Books Blog

Man Booker Prize 2013 Shortlist Announced

Image: Book Sticker 2012 Man Booker Prize

I loved every Man Booker Prize winning novel I've read: The White Tiger, Life of Pi, Midnight's Children,The English Patient.

And I always thought I had read more of them then I actually have.

Hugo Award Winners 2013

Redshirts by John Scalzi

On Sunday night in San Antonio, Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas by John Scalzi, was awarded the Hugo Award for Best Novel.

Named for Hugo Gernsback, widely credited for popularizing the reading of Science Fiction, The Hugo Awards are one of Science Fiction's most prestigious honors and have been an annual literary event since 1955.

More Hugo Award 2013 Winners:

Best Novella

Best Novelette

National Parks Free on Sunday for Park Service Birthday!

If you're not heading to downtown Denver to watch the US Pro Bike Challenge on Sunday (or heading to 1 of the 3 Denver Public Library Branches that will be open!), you may want to take the opportunity to celebrate our National Park Service's birthday with free admission to any National Park!

Colorado's National Parks, Monuments, and Historic Sites include a wide variety of scenery and history, and are scattered all over the state.

For majestic beauty:

Rocky Mountain National Park

Colorado National Monument

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Five-star Restaurant meals at home!

Eleven Madison Park Cookbook

I am a big fan of fine dining. But sometimes you just can't justify the price tag, especially since most of these delicious treats are out of town. Thankfully for those times when you are ready to eat like a star there are plenty of high powered cookbooks to quench your foodie desires.

Eleven Madison Park This is a large format beauty of a book. Sometimes I just like to read this one and fantasize.

Bouchon Bakery This delight from gastronomic powerhouse Thomas Keller is full of the best desserts you have ever dreamt of eating!

Images in the Public Domain

Owen Jones initial

Do you need an image that's already got copyright clearance? Consider the venerable Pictorial Archive series from Dover Publications, a rich source of public domain illustrations, graphics, typefaces, and design of all kinds. Here are the covers of just a few representative Pictorial Archive titles.

Hayward Cirker (1927-2000), the founder of one of the quirkiest publishing houses around, was a connoisseur of graphic design who had deep pockets and a singular vision. (I know. I worked for him in the early 1980s on the production of the Pictorial Archive series. I've included a bit of the firm's history below.) Cirker used to buy rare illustrated books at auction and turn them over to an artist who would select the best imagery and arrange it for faithful reproduction in an inexpensive paperback Pictorial Archive edition.

Did You Miss This?

Did you miss this?

If you browse the book stacks at the Central Library, chances are you'll spy a "Did you miss this?" bookmark tucked in a title. Staff periodically flag a book that may have fallen off your reading radar. Who knows? You may discover a new, favorite title. Recent titles sporting the bookmark include a few multicultural novels (and one memoir) you may have missed.

An Apartment Called Freedom by Ghazi A. Algosaibi was originally published in Arabic. The story takes place in Egypt during the 1950s, a time of bitter international conflict over the Suez Canal. Within this political climate, four young men from Bahrain arrive in Cairo to complete their education.

Hot Fall Nonfiction

Empress Dowager CIXI

Are you the kind of person that likes to settle in to fall with some good nonfiction? History, biography, memoir? Or maybe you're looking for some new recipes or home tips? We've got those too!  Check out these coming soon titles!

Biography, Memoir, and History:

Empress Dowager CIXI: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China by Jung Chang

Lady Catherine, the Earl, and the Real Downton Abbey by Fiona Carnarvon

Mozart: A Life by Paul Johnson

November is Thrilling!

Death of a Nightingale

If you're fan of thrillers and mysteries, November is going to be a great month for you! Place your holds on these hot books now! (and don't worry, we have other great stuff coming, too!)

Mysteries & Thrillers:

Death of a Nightingale by Lene Kaaberbol

Dust by Patricia Cornwell

King & Maxwell by David Baldacci

Mirage by Clive Cussler

Memorable Hangovers

After doing extensive research for last week's blog, Craft Beer: Good for What Ales You, my thoughts turned to Lucky Jim, the cultish, post-war novel written by Kingsley Amis (pictured) in 1954, and its iconic description of a hangover.

Jim Dixon, aspiring academic in medieval literature, tries to further his career at a weekend faculty party, but instead creates romantic entanglements and drinks far too much:  "Dixon was alive again. Consciousness was upon him before he could get out of the way; not for him the slow, gracious wandering from the halls of sleep, but a summary, forcible ejection. He lay sprawled, too wicked to move, spewed up like a broken spider-crab on the tarry shingle of the morning.

Orange Is the New Black

Orange Is the New Black

The first women's federal prison, Alderson in West Virginia, was opened for business in 1927. The same prison Martha Stewart reported to in 2004. Piper Kerman also began serving her prison term in 2004, reporting to the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury. She chronicles her experience in Orange Is The New Black​ and the basis for the Netflix series.

Much like Susanna in Girl Interrupted, Piper is a privileged protagonist. As her story unfolds, she exposes the different faces of privilege through her interactions with fellow inmates. Issues of race, sexuality, mental health and poverty are explored. Some of the women will have options when they are released, others will not.

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