Working it Out: From Emancipation to Economic Independence

After centuries of receiving no or minuscule compensation (by being hired out) for their labor, formerly enslaved people, at the stroke of a pen, were responsible for their own livelihood.

Seamstresses, servants, cooks, carpenters, blacksmiths, wheelwrights and masons could ply their trade. Most, however, of this country’s enslaved workforce had been deployed to cultivate monocrops. No matter their occupation, they were responsible for negotiating wages, securing housing, paying rent, purchasing supplies, buying and/or growing their own food, clothing themselves and their families.  After centuries of laws that denied them literacy, property and ownership of their own bodies and those of their children, thousands of people were thrust into a world that did not welcome their newly acquired status.

Continue reading “Working it Out: From Emancipation to Economic Independence”

#BookBingoNW2020: Set in a City of Literature

Now that summer is truly underway, it’s time for a book bingo check-in. How’s it going? Do you need a few more suggestions for books set in Cities of Literature? We thought you might need some recommendations for books to read, so we asked our colleagues in the thirty-eight other Cities of Literature to recommend some titles.

We’ll start with books that are available digitally from The Seattle Public Library. The titles below are just a small selection of titles set in Cities of Literature around the world. If reading printed books is more your style, you can purchase books through Bookshop.org by supporting your favorite local indie bookstore in the process or see if curbside service will work for you!

Books Set in a City of Literature

Milan, Italy
The Eight Mountains by Paolo Cognetti

This classic Italian coming-of-age story features Pietro and Bruno, who meet one summer as children and whose friendship endures the years and their divergent paths. Continue reading “#BookBingoNW2020: Set in a City of Literature”

#BookBingoNW2020: Indigenous Author

If you’ve been wanting to decolonize your bookshelf but aren’t sure how to start, Adult Book Bingo has an indigenous author square, which is an excellent opportunity to begin including more works by Native authors in your daily reading.

The Library offers plenty of fiction and nonfiction by indigenous writers from all over the world, but to get you started, here are three books from different genres by Native authors from North and Central America.

There There by Tommy Orange (Cheyenne, Arapaho) Continue reading “#BookBingoNW2020: Indigenous Author”

#BookBingoNW2020: Mentioned in another book

Book Bingo is still underway, and some of those squares may be giving you trouble. Here are some suggestions for the mentioned in another book square.

The beauty of this category is that there are so many books about books to choose from. Additionally, so many books mention other books in them, naturally and surreptitiously, that the possibilities are endless. I just finished a novel, Cantoras by Carolina De Robertis, which is about five queer women’s lives under a dictatorship in Uruguay and this cropped up towards the end:

She was happy. Even under the regime, she managed to be happy. Her favorite book, now, was a used paperback she’d found at the street market at Tristán Narvaja: a translation of To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf, who was British, and dead now, La Venus said, we were never alive at the same time and yet she saw right into me, this book is my Bible and Lily Briscoe is the only Jesus I need.”

Hopefully, you find inspiration in such serendipitous ways! Continue reading “#BookBingoNW2020: Mentioned in another book”

#BookBingoNW2020: Trans or Non-Binary Author

For transgender and non-binary folx, 2020 has been a mixed bag politically, while the intentional killing of trans folx continues, unabated. Publishing has been a bright spot, as trans and non-binary authors are more visible than ever before; yet J.K. Rowling’s controversial position on trans rights, considered by many to be transphobic, shows more work must be done. For Adult Book Bingo, consider one of these outstanding books for the trans or non-binary author square.

Nonfiction Continue reading “#BookBingoNW2020: Trans or Non-Binary Author”