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Multnomah County Library's Lucky Day service includes books for kids, teens and adults.  Lucky Day copies are available for spontaneous use and are not subject to hold queues.  Nobody can place holds on these items; it's first come, first served.  That means you might not have to wait at all for the most popular new titles!  You never know what you might find at your neighborhood library - it just might be your Lucky Day!

Today, the library started using a new logo. The library has had the same logo since becoming part of Multnomah County in 1990.

Old library logo

 

Prior to that, the Library Association of Portland governed library services in Multnomah County,  using the same logo since about 1912.

Illumino logo

In 2014, after Multnomah County residents voted to create a permanent library district to fund library services and hours, the library turned 150 years old. A special logo was created for the occasion.

 

150 logo

It is a time of rapid change and evolution for libraries. Our commitment to free and equal access and advocacy for reading will never change, but today’s libraries are so much more. They are places of learning, creation, technology access, civic participation and more. As the library evolves to meet the changing needs of our community, our visual identity is taking a new form as well. Today, the library begins using a new logo.

 

 

New library logo

 

Multnomah County Library’s updated logo was funded entirely by private dollars from Friends of the Library. The library will continue to use existing materials, like letterhead and so on, until they run out. Modest implementation costs, for things like signage, are covered by existing budgets within the library.

The library’s new logo will help create consistent visual standards for all library services. This simple geometric pattern — an “L,” a book, a portal, a window, a laptop, an arrow — the logo is whatever you want it to be. Anything is possible. Just as it is at your library.

New library banners

We are proud of the library’s 152-year history of service to this community. As the library re-imagines how it can best meet the community’s changing needs, we will always honor the library’s rich heritage.

Thank you for your ongoing support and passion for your public library.

Jeremy Graybill
Marketing + Online Engagement Director
Multnomah County Library 
503.793.0881 

Multnomah County Library loves zines!  And that's why we will be at the Portland Zine Symposium on Saturday (July, 9th).  Come see us at this annual extravaganza celebrating small presses, DIY culture and the wonderful zinsters of Portland and beyond!  Oh, and did we mention it's free?

Stop by to sign-up for a library card, check out a zine or snap a photo with our giant library card.  Can't make it?  You can check out some fabulous zines from the library anytime that we're open.  Take a look at some of the lists below to get started.

--By the Hollywood Teen Book Council

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s 2009 TEDTalk is a powerful statement  in how only having one story can perpetuate stereotypes.

We try to read broadly at the Hollywood Teen Book Council and seek out books that will expand our worldview. Whether it is a Chinese immigrant living in Canada, soldiers in an unpopular war, or our preconceptions of cheerleaders, here are three books that surprised us and changed how we saw others.

 

Midnight at the Dragon Cafe Midnight at the Dragon Cafe by Judy Fong Bates

Review by Siena Lesher, sophomore

From clothing to teeth to the food you eat, the cultural differences between China and Canada are one that many don’t even consider unless they’re being made fun of it. Su-Jen, who takes the English name “Annie,” leaves communist China with her mom for a hopefully better life in Canada. As she is very young, she begins to subtly assimilate into Western culture, leaving behind the ideas of her past. I actually read this book twice - the first time focussing on the plot, the second on the pressure for Annie to become “Western.” I thought it was very interesting and well written,  thoughtful and very eye-opening.

 

Sunrise Over Fallujah

Sunrise Over Fallujah by Walter Dean Myers

Review by Noah Pettinari, sophomore

Do you like plot twists to the Iraq War? Then this book is for you. Birdy is a soldier newly deployed into Iraq and Kuwait from Harlem, New York. As he learns the ropes of Civil Affairs operations in Iraq 2003, he encounters the true embodiment of war. This book is written in such a way as to personify the commonly dehumanized military, and lacks the catchy plots commonly found in YA novels. I would recommend it to any teen interested in the mental toll of war and how much war can change a person's life.

 

Exit, Pursued by a Bear Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E. K. Johnston

Review by Elsa Hoover, sophomore

When I picked up this book I didn’t have any idea what it was about. Exit, Pursued by a Bear? A cheerleader? I wondered what this could possibly be about, but then I read the inside of the flap and found out it was about sexual assault and stopped short. Did I really want to read something so sad? But I went on and I am really glad I did. This is a book about a cheerleader raped at camp, and the next year of her life as she navigates this new world. My favorite thing about this book was its realism in the face of a hard subject. Not everything turned out great. It wasn’t cheery and that why it felt real. You could understand where all the characters were coming from. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a short, emotionally charged book.


Here is a list of more books that helped expand our worldview:

Before railroads connected the East and West coasts, traveling across the county could take up to six months, and the journey was dangerous and expensive.  As the population in the West grew, so did the need for safer, more efficient transportation.

In 1862, Abraham Lincoln signed the Pacific Railroad Act, which charged two companies with building the Transcontinental Railroad. With one company starting in San Francisco, California and the other in Council Bluffs, Iowa, the two would build a railway that eventually met in Promontory Summit, Utah. Both railroads faced tough challenges.

The Central Pacific Railroad had to lay track through the Sierra Nevada Mountains, using dynamite to blast through the hard granite rock.   Many workers left the diffficult, low- paying job for other work. Increasingly, Chinese laborers were hired to work for the Central Pacific, and they were not paid or treated the same the same as white workers.

The Union Pacific was responsible for covering more land, including some territory that was unmapped, and faced difficult weather and conditions. Plains Native Americans opposed the railroad, which displaced them and their whole way of life.

In 1869, the two railroads finally connected. The final spike laid was made solid gold! It was now possbile to travel from New York to San Francisco in a week.  


Want to learn more about the Transcontintal Railroad? Just ask a librarian!

Louise Erdrich keeps getting better and better. Reading her new book, LaRose, I was awed by how the stories seem to bubble out of her in such interesting, complex profusion.

The main story is a tragic one, so tragic that it almost made me decide not to read this book. There are two families connected by blood and friendship, and both have sons who are five years old. One of the fathers is out hunting and accidentally shoots and kills his friends’ son. To atone, he decides to give his own son to the other family.

That’s where it starts, but there’s so much more. These families’ stories connect to the stories of other people in their community and to the stories of their Ojibwe ancestors. And all of these well-developed characters are voiced on the audiobook by Erdrich herself, who is perhaps the best audiobook narrator ever. Her quiet voice is just plain lovely to have in your earbuds, and she wholly captures the different characters’ voices, their humor and heart.

It’s a special experience, when writers read their own books for the audio version, and especially when they read them brilliantly. You’ll find more wonderful audiobooks read by their authors on this list. Please let me know if there are titles I’ve missed that should be on it.
 

Dana and John are the masterminds behind Minimalist Baker, a Portland blog dedicated to simple, plant-based and gluten-free cooking. Dana is the recipe developer, and John handles all-things technical. We asked Dana a few questions about books, reading and food, and here's what she said:

The cookbook I can’t live without is ...

I am honestly not a big cookbook user and typically search for recipes online. However, the one I find myself going back to is My New Roots by Sarah Britton. It has so much helpful information about how to soak grains, nuts and seeds, and how to handle and prepare foods on a very foundational level. Plus, the recipes are seasonal and gorgeous!

If I could have dinner with any author it would be...

Anne Lamott. I’ve read most of her books and they’ve taught me so much about life, writing and faith.

I would serve...

I think I would serve my Mediterranean Baked Sweet Potatoes from the blog. They’re a classic, so filling, and entirely plant ­based! One of my all­ time favorites.

The last thing I learned from reading was...

That I should wear a sleep mask to improve the quality and the amount of sleep I get (from the The Body Book by Cameron Diaz).

My guilty pleasure book is...

I don’t know that I have a guilty pleasure book, but I’m always reading up on health and diet and my favorite among that group is Rich Roll’s Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World's Fittest Men and Discovering Myself.

My favorite thing about the library is....

The smell. Ha! I love the smell of books. I also love that there is so much knowledge at my fingertips when I’m there.

--by the Hollywood Teen Book Council

As summer approaches many of us are making plans for future trips. Some will be enjoying summer with  “armchair travel” while others will be finding adventure on the road. Whichever way you travel, here are some suggestions for you:

Let’s Get Lost by Adi Alsaid

Review by Siena Lesher, sophomore

It seems as though adventure is hard to find these days. We’re all so trapped in what’s expected of us, caught in a web of time that draws tighter with every passing second. But, Let’s Get Lost fights to show that you don’t need to escape to have an adventure, that if you can just manipulate the silk, you can travel within the web. Each character must face their spider, one meeting a sister to whom she  hasn’t spoken  in years, another asking out the person they’ve loved for ages, all stories spun together by a girl on her quest to see the northern lights. I’d recommend this book to those who want to take their own adventure, whether it be traveling to Alaska, or simply seizing the Tuesday.

Also, try one of these:

Multnomah County Library's Lucky Day service includes books for kids, teens and adults.  Lucky Day copies are available for spontaneous use and are not subject to hold queues.  Nobody can place holds on these items; it's first come, first served.  That means you might not have to wait at all for the most popular new titles!  You never know what you might find at your neighborhood library - it just might be your Lucky Day!

Cover image of Love Saves The Day   
     "If there's a cure for this
       I don't want it
       Don't want it
       If there's a remedy
       I'll run from it
       From it"

If you ask many people what the term "disco" conjures, you'll likely hear about drugs, excess, sex, celebrity and exclusive parties/clubs - not to mention the questionable fashions, the quintessential hairstyles and the inevitable accusations of artificiality and inauthenticity  (anyone remember "Disco Sucks"?).

But disco was a complex musical and cultural set of coordinates that originally emerged from the economic, sexual and racial peripheries of early 1970s New York City.  Tim Lawrence's Love Saves The Day - a definitive and exhaustive intervention in cultural history - uncovers these radical roots in eye-opening detail.  Lawrence draws upon a ton of archival material and interviews with many of the (surviving) primary players to construct a wonderful narrative that should appeal to anyone fascinated by the intersections of the social, economic and cultural in the 1970s. Lawrence documents the founding of David Mancuso's legendary Loft and tracks the myriad divergent strands forward that ultimately lead to the dead end of Studio 54 and the mass burning of disco LPs in Chicago's Comiskey Park.

Especially of interest for pop music aficionados (disco touched just about every pop musical genre that followed), sound junkies, and anyone curious about the complex intersections between sexuality, technology, music and politics. 

And for your dancing pleasure, here's a playlist featuring some of the best music of the period:
 











I’m not fond of heights, but I’m always happy to be on a ladder harvesting fruit with the Portland Fruit Tree Project.  My experience volunteering with this group inspired me to make a list called “In the Orchard.” You’ll find romances, memoirs, and other books featuring orchards and fruit trees. 

One of my favorites is the memoir The Orchard by Adele Crockett Robertson. I so enjoyed getting to know this determined woman. She quit a job during the Depression and lived alone with her Great Dane for almost two years  while trying to save the family farm and orchards. She worked hard with a single minded devotion to care for apple and peach trees, treating her few workers fairly, and trying to make enough money to pay the mortgage. A great read!

Pride Festival with giant MCL Card

Once again this year, Multnomah County Library will be attending the Pride Festival! We'll be there all day on Saturday 6/18 and Sunday 6/19. Stop by our table at the Multnomah County Booth to sign up for summer reading (both kids and adults!), check out a book and spin the library prize wheel! We hope to see you there.

 

If you can't make it to the festival this year (or even if you can) celebrate by reading a wonderful LGBTQ book.  Need some inspiration?  Take a look at some of our reading lists!

National Bike Month has just concluded, and Pedalpalooza is now upon us. Do you need inspiration for your art bike, your cycling costume, or your bike party invitation? Look no further than the Central Library Picture File collection, which contains among its thousands of files one with the heading Bicycles & Tricycles. In it you’ll find images clipped from a variety of sources, from a variety of eras, for your bicycle art needs. If visual art collage and the serendipity of browsing appeal to you, this might be your resource.

Other Picture Files that begin with the letter B include Babies, Bahamas, Bali, Balloons & Dirigibles, Bandstands, Bangladesh, Banks (Buildings), Barbados, Barns, Bathhouses, Belgium, Bells, Bermuda, Bhutan, Bible, Biography (there are many Biography files, with subheadings such as Authors, Cartoonists, Designers, Popes, Scientists…), Biology, Birds, Boathouses, Boats, Bolivia, Bookbinding, Bookplates, Books, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botany, Boy Scouts, Brazil, Brickwork, Bridges, Bronzes, Bulgaria, Burma, Business, and Buttons.

Picture File clippings - bikes

For more about the Central Library Picture File collection, see:

The Picture File Collection at Central Library

Picture File Sampler: Vintage Fashion

Picture File Sampler: Artist’s Works

Please feel free to get in touch with us to inquire about this unique resource!

 

And for a selection of books about biking in Portland, see Matt's excellent reading list.

 

A message from  Director of Libraries Vailey Oehlke

No more kids finesWith Summer Reading just around the corner, Multnomah County Library is removing late fines for all youth library materials and on youth accounts (ages 0-17), effective June 15. Children's and young adult items will no longer be charged late fines. You can read more about the specifics of the new structure here.

The public library is a partner to youth, parents, families and caregivers from birth through high school. Exposing children early to a world rich with words, songs and play helps them become readers and succeed in school and in life. We proudly serve youth of all ages with high-quality books, fun and captivating programs, research resources, homework help, and caring staff who offer personal assistance.

For many, late fines are a real barrier that stops children and families from using and benefiting from the resources the public library offers. With the support of the Multnomah County Library District Board, our library is changing this practice. All existing late fines on youth accounts and materials will be removed as of June 15, 2016.

Patrons of all ages will still be responsible for returning library material for others to use within seven weeks of the due date, or be charged the replacement value of that item. 

I wish you all a summer filled with fun and reading. Won’t you please come visit us at the library?

 

Vailey Oehlke,

Director of Libraries

Multnomah County Library's Lucky Day service includes books for kids, teens and adults.  Lucky Day copies are available for spontaneous use and are not subject to hold queues.  Nobody can place holds on these items; it's first come, first served.  That means you might not have to wait at all for the most popular new titles!  You never know what you might find at your neighborhood library - it just might be your Lucky Day!

Princeless book jacketKids these days.  They get the best books!  Sometimes we get the best recommendations from patrons.  Even when they're only 7 or 8 years old!  I'm pretty sure I would have adored these graphic novels as a little girl because, I've got to admit, I really liked them as an adult. Princeless tells the story of a young princess whose father locks her up in a dragon guarded tower to await rescue by a prince.  She's having none of this. She promptly rescues herself and steals a dragon so she can have adventures instead of meekly awaiting a future spouse.  After listening to a young fan sing the praises of this series, I put book one on hold to read for myself and I'm glad I did! It's a charming adventure with some clever jokes for older readers hidden in it.

The Courageous Princess is a gentle story with a fairytale feel to it. Mabelrose is kidnapped from her loving parents, the king and queenThe Courageous Princess book jacket of a tiny humble kingdom. She manages to keep her head in the face of danger and escapes from her captor while, unknowing of this, her father sets out to try to save her.  Mabelrose has traditional fairytale virtues of modesty, loyalty and so on. She saves herself from each new problem she faces while trying to get home by doing the right thing for the right reasons.

Princess Ugg is meant for a somewhat older audience than the first two titles. Princess Ülga is a barbarian warrior princess who, on the wish of her dead mother, goes to a school for princesses in the "civilized" lands  so she can learn about her clan's neighbors. Her mother hoped that perhaps what she learned would halt the endless fighting in her homeland through diplomacy. The noble born girls from gentler lands do not understand Ülga and mock her appearance and behavior endlessly.

These titles are a great deal of fun and a quick distraction (and from an adult's perspective pretty sweet and charming) with young heroines who don't need someone to rescue them.

On the morning of August 24, 79 AD, Mount Vesuvius, a volcano near Naples in Italy, started to erupt. The ash and pumice from the eruption rained down on the ancient Roman city of Pompeii. Thousand of people died and the city of Pompeii was buried under a thick blanket of volcanic ash. The covered city was abandoned until the mid 1700s when a group started to explore the area and found the city mostly intact.

The Melbourne Museum in Victoria, Australia has recreated what the fateful day in Pompeii would have looked like, and what a city would experience under a major volcanic eruption. Around the 6 minute mark, you can see the flood of ash taking over the city.

Pompeii alleyFor centuries archeologists, historians, and scientists have been able to study the buildings, artifacts, and skeletal remains to learn more about Roman history and culture. Library research tools such as World Book Encyclopedia and Kids InfoBits are full of articles and information if you are curious in exploring more about what was found. There are links to recent magazine articles that can tell you about how scientists are using modern technology to study the people that lived in Pompeii, and what it can tell us about a community that was frozen in time.

One area of recent study is looking at the graffiti that has been found on the inside and outside of buildings. If you have ever been in a public bathroom and seen writing on a stall, this would have been acceptable back then. Researcher are discovering it was popular with all classes of people in ancient Rome to leave little bits of poems, and tourists would leave the mark on the city walls to say that they had been there. And, just like on many bathroom stalls, people would respond to others’ graffiti marks, only the studies have shown that they were a lot nicer than we are today. If this has sparked your interest our database Student Resources in Context is full of reference articles, images, and recent news articles all about what researcher are finding and what it can tell us about the culture from the past.

If you would like help in your search, contact a librarian we will help you get what you need.

Amazons book jacketA figure emerges from the dusky grasslands of the steppe. She rides an antlered beast, perhaps an elk or deer. A bow and quiver is slung across her back, and an axe hangs at her side. She is clothed in a long tunic with ornate belt, a leopard skin, and wildly patterned  trousers. A peaked felt cap covers her head. As the rider moves closer her mount’s antlers glint red and gold, and you can see that they are part of an elaborate mask, and that the elk is a tawny mare, one of those with the thick scruffy coats suited to cold climates. A hunting dog bounds through the grass at her side, and a trained eagle flies above.

While this may sound like something out of a fantasy novel, it’s a scene that could have happened 2,500 years ago in the steppes of ancient Scythia. In The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World,  Adrienne Mayor compares the myths to the archaeological evidence, and reveals a horse-centric, egalitarian culture in which women riders with bows fought and hunted, both at the sides of men, and on their own. These independent women were perplexing and even scary to the Greeks, who were both repelled and aroused by the idea of women fighters… and their pants! The world's oldest trousers were invented by the nomads of the steppes and look like something you might see today on Hawthorne street, but the Greeks considered them women's wear and thus, well, TERRIFYING! There are many more fascinating tidbits like this in Mayor's book and the books on this list.

From what I hear from my kids about sex education at their schools, kids in the Portland area are getting abbreviated, inadequate information about sex in these classes. Studies show that kids are probably also getting plenty of information from Internet porn. Neither of these options are very good.

I want them to know things that are never talked about in sex ed class-- that sex is supposed to feel good for girls, too. That pornography almost always presents an insanely stylized, but also unimaginative version of sex, and that real sex won’t and shouldn’t look like that. And then, of course, there’s a whole host of conversations to have about our culture’s weird over-sexualization of girls.

Clearly, we need to talk to our kids about sex, even though it is perhaps not their favorite subject for a chat with parents. For those questions they would never ask you, there’s a great sex-positive website called scarleteen you can point them to. And, of course, library books can help, too, so I created this list of really good books for kids of all ages.

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