Who owns your parts?

Henrietta Lacks was a poor black Virginia farmer born in 1920. She was one of ten children and went on to have five, herself. But she was more than that, Henrietta was also said to have been beautiful, generous and kind. And though she died at the age of 31, part of her is still very much alive and with us, some 62 years later.

 Henrietta Lacks in the 1940s.The Lacks family saga has recently resurfaced in the news.

Henrietta Lacks was a poor black Virginia farmer born in 1920. She was one of ten children and went on to have five, herself. But she was more than that, Henrietta was also said to have been beautiful, generous and kind. And though she died at the age of 31, part of her is still very much alive and with us, some 62 years later.

Mrs. Lacks was diagnosed with cervical cancer, she had a mass of rapid-growing tumors caused by HPV. After her death, it was discovered that the tumors had spread throughout her body. Cells from her tumors were harvested without her knowledge and sent to a researcher. Unlike other cells used in

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Telegraph Avenue by Michael Chabon, Lakeview Book Club Notes

Michael Chabon lyrically writes a novel of Oakland in the recent past and the multiracial, troubled and loving small community of family members and friends.

    

Hello Everyone,

 What a great meeting about Telegraph Avenue by Michael Chabon!

 There were 10 of us and our leader did a great job! She had done research on Michael Chabon and told us about his early life in Columbia, Maryland in an almost utopian middle class Black and White community. This background gave credence to his depicting a multiracial/multicultural world on Telegraph Avenue. One member told us that she knows Michael Chabon, because their children attended the same school. She said he is a really nice person. Other members have heard him speak at other venues and thought he seemed shy, almost childlike, but seemed really nice.

 Our discussion leader set the stage for us by finding a play list of 126 of the 128 musical mentions in the book. We sat down to the

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Chef Memoirs and Other Delicious Titles

Hungry? Reading is So Delicious, and so are these memoirs written by chefs and food writers.

Throughout the summer Oakland Public Library is hosting food related programs and events for adults as part of our Reading is So Delicious Summer Reading Program.  In keeping with this theme, I've highlighted memoirs written by chefs and food writers.  The chef memoirs explore the writer's relationship to food, their journey to the kitchen, and what food represents to them.  Other writers, such as Michael Pollan, write about food awareness and the history of food.  I hope you enjoy exploring some of these titles and have a few of your own to recommend.

Yes, Chef     

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Comic-Con is on!

Geek out! The 44th annual Comic-Con International is underway in San Diego. The winners for the Will Eisner awards, considered the Oscars of the comics industry, will be announced today.

The 44th annual Comic-Con International is underway in San Diego.  The winners for the Will Eisner awards, considered the Oscars of the comics industry, will be announced today.  Nominees for titles published in 2012 are truly exceptional.

Titles with the most nominations are:

Building StoriesBuilding stories by Chris Ware with nominations for Best Graphic Album–New, Best Writer/artist, Best Coloring, Best Lettering, and Best Publication Design.

This work, made of many small books, posters and cards, and encased in a box the size of a large board game, tells the story of the residents

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The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford

The classic, The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford,has nothing to do with war, but everything to do with love, deception, manipulation, glamour, gentility and death. Prepare to be haunted by the four well-mannered Victorians in beautiful Europe, politely destroying each others' lives!

The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford is considered one of the best 100 best novels of all time. One reviewer called it the "finest French novel in the English language." This alludes to the complex plot, fascinating involvements and constant surprises. It recreates the difficult relations between two "perfect" Victorian couples who leisurely travel and stay at the finest European luxury gathering places.
 
While "weeding" our collection, I came across this title. I was unfamiliar with it, but the preface sounded fascinating. I thought I'd give it a try that weekend while I went up the coast to bask in the beauty of the ocean crashing on the cliffs. My weekend went totally differently than I had planned. I holed up in a bed and breakfast and read nonstop. I could not put this book down. Sometimes a classic is a classic for a reason! The story is timeless

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i scream SANDWICH! and Other Summer Treats

Learn to make tasty summer treats including ice cream sandwiches, paletas, gelato, and sorbetto.

For many of us, summer brings memories of rushing to greet the ice cream truck or enjoying a dripping cone at the beach.  My favorite childhood summer treat was the ice cream sandwich, vanilla ice cream wedged between two chocolately cookies, so I was delighted to discover Jennie Schacht's new book i scream SANDWICH!

The recipes include classics such as S'mores and the Better-Than-It, Ms. Schacht's version of the famous San Francisco It's It Ice Cream Sandwich first sold at Playland at the Beach in 1928.  The author also explores flavors of the world with treats such as Latin Love, which is Dulce de Leche ice cream on Brown

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Hot Summer Street (Lit)

The winners for the Street Lit Book Award Medal (SLBAM) have been announced for 2012 titles. If you're a K'wan Foye fan, you'll be pleased.

Moll Flanders book coverStreet Literature, a sub genre of Urban Fiction, found its beginnings with stories which were serialized in newspapers. The works of Daniel DefoeCharles Dickens and Jacob Riis are early examples of the genre.  Although many of today's stories are released by major publishing houses

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The Season of the Witch: Enchantment, Terror, and Deliverance in the City of Love by David Talbot

A letter from Mary Farrell, Branch Manager of Lakeview, to the Lakeview Book Club about The Season of the Witch by David Talbot. It's one we all REALLY liked!

Hello Everyone,

Ten of us were at Lakeview to discuss The Season of the Witch: Enchantment, Terror, and Deliverance in the City of Love by David Talbot and all liked it!
 

We started out discussing the writing style of David Talbot. Three of us mentioned it was difficult to track at times and maybe more editing could have helped that. One pointed out that most of it was based on interviews Talbot had done with participants and observers of these events. The rest thought there was no problem with the writing at all and that the book was gripping and the

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Traveling with Fiction

Looking for a book to take on vacation with you this summer? Check out our list of suggestions.

Each year, as summer approaches, I find myself thinking about vacation even if I’m not taking one.  When I do travel, I like to read fiction set in the places to which I’m traveling.  And if there’s no vacation on the horizon, I still love to get carried away with a good book set in a location I’d like to visit.    

I know many library patrons also enjoy reading fiction set in other locales. Listed below are some titles I’ve recommended to patrons and other that that have been recommended to me. 

Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea

Into the Beautiful NorthA contemporary story set in a small Mexican village.  After most of the men in her village have moved North for work, nineteen-year old Natalia,

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In Abundance: authors explore how we got fat.

Three Bay Area authors give thier take on your expanding waistline.

This year's Summer Reading theme: “Reading is So Delicious” got me thinking and reading about what an abundance of delicious may do to our bodies.
 
Two journalists and a doctor, all residents of the Bay Area, tackle just this subject.
 

 How the Food Giants Hooked Us  by Michael MossSalt, Sugar, Fat gives an enlightening and sometimes frightening account of the processed food industry in the United States and beyond. Moss discusses how the biggest names in Big Food once

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