Posted on April 30th, 2012 by Alison Murphy in Foundation
Not sure what to get your Mom for Mother’s Day this year? We’re here to help. This year, let your mother or another special woman in your life know how much you appreciate her by contributing a book in her honor to the Boston Public Library. For so many of us, our mothers were our first introduction to the world of books and learning. What better way to say thank you than by honoring her with a book in her name? Click here to purchase a book for the library. We will customize it with a bookplate recognizing your mother, or another special person in your life, and we’ll also send her a personalized card, notifying her of your gift.
Happy Mother’s Day, from the Boston Public Library Foundation.
Posted on April 27th, 2012 by Alison Murphy in Foundation
We had a great time at the Big Thrill this past Wednesday, and we hope you did too! All of the authors had amazing things to say, giving us candid answers about their work (“I didn’t know who the bad guy was until about 80% of the book was written,” said Tess Gerritsen of one of her books), the writing process (Charlaine Harris claimed that having her work on television hasn’t affected her work, saying: “No matter how many times I get my picture taken on the red carpet with Alexander Skarsgård, I still have to sit my butt down and write the book!”), and what they would’ve done if they hadn’t been writers (Karin Slaughter would have been a watchmaker because, as she said, “I like putting tiny pieces together.”). Our favorite moment of the night? When asked why supporting libraries was so important, Lee Child spoke from the heart, saying: “not only did libraries save my life, they probably created it.”
Couldn’t make it? Don’t worry: we live-tweeted the event, so head on over to our twitter feed, @BPLFoundation, to catch up on all the fun. And don’t forget to check out pictures from the event at our Facebook page, courtesy of our wonderful photographer, Dana Curran!
Posted on April 23rd, 2012 by Alison Murphy in Foundation
We recently wrapped up our Facebook contest for tickets to the Big Thrill, happening this Wednesday, April 25th from 5:30-8:30PM. The contest features excerpts from the work of some of the authors that will be joining us at the event. Last week, we shared the bios for the authors of the first two entries in our contest, David Hosp and Karin Slaughter. This week, we’re revealing the final three:
Charlaine Harris a New York Times bestselling author who has been writing for thirty years. She is the author of several series of mysteries, but is best known for the Sookie Stackhouse series of books that inspired the cable TV series True Blood. The first book in the series, Dead Until Dark, won the Anthony Award for Best Paperback Mystery in 2001. Each book follows Sookie as she tries to solve mysteries involving vampires, werewolves, and other creatures of the night.
Tess Gerritsen gained nationwide acclaim for her first novel of medical suspense, the New York Times bestseller Harvest. Her books have been top-5 bestsellers in the United States and abroad. She has won both the Nero Wolfe Award (for Vanish) and the Rita Award (for The Surgeon). Her series of novels featuring homicide detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles inspired the TNT television series “Rizzoli & Isles” starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander.
And finally, Lee Child is the #1 internationally bestselling author of thirteen Reacher thrillers, including the New York Times bestsellers The Enemy, One Shot, The Hard Way, and the #1 bestselling Bad Luck and Trouble and Nothing to Lose. His debut, Killing Floor, won both the Anthony and the Barry awards for Best First Mystery, and The Enemy won both the Barry and the Nero awards for Best Novel.
Missed out on the contest, but still want to see these amazing thriller writers share the stories behind their stories? There’s still time to buy tickets! We have a special offer on tickets all this week, so buy now before we run out, and we’ll see you Wednesday.
Posted on April 13th, 2012 by Alison Murphy in Foundation
For the next two weeks, we are running a contest over at our Facebook page for tickets to the Big Thrill event, happening on April 25th, 5:30-8:30 here at the BPL. For the next week, we will be posting paragraphs from well-known thriller novels, the authors of which will be represented at the Big Thrill.
Last week, we posted an excerpt of David Hosp’s Among Thieves, a novel inspired by the true story of the biggest art theft of the 21st century – the 1990 theft of $500 million worth of paintings from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. David Hosp is the author of the international bestselling Scott Finn series of novels. The first, Dark Harbor, was nominated for a Barry Award for best first novel, and his latest, Next of Kin, was named one of 2011’s top-five thrillers by London’s Daily Telegraph. David is also a partner in one of Boston’s largest law firms, and represents the Boston Public Library pro bono with respect to copyright and on-line media matters.
This week, we featured Undone, from author Karin Slaughter’s popular Rizzoli and Isles series (also a television series!). Karin Slaughter is the #1 internationally bestselling author of several novels, including the Grant County series. Her first book, Blindsighted, became an international success, was published in almost 30 languages, and made the Crime Writers’ Association’s Dagger Award shortlist for “Best Thriller Debut” of 2001. Karin won the 2011 International Thriller Writers’ Association’s award for public service for her work in founding Save the Libraries.
Want to hear more about David Hosp and Karin Slaughter, and how they came up with the ideas for their popular series? Buy tickets now see them and other acclaimed thriller writers at the Big Thrill. And don’t forget to check back at our Facebook page today and all next week for more chances to win (psst – there’s a special Friday the 13th post today!)
Posted on March 26th, 2012 by Alison Murphy in Foundation
Tags: Arkansas, Boston Public Library, Civil Rights Movement, community organizing, Connolly branch, Laura Foner, SNCC, Women's History Month
Librarian Laura Foner, middle, laughs with fellow SNCC organizers
Last Monday, as part of their ongoing celebration of Women’s History Month, the Connolly branch featured librarian Laura Foner, who spoke about her experiences as an organizer for SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee). Ms. Foner served in the Arkansas chapter of SNCC from 1965 to 1966. Of her experience in the small southeastern town of Gould, Ms. Foner said, “I had heard about rural poverty, but I had not seen it. I was shocked and appalled that people were living this way in the 1960s.” Foner was the only white woman working with SNCC in Gould. “Being a white woman on the black side of town was dangerous for me and for them,” she said. “But we decided it was worth it.” Unable to go out after dark or be seen riding in cars with fellow black organizers, Foner coordinated the SNCC headquarters. Among other things, that included starting a library. “The children were thrilled,” she said of the library. “They had never before had access to free books, and they had never seen books written by black authors.” Children came by after school to read, play games, and sing freedom songs, which opened and closed every SNCC meeting. “Music was a huge part of the movement,” Foner said. “It kept spirits up.”
Certainly, there was much need for hope in Gould. On January 11th, 1967, the house that functioned as the SNCC headquarters was burned to the ground. “Every book in the library was lost,” Foner said. No one was ever charged in the arson. Of the fire and the other difficult events of the 1960s, Foner quoted Frederick Douglass: “’If there is no struggle, there is no progress.’ That’s as true today as it was in 1965, or 1865.”
Foner drew parallels between her first job as a librarian and her current role: “When I was making the decision [to become a librarian], I realized the first time I ever worked at a library was in Gould.” When asked how her activism had affected her career choices, she cited the library’s central role in the community as one of the primary reasons for her decision to become a full-time librarian at 50 years old. “It’s the perfect place for an organizer,” she said. “I believe that public libraries are crucial in the fight to preserve public spaces. It’s about saying this is ours, as people who are members of this society. We need to fight for and preserve our public spaces, and libraries are part of that. They’re a place that is free for everybody – you don’t have to have a lot of money, or speak the language, you can be any age, any size – all the resources are here for you. To me that is a really important model. It’s really great in a society where ‘my-my-my’ thinking is so primary to show kids that libraries are a place where we share.”
The Connolly branch’s celebration of Women’s History Month has featured a different event every Monday night in March. Their closing event will be Family Story Time tonight at 6:30PM (Connolly Branch, 433 Centre Street, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130, 617-522-1960).