Russian Classics: Top Picks for Winter

wintry Russian landscape

Some people would have you believe that the best way to deal with winter is to not deal with it at all. Go somewhere sunny, sit on a beach and soak up some Vitamin D. That may work for some, but many of us are happy—or forced—to take winter for what it is. We bundle up […]

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Excavating Interesting (and Uncommon) African American History Gems

Source: Wonderlane, Flickr

African American History Month is here. This year, how about doing some deep excavating on subjects that you might not ordinarily think about, but are fascinating to learn about? Online Resources You can explore the cities and cultures of ancient Africa with Ancient and Medieval History Online, one of CPL's Online Resources. Start by learning about three of […]

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13 Ways Advertisers Lie To You. #8 Will Blow Your Mind!

Marketing

Did you actually click on that? What's wrong with you? What have you ever learned from clickbait? But now that I've caught you, here are some books that might actually show you how marketers trick your brain into wanting all the things they have for sale. Nothing screams good marketing like classic American flimflam. John R. […]

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Quiz: Super Bowl Turns 50

Super Bowl 50, February 7, 2016 sign with San Francisco in the background

The AFL/NFL World Championship Game, also now known as Super Bowl I, was held January 15, 1967 in Los Angeles. The Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10. As they played that game, they probably had no idea the Super Bowl would become the event it is today. The stage for this year’s […]

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Far From Heaven: Ecological, Economic Dystopias

ghost town 1

Dystopias (the opposite of utopias) are popular right now, whether you like The Hunger Games or Divergent. Here are three dystopian novels to come out recently, where the rich get the resources and the meek inherit the dirt. Karl Taro Greenfeld's latest, The Subprimes, melds the ideas of ecological and economic dystopia seamlessly. Subprimes are people whose credit […]

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CPL’s Most Popular Books of 2015

The Girl on the Train, Dead Wake book covers

Before we completely shift our focus to the new books coming in 2016, let's take a look back at our most checked out and requested books of 2015. For comparison's sake, you may want to also look at Publishers Weekly's national statistics for 2015, as well as our most popular books of 2014. Are you surprised to learn […]

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Think Deep Thoughts: Rebecca Solnit

Rebecca Solnit

Rebecca Solnit is enjoying a bit of a renaissance with her latest collection of essays: Men Explain Things to Me. The title essay explores how Solnit and women in general tend to assume that men are more knowledgeable on a subject than they are, even when the woman is the expert. This essay gave rise to […]

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Exonerated Prisoners Share Their Stories

Living Justice book cover

It seems like everyone is talking about the Netflix documentary series Making a Murderer. In addition to debates about the specifics of Steven Avery's and Brendan Dassey's cases, the series also inspires conversations about exoneration, as Avery was exonerated in 2003 after spending 18 years in prison for a 1985 sexual assault he didn't commit. […]

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Bad Writing Is Fine Art

Bad Writing Is Fine Art

Maybe your idea of a good time is to get together with friends and watch Tommy Wiseau's magnificently awful The Room. Or maybe you like to play a party game where everyone takes turns reading The Eye of Argon. You'll be happy to know that the celebration of unfortunate art and literature has a proud history. Even C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. […]

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Women in the Fun Home

In most traditional societies, caring for the recently deceased is the province of women. And yet, there are very few women undertakers in America. Here are three nonfiction books about women and the funeral directing business. The most recent is The Undertaker's Daughter by Katherine Mayfield. Growing up above a funeral home in the 1960s and 70s, the Mayfields lived […]

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