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Posts from Seward Park Library

Get Psyched for Anti-Prom! A Prom-Related Reading & Viewing List

It was way back in 2004, at the Donnell Library's Teen Central room, when a bunch of librarians, myself included, came up with the idea for Anti-Prom. At the time, a bunch of teen books about prom and prom-related activities were being published and we were all sharing our own (somewhat anti-climatic) prom experiences. Then someone said, "We should throw a prom here." There was laughter as we imagined decorating the library with streamers, crepe paper and a disco ball and then someone said, 

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Lower East Side Heritage Film Series, Pt.9

It might be hard to believe, but the historic Fulton Fish Market migrated away from Lower Manhattan more than five years ago.  In our final installment of the 2010-2011 LES Heritage Film Series, we will take a look back at the Fish Market as it was in the 1950s (sans the olfactorial sensations). We'll be casting the rarely seen extended 23 minute reel for all to sea.  All this on our very own scaled down silver screen. (Apologies, as I am sure I have overfished these waters.) And back by popular demand - to 

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Learning English for the Sake of Her Children

Lucy Liu and her two children. Photo: Beowulf SheehanLucy Liu, who emigrated from China to New York City nine years ago, is proud that her two young children speak perfect English.   Now she wants to learn too.

  In order to keep up with her kids, Liu is learning to read and write in English for the first time thanks to the free classes at an NYPL Center for Reading and Writing at Seward Park Library in Chinatown.   “I wanted to 

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Girls in Pants: Girls Disguised as Boys

The idea of girls masquerading as boys to infiltrate the male world is not new; in fact, it's a literary staple. From William Shakespeare to Amanda Bynes, all it takes is some cloth to bind and flatten the chest, short hair, a lowering of the voice, some rolled up socks artfully placed, and voila — a boy is born! Of course, it also helps if there is a clueless boy who befriends the masquerader and then suddenly begins to question his sexuality when he wants to kiss the girl in disguise. And, to make things even more complicated, another girl arrives on the scene. 

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Lower East Side Heritage Film Series, Pt.8

Zisn Pesach!  In honor of Passover we are pleased to offer the following film on May 3, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. This FREE monthly series held at Seward Park Branch Library will offer documentary and feature films that were shot on location in lower Manhattan on both 16mm and DVD formats.

8th part in the series:

The Biggest Jewish City in the World (1975, 58 

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Get Ready for a Royal Wedding

I can't be the only person excited for the wedding of William Windsor to Catherine Middleton. In fact, I know I'm not. Out there, in that big, bad world of cynics, there are plenty of people just as psyched as me about the upcoming royal nuptials—they are just too cool to show it. This wedding brings me full circle. I remember being 9 years old and staying up all night with my Mom to watch Princess Diana marry Prince Charles, I had a slumber party to watch Sarah Ferguson marry Prince Andrew (where an adorable 3 year old Prince William 

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A Peep-erific Idea

Introducing: JUSTIN PEEPER! Cue the high-pitched screams, swooning, crying and tears. For their spring craft project the Seward Park Library Teen Advisory Group wanted to make a Peeps diorama. The inspiration came from The Washington Post's annual peeps diorama contest. The entries are so amazing and we wanted to see if we could create something just as cool and we had a blast doing it.

We started with the idea. The majority of the

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Hot Historical Fiction Part Two: The Tudors, Fairies, Ladies, and Fools

Okay, I confess, I am a history geek and an Anglophile, meaning I am sucker for anything with a bit of British history and culture. However, that doesn’t mean dry, boring or high brow. I still insist that the historical novels I read be interesting, fun to read, and perhaps romantic, and if they have magical elements, even better! The fairies, witty dialogue, and romance may pull you in, but you finish the book with a better understanding of history and society without even realizing it.   The Legend of Tam ... Read More ›

Lower East Side Heritage Film Series, Pt.7

Showing films on the first Tuesday of every month.  This FREE series at Seward Park Library will offer documentary and feature films that were shot on location in lower Manhattan on both 16mm and DVD formats.

7th part in the series:

Crosby Street (1975, 18 min., 16mm) Director Jody Saslow takes a look at the various economic, social, and aesthetic strata 

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Alex Pettyfer Movie Primer

Way, way back in May 2010 I wrote a blog post entitled Introducing Alex Pettyfer. At the time, no one but me had seemed to have heard of him. Now of course, he is everywhere: TV (shirtless on Ellen), magazines... and, who can blame them for wanting a piece of his action? He has two films out: I Am Number Four and Beastly, he was dating a Glee 

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Hot Historical Fiction Part 1: Gladiators, Roman Soldiers and Slaves

Who says that all historical fiction is dull and boring? If done correctly, historical fiction is not dull at all. It's time travel in a book. Who hasn't imagined being transported back through time to experience what life was like during a different period in history? I particuarly love reading stories that are completely out of my realm of knowledge and experience and have a sense of the romantic about it—novels about war, warriors and (ahem) gladiators tend to fit that bill.

One of the more well known authors of this type of historical fiction 

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Radio NYPL: The Beach Vacation playlist

It is too dang COLD! I mean, I get it, it’s winter! It is supposed to be cold and snowy but enough already! Geez!  Perhaps, to get away from it all, you might be dreaming of a beach somewhere where palm trees sway in the breeze, where you are lying in the sand listening to music as the waves crash in front of you and someone is serving you something slushy and frothy to drink. But what would be on your playlist? Luckily, I have recently returned from a 2 ½ week vacation in

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The Manga Cookbook Part 1, or, How To Boil an Egg

Every morsel in The Manga Cookbook is so freaking cute and delicious looking I couldn’t decide what to cook. This kind of copious edible cuteness must be how the Bento box came to be. The bento is a combo of small treats stuffed together attractively in a box or tray. In fact, stuffing the tray is compulsory, as the bento is meant to be portable. If there’s even a little space in the box, contents will shift and the omotenashi (eating with the eyes) will be ruined. In any event, I was compelled to make a variety of 

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The Romance Novels of Eva Ibbotson

“This is the kind of book that you want to read on a rainy day curled up with a cup of hot chocolate.”

Well known English children’s author Eva Ibbotson passed away recently at the age of 85. She is best known for her fantasy and adventure novels for children such as The Secret of Platform 13 and The Star of the Kazan. However, I discovered her through her historical romance novels (orginally published for adults) which have, in 

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My Library: Sefi

Sefi loves coming to the library for books and music but it wasn't always that way.

Name: Sefi

Age: Just turned 17!

Sefi, how long have you been coming to the library? Just 3 to 4 years.

Why did you start coming to the library in middle school? I started coming for TAG (Teen Advisory Group) but I stayed for the books and music. In the beginning, I wasn't really into reading but then you showed me all the cool stuff to try.

What do you like about reading now? It's your own virtual world. You can get lost in a book because 

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Jealousy by Lili St. Crow = Supernatural Awesomeness

If you are a reading omnivore like me, you love a good vampire/ supernatural novel. However, also, like me you have probably been bombarded by many supernatural novels in recent years and frustrated by their complete lack of "goodness". Look no more! The Strange Angels series by Lili St. Crow has it all: vampires, werewolves, zombies, half-vampires, hunters, kick-ass action, and romance and thats all just for 

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Radio NYPL: MTV VMAS 2010 edition

I always look forward to watching the MTV Video Music Awards. The performances and the scandals always make for a good time unlike the usually staid Grammy award shows. Who can forget last year's epic Lady Gaga performance complete with fake blood or Kanye West drunkenly interrupting Taylor Swift's acceptance speech both of which were rated 10 for pure entertainment value. The awards that aired this past Sunday on 

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Sam Stern's Real Food Real Fast - Beef 'n' Mushroom Lettuce Wraps

Last night I made Lettuce Wrapped Beef 'n' Mushroom Stir-Fry, from Sam Stern’s Real Food Real Fast. My co-blogger, Anne Rouyer, says Sam Stern is the teenage Jaime Oliver. Like Jaime, he is physically adorable. Like Jaime, he is British. Also like Jaime, he writes cloying, chatty recipes for bland meals. 

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"Wow, That's Amazing That You Do That!" Volunteering at the Center for Reading and Writing

Tutoring at the Center for Reading and WritingThe Centers for Reading and Writing are recruiting volunteer tutors for our fall class cycle beginning in September, so I've been thinking about what it means to volunteer here in the library's adult literacy program.    

I decided to speak with Gale, who has been volunteering at the Center for Reading and Writing for over twenty years. When I 

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