header image

Summer Reading, Reading Lists X

The folks who manage the Oxford English Dictionary have announced the new inclusions for the dictionary which include woke, post truth, and zyzzyza…I’ll leave it to you to “look these up.”
My use of the word manage is not unintentional, the OED is not entirely online, though, one can still see, use, worship the twenty volume print edition (the last print edition produced) in the ODY Reference Area.  We have a wonderful collection of dictionaries in ODY and Launders, on the vocabulary of topics professional, on languages modern and antique, and on the main level of ODY we have dictionaries, still, on lecterns. Look up a word on a lectern-borne dictionary, it’s an experience.

We also have a great collection of books about dictionaries, so by way of home-grown list, I’d like to recommend the following for 4th of July reading:

Good stuff.  I’m off the Maine for a few days, and will pick up again with a new reading list on July 6th.  Enjoy the 4th…



Summer Reading, Summer Reading Lists IX

One way to look at a library is as a reading list.  Collectively recommended, by a university community or by a city or town, made available, loaned and and borrowed, reshelved and sometimes lost. Plenty of people and ways to recommend titles, though interesting that some of the power of any particular libraries collection comes from its limitations:  books have to be specifically chosen for the locale they’ll make their own.  That’s a good thing, particularly the part about librarians offering advice about what to read.  Librarian Nancy Pearl is on contract (apparently) over at NPR’s Morning Edition, where she recommends books (what a gig!). She often produces lists of “under the radar reads,” which end up looking a lot like that:

The three titles not available in ODY are at the Canton Free Library, so they’re a short walk down Park Street in fine summer weather.  Happy librarying…

Summer Reading, Summer Lists VIII

Back in July of 2014 the New Yorker ran a piece titled “A Prisoner’s Reading List” by Alex Halberstadt.  It is a profile of Daniel Genis, who served a variety of prison terms at a dozen maximum and medium security prisons, and in the course of doing so, compiled a reading list of 1046 books.  The article does not provide the complete list (nor would we have room to reproduce it here) but referenced in the article among the books that became the anchors this man’s life are:

Summer Reading, Summer Lists VII

The folks who work at WCRB Boston–the “big” classical music station out of Boston (which my mother got me into the habit of listening to)–have assembled their list of the Songs of Summer ’17…and it’s a pretty darn diverse list (with a nice dollop of Mendelssohn).  Just moving from one video to another would be a great summer afternoon (like these sunny days that finally attend us here north of the Adirondacks…to go with those some of our titles on classical music; monographs thinking through the question, viability, and reason for music outside of that which we might bottle as pop.  Good good weather reading…

I will not be in the office next Tuesday (may very well have some Mozart on the car radio) but will be back with another reading list a week from today!

Summer Reading, Summer Lists VI

From the New York Public Library, “Know your Feminisms–a book list “essential for understanding the history of feminism and the women’s rights movement.” Their list of ten essential titles is:

The complete Know Your Feminisms list is available also from the NYPL, updated March 8 2016 complete with current titles.

Summer Reading, Summer Lists V

Noted Sports write Frank Deford died on May 28th (his NPR obituary is here).  He had a long and extraordinary prolific career writing about sports, with numerous books to his credit published over a forty some odd year span, including titles such as Cut ‘n Run, and The Old Ball Game: How John McGraw, Christy Mathewson, and the New York Giants Created Modern Baseball.  He was also a commentator for NPR’s radio show, Morning Edition, and position he held for thirty three years.  NPR’s Tanya Ballad Brown undertook the herculean task of going back through his commentaries and selected an representative group.  The results of her work are here, “The ‘Best Of’ Frank Deford, According To Frank Deford.” In honor of Deford’s life and work we’ll turn to this list of radio pieces as this installment of our summer “reading” list; it’s well worth a moment to listen to them, sports writing is much the poorer without him.

Summer Reading, Summer Lists IV

Another reading list from the New York Times, dated 9 November 2016, of books that spoke to the why of the election past…


Summer Reading, Reading Lists III

Of course, one of the most important reading lists published in the United States is the Pulitzer Prize announcements.  This year’s winners are:

Olio is available through ConnectNY, The Underground Railroad is available through the North Country Library System, and the other titles through an ILLiad interlibrary loan request.

Summer Reading, Summer Lists

As part two of the summer 2017 gathering of reading lists, Barack Obama.  On a post dated August 12th 2016 on whitehouse.gov, the then President shared what he had been reading:

  • Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan
  • by Colson Whitehead
  • H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald
  • The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
  • Seveneves by Neal Stephenson

All the titles we don’t have are available through ConnectNY, and Girl on the Train is in the Canton Free Library Collection…

Summer Reading, Reading Lists

Last December when thinking about what books to buy for people he knew in light of Mr. Trump’s election victory, Ross Douthat published  piece titled “Books for the Trump Era” wherein he wrote “…the Trump era has already been god for political reading lists.”  So it has.  Thus, for this summer’s exercise in blogging about summer reading we will be sharing a variety of reading lists from a variety of points of view.  Whatever evil the Internet may have done to our political discourse, it is really good for finding lists of books…so here we begin with some, starting with the books Mr. Douthat mentioned in his article from the New York Times on December 21st (2016):

We have several of Mr. Douthat’s books including Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics…books in the SLU Libraries are linked here to the catalog record, for those not in our collection remember you can get ’em here through either ConnectNY or ILLiad, interlibrary loan runs year round!  Happy reading…

St. Lawrence University