Thursday, October 31, 2013

Rev. Al Sharpton - The Rejected Stone

Sharpton, Al. (2013) The Rejected Stone: Al Sharpton and the Path to American Leadership. Hardback | Cash Money Content | ISBN-13:9781936399475 | $13.46 |  272 Pages

On October 10th The Free Library of Philadelphia’s Authors’ tour hosted Rev. Al Sharpton to promote his new book The Rejected Stone: Al Sharpton and the Path to American Leadership.

Civil rights activist and MSNBC's PoliticsNation host Rev. Al Sharpton makes his latest entry into the literary world with The Rejected Stone, which was released October 8th, 2013. The book's title is named after the biblical quote in Psalms chapter 118 verse 22.

He give details on his  wisdom in chapters all their own titled, “Learning from Flawed Leaders,” “Never Rest on Your Laurels,” “Practice What You Preach,” and “Don’t Be Afraid to Be Big,” to name a few
I thought this book was good very insightful of his childhood stardom, as a 9-year-old preacher and his turbulent upbringing of moving from a middle class home to the projects.

Another rather interesting aspect of this book is the fact that it is distributed by Cash Money Content whose parent group is Cash Money Records, a record company with whom Rev. Sharpton has had a tumultuous relationship in recent years.  

Just last summer, Rev. Sharpton called a meeting with Pepsi Co. to protest their endorsement of Cash Money rapper Lil' Wayne after he made an insensitive reference to Emmett Till, the African-American teen who was lynched in Mississippi back in 1955.

During the book's presentation, one the spectators in the crowd asked Rev. Sharpton about his unexpected collaboration with the same company that he protested. Sharpton eluded the question by saying that he was signed with company Simon & Schuster.

Needless to say, the circumstances surrounding the book's publishing are questionable. However, The Rejected Stone is a good read which covers the life and lessons of one of the most significant figures of the 21st century. 


Friday, October 18, 2013

Twelve Years A Slave - The Solomon Northup Story

"12 Years A Slave' Wins Best Picture Drama At 2014 Golden Globe Awards"
"12 Years a Slave" Named Best picture at 2014 Oscars

 Twelve Years a Slave, originally published in 1853, is a breathtaking story about the life of Solomon Northrup, a New York citizen who was kidnapped after being lured to Washington DC and sold into slavery for nearly 12 years between the years of 1841 and 1853.

Northup, from upstate New York was a free black man who was a highly skilled carpenter and an accomplished fiddle player.  While in New York, two circus promoters offered Northup a high paying job, which they said would only take a few days to complete. Without letting his wife know of his whereabouts, he traveled with these strangers, only to find himself drugged, beaten and bound in a cell. When Northup argued his right as a free man, he was severely beaten and demanded to never to mention his free life in New York unless he wanted to be killed. 

Shortly after, Northup is taken by ship to New Orleans, where he and many of the other slaves are subject to harsh conditions including the deadly disease, smallpox. During his years as a slave, Northup works on many different plantations for some very cruel and abusive owners, yet he's also tormented by the fact that he cannot reveal his true identity as a free man to anyone, not even a fellow slave. 

Twelve Years a Slave has been made into a motion picture directed by Steven Rodney McQueen is set to debut today (Oct 18, 2013). By me being a history enthusiast, naturally I find this to be quite a compelling story. I can’t wait to see the movie and compare it to how close the movie is to the actual book. Eager patrons are already flocking my library branch looking for copies of this book. This Book is a MUST READ!

 Northup, Solomon(2013)  Twelve Years a Slave. Paperback | CreateSpace Independent Publishing | ISBN -13:978-1492137049 | $4.77 | 154 Page

Friday, October 11, 2013

Urban Public Librarians as School Media Specialists | EasyBib Blog

Urban Public Librarians as School Media Specialists

Librarian Profile: Marvin DeBose

Teen Librarian, Free Library of Philadelphia

Philadelphia, PA

Marvin DeBose
We’ve featured many great academic and K-12librarians in our Librarian Profile blog posts over the past year, but what about public librarians? In many communities, they play an equally important role as the school library — sometimes, they are the school library.
Marvin DeBose, a teen librarian at the Free Library of Philadelphia, knows this situation all too well. Public libraries, particularly in ubran areas like Philadelphia that have faced dire school budget cuts, play a crucial role in providing information and educational resources to students.
DeBose, who has worked as a teen librarian at the Free Library of Philadelphia for eight years, has seen an influx of student patronage as school budgets were slashed. “One of the problems we have in Philly is that the majority of public K-12 schools don’t have libraries –we are the primary source of information access for the kids,” he said. With a high school right down the street, DeBose has students coming in everyday. “We really kind of operate in the capacity of a school library. Anything K-12 school library media specialists do, I do.”
Given the lack of school libraries in Philadelphia city schools, DeBose makes a concerted effort to form a relationship with local schools to educate students on how the public library can help. The importance of K-12 schools forming relationships with public librarieshas been discussed frequently in recent months, and is something DeBose has continued to nuture.
“The relationships with the public schools are good, but some of them have such a bad behavior problem that coordinating visits and programs gets put on the back burner,” he said.
“Our programs depend on the demographic and what type of school it is — we’ve done everything from talking to a large crowd in an auditorium, to going from class to class, letting students know about our services.” DeBose organizes a “boot camp” for ninth graders, where he gives them a crash course on what they can expect when they start high school, and how the public library can help them.
“We find it really helps. When you become a part of the community, the kids come to you, and the library.”
Check out Marvin’s blog, Mr. Philly Librarian, where he writes book reviews, discusses library events and shares author interviews. Feel free to connect with him on LinkedIn, too.
Emily GoverEmily Gover is the information literacy librarian for EasyBib andResearchReady. In the Philly Cheesesteak battle of Pat’s vs. Geno’s, she goes for Pat’s every time. You can find her on Twitter, @Emily_EasyBib, or posting news you can use at the EasyBib Librarians Face