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Blog Posts by Subject: Nonfiction

Kitty Genovese: The Girl Next Door That Everyone Knew

Maybe because Kitty Genovese's story conjures up questions of how crimes are committed, and the emotional struggles we live with from such events, this story hasn’t quite come to an end even after fifty years. We talked to the author of a new book about the famous murder.Read More ›

September Author @ the Library Programs at Mid-Manhattan

Any of these subjects pique your curiosity? If so, join us for an Author @ the Library talk this September at Mid-Manhattan Library to hear distinguished non-fiction authors discuss their work and answer your questions. Author talks take place at 6:30 p.m. on the 6th floor of the Library, unless otherwise noted. You can also request the authors' books using the links to the catalog included below. Read More ›

Misfit Memoirs: A Book List

I love a great memoir, and I noticed recently that I tend towards a certain sub-genre of memoirs, those of the mistfit variety. These memoirs are usually brutally honest, self-deprecating, and describe life at the fringes of society, or at least behavior that most of us would be embarrassed, horrified or shocked by. Most are funny and tend to be insightful, and whether it’s a well-known celebrity or someone I’ve never heard of, I find them relatable and refreshing. Read More ›

August Author @ the Library Programs at Mid-Manhattan

Philosophical inquiry at the movies… a looming retirement crisis… familiar New York landmarks seen from unexpected angles… the birth of NYC’s power system… the language hoax… the hidden history of the mob in NYC… Tomorrow-Land, the 1964-1965 World’s Fair… the great Boston - New York subway race… the Kitty Genovese murder… the inventor of electric traction… the hospice movement… the makers of modern Manhattan…Read More ›

July Reader's Den: "Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It" by David Ewalt - Wrap Up

Hello and welcome to the wrap up of Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It by David M. Ewalt. I hope you enjoy or are enjoying the book as much as I have. If you have any comments or questions please feel free to write below. For August the book is The Circle by David Eggers.Read More ›

July Reader's Den: "Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It" by David Ewalt Part 3

Welcome back to the Reader's Den for part three of Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It by David M. Ewalt. In Part two we discussed the chapters on Roleplaying. In this post we discuss the history of Dungeons & Dragons itself.Read More ›

July Reader's Den: "Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It" by David Ewalt Part 2

Of Dice and Men is essentially a history of Dungeons and Dragons, but it also seeks to explain gaming to the non-gamer or the curious. Read More ›

Book Notes From The Underground: July 2014

Here are some new noteworthy titles that may or may not be receiving the attention they deserve:Read More ›

July Reader's Den: "Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It" by David Ewalt

In Of Dice and Men, David Ewalt recounts the development of Dungeons & Dragons from its roots in the games of the Ancient World and 19th Century Europe, through its many incarnations and editions and the hysteria that came with it, to its current incarnation in video games.Read More ›

Booktalking "Gifted Grown Ups" by Marylou Kelly Streznewski

Gifted children are considered special education students: smarter than 95% of the population, with an IQ (Intelligence Quotient) of 130 or higher. An IQ of 100 denotes average intelligence. There are also qualitative measures of people's abilities. Howard Gardner conceptualizes people's strengths in terms of multiple intelligences. Gifted adults are also characterized by quick mental speed, sophistication of thought, high levels of sensitivity, drive, and a sense of humor.Read More ›

July Author @ the Library Programs at Mid-Manhattan

Gangsters and true crime, New York City history, financial literacy, MacArthur, FDR, Khrushchev, Lindsay, Main Street, U.S.A., travel, learning and self-discovery, climate change, foreign policy, the collective afterlife, and great pizza are among the wide-ranging topics coming up at our Author @ the Library talks in July 2014! We hope you’ll join us for insightful discussions with the authors of these 

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June 2014 Reader's Den: "The Judgment of Paris" by Ross King, Part 3

Other recommended works:

The Girl Who Loved Camellias by Julie Kavanagh The fascinating history of Marie DuPlessis chronicles the life of the courtesan who inspired Alexandre Dumas fils’s novel and play La dame aux camélias, Giuseppe Verdi’s opera La Traviata, George Cukor’s film Camille, and Frederick 

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June 2014 Reader's Den: "The Judgment of Paris" by Ross King, Part 1

Welcome back to the Reader's Den! This month we'll be looking at The Judgment of Paris by Ross King, about a turbulent era in art history.Read More ›

June Author @ the Library Programs at Mid-Manhattan

The rise and fall of the atomic era… achieving financial independence... legendary actor Stella Adler… millennia of Egyptomania… an exile’s return to Bosnia… Tammany Hall, a birthplace of progressive urban politics… the discovery of logic ... the art of quitting… tracking the New York art world… the history of the world’s most influential spice… blood libel in Tsarist Russia… imagining a socialist USA … bad English… the approaching death of money… dueling neurosurgeons... Read More ›

Uncovering the Truth: Helen Bernstein Book Award 2014

Each year since 1988, the Library has awarded Helen Bernstein Book Award for Excellence in Journalism to a journalist for a work of in-depth, investigative reporting. Over 100 non-fiction books were nominated this year, all of them read, discussed and vetted by a Library Review Committee. These are the five amazing books the group chose as this years five finalists—all must-reads!Read More ›

Book Notes From The Underground: May 2014

Here are some new noteworthy titles that may or may not be receiving the attention they deserve. Read More ›

Booktalking "A Year at the Races" by Jane Smiley

Some horses are driven and ambitious just as some people are so focused and determined to achieve success. For example, Secretariat displayed those qualities. They are interested in their work and they try to improve for themselves, not simply for the trainer's approval. They are less distractible. Horses have different athletic inclinations and preferences for certain kinds of work (e.g., trail riding, eventing, dressage, barrel racing, etc.)Read More ›

Booktalking "The Horses in My Life" by Monty Roberts

Monty Roberts was riding horses at a walk, trot, and canter as a 3-year-old boy. He vaguely remembers people saying, "He's only three, and look at him ride!"Read More ›

Our Favorite, Most Absorbing, Compelling, and Pleasurable [True!] Tales of New York City

The Milstein Division of United States History, Local History & Genealogy recommends our favorite, most readable, most memorable New York City nonfiction. These are the true stories of New York that engaged us, that intrigued us, and that we thought you might like to read as well.Read More ›

Booktalking "Higher Education?" by Andrew Hacker and Claudia Dreifus

All of the talk these days is about the rising cost of tertiary education. Is it really necessary for so many people to go to college? Ever wonder why exactly college costs are so astronomically high?Read More ›
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