National Park Service Centennial

Tunnel View, Yosemite Valley

On August 25, 2016, the National Park Service turns 100!  The centennial celebration pays homage to the Organic Act of 1916, which established the Park Service and brought a number of parks already in existence together under its auspices.  However, the rich history of the parks movement predates this, beginning in earnest in the 1860s. […]

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Listen All the Way

Source: kazzpoint0, Flickr

June is winding down, but summer has just begun! As we continue to celebrate Audiobook Month, we've set our sights on great titles for those of you hitting the road. As fun as road trips can be, there are only so many rounds of I Spy or 20 Questions a person can take. Give everyone a break […]

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Suspenseful Debut Novels

tree and shed on farm

I love reading debut novels because they always hold the hope of discovering a new author or a new voice. The only problem in finding a good one, though, is having to wait for more! The following debut novels offer a double whammy with stories full of psychological suspense and the suspense of waiting for the next […]

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Books Celebrating Queer Latinx Identity

Rainbow Pride flag in the sky

Pride Month is a time of celebration, of coming together as one queer community of all cultures and ethnicities. But for people of color, sexuality intersects with ethnic cultures in a distinct and important way. These titles celebrate our queer Latinx family and honor the unique stories they have to tell. From Macho to Mariposa, edited by Charles […]

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Caught Reading: Humboldt Park, June 2016

Humboldt_Park_Lagoon

As the weather warms up, I love to spend time in our city's beautiful parks. The Chicago Park District is the oldest and one of the largest public park districts in the United States. From public beaches to pools to tennis courts to playgrounds, Chicago's parks have something to offer all ages. Recently I ventured […]

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Top Picks: 5 Dreadful Dads

Source: Flickr, objectivejay

Literature has its fair share of bad dads. There are those who drink, beat, meddle, belittle and steal, among far more horrifying acts. To celebrate Father's Day, I've picked five dreadful dads featured in some great books and one play. You'll be thankful these awful guys aren't your pop. Jack Torrence in The Shining. What could go […]

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Listening to Dear Old Dad

Source: kalexanderson, Flickr

Fathers play huge roles in our lives. From childhood to adulthood, they shape who we are. There are funny dads, brilliant dads, troubled dads and sometimes absent dads. In honor of fatherhood and as we continue our celebration of Audiobook Month this June, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite audiobooks by or about some remarkable fathers. Published […]

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#TBT: Composer, Songwriter Cole Porter

Cole Porter

You might love Cole Porter without even realizing it. The composer and songwriter's theater legacy includes musicals Anything Goes and Kiss Me, Kate and songs "In the Still of the Night, "I Get a Kick out of You" and "It's De-Lovely"—and that's just a taste of his work. He's also known for covers by powerhouses like Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra. […]

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DIY Books to Celebrate National Week of Making

Source: pixaby, public domain

President Obama has announced the 2016 National Week of Making is June 17-23, but you don't have to go to Washington, D.C. to celebrate! You can attend a class here at the Maker Lab or at other Chicago locations, or check out a book and make something at home. Making comes in all shapes and sizes—and forms. Whether […]

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If You Love Me Before You…Read These Books

me before you book cover

To celebrate the adaptation of Me Before You to the big screen, here are some similarly themed books to keep you occupied before or after seeing the movie. Me Before You is available in other formats. We've all second guessed decisions, but in Maybe in Another Life, Hannah's choices are played out in two interweaving stories in […]

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