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At the Libraries: 20 Brilliant Bookcases

Are you tired of your boring, plain, everyday bookcases? Me too! I can't do much about the bookshelves inside my library, but I am definitely inspired to change around the bookshelves in my home by these amazing pictures! Thanks, Incredible Things -- these bookcases truly are incredible!
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Some days, I can't imagine a crazier library than my own North Carolina one, but Avi Steinberg has me beat by a mile, if not several thousand miles. Read his essay about working in a prison library and count your blessings!
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I was a little bit too old for the whole Goosebumps craze when it first came out (I was totally into the "Fear Street" series, though), but it is still superpopular with kids. And now, with a new movie coming out, it looks like R.L. Stine will be raking it in even more! Looks pretty scary to me!
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Here's another cool exhibit from a university's Special Collections department—UMass' W.E.B. DuBois Library is running "Uncertain Futures: Americans and Science Fiction in the Early Cold War Era." Anyone else got a great exhibit for me to highlight?
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Check out 21st-century libraries! We're offering music downloads and ebooks, tweeting, a and texting. As the Washington Post so cleverly put it, libraries' "lexicon is changing, replacing 'Shh!' with 'LOL.'" OMG, WaPo.
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Update on this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade -- the Wimpy Kid balloon is being designed as we speak! Check out some early photos!
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Here's a great NY Mag feature on what celebrity's children's books (which are usually pretty gag-worthy) have to say about the celebrity themselves.
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Breaking news! Jonathan Franzen's glasses were stolen and held for ransom at a book party. His whole UK visit has been full of drama, in fact. Read all about it!
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Video time! This is not librarians being silly, but the actual video of Tears For Fears' classic "Head Over Heels," which just happens to be set in a library. Enjoy! Oh, card catalogs - I don't miss you at all.
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Let's end with a question. I'm trying to do a "Skill Share" program at my library. It's where you invite the public to share a skill that they know in front of an audience, with people taking turns. Decorating cakes, cross-stitch, juggling, what have you. If you were to share a skill, what would it be?

If you follow a great library blog, site, or twitterer, please share it with me! Hit me at atthelibraries@gmail.com or leave me a comment. See previous installments of At the Libraries here.

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At the Libraries: The Best Books of 2013
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Have you seen the best-of-the-year round ups yet? The New York Times, Amazon, and Publisher's Weekly are all very thorough.

I think I'm going with Longbourne by Jo Baker, but Thank You For Your Service was also a book I'll never forget. I'm very 'meh' on The Goldfinch. What was your favorite?

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Here are some hilarious ideas for organizing your library or book store shelves!

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New blog alert! If you want to know what it's like to work at a library via GIFs, try Librarian Problems.

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All those awards—won't someone think of the poor judges who have to read all those books? Here's one sob story. (Well, OK, it's not all bad, but it is pretty funny.)
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Books are great, but what are the best libraries of 2013? Funny you should ask... 

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One of my favorite round-ups every year is 100 Scope Notes' Children's lit year in miscellanea. Best Cake of the Year? Travis covers it!

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I guess I need to read this Emily of New Moon book, if she's #1 on the list of Classic YA heroines, huh?

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Nothing like a little library porn to brighten your new year!

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A big news story this year was Amazon's plan to use drones for delivery. But did you see what Waterstone's plan is? Way better.

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How about another great list? This one is the best librarians in pop culture! You have seen Party Girl, right?

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File this story under: Things about which we need more detail. A giant slide was built to move 22 miles worth of books. Tell me more, please!

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Here's some cool looking libraries in Mexico!

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Which book on your library shelf probably has herpes? I think this one is totally guessable, guys...
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Time to spotlight some great bookshelves. This one keeps you balanced. But this one is shaped like a robot, so it's basically no contest.

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Confess your secret shame here, librarians!

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I am kind of depressed that my state's most famous book is a Nicholas Sparks, but oh well. This is still a very cool map.

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Recycling books can be a lot harder than it sounds. Check out how one library was able to instead reduce and reuse 10,000 books!

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Let's get back to drones for the ending of our column. Have you seen the video of the NYPL shot by a drone? It's surprisingly beautiful.

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Happy New Year, everyone!

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At the Libraries: The Bookstore that Comes to You
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Just like a food truck, but less messy!

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These are great posters for reading. I'll take one of each; thanks!

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So, tell me straight: do you finish every book, or are you able to quit in the middle? I gave myself permission to quit a few years ago and it was VERY liberating. Life's too short, y'all!

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We've seen lots of tiny libraries, but I don't think I've seen THESE tiny libraries yet. Apparently there are ten in Manhattan—anyone seen or used one yet?

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Speaking of tiny, this 5-year-old, who has read 875 books this school year, is my tiny hero!

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Do books with girl characters have "girly" covers? One of my favorite YA authors, Maureen Johnson, inspired these great gendered cover flips. I think the David Sedaris is the best.

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Oh dear, these Park Slope parents have the most unusual library complaint.

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2131 books = a new world record and a bit of a clean-up nightmare, but I'm sure the Seattle Public Library would say it was all worth it.

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I love this art project—turn old bricks into books!

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Or, if you have old books instead of old bricks, you can turn them into sculptures instead.

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Or maybe you just want to paint some books? Check out these quirky watercolors for inspiration!

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Remember The World Book Encyclopedia? Ever done a "Dork Bowl?"

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Would you read these books, too? Maybe you should write one!

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If you need some heartwarming stories to read today, try the Libraries Changed My Life tumblr. They sure changed mine!

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I love it when we can end on a video. Here's a great one, but warning—it's pretty sad, as you can tell from the title:
Out-of-Work Librarian Blues.

Best of luck to her.

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Thanks as always for reading, and have a great June! See you all next month.

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