that my favorite question to ask is “What are you reading?” I particularly love to ask my mom and my sister because they are almost always reading something I need to know about or something I’ve read and should revisit. This happens on a regular basis thanks in large part to the Gilmore list.

Categories
Programs Recommendations

Five Ways to Celebrate Toni Morrison Day!

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Happy Birthday, Toni Morrison! Mark your calendars! February 17th is Toni Morrison Day, and there’s no better time to immerse yourself in her work. Read, watch, listen, or attend, there are myriad ways to honor Morrison’s legacy.