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Posts from Seward Park Library

Hot Historical Fiction: Girl Spies, Resistance and Nazis

Readers who think historical fiction is blah or boring STOP RIGHT THERE! This list of books, set in Nazi Occupied Europe, is filled with fast paced adventure, high stakes thrills, nail biting tension, whirlwind romance and daredevil girls who are cool under pressure.

A 2013 Michael L. Printz Honor Book, Code Name Verity (2012) is hands down one the most thrilling historical fiction novels I've read in years. Set in France and England in 

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100 Titles for Reading and Sharing 2012: Con Artists, Besotted Toads, and Evil Puppet Masters - The Best in Children's Fantasy

I'm a big fan of the fantasy genre and have been reading it most of my life. So, of course when it comes to our booklist this year, I'm very happy about the Fantasy titles included, and delighted to talk about them. But before I do, I wanted to talk about the nature of the fantasy genre itself.

The best fantasies are real.

I know that sounds all wrong, but it's the truth. The best fantasies reach right into you, make you believe in that world and characters. In the midst of impossibility, readers are suddenly back dealing with very real issues.  

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11 Free Websites to Practice English at Home

RTlibrary on FlickrAt the New York Public Library's Adult Learning Centers, where adults work on basic English and literacy skills, we're often asked for recommendations of websites for adults to practice English at home. Below you'll find eleven sites, some with a focus on listening, some on vocabulary, others on grammar, and some with a range of activities. Happy learning!

Easy World of English

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A List of Lists: November 2012

Visit NYPL's BiblioCommons for these lists and many more. See below for some interesting staff picks from the past couple months, on topics both timely and timeless:

Mid-Manhattan Library celebrated Martin Scorsese's 70th birthday by putting together lists of his films and his survey of postwar Italian 

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LES Heritage Film Series: The '80s, Part 1 — DESPERATELY SEEKING SUSAN with DIRECTOR SUSAN SEIDELMAN

I'm sorry to shout. But we're showing Desperately Seeking Susan and DIRECTOR SUSAN SEIDELMAN WILL BE HERE. So if ever you were going to attend a Lower East Side Heritage '80s film, this is the one. Ms. Seidelman will be speaking about her work, and there will be a Q and A after the show. Moving on...

I was amazed at what I remembered and what I forgot about Desperately Seeking Susan, or remembered differently. I forgot all the cameos.

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Ghosts of Cities Past

What’s the history of your favorite haunt? Teens from The New York Public Library’s Seward Park Branch explored the hidden past of their neighborhood earlier this year and made some surprising discoveries.

Using iPads as their guides in a mobile gaming experience that transported them back in time, the teens dug deep into their neighborhood’s landmarks through the contents of NYPL’s Lower East Side History Collection. One boy was fascinated to learn that 

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A List of Lists: August 2012

It's the end of August, which means soon we'll be trading in our fluffy beach reads for heartier winter tomes. NYPL librarians have plenty of suggestions for you.

Back to School! Back to School Books for Kids Favorites for Third Graders Lindsy's Top Ten Favorite Back to School Books for Young ... Read More ›

A List of Lists: July 2012

Visit NYPL's BiblioCommons for these lists and many more. You can also create your own and share them with us in the comments! See below for some interesting staff picks from the past month, on topics both timely and timeless:

Nonfiction Job Hunting Resources Most Talked About Female Biographies ... Read More ›

Lower East Side Heritage Film Series: the Eighties, Part 3 - The Way it Is or Eurydice in the Avenues

Pretend you’re just outside Tompkins Square Park. Enter the park on Avenue A, at 8th Street. Take the windy path through the park towards Avenue B. Okay, now sniff. What do you smell?

You smell dogs.

The Way it Is or Eurydice in the Avenues opens early morning summer in the Park. Three feckless dog walkers stand over the dead body of a girl in a polka-dot dress. Who else is going to find a dead body in Tompkins Square Park? Okay, drug-addicts, probably, but still. Dog walkers. 

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Summer Reading Kickoff on June 7, 2012 at the Seward Park Library

On June 7, 2012, a fabulous sunny day, the New York Public Library (NYPL) had a kickoff celebration for summer reading at the Seward Park Library.

NYC High School Band: Starting at 10 a.m., a high school band played outside the library. It is a great location for a party since the park is adjacent to the library and the weather was so terrific. The party drew a crowd, and the kids were having a lot of fun running around and playing with our Library Lion mascot and 

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The British (and Irish) Boys of Summer: A Summer Reading List inspired by One Direction

I started summer 2012 seeing One Direction, not once but TWICE in concert! Let me just say this: they were AWESOME! I could go on and on (and on, just ask my friends) about my favorite four British boys and one Irish boy, but I won’t. I could talk loads about Harry’s accent, Niall’s laugh and Louis’s trousers but I will stop myself and instead mention that NYPL has bought their journal memoir Dare to Dream! As we ... Read More ›

Lower East Side Heritage Film Series: the Eighties, Part 2: Jarmusch's Permanent Vacation

Permanent Vacation opens with a moving crowd of New Yorkers, still dressed '70s groovy. It might be a camera trick, but no one appears to be rushing. The music is slow, diffuse horn and bells. We meet 16-year-old Aloysious Christopher Parker, already dressed '80s rockabilly cool. His body is like a marionette's — all long limbs and loose joints. His voice is like an oboe, and his delivery is like slow air out of a tire. He dances to

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A List of Lists: May 2012

Visit NYPL's BiblioCommons for these lists and many more. You can also create your own and share them with us in the comments! See below for some interesting staff picks from the past month, on topics both timely and timeless:

Genre Fiction While You're Waiting for Fifty Shades of Grey, Try... Comic Books for Adults ... Read More ›

Lower East Side Heritage Film Series, Season 2, Part 8: Young Filmmakers and the Seward Park Neighborhood

Don't Shhhh me!.... NOT this time.

We are about to conclude the second season of our Lower East Side Heritage Film Series and for the closer we are ALL TALK.

Along with our now traditional send off (we can call it traditional after the second repetition, right?), the film that started this whole LESHFS, The Seward Park Branch and the Neighborhood It Serves will be projected in all its 16mm glory. I will be orating the original

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Lower East Side Heritage Film Series: the Eighties - "Smithereens" (1982)

I went to high school in the EastVillage from 1983 to 1987. This might sound kind of punk rock. Unfortunately, I totally missed out on CBGB in the late Seventies (see also: Punking Out) and early Eighties. And let's face it, I didn't go inside any real club for most of the Eighties either — I was underage, and too busy studying for the SATs. But I remember how the outsides looked. The streets and 

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OMG! I Love that Song! A Guilty Pleasure Playlist

Guilty pleasure: something you like, but feel guilty about liking, because you are aware that your fondness for said thing is a little embarrassing or not so great. Reasons for feeling guilty include: enjoying a silly pop song, liking a band for their hotness and not necessarily for their music, the genre of music is considered uncool, liking the artist makes you one of them — and you are sooo much cooler than that! But SO WHAT? WHO CARES? You like what you like. Let your cheesy, pop-song lovin', freak flag fly! Have long discussions about your favorite member(s) of One 

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Lower East Side Heritage Film Series, Season 2, Part 7: Regeneration (1915)

Shhhh.... this one is silent.

One of the great things about silent film is the fact that it is, well, silent.

While this attribute certainly draws attention to body language and visual storytelling, it also provides a blank canvas. As someone who composes and arranges music, this proves a great opportunity to sharpen my skills and have a bit of fun, dropping different types of music into a set of scenes. The fun happens when music intended for one purpose magically enhances another. It is proved to be a much more laborious a task, as I am not able to rely on the timings 

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A List of Lists: April 2012

Visit NYPL's BiblioCommons for these lists and many more. You can also create your own and share them with us in the comments! See below for some interesting staff picks from the past month, on topics both timely and timeless:

April is Poetry Month, and April 26 is Poem in Your Pocket Day. Don't be caught unprepared; NYPL staff can help you find the perfect poem.

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Poetry Writing With Adult New Readers, Strategy 1: The List Poem

You have not crossed the bridges I have crossed. You have not listened to the music I have listened to. You have not been in the top of the World Trade Center the way I have been there. You have not seen the waves I have seen. You have not fallen from horses the way I have fallen. You have not felt the guns on your neck the way I have felt them. You have not been in the sea with a big storm in a little boat the way I have been.

—Excerpt from "Don’t Give Me Advice," by Luis Marin, Tompkins Square CRW

This month is

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My Heart Will Go On: Stories from the RMS Titanic, Truth and Fiction

In the late hours of April 14th, 1912 and the early morning hours of April 15th, about 85 years before a dying Leo DiCaprio urged a freezing Kate Winslet to live, the RMS Titanic struck an iceberg and sunk into the icy waters of the North Atlantic. In a matter of hours this “unsinkable” ship was on the bottom of the ocean and only 712 out of its 2,208 passengers would survive.  Since the news of the sinking first got out up to the present day, on the100th anniversary of the tragedy, there have been hundreds of stories about those who died, those who survived 

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