Did we, ahem, whet your appetite for more Dime Novel adventure? If so, be sure to check out our fascinating full collection of Dime Novel and Popular Literature from 1860 to 1930.
Did we, ahem, whet your appetite for more Dime Novel adventure? If so, be sure to check out our fascinating full collection of Dime Novel and Popular Literature from 1860 to 1930.
Whether they are the focus of a narrative or one of its characters, dogs have played memorable roles in literature. Falvey Memorial Library has several stories about dogs in its collection.
Many University students probably read Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, Sounder by William H. Armstrong and James Barkley or Red Dog by Bill Wallace for elementary school. And as adults, they may have read Marley & Me by John Grogan.
Dogs also inspire writers of non-fiction: Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust by Michael Hingson; Rescuing Sprite: A Dog Lover’s Story of Joy and Anguish by Mark R. Levin; and Until Tuesday: A Wounded Warrior and the Golden Retriever Who Saved Him by Luis Carlos Montalvan (Author), Bret Witter (Contributor).
Sometimes a poem is the best choice for remembering a dog that has become a part of one’s life. Jimmy Stewart’s poem “Beau” provides an ideal example.
Do you have a favorite literary work that features a dog (or dogs)? Please use the Comment section to tell us.
On July 11, the last original member of the Ramones, Tommy Ramone, passed away of bile duct cancer. Born Thomas Erdelyi in Budapest, Hungary, in 1949, he moved to Forest Hills, Queens, at the age of four and went on to found one of the most popular and enduring rock bands of all time. The death of Tommy Ramone, the last surviving original member of the Ramones, marks the end of an era. The other three died recently: Joey in 2001 of lymphoma, Dee Dee in 2002 of a drug overdose and Johnny in 2004 of prostate cancer. The sad occasion of Tommy Ramone’s death is extremely significant to a certain large group of people, young and old: Punks.
Some have recently said that the Ramones are now finally dead—gone but not forgotten. Others, such as Legs McNeil, a close friend of the Ramones as well as other punk artists and bands of the original punk era, such as Iggy Pop and the UK group The Sex Pistols, think that the Ramones have been gone for a long time, citing their supposed artistic demise in the late 1980s. Even still, the Ramones were arguably the most influential punk band ever. They pioneered the simple, fast punk sound that many know and love.
The Ramones are still a fairly popular group with lots of people today, including the original punk rockers of the Ramones’ generation as well as a new generation of kids and young adults that like the punk style and music of the Ramones. As the past few weeks have gone by, many people have talked to me about Tommy Ramone’s death both on social media and in person. The day after he passed away I wore a Ramones shirt, and people of a wide range of ages complimented the shirt, asked if it was to remember Tommy, or said they loved the Ramones and were very surprised when they heard the news.
As a huge fan of the Ramones’ style, attitudes and music, I felt slightly upset about this death although I can’t really say why. There will always be easy access to Ramones music, and there are pictures, videos and interviews of them. I can say, as a young fan of the Ramones, I am disappointed that there is no way to ever see them. Of course there wasn’t any way to see them before Tommy’s death, but this just seals in the thought that the band all together is completely gone. Something about it just doesn’t feel the same, knowing that you’re listening to music where all four founding members of the band are not alive.
People all over the world will always recognize the influence that The Ramones had on music and society. You can dig deeper into punk music and its cultural impact with these great resources from the Falvey collection:
For popular histories of punk rock that cover the Ramones, try these:
And finally, two more scholarly treatments of punk rock culture:
Verizon Channel 9 – which is PCN, Pennsylvania’s non-profit cable network, broadcast a show entitled Philadelphia in World War I. For those who missed it, this program will be re-broadcast Saturday, July 26th at 5:35 pm and again on Sunday, July 27th at 04:35 am.
This program includes an interview with Special Collections and Digital Library Coordinator Michael Foight and other speakers involved with the “Home Before the Leaves Fall: a Great War Centennial Exposition” which features World War I content from Villanova University as well as other heritage organizations throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Experience World War One as it happened day by day, 100 years ago at http://wwionline.org.
“Where in your library can I find books set at the Jersey shore?” the woman asked. Working at Falvey’s Learning Commons service desk, I searched the library’s catalog for “New Jersey” (as Subject) and “shore” (as All Fields):
“No,” she sighed, “I’m interested in summer reading: you know, fiction.”
I thought I’d find ideas for titles on Amazon.com, so I searched it for New Jersey shore fiction. I received 486 hits, including—
Summer’s Point by Margaret Palmer
Shore Stories: an Anthology of the Jersey Shore by Kay Boyle, Robert Pinsky, Stephen Dunn and Christopher Cook Gilmore
Missing by the Midway: An Ocean Grove Mystery (Volume 1) by Heath P. Boice
Murder Down the Shore: A Jersey Shore Mystery by Beth Sherman
Avalon by Gina Miani
Pop’s Place by Ed Buhrer
Shoretown by Dan Milczarski
High Tide by Tom Bruno
Dead and Breakfast (Asbury Dark) by Lori Bonfitto
Moondreams by Dean P. Johnson
The Methuselah Gene: A Science Fiction Adventure Thriller (New Millenium Writers Series) by Sal DeStefano
Wrong Beach Island (a Meg Daniels Mystery) by Jane Kelly
The results also included juvenile books (Nicky Fifth at the Jersey Shore, etc.) and several items related to the “Jersey Shore” television series. I tried avoiding the name of that TV show by changing my Amazon.com search to New Jersey beach fiction. The 479 results included many duplicates from my previous search. It also showed such titles as
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Book 1) by J.K. Rowling and Mary GrandPré
What to Expect When You’re Expecting, 4th Edition by Heidi Murkoff and Sharon Mazel
none of which, I suspected, were set at the Jersey shore (or beach).
I also searched flashlightworthybooks.com, which offered Creepers by David Morrell and Dunk by David Lubar. And goodreads.com recommended Chili Pimping in Atlantic City: The Memoir of a Small-Time Pimp by Michael “Mick-man” Gourdine.
“But I was hoping to find a library book,” she clarified. “I’m trying to save some money.”
Remembering that the Delaware County Library System has a branch right down the street, in Wayne, I searched DCLS’s catalog: The Boardwalk Mystery and Black Jack Jetty: a Boy’s Journey Through Grief are both in the children’s section. And Jersey Angel and Touched are listed as “young adult fiction.”
“Down The Shore by Stan Parish looks good. I’ll get that.”
I wrote down the book’s call number and handed her the slip of paper: “Let me know whether you recommend it.”
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Got summer reading? Falvey Memorial Library has Popular Reading and fiction to satisfy your need to read something fun.
“Home Before the Leaves Fall: A Great War Centennial Exposition,” an online exhibit, will be launched Thursday evening, June 26, at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Peter John Williams—an attorney, an amateur historian with a special interest in World War I, and a life-long Philadelphia resident—will speak on life in Philadelphia during World War I (1914-1919). Williams is the author of Philadelphia: The World War I Years. Both digital and physical materials will be on display at the launch and reception.
Villanova University, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, American Philosophical Society, Chemical Heritage Foundation, College of Physicians, Library Company of Philadelphia and Swarthmore College are current participants in the exhibit, which commemorates the centennial of World War I. The exhibit highlights little-known primary and secondary sources held by various institutions in the Delaware Valley region.
Michael Foight, Special Collections and Digital Library coordinator, says “[T]his sprang out of an initial collaboration with the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, with Villanova’s Special Collections and Digital Library team as the coordinators and hosts of this project. A large and growing number of institutions in the Mid-Atlantic currently contribute content as well as a number of academically affiliated and independent scholars and researchers, including several Villanova University faculty and graduate students.”
Foight explains, “The goals over the next four years include to prioritize digitization of little-known primary and secondary sources on the Great War held by institutions in the mid-Atlantic and to share descriptions of held content for both the public and the scholarly community. The website itself will host a set of curated shorter articles authored with illustrations drawn largely from this newly available content. A number of Digital Humanities projects, including an independent crowd-sourced genealogical data collection and mapping of the Great War dead of Philadelphia, will be worked on with the scholars involved in the exhibition.”
The Historical Society of Pennsylvania explains that the website will contain images, memoirs, diaries, periodicals, “contextual essays, news of commemorative events, interactive data, and geographical information system (GIS) mapping. The project aims to promote the use of these materials to students, scholars and the public, and to commemorate the services and sacrifices of soldiers and civilians a hundred years ago.”
Article by Alice Bampton, digital image specialist and senior writer on the Communication and Service Promotion team. Poster image from National Archives. Photo Kaiser William II. Digital Library@Villanova University
After a long, blustery and snow-filled winter, many of us were more than eager to prematurely whip out the sunscreen and sandals and hit the beach this Memorial Day, which has been dubbed by most as the start of the summer season. However, what most people don’t realize is that summer doesn’t officially begin until the summer solstice, which takes place this year on June 21 in the Northern Hemisphere. This day is often referred to as “the longest day” because we experience the most hours of sunlight that we will all year long. The extra hours of light will be a welcomed gift for many, especially after the cold and dreary winter that we’ve had.
So, wondering how you can embrace impending summer and take advantage of the extra precious hours of light? Here at Falvey Memorial Library we can make one inspired suggestion: sit outside and catch some of those rays with a big fat book and an ice-cold drink! In fact, there are a number of books that you can check out directly from Falvey to help you properly celebrate the “the longest day.”
Several prominent authors have written stories that take place over the course of a single day. As you will discover after reading these books, a lot of action can transpire within a mere 24 hours!
Books that take place over the course of one day:
Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
Saturday by Ian McKellan
Seize the Day by Saul Bellow
Ulysses by James Joyce
Under the Volcano by Malcolm Lowry
Or why not slow down and take on an extra-long book to help kick-off summer? You will have enough reading light to last you all day!
Long books that we suggest reading:
A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
Make sure to check out a book from Falvey and, if you’re feeling especially ambitious, even snag two from our shelves. You might as well take full advantage of the longest day that we’ll see all year and give a proper welcome to the summer season!
When your father used to come home from work, did he unwind with The Evening [Philadelphia] Bulletin, Sports Illustrated, or Popular Mechanics? Or did he kick back with a bestseller by David McCullough, David Bradley or Dave Barry?
Falvey Memorial Library staff members offer their responses below. How about you? What does (or did) your father read? Please contribute your father’s favorite titles/authors in our comments section.
From Darren Poley:
From Sarah Wingo:
My dad read J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and all three Lord of The Rings books to me when I was between the ages of 8-11 or 12ish. He did all of the voices and his Gollum in particular was perfect years before the movies ever came out. Having those books read to me at such a young age really influenced my imaginative aesthetic. One of my childhood friends, with whom I’m still close, called me when the movies came out to say “OH MY GOD, this is what we used to play when we were kids!! I had no idea!! And you weren’t kidding – those black rider things are terrifying!” She never read the books, but I used to always make her play Lord of The Rings with me when we were little. I’ve reread them many times since and they will always have a very special place in my heart because I shared them with my father.
From Alice Bampton:
My father wasn’t much of a reader; he much preferred outdoor activities. But he had subscribed to National Geographic from early adulthood until he died. He kept every issue; they were stored in a large bookcase and we – my sister and I – had free access to them. As a small child I enjoyed the photographs, originally in black and white and later in color – perhaps this helped inspire my love of photography – and later I enjoyed reading the stories. My father also kept his set of the Book of Knowledge, a children’s encyclopaedia that contained all sorts of articles: biographies, science, literature, how to make things, etc. These were in the same bookcase as the National Geographics and also provided considerable entertainment on days when we couldn’t go outside to play and in the evenings. (Since we lived in the country, television wasn’t available out there until I was in high school.)
From Susan Ottignon:
Dad served in the Army, during World War II, and I believe this major event led to him to be become a voracious reader on the subject of the Third Reich and its major players. I especially remember him reading Albert Speer’s Spandau : the Secret Diaries and The House on Garibaldi Street : the First Full Account of the Capture of Adolf Eichmann as well as many of the works on Adolf Hitler. Dad was an avid collector of all 39 volumes of the Time-Life’s series, World War II, and when each volume arrived, he read them cover to cover.
From Joanne Quinn:
My dad had the same pile of reading material sitting on the old metal tray table next to his La-Z-Boy for years…I always suspected it was mostly untouched. There was something there called The Golfer’s Trilogy, a slim three volume set that was written by some combination of Jack, Arnie or Sam, and fitted into a glossy cardboard sleeve. I think it came free with the subscription to Golf Digest or whatever other golf magazines were stacked there as well. He also hung onto the issue of Sports Illustrated with Steve Carlton on the cover long past its shelf life. That was 30 years ago, but he still has a recliner and a tray table and a pile of stuff that also doesn’t seem to change all that often: Remembering Harry Kalas. A pile of Ireland of the Welcomes, a subscription sent and renewed for him year each by a distant cousin. But it’s his love of the paper, the daily paper, that pushes his time spent reading into the stratosphere. Though he and my mom moved to Ocean CIty, N.J., almost 20 years ago, he still picks up the Delaware County Daily Times every single day. He also enjoys the Ocean City Sentinel & Inquirer as well. He’ll tell you it’s because he likes the puzzles – and, with an elbow, wants to double check that he’s not listed in the obits.
From Kimberley Bugg:
When I was around 11 or 12 years old, I either ran out of or lost interest in the Judy Blume and Baby-Sitters’ Club books that I loved to read so I began to search my house for other reading materials. In my father’s closet, I found a trunk of new and more exciting things to read including Donald Goines novels, Women, Culture, and Politics by Angela Davis, and this this gem of a book: The Autobiography of Malcolm X. To this day this it is one of the most profound literary works I think I have ever read. It was brazen, bold, and political. I loved it. I also enjoyed Angela Davis’s book too. The discovery of these works not only matured me as a person but evolved my scope of interest and reading selection. Now that I am reflecting, sneaking in my father’s closet to read that biography has shaped some of the things I am most passionate about in my life.
Whenever a public figure passes away, I can expect that for the next few days my social media will be abuzz with articles, remembrances and general mentions of said person. So it has come as no surprise that since Maya Angelou’s death on Thursday May 28 my Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr feeds, as well as many other websites and blogs that I frequent, have been brimming with content on the life, works and death of Angelou. However, as I have scrolled through the many posts and tweets in response to Angelou’s life and death over the past few days I have been struck by the genuine outpouring of emotions people are expressing. It felt somehow unique, somehow more personal than the usual “rest in peace” and “they will be missed” messages I usually see.
I was particularly moved by a Facebook post by a good friend of mine who teaches high school English who posted late in the day on the 28th long after all of the initial posts of surprise and sadness had flooded my news feed, she said:
“I spent some time today thinking about what I love so much about Maya Angelou, and I’ve decided it’s the fact that she made me feel powerful, in all the positive connotations of that word.”
Go to Angelou’s Wikipedia page or any site detailing her biography and you can learn that “she published seven autobiographies, three books of essays, and several books of poetry, and was credited with a list of plays, movies and television shows spanning more than 50 years” (Wikipedia). And Angelou’s resume was as varied and interesting as her writing. In her lifetime she was a poet, civil rights activist, dancer, film producer, television producer, playwright, film director, author, actress and professor, just to name a few of the occupations she held in her 86 years of life.
It’s hard to think of a better epitaph for a woman who once said “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Dig Deeper: Maya Angelou
If you’re interested in learning more about Maya Angelou, we have some resources to recommend:
Books in our catalog written by Maya Angelou
Books about Maya Angelou and critical companions to her works:
Maya Angelou’s official website (pretty bogged down right now, may not open due to heavy traffic)
Maya Angelou (4 April 1928-). Lynn Z. Bloom
Afro-American Writers After 1955: Dramatists and Prose Writers. Ed. Thadious M. Davis and Trudier Harris-Lopez. Dictionary of Literary Biography Vol. 38. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. p3-12.
During the spring semester, the Aurelius Digital Humanities Initiative launched its second project, a digital edition of El Peru en sus tradiciones en su historia, en su arte. The project was commandeered by Visiting Assistant Professor of Spanish Chad Leahy, PhD, who worked with his special-topics Spanish class to digitize and transcribe the text. Guidance was also provided by Laura Bang, digital and Special Collections curatorial assistant, and David Uspal, senior web specialist for library services and scholarly applications. Dr. Leahy explains that the materiality of text as object, the smell and feel of the item itself, has a story to tell us and digital humanities as a new technology has a way of opening this aspect of the text to the world.
El Peru en sus tradiciones en su historia, en su arte is a 133 page multimedia scrapbook that contains postcards, newspaper clippings, drawings—more than 160 distinct visual objects in all. In many cases, these entries are copied without original sources, raising difficult questions regarding authorship, provenance and purpose. There is no way to prove authorship, but Dr. Leahy speculates that the text may have originated through the Augustinian missions in Peru and was probably a gift. The latest internal date, 1924, suggests that the scrapbook was produced in the latter half of the 1920s. In addition to studying the Peruvian text, Dr. Leahy’s class had the opportunity to develop hands-on digitizing skills while scanning the text Los dramas de la Guerra, a serialized account of the First World War published in Barcelona during the war years.
David Uspal wrapped up the event by explaining the development behind the website. Uspal said, “in addition to the transcription work by the undergraduate students, technical support for the project was provided by Falvey [Memorial] Library’s Technology Development Team, with a large contribution by technology graduate assistant Pragya Singhvi. Pragya’s work on importing transcription documents and automatically producing TEI and HTML versions of these documents will both help reduce the work necessary on future translation projects (and thus, more likely to get more and varies projects approved) and allow these projects to adopt open standards which will allow for greater use in the academic community.”
Laura Hutelmyer is the photography coordinator for the Communication and Publications Team and special acquisitions coordinator in Resource Management