Ruth Guerrier-Pierre visiting the interactive exhibition The ABC of It: Why Children's Books Matter located at NYPL's main library at 42nd Street and curated by Leonard Marcus.
Ruth Guerrier-Pierre keeps the children visiting the Kips Bay Branch of the New York Public Library on their toes. She is an avid reader and loves nothing better than to share books hot-off-the-presses with her readers. Ruth, a life-long New Yorker, started working at NYPL while still an ungraduate at Queens College. She knows all about handling books—she had to shelve plenty while working as a Page in the Central Children's Room at the Donnell Library in 2006.
Since then, Ruth has also received her Masters in Library Science from Queens College with the help of the Library's famed Librarian Trainee program. As for the Kips Bay neighborhood, the name Kip has its roots in 17th century New Netherland when the Kip family had a farm that ran along that area of the East River. Although many high-rise residential buildings and NYU's Medical Center obscure those old farmlamds, you can still find hints of those earlier days as you walk the streets, so take a moment to stop by this branch and let the staff welcome you.
As a member of NYPL's Children's Books 2013 committee you had to read so many books this year—did you notice any trends?
I have noticed a plethora of great Science Fiction and Fantasy selections for middle grade readers. Sky Jumpers by Peggy Eddleman, The Wild Boy by Rob Lloyd Jones, The Real Boy by Anne Ursu and many more. This was the year of great Science Fiction and Fantasy.
What books are the children talking about at the Kips Bay branch?
Right now the kids are excited about Merrie Haskell's Handbook for Dragon Slayers, and they are still enjoying the antics of Greg Heffley & friends in Jeff Kinney's The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, which is as popular as ever.
Overseeing a busy Children's Room is never easy, what do you love about working here at Kips Bay?
The coolest part of being a Children's Librarian, or simply a librarian, is sharing books with children. It can be during a Baby Lapsit or Toddler program, or when talking with parents who come in to the library looking for recommendations. I enjoy recommending books and other materials—and the results—when they come back to ask for more—is very satisfying!
What was one of your favorite books published in 2013?
One of my favorites of 2013 would have to be The Mouse With the Question Mark Tail by Richard Peck. It's about a very small mouse on a very big quest. Just a good adventure story with so many wonderful details to draw you in to the world behind the walls in Buckingham Palace. I loved Peggy Eddleman's Sky Jumpers as well. A reluctant heroine, action packed, and it looks like there will be a sequel!
P.S. Here are some of the top circulating titles at Kips Bay last month: