Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I now have a 5-week class in which I teach interviewing skills. When I'm finished with those students, I have 3 hours of down time and the building where I teach is fairly close to the library. You know where this is going, right?

The honeymoon's not over by a long shot, but I felt the first pangs of criticism welling up in me today about my beloved library. Now that I've finally discovered Peter Sieruta's excellent blog Collecting Children's Books, I'm wishing there was a children's literature section in this library so I could check out some of the writers -- both old and new -- that he blogs so brilliantly about.

I got over my little snit pretty easily; my library and I kissed and made up. Combing through the stacks, I found:
Lost Names: Scenes From A Korean Boyhood - Richard E. Kim. First published in 1970, this is a collection of seven autobiographical stories about a boy and his family living in Korea during Japan's often harsh colonial rule. How could I have lived here almost 5 years and am only just now stumbling onto this book?

Twentieth-Century Crime Fiction - Lee Horsley. A critical text aimed towards students studying this genre. Duly academic and slightly starchy in tone, but that don't scare me none. Besides, how could I pass up a cover like this?

Home: American Writers Remember Rooms of Their Own - Edited by Sharon Slaon Fiffer and Steve Fiffer. Richard Bausch, Gish Jen, Lynda Barry, Kathryn Harrison and several other writers each take a room and share their memories.
Reading in the Dark - Seamus Deane. Deane's first novel is set is postwar northern Island, and seems to be a coming-of-age story.
The Uncalled - Paul Laurence Dunbar. A 1901 novel by the famous African-American poet who died from tuberculosis at the age of 33. This 1969 edition is part of a series called History And Literature Of The Black Man In America and is a facsimile of the original.

Literary gem of knowledge: Dunbar went to the same high school as Orville and Wilbur Wright.
All of these books are less than 300 pages long. If I stay home for a couple of weekends perhaps I can get them read before they're due back in a month's time.


Ana S. said...

That's one of my complaints about my library children's section. Ah well, there's still a lot to love about it.

I've just subscribed to Collecting Children's Books - thanks for bringing it to my attention! Definitely my kind of blog.

Eva said...

Lost Names sounds so interesting!! I'm afraid to even go to the children's blog, because then I'll have to double my TBR list.

Carrie K said...

That seems doable. What are weekends for?

The only time I visit our childrens sections in libraries is when I want to see how many books I recognize from my childhood.

Philip O'Mara said...

Read a great new sporting comedy, entitled Classes Apart.
This is an adult sporting comedy that follows the fortunes of Paul Marriot, the secretary of the Barnstorm Village Sunday soccer team and coach of a school cricket team in Yorkshire, England. The story describes the remarkable camaraderie between the players and supporters of this little club and their desire to achieve success. The team had previously been known more for its antics off the field, rather than their performances on it.

During his time at the club he meets and becomes involved with Emma Potter, who is the sister of James Potter, a major player for their bitter rivals Moortown Inn. Thus, begins an entangled web of romance and conflict. He also begins working at Derry High School, a school with a poor reputation of academic success, where he becomes coach of the school cricket team. Here he develops an amazing relationship with the children and they embark on an epic journey.

Anonymous said...

i'm a freak for the library--i even volunteer at mine once a week. despite the fact that i'm always there, i still owe insane fines for overdue materials!

my childhood library had a children's section that's as big as my current library. it has giant aquariums, big colorful kid-sized furniture, and MILES of books.

Jeane said...

I have Reading in the Dark on my bedside pile, but haven't yet got the chance to open it.

Gentle Reader said...

Looks like you've found some gems there in your library. Sorry there's no children's section, but I guess no library is perfect :)