Libraries Lead: Celebrating National Library Week

Libraries lead us on unplanned journeys. When we visit the library, who knows where it can take us: A career change? A new passion? A graduate degree?

This week the Weinberg Memorial Library celebrates National Library Week (April 8-14) with the theme “Libraries Lead.” The following quotes demonstrate the importance the library holds on an individual.

I used to go to the library all the time when I was kid. As a teenager, I got a book on how to write jokes at the library, and that, in turn, launched my comedy career. – Drew Carey, comedian

I would walk into the Carnegie Library and I would see the pictures of Booker T. and pictures of Frederick Douglass and I would read. I would go into the Savannah Public Libraries in the stacks and see all of the newspapers from all over the country. Did I dream that I would be on the Supreme Court? No. But I dreamt that there was a world out there that was worth pursuing. -Clarence Thomas, U.S. Supreme Court Justice

When I was a kid and the other kids were home watching “Leave it to Beaver,” my father and step-mother were marching me off to the library. -Oprah Winfrey, actress & entrepreneur

We ask you to pause for a moment and think about how a visit to the library led you in a new direction. Reply to this post, or stop in at the display on the first floor and share a way the library has transformed your life.

Happy National Library Week!

On Display: Multicultural Books & Movies

Please check out the new display on the first floor of the library. As part of this year’s National Library Week theme, Libraries Transform, there is a display of multicultural books that have been turned into films. Everything on display is owned by the library and will be available for circulation after April.

For even more fun, Multicultural Affairs is hosting an evening of dinner and discussion on Monday, April 10 from 5:30-7:00 in the Multicultural Center in DeNaples, room 205G. The topic is multicultural authors, how they are represented in the curricula, and ways that more multicultural authors can be integrated into courses. Go and check out these amazing authors, then check them out from Weinberg Memorial Library!

Multicultural Books & Movies on display:

Walker, Alice. The Color Purple. Easton Press, 2000. PS3573.A425 C6 2000

The Color Purple. Directed by Steven Spielberg. Performances by Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey, and Danny Glover. Warner Brothers, 2007. PN1997 .C64 2007 DVD

Originally published in 1982, The Color Purple won the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Award. The book is written as a series of letters and tells the highly emotional story of a black girl in rural Georgia in the 1930’s. Separated from her sister and forced into marriage, Celie faces violence and neglect as she grows into adulthood. Multiple female characters face challenges that depict the bleak set of options available to black women at that time.

 Morrison, Toni. Beloved. Random House, 1987. PS3563.O8749 B4 1987

Beloved. Directed by Jonathon Demme. Performances by Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover, and Thandie Newton. Harpo Productions, 1998. PN1997 .B45 DVD

Paul D. and Sethe, two former slaves from the same plantation find each other again after 18 years. Their bond stirs up vivid, upsetting memories of their time at “Sweet Home.” Paul D. moves in, creating a disturbance in the household and a strange girl arrives named Beloved. Beloved’s presence forces Sethe to address past decisions, even while trying to build a future for herself and her children as a free black woman.

 Dash, Julie. Daughters of the Dust. Plume, 1997. PS3554.A823 D3 1997

 Daughters of the Dust. Directed by Julie Dash. Performances by Cora Lee Day and Alva Rogers. Geechee Girls, 1991. STREAMING MEDIA

A black woman anthropologist from 1920s New York visits the Sea Islands off the coast of the Carolinas and discovers her roots. A look at the culture of the Gullah people, descendants of blacks who intermarried with Indians.

Tan, Amy. The Joy Luck Club. Putnam, 1989. PS3570.A48 J6 1991

 The Joy Luck Club. Directed by Wayne Wang. Performances by Kieu Chin, Ming-Na Wen, and Tamlyn Tomita. Hollywood Pictures, 1993. PN1997 .J69 2002 DVD

Four mothers. Four daughters. Eight stories. The Joy Luck Club is four women in San Francisco who have played mah jong together on a weekly basis for forty some years. One of them, Suyuan, has died, and her daughter June is preparing to go to China. Auntie Lindo with daughter Waverly, Auntie Ying Ying with daughter Lena, and Auntie An Mei with daughter Rose are at the going away party. Born in China, the Joy Luck Club members came to America as young adults; their daughters are 100% American. The old days are seldom spoken about, and some things about those times have never been said aloud, but the experiences left behind color the hopes and expectations these women have for their daughters. If daughters become their mothers–no matter how much both parties desire that it not happen–daughters also become different from their mothers–despite all attempts to perpetuate the status quo.

 Lahiri, Jhumpa. The Namesake. Houghton Mifflin, 2003. PS3562.A316 N36 2003

 The Namesake. Directed by Mira Nair. Performances by Kal Penn, Irffan Khan, and Tabu. Fox Searchlight Pictures, 2006. PN1997 .N25 

The American-born son of Indian immigrants feels pulled between his ethnic heritage and his desire to assimilate, especially after becoming involved with two very different women.

 Alexie, Sherman. The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven. Grove Press, 1993. PS3551.L35774 L66 2005

 Smoke Signals. Directed by Chris Eyre. Performances by Adam Beach and Irene Bedard. Miramax Films, 1998. PN1997 .S568 

Book: A collection of short stories with the same two characters Victor Joseph and Thomas Builds-the-Fire who live on the Spokane Indian Reservation. The title refers to the 1930’s radio show and 1950’s television show with the white cowboy hero “The Lone Ranger” and his Native American sidekick “Tonto.” A recurring issue in the book is the way Native Americans view themselves, as well as the way others understand them from depictions in popular culture.

Movie: Depicts two young Native Americans, Victor and Thomas, who are opposites. Thomas is a nerd, while Victor is strong and sometimes confrontational. When Thomas is an infant he is saved from a fire that takes the lives of his parents. Victor’s father saves Thomas, but leaves his own family when Victor is just a baby. When his father dies, Victor needs Thomas’s help to retrieve the remains of his father. The two set off on a journey of personal growth and reliance on each other.

 Boyne, John. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. David Fickling Books, 2006. PZ7.B69677

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Directed by Mark Herman. Performances by Asa Butterfield, David Thewlis, and Rupert Friend. Miramax Films, 2008. PN1997.2 .B697 2011

Bored and lonely after his family moves from Berlin to a place called “Out-With” in 1942, Bruno, the son of a Nazi officer, befriends a boy in striped pajamas who lives behind a wire fence.

 Hosseini, Khaled. The Kite Runner. Riverhead Books, 2003. PS3608.O832 K58 2003

 The Kite Runner. Directed by Marc Forster. Performances by Khalid Abdalla, Zekeria Ebrahimi, and Ahmad Khan Mahmoodzada. Dreamworks Pictures, 2008. PN1997 .K589

In a divided country on the verge of war, two childhood friends, Amir and Hassan, are about to be torn apart forever. It’s a glorious afternoon in Kabul and the skies are bursting with the exhilarating joy of a kite-fighting tournament. But in the aftermath of the day’s victory, one boy’s fearful act of betrayal will mark their lives forever and set in motion an epic quest for redemption. Now, after twenty years of living in America, Amir returns to a perilous Afghanistan under the Taliban’s iron-fisted rule to face the secrets that still haunt him and take one last daring chance to set things right.

 Zusak, Marcus. The Book Thief. Alfred A. Knopf, 2007. PZ7.Z837 Boo 2007

The Book Thief. Directed by Brian Percival. Performances by Sophie Nelisse, Geoffrey Rush, and Emily Watson. Fox 2000 Pictures, 2013. PN1997.2 .B66 2014

Death narrates this highly emotional story of a girl who transforms the lives of those around her during World War II, on the German homefront. Although Liesel is illiterate when she is adopted by a German couple, her adoptive father encourages her to learn to read. Ultimately, the power of words helps Liesel and Max, a Jew hiding in the family’s home.

Celebrate National Library Week 2017

All it takes is one book and your life is changed forever. This year’s theme for National Library Week (April 9-15) is Libraries Transform.

National Library Week began in 1958 and is sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA). Every April, libraries across the country celebrate accomplishments and get the whole library community involved. At the Weinberg Memorial Library, we strive to follow our Jesuit Mission to support students and community patrons every day. Libraries do transform a community and a book can transform each patron.

So many books have influenced me in my lifetime, but the two books that have absolutely changed my life are The Bible (7th grade) and the Harry Potter Series (sophomore year of college). They have most definitely transformed the way I view the world. The Weinberg Memorial Library staff wants to know, which titles transformed your worldview? In the space below, please take a moment and respond with your favorite transformative book!

Beverly Cleary Turns 100

Beverly_Cleary_1971Do you have a little sister or brother? One that was really wild and drove you crazy? That’s the story of Beezus and Ramona, two of the best remembered characters of world-famous children’s author Beverly Cleary. On April 12th, this amazing writer turned 100 and I couldn’t be more excited.

In fourth grade, my teacher read aloud The Mouse and the Motorcycle featuring Ralph S. Mouse who steals a toy motorcycle and has miniature adventures. I never read the Henry Huggins books about a boy and his beloved dog Ribsy, but I loved Ramona Quimby.

I didn’t have a big sister, I was the oldest, but Ramona’s adventures and love for her family were a lot like my brother and me growing up. Ramona plays outside, has a great imagination, and she even has a crush on a boy in kindergarten! She makes sacrifices for her family (like downsizing her Christmas list) and goes through ups and downs with family as her father goes back to school, her mother enters the workforce, and her father even struggles with moving for a new job. All of this while Ramona is growing up and struggling with her own problems like riding the bus alone and dealing with school bullies.

For young readers, just starting to read for pleasure, the Beverly Cleary books are very pertinent and enjoyable. These books are not there to teach a moral or lesson, but for pure enjoyment. And what better lesson than to read for fun?

Beverly Cleary is the queen of the early chapter book and will always have a place in this reader’s heart. Happy Birthday!

But, you don’t have to take my word for it…I asked students in the library if they remember Beverly Cleary and heard a definite “Yes!”:

“I read Ramona with my parents.”

“I remember watching the movie “Ramona and Beezus” when it came out.”

“I read it with my sister. She was older, so she was Beezus and I was Ramona.”

Available for Checkout:



By Beverly Cleary



Need a Little Christmas?

treeWalk into the Pro Deo room of the library and smell mint and coffee.  
Java City is offering festive drinks, including a Gingerbread Latte and “Merrimint:” a white mocha Javalanche with peppermint pops. Perfect
partners for a good book or movie.

Check out these holiday materials:



 Children’s Books

Movies (Media Resources, 3rd Floor)


Modern Classics

  •  Love Actually starring a conglomeration of British actors whose stories intertwine and culminate in a rendition of “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
  • Elf Zooey Deschanel sings “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” and “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”
  • The Nativity Story A film depiction of the journey Mary and Joseph take to Bethlehem.