Thursday, April 21, 2011

Pulitzer Prizes

The 2011 Pulitzer Prizes were announced this week and Jennifer Egan won the fiction prize for her novel "A Visit from the Goon Squad". (This novel also won the Morning News Tournament of Books I blogged about a few weeks back.) The other two fiction finalists were "The Privileges" by Jonathan Dee and "The Surrendered" by Chang-Rae Lee.

To see more, including the books that won in the history, poetry, general non-fiction and biography categories, you can visit the Pulitzer website here.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Books and Cake

The website Cakewrecks did a post on this very sweet combination in honor of National Library Week (see all the cakes here).

This one, a map of the Land of Oz, is my favorite:

Created by the Cake Doctor

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Where was this idea?

When we had all those leftover books at the end of booksales? We could have made dozens of these rugs *grin*! And, yes, it is a rug made out of book spines - not sure what it would feel like to walk on it though...

 The artist who created it, Pamela Paulsrud, does a lot of things with altered books and "found words".

On the Apartment Therapy website where I first spotted this, the blogger notes: "Most of us love books greatly and don't like to see them damaged. It's easy to believe that they should all be in libraries for an eternity or shipped to places where folks could use them" and commenters also express dismay over what they perceive as the waste of a book.

Folks, as anyone who works with books in large quantities will tell you: books can definitely outlive their useful lives! That computer guide from the 80's? The zillionth copy of the now forgotten bestselling diet guide from 10 years ago? Twenty year old college textbooks? It's okay to consign them to the recycle bin, and if you can find a way to reuse even a small portion of the book before you do so, go for it!

As all good Friends of the Library know, there will always be more books to take their place...

Friday, April 15, 2011

Wonderful design

This is from a children's bookstore in China called Kids Republic (more pictures here).  I doubt I'll be in Beijing anytime soon to visit it, but wouldn't something like this also be awesome in a library?

I want to be curled up in one of those circular seats...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Happy Library Week!

This week is National Library Week - show your librarian some love!

Okay, maybe not quite like this!
The book cover above is from a hilarious website called Awful Library Books where two librarians blog about the stranger things they find on their shelves.

Notice the subtitle on this one: "What are those television-typewriters anyway?"  Plus an "up-to-date" buying guide!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cobb County has proposed closing 13 of its 17 libraries to help balance its budget; an editorial in today's AJC by Margaret Johnson-Hodge speaks quite eloquently to the tangible and intangible benefits a library offer to its patrons:
"You see, a library is more than books. It is more than the people who staff them, and the rows and rows of tomes that fills its space. Libraries are refuge for the overwhelmed mind and respite from a technical age. Libraries are lifelines to the outside world and the hope for a better life. Libraries empower the spirit and uplift the soul. Libraries educate and liberate. They are as essential as the air we breathe."
Luckily, Fulton County has so far spared the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library system the drastic cuts other surrounding counties have been forced to make - kudos to our commissioners for recognizing the worth of the libraries, especially in such a tough economic climate.

*For more on the Cobb County situation, also see the article headlined "Cobb library proposal seen as political ploy to raise taxes", again from today's AJC.

Update: The libraries managed to avoid the chopping block! They'll stay open after all, due in part to Twitter and Facebook campaigns on their behalf.