10 Great Reasons to Read Fiction in July 2018

July is not holding back on the great new fiction releases. Time to place your holds!

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July Summer Film Festival at the African American Museum & Library at Oakland

Catch Stanley Nelson's inspirational documentaries plus a special program of archival short films

Each Saturday in July AAMLO will be screening a series of documentary films by Stanley Nelson plus a one day special program of archival short films. All screenings begin at 2 pm.

Stanley Nelson is one of the foremost chroniclers of the African American experience working in nonfiction film today. His films, many of which have aired on PBS, combine compelling narratives with rich and deeply researched historical detail, shining new light on both familiar and under-explored aspects of the American past.

Saturday July 7 

Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges & Universities (Stanley Nelson, 2017)


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Check out Charlie Jane

Check out the magic of local author and sci-fi phenom: Charlie Jane Anders.

On the tippy-tail-end of Pride month, I'd like to highlight an amazing local author who's won a boatload of big awards: Charlie Jane Anders. Charlie Jane is not only the winner of both the Nebula and Hugo awards, co-founder of io9.com, a site about science, sci-fi and the future, but also won the LAMBDA literary award with her first novel, Choir Boy!

book cover of All the birds in the sky book cover of six months, three days... 

I had the pleasure of attending a

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Celebrate Pride Month with New LGBTQ Themed Books

New LGBTQ books at OPL.

Any time is a good time to read LGBTQ themed books, but since June is Pride month I'm taking this time to highlight these new titles released during 2018. Happy LGBTQ Pride Month and happy reading!


The World Spins Forward     What Drowns the Flowers in Your Mouth     Tomorrow Will Be Different

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Father's Day Books that Aren't Hop on Pop

Dads are complex. Here's some Father's Day literary fare that celebrates dads who are feminist, POC, queer, undocumented, and usually excluded from the mainstream narrative of fatherhood.

For Kids


Franny's father is a feminist by Rhonda Leet

Daddies who are feminist allies are just the best.

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Waiting for A Gentleman in Moscow?

What are you going to read while you wait for A Gentleman in Moscow?


While not the newest or hottest book in our collection, A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles has been a consistent favorite with our borrowers. Set in Moscow’s Metropol Hotel, Count Alexander Rostov been held under house arrest since 1922. The decades pass. Rostov builds a rich inner life in a tiny world. Since its publication in September 2016, there has never NOT been a waiting list to read this book whether in print, as an ebook, or as an audiobook. At this writing there are 27 readers in line for the print edition alone. It’s pretty spectacular that a novel that is nearly two years old has still got so many holds. This book has legs! You’

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10 Great Reasons to Read Fiction in June 2018

What will you read in June? These ten novels offer tempting options!

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Humorous Essays

Books that will keep you laughing.

This past week a library visitor asked me to recommend funny books. I tried to remember some humorous books I've read recently and realized most of my reading has been intense and serious. I appreciated this request because it led me to some humorous essay collections that I'd like to share with you. 

Some of these are new books, some were released years ago, but all of them will keep you laughing.

 We Are Never Meeting in Real Life     Calypso     

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Voter Pre-Registration & a Snapshot of Oakland Youth’s Views on Voting

Oakland Public Libraries have long been a site where community members can pick up voter registration applications, and now OPL can also help 16- and 17-year-olds pre-register to vote.

Post by Diane Vo, a librarian in the Main Library's TeenZone

Last month, California Secretary of State Alex Padilla reported that over 100,000 16- and 17-year-olds have pre-registered to vote in California. The number of pre-registrations per week has noticeably increased since February’s Parkland, FL, shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and March’s national school walkouts and protests.

Padilla announced this milestone while also launching a new youth portal of the California Secretary of State website that connects students to civic engagement opportunities. The secretary of state subsequently held rallies and events during California High School Voter Education Weeks (April 16-27), where he spoke to

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Giving Me Life: A Visual Journey of African American Organ and Tissue Transplant Recipients

A powerful photography exhibition depicting the visual testimonies of nine Bay Area African American transplant recipients who have overcome incredible obstacles in their journeys toward a more fulfilling life through the gift of organ and tissue donation.

The African American Museum and Library at Oakland in collaboration with the Donor Network West presents our newest exhibition “Giving Me Life: A Visual Journey of African American Organ and Tissue Transplant Recipients.” This upcoming photography exhibition holds a very special place in my heart.Photo courtesy of Donor Network West

As a child of a parent who received multiple kidney transplants, I can remember getting up early in the morning making the trek to UCSF for my moms’ dialysis and doctors’ appointments.  My mother waited years on the transplant list for a donor which would give her a new lease on life.  I also remember the jubilation we all felt when we received the call that a match had been found.

My mother was fortunate to get the gift of life twice in her lifetime. The first gift came from my uncle, who donated a kidney when my mother was in her early

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