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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Jane Austen’s Legacy

From ABC to The Huffington Post and NPR, you can’t miss the tributes to the 200th anniversary this week of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy’s tumultuous love affair in Pride and Prejudice. Jane Austen’s cherished novel has survived the ages and its adaptations range from film, to a P.D. James mystery, a zombie variation and more. It is definitely a good time to reread the novel or enjoy it for the first time. If you want to know more about the novel or Austen herself, here are a few books to try:

The Annotated Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Flirting with Pride and Prejudice: Fresh Perspectives on the Original Chick-Lit Masterpiece by Jennifer Crusie

Jane’s Fame: How Jane Austen Conquered the World by Claire Harman

The Jane Austen Handbook: A Sensible Yet Elegant Guide to Her World by Margaret Sullivan

A Fine Brush on Ivory: An Appreciation of Jane Austen by Richard Jenkyns

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Inaugural Poets

After Robert Frost recited a poem from memory at John F. Kennedy’s 1961 festivities (the glare of the sun prevented him from reading the poem he had composed), it took 31 years before another president, Bill Clinton, asked a poet – Maya Angelou -- to the podium. Next Monday, when Cuban-American poet Richard Blanco shares some verse on the west portico of the U.S. Capitol, he will succeed Elizabeth Alexander, who President Obama chose to read at his first inauguration in 2009. If you are interested in the writings of this select group of poets, here are a few collections to try:

City of a Hundred Fires by Richard Blanco

American Sublime: Poems by Elizabeth Alexander

The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou

Poems by Robert Frost

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Reading in the New Year

Midwinter is a great time to curl up with a good book and already January has produced some good reading.  Writing in Flavorwire, Emily Temple offers some suggestions to start off the new year ("Ten New Must Reads for January," Jan. 2, 2013).  Here is a sampling of her recommendations. The library has ordered all the titles below, so reserve your copy now and be among the first to read the year’s newest books.
The Death of Bees by Lisa O’Donnell
Tenth of December: Stories by George Saunders
A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan