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Posts Tagged ‘author talks’

Boston Public Library June Literary Events at Locations Across the City

Posted on May 24th, 2016 by BPL News in Media Releases

Downloads3Boston Public Library offers a wealth of author talks and book sales throughout the month of June; visit www.bpl.org/calendar for a complete list.

  • The Brighton Branch, located at 40 Academy Hill Road, holds a book sale on Friday, June 3, and Saturday, June 4, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • The Central Library, located at 700 Boylston Street, hosts a book sale in the McKim building’s Cushman Room on Saturday, June 4, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Caldecott Medal-winning author and illustrator E.B. Lewis speaks to children about how picture books are created on Tuesday, June 7, at 4 p.m. at the Faneuil Branch, located at 419 Faneuil Street in Brighton.
  • The Parker Hill Branch hosts a book sale on Thursday, June 9, from 4-7:30 p.m. at 1497 Tremont Street in Roxbury.
  • Anthony M. Sammarco gives a slide show presentation and talk about his book Lost Boston, which details Boston’s fascinating lost architectural heritage on Thursday, June 9, at 6:30 p.m. at the Lower Mills Branch, located at 27 Richmond Street in Dorchester.
  • Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor offers profound insights in her in-depth look at the political landscape that gave birth to Black Lives Matter, discussing From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation on Saturday, June 11, at 12 p.m. and on Saturday, June 25, at 12 p.m. at the Dudley Branch, located at 65 Warren Street.
  • Local author Myra Love speaks about her new book, My Life as a Poet: Minerva’s Story, which details Minerva’s senior year in high school, in which she resists others’ efforts to define her, even when illness and violence intrude. Monday, June 13, at 6:30 p.m. at the Connolly Branch, located at 433 Centre Street in Jamaica Plain.
  • Join biologist Nathan H. Lents for a discussion of his book Not So Different: Finding Human Nature in Animals; through a mix of colorful reporting and rigorous scientific research, Lents describes the exciting strides scientists have made in decoding animal behavior. Thursday, June 16, at 6 p.m. at the East Boston Branch, located at 365 Bremen Street.
  • Local author Kenneth Turino speaks about his book Haymarket, as the Boston market district has changed dramatically but continues to serve a constant stream of students and tourists, longtime residents, and newly arrived immigrant families. Thursday, June 16, at 6:30 p.m. at the West End Branch, located at 151 Cambridge Street.
  • Stop by the South End Branch, located at 685 Tremont Street, for a book sale on Saturday, June 18, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • The South Boston Branch, located at 646 East Broadway, holds a book sale on Saturday, June 18, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Jenna Blum reads from her book Those Who Save Us, which combines a love story and mother-daughter drama on Tuesday, June 28, at 6:30 p.m. at the South End Branch, located at 685 Tremont Street.
  • Bob Backlund, WWE Hall of Fame member, discusses his book Backlund: From All-American Boy to Professional Wrestling’s World Champion on Thursday, June 30, at 6 p.m. at the West End Branch, located at 151 Cambridge Street.

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Bee Panel at the Central Library in Copley Square

Posted on May 18th, 2016 by BPL News in General

BeesBees were the theme for the final Boston Public Library Author Talk of the spring, with guests Olivia Messigner Carril, co-author of The Bees in Your Backyard: A Guide to North America’s Bees, and Thomas Seeley, author of Following the Wild Bees: The Craft and Science of Bee Hunting. The bee experts provided the audience with an overview of the different ways to observe and track the wild bees that live around us.

Seeley led off with an exploration of the art of bee hunting, which involves tracking bees to their nest through a process of luring and following them. To begin, a hunter catches a bee in a box designed specifically for bee hunting that contains a sugar water comb. When the bee is released it will return with its nest mates, allowing the bee hunter to see the “beeline,” or the direction in which the bees are flying. The hunter then moves further down the beeline with the box of bees, following the bees’ path as they again are released and return to the box with the food source. Eventually, the hunter will be able to follow them home to their nest. Seeley says the joy of bee hunting lies in observing the bees and locating their home. A bee hunter doesn’t have to be immersed in nature to go on a bee hunt; Seeley has conducted bee hunts everywhere from Harvard Yard to Central Park in New York City.

Messinger Carril followed with an overview of the wide variety of bee species – four thousand in the United States and Canada alone – and how to find and identify them. The solitary bee can make its home in everything from sand to pine cones and snail shells. Some bees even build beautiful nests out of flower petals. When encountering a wild bee, she said, an observer can use a camera phone to take pictures from a few different angles in order to identify the species later. To help illustrate the wide diversity of bees, she brought along a box of bee samples that showcased a range of bee types and sizes.

The authors concluded by taking questions from the engaged audience members who were eager to know more about bee populations and species. In response to one attendee’s question on how to support wild bees, Messinger Carril emphasized that it’s important to provide them with an undisturbed place to nest and to grow native plants that are not highly cultivated.

Thank you to all who attended our spring Author Talks. Boston Public Library’s Author Talks Series will return in the fall.

Joseph Bagley and “A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts”

Posted on May 12th, 2016 by BPL News in General

image1Joseph Bagley, City Archaeologist of Boston, wrapped up the BPL’s spring Local and Family History Series with a discussion of his new book A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts. He treated the crowd of 100 people that filled the Central Library’s Commonwealth Salon to images of some of the artifacts highlighted in the book as well as the fascinating stories behind them.

Bagley was inspired to write A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts by the volume A History of the World in 100 Objects. When writing the book, he made sure to select artifacts that represent all time periods in Boston history, not just the Revolution, and Bostonians from all walks of life. For instance, he highlights a plate found in an excavation of the 1806 African Meeting House on Beacon Hill that was part of a matched set of shell-edged pearlware – a luxury in the 19th century. It was identified as belonging to Domingo Williams, a free black man who lived below the meeting house and ran a successful business as an event caterer for Boston’s upper classes.

Other artifacts serve as a gateway into the lives of fascinating Bostonians throughout history. For example, the oldest bowling ball in North America, dating from 1660-1715, was uncovered in the North End in a privy on the property of Katherine Nanny Naylor. Though lawn bowling was illegal in Puritan society, the wealthy Nanny Naylor may have openly bowled as a sign of her elite status. Illegal bowling was just the tip of the iceberg of ignoring convention for Nanny Naylor; she was also the first woman in Massachusetts to successfully sue for divorce from her abusive husband.

Other artifacts highlighted in Bagley’s book remind readers that the history of Boston did not begin with the Puritans. A native spear point found during an archaeological survey of Boston Common dates from 5,500-7,500 years ago, making it older than Stonehenge or the Egyptian pyramids. Bagley also explored the stories behind such objects as a comb found in the Paul Revere House, a whizzer toy that belonged to the son of wealthy merchant and slave dealer Charles Apthorp, an arrowhead made from a kettle traded to native people, and a page from a Hebrew prayer book found in the walls of the African Meeting House.

Bagley concluded with an overview of the City of Boston Archaeology program, including the current work at the Malcolm X House. He emphasized that the program is truly public, as anyone is welcome to help excavate the property. During a question and answer session that followed, the audience proved eager to learn more about archaeology in Boston.

Paul Lewis & The Citizen Poets of Boston

Posted on May 11th, 2016 by BPL News in General

citizens 2Paul Lewis, a professor of English at Boston College, visited the Central Library in Copley Square on May 9, discussing his book The Citizen Poets of Boston, which originally began as an exhibition at the Boston Public Library in 2012 titled The Forgotten Chapters of Boston’s Literary History. Lewis began by thanking staff of the Boston Public Library, who were instrumental in assisting him with his research; the book would have been very difficult to produce without databases and BPL resources that provided the images and text of the poems. The poems in his book are a compilation of “citizen” poems from 1789-1820. At the time, there were hundreds of magazines throughout the country, and quite a few in Boston; they would invite readers to submit their poems, hence “citizens,” which could refer to any resident of the City at that time.  This time brought forth much interaction from writers to editors and editors to writers, and between readers and writers.

The poems revealed the culture of the time, and of what people were thinking about and feeling in post-revolutionary Boston. Poems included thoughts by a seamstress wanting to get married, a 21-year-old complaining about aging, a formerly enslaved man striving for freedom, a young woman protesting marriage, and a poet describing his love for books. The sections of the book are broken down into categories: “Coming to Boston,” Men and Women,” “Politics,” “the Family,” “Jobs, Shops, and the Professions,” “Pleasure and the Good Life,” “Rebusses, Riddles, Anagrams, Acrostics, and Enigmas,” and “Death.” Lewis was joined by students from Boston College to read some of these poems, as well as City of Boston Poet Laureate Danielle Legros Georges.  Lewis indicated that this type of project could potentially be replicated in cities such as New York and Philadelphia.

The BPL’s Author Talk Series continues on Wednesday, May 11, at 6 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon with Joseph Bagley as he discusses A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts.

Boston Public Library’s May Author Talks and Programs

Posted on April 27th, 2016 by BPL News in Media Releases

Desktop291Events take place at Central Library and Branches Throughout the City

Boston Public Library’s May schedule is filled with author talks and lectures, book sales, and programs honoring Mother’s Day. Visit www.bpl.org/calendar for a full schedule.

  • Make a gift for a special mother in your life with clay artist Sabrina Pilet-Jones on Wednesday, May 4, at 4 p.m. at the South End Branch, located at 685 Tremont Street.
  • Make homemade bath products for a mother or yourself on Thursday, May 5, at 7 p.m. at the Uphams Corner Branch, located at 500 Columbia Road in Dorchester.
  • Create your own comic book-themed drink coaster for Mother’s Day on Saturday, May 7, at 11:30 a.m. at the Uphams Corner Branch, located at 500 Columbia Road in Dorchester.
  • Hear stories celebrating mothers on Saturday, May 7, at 11 a.m. in the Children’s Library at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street.
  • Paul Lewis, editor of The Citizen Poets of Boston: A Collection of Forgotten Poems, 1789–1820, speaks about mostly anonymous works that reveal the vibrant, lost world of Boston’s post-revolutionary poetry and provide access to the culture and daily life of the city. He is joined by Danielle Legros Georges, Poet Laureate of Boston, on Monday, May 9, at 6 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street.
  • Local author Lisa E. Pearson discusses her book Arnold Arboretum, the newest addition to Arcadia Publishing’s Images of America series, on Monday, May 9, at 6:30 p.m. at the Connolly Branch, located at 433 Centre Street.
  • In honor of Asian-Pacific Heritage Month, children’s author Thanhha Lai discusses her novel Inside Out & Back Again, which won numerous accolades including the National Book Award and the Newbery Honor Medal. It is the story of a young girl in 1975 who, along with her family, leaves her home in Vietnam to start a new life in Alabama. Tuesday, May 10, at 12 p.m. at the Adams Street Branch, located at 690 Adams Street in Dorchester.
  • Joseph Bagley, author of A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts, highlights some of the city’s fascinating past —from ancient fishing grounds to Jazz Age red-light districts—and demonstrates how historical objects offer a unique and accessible introduction to Boston’s history and physical culture. Wednesday, May 11, at 6 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street. Part of the Local and Family History Series.
  • Hear the incredible story of a Holocaust survivor persecuted by the Nazis and victimized by the American court system in When God Looked Down and Wept. This presentation includes a short film followed by a discussion with the lawyer who represented the survivor in his fight for his First Amendment rights. Thursday, May 12, at 6:30 p.m. at the West End Branch, located at 151 Cambridge Street.
  • Award-winning Boston Globe journalist Emily Sweeney gives a slide lecture regarding her book Boston Organized Crime, which explores the region’s shadier side, taking a closer look at the mobsters and racketeers who once operated in the greater Boston area. Saturday, May 14, at 2 p.m. at the Brighton Branch, located at 40 Academy Hill Road.
  • The Friends of the North End Branch hold their annual book sale on Saturday, May 14, from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. at the North End Branch, located at 25 Parmenter Street.
  • The Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture in collaboration with the Boston Public Library present Boston’s Poet Laureate Danielle Legros Georges reading from her new collection of poems The Dear Remote Nearness of You on Sunday, May 15, at 2 p.m. in the Abbey Room at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street.
  • Join bee experts Joseph Wilson, Olivia Messinger Carril, and Thomas Seeley for a bee keeping panel, which will include an introduction to the many different types of bee species, as well information on the lost pastime of bee hunting, on Monday, May 16, at 6 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street.
  • Peter Grinspoon discusses Free Refills: A Doctor Confronts His Addiction: A Memoir, which describes his journey to overcoming addiction and ultimately becoming a more compassionate doctor for it on Monday, May 16, at 6:30 p.m. at the South Boston Branch, located at 646 East Broadway.
  • The Friends of the South Boston Branch hold their springtime book sale on Saturday, May 21, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the South Boston Branch, located at 646 East Broadway.
  • The Lower Mills Branch at 27 Richmond Street welcomes mystery author and investigative reporter Hank Phillippi Ryan for a talk and book signing on Monday, May 23, at 6:30 p.m.

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