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Author Bich Minh Nguyen to speak in Plymouth

Author Bich Minh Nguyen, who wrote Stealing Buddha's Dinner will speak at 1 p.m. on Saturday, October 17th at the Penn Theatre in Plymouth.

Nguyen and her family left Vietnam in 1975, and relocated to Michigan. Stealing Buddha's Dinner is a memoir of the author's childhood and experiences of assimilation into American culture. This is Nguyen's only appearance in the Detroit area; and her presentation is not to be missed.

What Libraries Stand For in America

When searching the library shelves for books and movies or stopping in to surf the net on one of the public computers does anyone really stop to think about how the library service was born? Today, most districts, cities and schools contain at least one public library and this can be taken for granted. What some do not realize is the role the library plays in equal opportunity education. The people who can not afford picture books for their children can check them out at the library or the people who can not afford college are given the opportunity to research scholarships.

Hispanic Heritage

National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from mid-September through mid-October each year. The resources in this Special Collection provide an introduction to the culture, identity and direction of the diverse population that is Hispanic.

Culture

Arte Latino: Treasures From the Smithsonian American Art Museum by Jonathan Yorba: This book documents 50 Latino artists from the U.S. and Puerto Rico as they explore their identity and influence on U.S. culture over the past two centuries through various media.

Fantastic Origami

We've done it this time! We've got 1000 sheets of origami paper just waiting to be folded at our Fantastic Origami program on Tuesday, September 22 from 5-7pm in the Purple Room. Come learn about Sadako Sasaki and celebrate the International Day of Peace on September 21 by making paper cranes. Registration is now open for third and fourth graders.

The White Queen

Philippa Gregory has done it again! If you enjoyed The Other Boleyn Girl, you will enjoy her newest novel, The White Queen. It takes place earlier than the Tudors and has all the same great elements she is famous for romance, family "scheming" for power, and lots of insight to a period of history you may not have known about. Read it and enjoy!

Edward M. Kennedy

Senator Edward M. Kennedy passed away early this morning after a long battle with cancer. He was 77. Kennedy, nicknamed "Ted," and known as the "Lion of the Senate" was first elected to represent Massachusetts in 1962. He is one of only six senators in U.S. history to serve more than 40 years. Throughout this time he played major roles in the passage of such landmark legislation as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act. He has also been one of the Senate's foremost champions of health care reform. Speaking to reporters after hearing the news of Kennedy's death, President Obama called him "not only one of the greatest senators of our time, but one of the most accomplished Americans ever to serve our democracy."

Pick Up Some Historical Fiction

Every August I look forward to the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival! There's lots of cool crafts for sale, yummy fair food, and a living history area where you can see how 19th century Michiganders lived. Whenever the festival comes, it always makes me want to pick up a good piece of Civil War historical fiction. My favorites are the ones by Ann Rinaldi. She even wrote one about a girl from Michigan who runs off to join the Union Army during the Civil War. There's a ton to choose from at the library, so stop by and give one a try. Happy reading!

Give LibraryThing a Fling

LibraryThing is a great way to keep track of what you're reading as well as find out what others have enjoyed. LibraryThing helps you catalog your books, get connected to to others who share similar tastes and receive suggestions and book reviews for future reading pleasure. Especially of interest are "I See Dead Peoples Books" which are legacy libraries of famous dead people and the "Zeitgiest" page which lists top reviewed books, most popular authors, largest libraries, most translated texts and more. Sign up for library thing to catalog your reading interests or explore those of others. It's really fun!

Young people make our history great!

Have you heard of Kory Johnson? Kory was nine years old in 1988 when she started Children for a Safe Environment, an organization that helps to make sure water is safe for us to drink. Want to learn more about kids who made their mark on American history? Check out We Were There Too by Phillip Hoose. In this great history book you'll find true stories, photos and other primary documents to help you envision what it was like to be a young person and stand up for what you believe.

The Summer of '69

Do you remember Hurricane Camille? Woodstock? Apollo 11? The Manson Murders? The Stonewall Riots? If so, do you remember what all of these history making events have in common? They all occurred in the Summer of 1969. For an overview of some of these events check out CNN's Special page. For a perspective on the entire year you can also read Rob Kirkpatrick's recent book 1969: the Year Everything Changed. Or check out Wikipedia's timeline for a day-by-day breakdown of this seminal year in American history.

An Anne Frank Diary Anniversay

Saturday, August 1, marks the 65th anniversary of Anne Frank's last diary entry. Written while her family was in hiding from the Nazis, the diary has gone on to become a beloved classic around the world. The library owns several copies of the book, including abridged versions for younger readers. There are also many other Holocaust survivor books available to further your knowledge of this tragic period in history.

Exploring Genealogy at the Westland Public Library

Are you new to genealogy and would like to know the basics? The Westland Public Library will be hosting a program for genealogy newbies on Thursday, August 6th at 7 pm. Kris Rzepczynski, genealogy librarian and expert from the Library of Michigan, will be presenting. Register by calling the adult reference desk at 734-326-6123.

Henry Ford and Fordlandia

Fordlandia : the rise and fall of Henry Ford's forgotten jungle city by Greg Grandin documents Henry Ford's 1927 purchase of a Connecticut-sized plot of land in Brazil for the purpose of growing rubber. The South American leaf blight and the advent of synthetic rubbers forced the company to abandon Fordlandia in 1945, long after Ford had poured millions of dollars and years of strenuous effort into the project. Grandin argues that this was more than an economic venture. It was a missionary application of Ford-style capitalism--high wages, humane benefits, moral improvement to a backward land.

A call for young writers ages 13-17

Do you love to write?  Are you looking for a way to win cool prizes and have you work published?  If so, you should check out the American Veteran, The Power of One Essay and Scholarship Project.  Teens are asked to write about a veteran who showed the ability to be a role model and has shown the "power of one" by making a difference in the lives of others.  For more details and the contest rules check out this link.

Happy 308th Birthday Detroit!

Did you know that Detroit was founded on July 24, 1701 by French explorer Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac? Commemorate the occasion with Madame Cadillac's Ghost by Janie Lynn Panagopoulos - a fun mystery about two kids left on their own to explore the Detroit Historical Museum (pictured left). If you get the chance, why not have your own adventure at the DHM? Admission is free during the month of July so it's definitely worth the trip!

Walter Cronkite

The man once known as "the most trusted man in America" passed away Friday at the age of  92. Walter Cronkite, the legendary journalist and TV news anchor for CBS, retired in 1981 after a long and distinguished career. Recruited by Edward R. Murrow,  Cronkite joined the network in the early 1950s after proving himself with his excellent coverage from Moscow during World War II.

To the Moon!

It's hard to believe but this Monday, July 20 celebrates the 40th anniversary of the first manned moon landing.