1. Short Takes on Literature this Wednesday, 2:30-4:30

    This semester, our theme is Animal Tales and Human Acts. Share good stories, light refreshments, conversation and ideas. Access to story selections are always available one week prior to each session at the Library Reference Desk.

    Wednesday, October 22, 2:30-4:30, the Library Conference Room

    As Halloween approaches, we look to the master of American horror, Edgar Allen Poe. We will be reading “The Black Cat,” a psychological thriller about the haunting nature of guilt. We will also be reading a story from first-time author, Peter de Niverville, titled “The Petting Zoo." This pairing of classic and contemporary will be the perfect lead-in into next week’s festivities. 

    Come share your own pet stories, and talk about how you felt about this week’s stories. See you there!

     

  2. LaGuardia Library Book of the Week, NO TIME TO LOSE: A LIFE IN PURSUIT OF DEADLY VIRUSES

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    No Time to Lose: A Life in Pursuit of Deadly Viruses by Peter Piot

    "Peter Piot has had an exceptional, adventure-filled career. In the 1970s, Piot was sent to Central Africa as part of a team tasked with identifying a grisly new virus. Crossing into the quarantine zone on the most dangerous missions, he studied local customs to determine how this disease - the Ebola virus - was spreading. Later, Piot found himself in the field again when another mysterious epidemic broke out: AIDS. He travelled throughout Africa, leading the first international AIDS initiatives there. Then, as founder and director of UNAIDS, he negotiated policies with leaders from Fidel Castro to Thabo Mbeki and helped turn the tide of the epidemic. Candid and engrossing, No Time to Lose captures the urgency and excitement of being on the front lines in the fight against today’s deadliest diseases.”

    "No Time To Lose." No Time To Lose. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2014.

    "From the discovery of the Ebola virus to the struggle against HIV, Peter Piot has been at the forefront of the global fight against infectious diseases. In this insightful book, Dr. Piot reminds us of the importance of our shared responsibility for overcoming global humanitarian challenges."

    — Kofi Annan, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and former Secretary-General of the United Nations

    This book will be shelved at QR 359.72 P56 A3 with other books on virology once it is no longer a new book.

     

  3. Short Takes on Literature this Friday, 2:30-4:30

     This semester, our theme is Animal Tales and Human Acts. Share good stories, light refreshments, conversation and ideas. Access to story selections are always available one week prior to each session at the Library Reference Desk.

    Friday, October 17, 2:30-4:30, the Library Conference Room

    This week we look to Lydia Millet for stories about two men who have shaped their careers around caring for animals, to the detriment of their human relationships. We are reading Love in Infant Monkeysand Sir Henry.

    For more about Harry Harlow, and his experiments exploring the importance of affection in the development of baby monkeys, listen to the prologue from This American Life’s "Unconditional Love" episode. You can also see some of the (often disturbing) footage from the experiments.

    Come share your own pet stories, and talk about how you felt about this week’s stories. See you there!

     

  4. LaGuardia Library Book of the Week: SOLOMON NORTHUP (12 Years a Slave)

    Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years a Slave by David Fiske, Clifford W. Brown, and Rachel Seligman

    Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years a Slave provides a compelling chronological narrative of Northup’s entire life, from his birth in an isolated settlement in upstate New York to the activities he pursued after his release from slavery. This comprehensive biography of Solomon Northup picks up where earlier annotated editions of his narrative left off, presenting fascinating, previously unknown information about the author of the autobiographical Twelve Years A Slave.

    This book examines Northup’s life as a slave and reveals details of his life after he regained his freedom, relating how he traveled around the Northeast giving public lectures, worked with an Underground Railroad agent in Vermont to help fugitive slaves reach freedom in Canada, and was connected with several theatrical productions based upon his experiences. The tale of Northup’s life demonstrates how the victims of the American system of slavery were not just the slaves themselves, but any free person of color—all of whom were potential kidnap victims, and whose lives were affected by that constant threat.”

    —From the publsher’s website:
    Solomon Northup by David Fiske, Clifford W. Brown, and Rachel Seligman.” ABC-CLIO.com. N.p., 2014. Web. 02 Oct. 2014.

    This book will be shelved at E444 .N87 F57 2013, with other books on slavery, once it is no longer a “New Book.”

     

  5. Short Takes on Literature this Wednesday, 2:30-4:30

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    This semester, our theme is Animal Tales and Human Acts. Share good stories, light refreshments, conversation and ideas. Access to story selections are always available one week prior to each session at the Library Reference Desk.

    Wednesday, October 8, 2:30-4:30, the Library Conference Room

    This week we look to Haruki Murakami and Alice Adams for two stories about the ways we project our own feelings onto cats and dogs (and the way they seem to know exactly what we mean). We are reading "Town of Cats" and "A Very Nice Dog."

    Come share your own pet stories, and talk about how you felt about this week’s stories. See you there!

     

  6. Short Takes on Literature this Wednesday, 2:30-4:30

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    This semester, our theme is Animal Tales and Human Acts. Share good stories, light refreshments, conversation and ideas. Access to story selections are always available one week prior to each session at the Library Reference Desk.

    Wednesday, October 1, 2:30-4:30, the Library Conference Room

    This week we look to Alice Elliot Dark and Mark Twain for two stories that consider what we owe to our furry friends. Any pet owner knows that there are times when our animals seem almost human. Then a dead mouse appears on your doorstep, or your dog throws up on your bed, and you are reminded of the distance between our minds and theirs. Still, is there anything we wouldn’t do for them? 

    Writing for the New York Times in 2008, Alice Elliot Dark describes her funny nightly scene: 

    So all the animals are in the room at night, snoring, snuffling, pacing around. Rarely are all three asleep at the same time — I know, because their movements wake me. In the morning, they take turns getting up, but one of them is always on the move by 5 a.m., signaling the others. I leap up with them. If I don’t, Jesse wets the hall rug. Tuffy soils the living room. Shane, unless her three cat boxes are pristine — two must be bare, one filled with litter, each on a different floor of the house — wets the cork floor in the dining room.

    Come share the crazy things you do for your pets, and talk about how you felt about this week’s stories. See you there!

     

  7. LaGuardia Library Book of the Week, THE SIXTH EXTINCTION: AN UNNATURAL HISTORY

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    The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert

    "Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In The Sixth Extinction, two-time winner of the National Magazine Award andNew Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert draws on the work of scores of researchers in half a dozen disciplines, accompanying many of them into the field: geologists who study deep ocean cores, botanists who follow the tree line as it climbs up the Andes, marine biologists who dive off the Great Barrier Reef. She introduces us to a dozen species, some already gone, others facing extinction, including the Panamian golden frog, staghorn coral, the great auk, and the Sumatran rhino. Through these stories, Kolbert provides a moving account of the disappearances occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind’s most lasting legacy; as Kolbert observes, it compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.”

    from the author’s website

    This book will be shelved at QE721.2 .E97 K65 2014, with other books on paleontology, once it is no longer a “New Book.”

     

  8. Banned Books Week: Celebrate your Freedom to read!

    From Mark Twain to Captain Underpants to Gossip Girl, your modern library is full of fugitives. Every year, we celebrate Banned Books Week, and your freedom to read every scary, confusing, sexy, or devastatingly true story that comes your way. 

    Exercise your right to read with a classic like I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, or visit with something more current, like The Hunger Games trilogy. Read what makes you happy. Read what opens your world. Read even if it sort of hurts, and read because you are not alone. Above all, read.

    Need more ideas? Consider: 

     

  9. LaGuardia Library Book of the Week, BANKSY: THE MAN BEHIND THE WALL

    Banksy: The Man Behind the Wall by Will Ellsworth-Jones

    "British journalist Ellsworth-Jones (We Will Not Fight…) here profiles the elusive Banksy, a street artist who fiercely defends what’s left of his anonymity and credentials as an outsider. Ellsworth-Jones does a superb job of threading his way through the fascinating world of street and outsider art, asking all the important questions that arise when the art world, social commentary, questions of what is public vs. private, and – most important — commerce, collide.

    What does it tell us about the state of the art world when a self-proclaimed vandal and prankster who became famous for stenciling on public walls and surreptitiously adding his own work to famous museums, suddenly commands six figures for his work, produces an Oscar-nominated documentary about an eccentric camera buff (who originally claimed to be making a documentary about him), and needs a sophisticated organization to protect and provide authentication for pieces previously regarded as defacement of public property? Banksy’s work is competent, clever, thought-provoking, and accessible.

    VERDICT A fluent, enjoyable discussion of an important contemporary cultural phenomenon; this book will appeal especially to readers who are fans of Banksy’s work and is an essential title for devotees of pop culture and outsider art.”

    Woodhouse, Mark. “Banksy: The Man Behind The Wall.” Library Journal 138.1 (2013): 86. Library & Information Science Source. Web. 4 Sept. 2014.

    This book will be shelved at GT3913.43 .B36 2013, with other books on graffiti, once it is no longer a “New Book.

     

  10. Librarian-Goggles, or how learning research skills will improve your grades, get you ahead, and (maybe) save the world

    When you go through your search results, is this what you see? 

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    If so, consider registering for LRC 103: Internet Research Strategies.

    As we change our ideas about what a newspaper or a book looks like, and as it becomes difficult to figure out which websites can be trusted, it is all the more important to equip yourself with a better understanding of where information comes from, why it was created, and how you can use it. In this course we will help you find answers to questions like: 

    • Why do I need sources for my paper, and how do I find them?
    • Wikipedia: a force for good or evil?
    • Accidental plagiarism — is this a real thing? 
    • Is there more to the internet than cat videos and the first page of Google results?
    • How did Facebook know I am looking for new shoes?
    • Why are my textbooks so expensive? 

    Basically, we will teach you how to see the information world like a Librarian. Librarian-Goggles, if you will. For example, here is the same set of search results, but with Librarian-Goggles on:

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    This 1 credit course will prepare you for the modern information world, your career at LaGuardia, and beyond. 

    Register now for one of our three Fall I sections:

    • LRC103.0500 (65307) online course
    • LRC103.0501 (62943), Wednesdays 10:30am - 11:30am
    • LRC103.5400 (65310), Tuesdays 5:45 p.m. - 6:45 p.m.

    See you next week!

    Thanks go to Lori Townsend for creating the images used in this post.