Satirizing the Sybaritic

Satire, the saying goes, is making fun of people richer than you, and Gigi Lavingie's Seven Deadlies does it well. It is not so much a novel as a string of connected fables about the seven deadly sins, as practiced by uber-rich Southern Californians. Fourteen-year-old Perry Gonzales is a babysitter to her much-wealthier peers, and tries to help […]

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Pride and Prejudice and Fanfiction

lace gloves and old book

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” The most popular of Jane Austen’s novels in her time, Pride and Prejudice continues to fascinate readers and writers today, 200 years after its original publication on January 28, 1813. In fact, Jane […]

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I Never Want This Book to End

Have you ever read a book that makes you sad when it's over? I sure have. This happened to me most recently with Holly Goldberg Sloan's debut novel I'll Be There. It is a teen book that anyone can enjoy. The novel follows the lives of two young people, Emily and Sam, who come from completely […]

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GenreList IV: Heist!

opening to a back vault

This time on GenreList: The stakes couldn't be higher, and everything is on the line! Get ready to enjoy some ill-gotten gains as we plot and scheme our way into a heist! Heist films (or caper films) are a sub-genre of crime fiction that focuses on convoluted plots, double dealing and high-stakes reward. While much […]

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The Trees of Winter

Did you ever stop and think about the trees in your neighborhood?  Can you identify which trees you see? Did you know there are even famous Celebritrees? Between December 16, 2013 and January 5, 2014, use these activities to find the importance of trees as part of the Winter Learning Challenge. Discover Look for an evergreen, or […]

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How Do Birds Survive the Winter?

Birds, but especially pigeons, are everywhere in the city. Look Up! to find out what kind of pigeons live in your neighborhood and where they make their homes. Between December 16, 2013 and January 5, 2014 record your observations as part of the Winter Learning Challenge.  Discover Observe a pigeon on the street, in your backyard or outside […]

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How Do Squirrels Survive the Winter?

These Frisky Brisky Hippity Hop-ping critters are fun to watch, so look out your window and record what you see. Between December 16, 2013 and January 5, 2014, investigate squirrels in your neighborhood as part of the Winter Learning Challenge. Discover Observe the squirrels in your yard or neighborhood park. Are they grey squirrels or fox squirrels? How […]

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Do Pets Like Winter?

Pets can be a part of your life year round! Dogs love playing in the snow and even cats can learn to appreciate the cold -- especially while lying in the heater watching the birds outside. Find even more activities you can do, inside and out, with all kinds of pets in Pet Science. Between December […]

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How DO Humans Keep Warm in the Winter?

child playing in the snow

If there's only one animal you see in your neighborhood this winter, it's sure to be a human. Whether you are wearing gloves or mittens, boots or snowpants, be sure to wear The Hat to keep warm in the chilly weather. Warm up your brain between December 16, 2013 and January 5, 2014 with the Winter […]

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Technology that Changed Chicago: Horses go out of Business

Title reads " Order coal now. United States Fuel Administration. Picture shows a team of horses and a man heaving coal off a wagon

Previous: Horses for Pleasure In 1900 there were only 377 automobiles registered with the Board of Examiners of Operators of Automobiles.  The Comparative Wheel Tax Statement shows that in 1916 there were 46,662 horse-drawn vehicles and 65,651 automobiles. By 1940 there were fewer than 2,000 horse-drawn vehicles  and over 600,000 automobiles.  The fastest changes happened […]

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