Cozy up to at mystery

Cozy up to a mystery this winter.

If you're in the winter doldrums, or if you've got the post-election, just spent too much money, too stuffed with pumpkin pie to move-blues, why not put up your feet and try a cozy British mystery? I've just started two series (a decade too late, as is my m.o.), Agatha Raisin and Her Royal Spyness mysteries. 
book cover with sassy blonde middle-aged womanMrs. Raisin, having

Click here to read more

Time to Get Baking

"A party without cake is just a meeting." -- Julia Child

December is here and the winter holidays are at our heels. The Winter Solstice, Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa all call for desserts. I don't know about you, but I'm in the mood to bake.

Though the internet is a fine place to start, the volume of material to sort through can be, well, overwhelming. When you've got a spare minute or two, Google "cookies" and work your way through 2 1/2 billion entries. Me? I love a good cookbook, and the library is just full of cookbooks to get you baking. Read on for a few suggestions and some jacket photos from our wide selection. If you're browsing the shelves go to 641.815 for most baking books. Our ebook platforms also boast an ample supply of baking and dessert cookbooks.

Two terrific go-to bakers with cookbooks in collection are Dorie Greenspan and David Lebovitz. Greenspan has a new title out this fall, Dorie's Cookies,

Click here to read more

10 Great Reasons to Read Fiction in December 2016

If you're looking for new fiction, here are our ten picks for December.

Click here to read more

Reading Race and Class

Books that shed light on race and class dynamics in the U.S.

In the past, and especially during this election cycle, I've been committed to reading books that help me better understand race and class dynamics in this country. One of the books on my reading list is The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race, edited by Jesmyn Ward. Ward uses James Baldwin's 1963 book The Fire Next Time as a starting point to discuss current questions of race in the U.S. Contributors such Carol Anderson, Edwidge Danticat and Isabel Wilkerson speak to their concerns about race through essays and poems.                                         

Click here to read more

Oakland Public Library's 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

What's the best gift to give or receive? In our opinion: a book!

If we do it two years in a row, can we call it a holiday tradition? Either way, we're glad to help you once again with your seasonal gifting duties. Our second ever Holiday Gift Guide features some of our favorite books from the past year, with a list of local indie bookstores where you can buy these gems. (Call ahead to confirm availability!)

This page has recommendations for adults and teens, plus check out our gift guide for children's books here. You can also view the teen recommendations on Pinterest.

Books for Adults

Click here to read more

America, America

American Panic is a sober discussion of past upheavals experienced by Americans through the media, political factions, public violence, and personal persecution.

American Panic: A history of who scares us and why

By Mark Stein

“Political panic, the irrational fear that one’s government is in danger, is by no means unique to any country.  In America, it dates back to the 1692 Salem witch hunt … “Witch hunt” remains a phrase in the American vernacular, ensconced in our dictionaries as an investigation of disloyalty based on unverified assertions and public fear.” - Mark Stein

 

In the past week I have been searching for meaning, explanation, comfort,

Click here to read more

November Noir

The darkening days of the year lead us to read darker books.

It’s November. The days are getting shorter and we all seem to be in a gloomy mood. What could be more bracing that to read a big bunch of noir. May we suggest a hardboiled book or three? There are hundreds of choices, from pulp paperback potboilers to dark Scandinavian frostiness. Here’s a very short sampling to get you started.

L.A. Confidential by James Ellroy. It’s got everything. Los Angeles in the ‘50s. Murder. Prostitution. Drug trafficking. Conspiracy. Political and police corruption.

Farewell My Lovely by Raymond Chandler. This is the second of Chandler’s Philip Marlowe stories and in it Marlowe investigates two murders. There’s a missing woman, drugs, corruption, and gambling to add complication for Marlowe.

Sanctuary by William Faulkner. Noir by Faulkner? Yes. He claimed he wrote it for the money. Set during Prohibition, among bootleggers in Mississippi, the story revolves around the kidnapping of a young woman, a murder, and the ugly events that ensue.

Click here to read more

Virgie Tovar wants you to Lose Hate Not Weight

Stop Dieting Right Now! You Are Totally Perfect! A booklist from author and activist Virgie Tovar

“Every person, regardless of size, weight or health status deserves a life free of discrimination.”

Words straight from the mouth of Virgie Tovar, author, activist and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She holds a Master's degree in Human Sexuality from San Francisco State University with a focus on the intersections of body size, race and gender. Her writing has appeared in tons of print and online publications and she has lectured all over the country. She also runs Babecamp, an online course “designed to help those who are ready to break up with diet culture.”

“When women get to choose what their body size is, and they get to choose what they eat and they get to choose what kind of clothes they wear, this is indicating a major paradigm shift… I think you’ve consistently seen backlash from the

Click here to read more

10 Great Reasons to Read Fiction in November 2016

The weather is getting cooler, the days are growing shorter. You’re probably ready to curl up with a great book! Here are ten of the best arriving this month.

Click here to read more

What's Your Story?

Do you need inspiration writing your novel? Check out our selection of books to help you with the writing process.

November is National Novel Writing Month so if you've been waiting to write your story, what a great time to begin. Maybe you've been working on your novel for a while but need inspiration. Wherever you are in the process, OPL has books to to help you along the way. And if you need a change of scenery, stop by any of our libraries to work on your book. 

Write-a-Thon    

Click here to read more