Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Un-Common Cinema Presents: From Nothing, Something

Saturday, April 15
2:30 - 4:30 p.m.
Saxe Room

Join us for a monthly screening
of thought provoking film, followed
by a lively discussion of
the issues presented.

Have you ever wondered about the creative process??

About where ideas come from?

And how creatives manage to find these ideas 
over and over as they work?  

On April 15th, 2017, the Worcester Public Library will be showing the documentary "From Nothing, Something."

We will be screening the film and discussing it. 
The film will bring many interesting questions to explore. 

Monday, February 27, 2017

Treasures From the Worcester Room: A Pre-War Playbill

As the United States prepares to commemorate the one hundred year anniversary of America's entry into World War I this year, it is interesting to note that the United States entered the war relatively late.  As such, the war was a subject of fascination to many Americans for years, without Americans having declared a side.  Along those lines, it is interesting to look at at a play that was performed in Worcester 101 years ago this month in February of 1916.  That play was Under Fire written by Roi Cooper Megrue.

The Worcester Room's collection of theater programs has always been one of the collections that has interested me the most.  Not only does it demonstrate how Worcester has long been a home for the arts, it also helps to demonstrate the opinions and culture of the city at the time.  This particular program has a few interesting features worth highlighting.  The program insists that the production is "new and neutral" and promises a show free from "noise, horror and atrocities" and featuring "thrills, comedy and romance". This shows a country and a city that could still look at the First World War through the eyes of a third-party observer.  In fact, when researching the history of the production, I found one article from the time that mentioned that when the show was running on Broadway, the director hired reservists from the German army who were living in America to play German soldiers.  This was mere months before the United States would be battling the German army in Europe.  Just another great example of the treasures that can be found in the library's Worcester Room.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Winter Reading Challege: Last Chance for Submitting Reviews!

Here are a few more fiction book reviews by patrons who participated in our Winter Reading Challenge. Our Winter Reading Challenge will end on February 28 (so if you're going to participate, hurry up and read!). You may even win a Bundle of Books Basket! Want your book review to be featured on our social media? Take the challenge and write a review of the books you read! Sign up and log the books you read here! Good luck and happy reading!

by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

 We all know who the famous character Sherlock Holmes is, but I never actually read about him until now. I'm not a big fan of mystery novels in general, but I found this book very entertaining. I appreciate how wonderfully short and to the point it was since many Brit Lit novels are very verbose. This murder mystery involves a historically cursed family that is "hounded" by an evil dog-like creature. Is it a real dog? Is it a demon? Is it operating on its own? Why is the family being murdered? How can it be stopped? Holmes and Watson crack this multi-layered case in under 300 pages, and the ending will most likely surprise you. It is written from Dr. Watson's point of view, often through diary entries or letters. If you are a (murder) detective/mystery fan, this is definitely the godfather of all mystery books that you must read. Despite not being much of a mystery fan myself, I plan on reading all his Sherlock Holmes books.

Lex P.

by Yaa Gayasi

Homegoing deserves the attention and best-seller status it has acquired -- riveting story by a first-time novelist of two sisters whose lives in 18th century Ghana go very different directions. Wonderfully depicts the different regions of Ghana and in turn, the U.S.
Highly recommended!

Allison H.

by Allen Steele

Alan Steele, Massachusetts resident and former writer for the weekly news journal Worcester Magazine, is the author of the science fiction novel "Coyote". Coyote is the story of why the first extrasolar human colony is founded and how the colonists are challenged by the alien ecology and their own human mistakes and frailties. The colony is on the moon of a ringed planet a few hundred light-years from Earth - the planet is named "Bear" and one of its moons is the titular "Coyote". During the 230 year-long voyage the humans are kept asleep - until one is "accidentally" awakened. The novel is divided into sections, with each section having its own protagonist. The first section takes place on Earth, where the crew and colonists are assembled. The next part is told from the point of view of the man who tries to remain sane after discovering he is the sole conscious person on board. There's a section told by Wendy, a teenager, who is one of the colonists, and another section which follows the misadventures of a teenage boy. Coyote will appeal to readers that enjoy grand adventure, hard science fiction, and the works of Robert Heinlein. But I think the first section, in particular, will draw the interest of politically-aware readers: How did this hugely expensive space mission come to be funded? Why is there only 1 star on the flag? How does ship's captain Robert E Lee modify his orders? And what secret is Wendy's father hiding from both her and Captain Lee?

Melody F.

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by Ben Aaronovitch 

The Hanging Tree is a fun, fast-paced mystery that will remind you of Doctor Who and Percy Jackson for grown-ups. Peter Grant is a policeman in London who specializes in supernatural occurrences -- and London is full of them. This is the latest installment in the series "The Rivers of London". In the Hanging Tree the world of the super-rich collides with the "demi-monde" of fae, river goddesses and elves. The result is murder most foul.

Maryagnes R.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo’s name first broke the scene when Madonna heavily invested in her art. Kahlo was a Mexican painter whose art did not fit any convenient movement of the time; not even the current Surrealism.  No one was like Kahlo. She  had a sad story as a physically challenged woman. She broke her back and was confined to her bed for years. She continued to paint in her reclined position. Instead of the pitiful invalid, Kahlo’s self-portraits show her strength, her sense of humor and her pain. She was married to the famous muralist and philanderer, Diego Rivera, whose murals thematically included the power of the people and political uprisings.
Frida Kahlo: the painter and her work
Prignitz-Poda, Helga.


Frida Kahlo: the paintings
Herrera, Hayden.

759.972 K12h 1993

The letters of Frida Kahlo: cartas apasionadas
Kahlo, Frida.

759.972 KAHLO

Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera from the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection & 20th century Mexican art from the Stanley and Pearl Goodman Collection


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Winter Reading Challenge: Even More Book Reviews by You!

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Here are a selection of nonfiction book reviews by patrons who participated in our Winter Reading Challenge. Our Winter Reading Challenge will end on February 28 and all adults are welcome to participate. You may even win a Bundle of Books Basket! Want your book review to be featured on our social media? Take the challenge and write a review of the books you read! Sign up and log the books you read here! Good luck and happy reading!

The Perfect Horse: The Daring US Mission to Rescue the Priceless Stallions Kidnapped by the Nazis by Elizabeth Letts is a real life thriller about how the Nazis tried to apply their eugenics theories to horse breeding by using the Lipizzaners and other thoroughbred horses to breed the perfect war horse and how the Americans acted to save the horses trapped ahead of the advancing starving Russian army. Fascinating reading for horse fans and World War II fans.

Maryagnes R.

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Alexander Hamilton, by Ron Chernow. I found it extremely interesting to read about the early years of this country in the context of current events. I didn't realize how divided and tumultuous things were back then, with frequent talk of civil war, fears about reverting back to monarchy, major personal animosity among the founding fathers. It's a long book, but written very engagingly so it goes quickly. Highly recommended.

Jeanne G.

Image of itemBad Feminist by Roxanne Gay is sharp, introspective, and witty. She provides a much-needed intersectional discussion of race, gender, and sexuality.

Caitlin S.