Tag: reading

Dive Into Summer and Check Out These Bestselling Nonfiction Books!

Each week, Bookstr scans bestseller lists across the Internet to learn what people are reading, buying, gifting, and talking about most — just so we can ensure consistent, high-quality recommendations. This week’s nonfiction picks center are current bestsellers, showcasing which nonfiction books are the biggest hits with audiences! Pick these up to see what everyone is talking about!

 

5. Wally Funk’s Race for Space by Sue Nelson

 

A woman holding a space helmet stands before a rocket ship taking off

Image via Amazon

Wally Funk’s Race For Space by Sue Nelson tells the story of Wally Funk, who was one of the thirteen American female pilots in NASA’s 1961 program: Women in Space. She wanted to become one of the first women astronauts but just one week before the final phase of training, the program was cancelled. This book is a fascinating read, exploring Wally Funk’s life, before, during, and after the failed space venture. Although she may never reach the stars, her story will inspire you to reach for them.

 

4. Some kids I taught and what they taught me  by Kate CLanchy

 

A notebook sitting on some schoolbooks with a pencil

Image via Amazon

 

Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me by Kate Clanchy is an exploration and celebration of her thirty-year teaching career. From the pressures of explaining sex to teenagers, to nurturing a poetry group of refugees, to the regular stresses of coursework, this memoir is an honest exploration of teaching, from its highs to its lows. It is showcase of how vital teaching is and how undervalued it can be to the world at large. This novel will show you why it shouldn’t be.

 

3. The Corner shop by Babita Sharma

 

Image via Amazon

The Corner Shop by Babita Sharma tells of the institution that is still vital to our modern world today, even with the rise of retail. The author was raised in one and had her worldview shaped by gazing out from its tiny confines. Along with learning how to stack shelves and organize items, Babita gained unique political and human insight from the shop. This book is a very interesting look at these shops from her POV, discussing how they are still vital to the world and still beloved by many.

 

2. ‘Superior’ by Angela Saini

Image via Amazon

Superior by Angela Saini is a disturbing read but an essential one. After the horrors the Nazis committed during World War II, the world turned its back on eugenics and the study of ‘race science’. But not all did. Some scientists remained committed to the terrible ideas of race science, believing that certain people are inferior to others. The book explores its horrific origins and how it’s been slowly keeping itself alive thanks to a small group of scientists who remain committed to its ideals. And how, it is today experiencing a horrific resurgence in popularity. At a time where white nationalism is rising, Superior is an examination of the insidious, disturbing, and destructive nature of race science.

 

1. Three Women by Lisa Taddeo 

 

Image Via Amazon

Three Women by Lisa Taddeo is the story of women’s relationship with sex, showcased in a manner that isn’t often seen. Taddeo tells the story of three women’s unmet needs, disappointments, and obsessions. The culmination of many long hours of research over an eight year period, the women featured are: Lisa, who is in an unhappy marriage with two kids, Maggie, who has a fling with her teacher and becomes the center of a small town court case, and Sloane, whose husband likes to watch her have sex with other people. This book is an exposure of erotic fragility in modern America, frank, honest, and up front about women’s relationships with sexual desire.

 

Featured Image Via Amazon 

Top 10 Literary Quotes to Prepare You for Summer!

 

Summer is here (thank god!) Goodbye freezing winds, slogging through mounds of snow, cold nights, and early sunsets. Say hello instead to warm beaches, cookouts, strolls through the beautiful foliage, and leaping into the pool! Its summer time, book lovers, and we’re sure you all have a lot of reading to catch up on. What better place to read than on a sunny beach listening to the crash of the ocean waves or lying in the soft grass under the shade of a swaying tree in a park? Here are ten quotes from literature to get you hyped for the splash of summer!

 

Image via the New York Times

1. “And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer” – The Great Gatsby.

2. “The summer stretched out the daylight as if on a rack. Each moment was drawn out until its anatomy collapsed. Time broke down. The day progressed in an endless sequence of dead moments” – Perdido Street Station.

3. “The castle grounds were gleaming in the sunlight as though freshly painted; the cloudless sky smiled at itself in the smoothly sparkling lake, the satin-green lawns rippled occasionally in a gentle breeze: June had arrived” – Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

4. “August has passed, and yet summer continues by force to grow days. They sprout secretly between the chapters of the year, covertly included between its pages” – Tree of Codes. 

5.“Spring flew swiftly by, and summer came; and if the village had been beautiful at first, it was now in the full glow and luxuriance of its richness. The great trees, which had looked shrunken and bare in the earlier months, had now burst into strong life and health; and stretching forth their green arms over the thirsty ground, converted open and naked spots into choice nooks, where was a deep and pleasant shade from which to look upon the wide prospect, steeped in sunshine, which lay stretched out beyond. The earth had donned her mantle of brightest green; and shed her richest perfumes abroad. It was the prime and vigour of the year; all things were glad and flourishing” – Oliver Twist.

Image via NPR

 

6. The summer night was settling upon the neighborhood like a dark lace veil, casting dappled shadows on the roofs and sidewalks and lawns” – Luisa Across the Bay.

7. “Summer was on the way; Jem and I awaited it with impatience. Summer was our best season: it was sleeping on the back screened porch in cots, or trying to sleep in the tree house; summer was everything good to eat; it was a thousand colors in a parched landscape; but most of all, summer was Dill” – To Kill A Mockingbird.

8. “It was rapture enough just to sit there beside him in silence, alone in the summer night in the white splendor of moonshine, with the wind blowing down on them out of the pine woods” – The Blue Castle.

9. “At these times, the things that troubled her seemed far away and unimportant: all that mattered was the hum of the bees and the chirp of birdsong, the way the sun gleamed on the edge of a blue wildflower, the distant bleat and clink of grazing goats” – The Naming.

10. “The crickets felt it was their duty to warn everybody that summertime cannot last for ever. Even on the most beautiful days in the whole year – the days when summer is changing into autumn – the crickets spread the rumor of sadness and change” – Charlotte’s Web.

 

What are some of your favorite summer books? What’s on your reading list for this summer? Tell us in the comments!

Featured Image Via Deadline

The San Francisco Public Library Gives Home to the Homeless

“I’ve got nowhere else but here,” The San Francisco Chronicle quotes Francisco Martinez, 78, as he settles in a window chair in the San Francisco’s Main Library with a Bible.

Martinez is homeless, but he’s not alone at the library. He’s one of the many homeless people who have been met with a warm welcome at public libraries all over America.

 

The San Francisco Public Library

Image Via Trip Advisor

 

One of these people is Sally, a former nurse in her 50s. CityLab notes that “[a]fter witnessing a co-worker commit suicide, Sally suffered from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and was unable to continue working.” She soon became homeless, and, after witnessing a stabbing on the streets, her PTSD has been worsening ever since. She too went to the library and, from there, has been able to find subsidized housing and resume working.

Libraries are full of stories, but these hopeful tales of human resilience are all thanks to the efforts of the San Francisco Public Library and social worker Leah Esguerra.

 

Leah Esguerra

Image Via Good News Network

 

A little history:

According to Reader’s Digest, 2009 was the year that the San Francisco Public Library had an overwhelming number of homeless patrons who utilized their services. To put it in perspective, of the 5,000 people that visit the San Francisco Public Library every day, about 15 percent (that’s 750 patrons) are homeless.

Instead of removing the homeless, the Library decided to hire a social worker to address each individual’s situation. The social worker they hired? Leah Esguerra.

 

 

Following her assignment, Esguerra would walk around and get familiar with the homeless patrons, performing full clinical assessments and reporting her findings back to her colleagues at the San Francisco Homeless Outreach Team, who would then provide the homeless with what they needed.

 

Esguerra at the San Francisco Public Library

Image Via California Health Report

 

“The role is not to ‘end homelessness,’ but the role is to connect people to resources, to homeless services,” Esguerra told Business Insider. “… because of homelessness, there’s a lot of exclusion, but here in the library it’s including them, helping them.” In the seven years that have followed since her hire, Esguerra and her team have helped hundreds find jobs, housing, and proper medical care.

“At one time, the library was my home,” Sally tells CityLab.

Now there are several homeless people who, working under Esguerra’s supervision, keep the facility working. This includes Melvin Morris, who is currently employed for $12 an hour.

 

 

“I come from the same place [our homeless patrons] come from,” Morris told the Huffington Post. “When I talk to them, they can’t believe I was actually homeless. I tell them they could do it, too.”

Taking a cue from the San Francisco Public Library, Reader’s Digest notes that “[t]oday, more than 24 public libraries provide support for the homeless.”

 

A homeless person learning how to use a computer in the library.

Image Via ELFL

 

Now all public libraries in Pima County, Arizona have nurses available to provide blood pressure checks and immediate care to anyone who needs it.

The Queens Library in New York provides a mobile app to give the homeless emergency food, shelter, and legal services.

Since The San Francisco Public Library started this trend, over 150 homeless patrons have received permanent housing and an additional 800 have enrolled in social and mental health services.

 

 

Featured Image Via National Geographic

Suds and Stories—Tackling Literacy at Laundromats

Laundromats across the country are taking on an unexpected cause—childhood literacy. Several organizations are connecting libraries to laundromats and holding free book-shares and storytimes for low-income neighborhoods.

The incentive is to boost literacy among children whose community libraries are defunct or overcrowded and under-resourced. Now children are learning the joy of reading somewhere their families frequent, without the added hurdle of library fines and fees.

These programs work through a myriad of methods, with some of them equipping parents to read to their children while waiting, hosting librarians for a book-reading, distributing and lending books, or even setting up Wi-Fi hotspots to relay educational content.

According to NYU Steinhardt Professor Susan B. Neuman, these spaces significantly increased the time kids spent on literacy activities that bolster school readiness. Her study found that on average, the children spent 47 minutes enthralled with books, drawing, writing, and singing songs.

 

Storytime at Bubbleland Laundromat. Image via Chicago Public Library

 

Notably, the parents expressed that they were patrons of the laundromat for its program, and their children looked forward to laundry day. Given that the ages between birth and five are crucial to brain development, these few hours can have a great impact on a child’s educational trajectory.

In another study on an NYC initiative, one disappointing finding was that while the children flocked to the reading spaces, the parents were not always actively engaged in the learning.

Family involvement is key to the program’s success. The study found, however, that with librarians added 30% of parents eventually participated; this speaks to the idea that more funding may raise effectiveness.

Among the many laundry laundromats that have spread across the country, a number are sponsored by the Laundry and Literacy Coalition (LLC)—a partnership between the Clinton Foundation’s Too Small to Fail (TSTF) and the Coin Laundry Association’s LaundryCares Foundation.

"Can't believe Harry Potter dies at the end of endgame smh"

Our Favorite Bookish Tweets This Week

It’s time for some Friday Twitterature! As one of our many weekly features, Bookstr is taking a look back at some of the best tweets from our feed this week: celebs gush over Game of Thrones, spoilers threaten Avengers fans everywhere, and Jeff Bezos wants to ship to the moon. Get ready for the weekend (as if you weren’t already right there) with these literary tweets.

 

1. This dangerous tweet from kehlani

 

 

 

2. This self-promo tweet from Flo (of the machines)

 

3. This fan-fueled praise from Stephen king

 

4. in case you wanted to cry some more

 

5. Amazon ceo’s private space company is out for delivery

 

Amazon, the company set to take over the book publishing world AND the real world, may have some new developments. FYI, Blue Origin is basically Jeff Bezos’ own private NASA. We assume he wants to colonize space or become the next man to land on the moon (or the first, depending on whether or not you believe the conspiracy theory). He mysteriously Tweeted out a date without explanation or context… so, we can assume that this is the day he finally claims our souls?

 

6. family night pro-tip: don’t watch your own sex scene

 

 

 

Featured Image Made With PhotoCollage.