Brooklyn Public Library


Presidential Reads

Feb 12, 2010 11:14 AM | 0 comments

There’s a lot to learn about what it takes to fill the shoes that roam the White House every day. We think Presidents Day is an excellent time to learn a little something about our current commander in chief. You’ll have the day off from work. What else are you going to do? Here’s what our expert staff recommends:


The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama

by Gwen Ifill

Ifill sheds light on the impact of Obama's presidential victory and takes a look at other up-and-coming African American politicians.


Destiny Calling: The Presidential Election of Barack Obama

by Charles M. Madigan

Americans tell how the previous eight years of failed policies prompted them to vote for a newcomer blazing the banner of change.


How Barack Obama Won: A State-by-State Guide to the Historic 2008 Presidential Election

by Chuck Todd

A guide to how Obama achieved his victory and to understanding the political implications of the 2008 presidential election.


!Obámanos!: The Birth of a New Political Era

by Hendrik Hertzberg

A collection of articles by this longtime New Yorker writer as he watched Obama's historic presidential campaign.


Renegade: The Making of a President

by Richard Wolffe

With exclusive access to Obama and his inner circle, veteran political reporter Wolffe portrays the president with stunning detail.


For more recommended reading about the presidents that came before Obama, visit our website.  

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Isn't It Romantic?

Feb 9, 2010 10:15 AM | 0 comments

Did you know that romance novels are among our highest-circulating genres at Brooklyn Public Library? If you're love-struck by these novels, here are the most popular titles you may want to pick up this week... just in time for Valentine's Day.


  1. Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer
  2. Desert Prince, Bride of Innocence by Lynne Graham
  3. The Elusive Bride by Stephanie Laurens
  4. Dance to the Piper by Nora Roberts
  5. At the Duke's Pleasure by Tracy Anne Warren

Print Titles:
  1. Dear John by Nicholas Sparks
  2. Big Girl by Danielle Steele
  3. Eclipse by Stephanie Meyer
  4. The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks
  5. Fallen by Lauren Kate

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This Week at Brooklyn Public Library

Feb 3, 2010 12:56 PM | 0 comments

February is Black History Month (BHM). As we celebrate the rich culture and pride of African Americans and their impact on American history, Brooklyn Public Library is pleased to offer these and other great programs:

Silent Choices- A Documentary Film Screening
Introduction to Genealogy
Brooklyn Sings, Brooklyn Swings: Barbara King 
Celebrate Black History Month: Rhythm & Sound in Theater 

For more information about these or other BHM programs, check us out here


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Feb 2, 2010 11:51 AM | 0 comments

Today's guest blogger is Richard Reyes-Gavilan, Director of Central Library.

Another February 2 is upon us, and with it we mark the passing of winter’s official midway point. For those of us already looking toward spring, we spend at least a fleeting moment celebrating the presentations of Punxsutawney Phil and Staten Island Chuck—our nation’s unfailing rodent prognosticators. As for me, and others like me who frequent the library’s Language and Literature Division, we of course spend the day celebrating James Joyce’s birthday.

Joyceans everywhere know that today marks the author’s 128th birthday. Some folks say—and I don’t disagree—that beyond writing the best English-language novel of all time (the demanding but surprisingly accessible Ulysses), Joyce is responsible for the best English-language short story of all time (“The Dead,” collected in Dubliners). For those who are more visually oriented, John Huston’s spot-on 1987 film adaptation of the story was just re-released on DVD after an irritatingly long period of unavailability.

Central Library also holds an impressive collection of works about Joyce. I’d rank Richard Ellmann’s fascinating biography James Joyce among the greatest literary biographies of the 20th century. If you’d rather jump right into Ulysses, but want some help getting over the bumpy parts, try Harry Blamire’s New Bloomsday Book, a terrific page-by-page guide for the uninitiated.

Finally, for those who couldn’t care less about James Joyce and thought this post was going to be about groundhogs, you’re in luck. You can always check out Bill Murray’s Groundhog Day—an underappreciated classic and certainly some of the actor’s best early work.

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Literary Losses: J. D. Salinger & Howard Zinn

Feb 1, 2010 12:54 PM | 0 comments

Last week was a tough one for writers and readers. We lost the famous reclusive author J. D. Salinger, and activist/writer Howard ZinnI've been a fan of Salinger’s unique and captivating writing since (like so many) discovering The Catcher in the Rye when I was a teenager. His collection, Nine Stories, which contains the cryptic and beautiful “A Perfect Day for Bananafish,” has a depth and staying power that makes it effecting long into adulthood.

Howard Zinn, who grew up in Brooklyn, was still busy writing and working as an activist at 87, and had just produced a major project, the film The People Speak, featuring well-known actors and performers.


We also lost two other prolific authors, Louis Achincloss and Robert Parker. Achincloss was the author of more than 60 books who also happened to be a full-time Wall Street lawyer. His frequent subjects were the corruption and goings-on in New York City’s upper class. If you are a crime and mystery fan, you are probably familiar with Robert Parker. The author of several series featuring private i’s such as Spenser (made into the TV series Spenser for Hire) and Jesse Stone, passed away in his Cambridge home at the age of 77.


These authors will be missed, but we can take some comfort in knowing their work lives on for us to enjoy. Check out their books at your local library.

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