After just returning from Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok, where it was hot and humid, this New England weather is killing me. I would love to return to a sunny vacation where the authentic food was amazing, Buddhist temples await, adventures on rivers and massages at every turn. If you’re looking to take a trip to get out of this cold and dreary weather, come take a look at Somerville library’s travel books, starting in the 914 section on the second floor of the main library, you can find a... Read Post
So we had two primary presidential candidates (and by primary, I mean two with actual chances of winning). And the candidate more people voted for lost.
So how does that work? People say this country's a democracy, right?
Well, not quite: especially when it comes to electing the president. When the Constitutional Convention met in 1787, the question of how to elect a president of the United States was considered quite a conundrum. They considered several different methods... Read Post
Yesterday the New York Times ran a two-part column discussing whether or not there is a "wrong way" to read a book. The best part was this quote from Doris Lessing:
“There is only one way to read, which is to browse in libraries and bookshops, picking up books that attract you, reading only those, dropping them when they bore you, skipping the parts that drag — and never, never reading anything because you feel you ought, or because it is part of a trend or a movement. Remember that... Read Post
Libraries are sanctuary spaces for First Amendment rights. All persons are welcome and have the right to use the library free from discrimination and from threat to individual safety.
There is no “hate speech” exception to the First Amendment. Hate speech is any form of expression through which speakers intend to vilify, humiliate, or incite hatred against a group or a class of persons.
Moreover, hate speech stops being just speech and becomes conduct when it targets a... Read Post
The new display at the Somerville Public Library on Highland Ave, created by our one and only staff member, Thy, is now in our glass case for viewing. The display features books, movies and upcoming programming happening all surrounding the Somerville Reads 2016 book "The Witches" by Stacy Schiff.
Below are some pictures of the display:
Blog by Kathryn Smith, author of “The Gatekeeper: Missy LeHand, FDR and the Untold Story of the Partnership That Defined a Presidency.”
Thanks, Cathy, for letting me be your guest blogger today.
Missy LeHand was one of Somerville’s most famous residents in the 1920s-1940s, when she was the private secretary of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Especially during her White House years, 1933-1941, every visit to her family home at 101 Orchard Street generated an interview by the Boston... Read Post
I’m re-reading The Great Gatsby for the first time since college and am astounded. I remember loving the lush, delicate writing at the time but little else. Now I can’t get over the deceptive, seeming simplicity of this very short novel that has so much going on it: a snapshot of the Jazz Age, a critique of class, of entitlement, of capitalism, and the brutal clash of dreams and reality, all conveyed in exquisite prose.
Many of the people and a couple of the events in the novel have... Read Post
By: Aimee Bender
This endearing book is set in California and is about Rose Edelstein, who when tasting food, can feel the hidden emotions of the person who cooked it. The book is about her relationship with her out of touch parents, disappearing brother, fake classmates and how she handles all the emotions people dump into their food. The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake is about being present in everyday life; and how important it is to spend time with people who you actually like... Read Post
Have you ever taken a stroll in Somerville, to come across an octagon shaped house with all the windows boarded up and cameras leering down at you? Well, if you know what I'm talking about, you've seen the Round House at 36 Atherton Street in Somerville. Although, it may not be as mysterious as we all think. The house was built by Enoch Robinson sometime around 1847, right after the locksmith and designer moved to Somerville. He lived in the house with his wife, three daughters, one son and... Read Post
NBC nightly news correspondent Richard Engel has written an intriguing book, And Then All Hell Broke Loose: Two Decades in the Middle East, about his experience living in the Middle East.
From witnessing bomb explosions, kidnappings, and briberies, meeting Saddam Hussein, and at one point was the only living American reporter in Baghdad during the Iraq War, Engel has shared a great and fascinating experience with us that all American should read.
The book begins with... Read Post
One of SPL's most valuable resources for Somerville history is the Somerville Journal, the city's oldest newspaper. We have the complete run of the paper in hard copy and microfilm from the 1870s to the present. Reading old issues is fascinating. Not only do they give a sense of how important newspapers were for news and entertainment before competition from radio, television and the Internet, they also reveal the issues that were on people's minds that seldom make it into the history books... Read Post