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Abigail Bekx
Reader, writer, and grammar nerd. Loves reading Harry Potter, Jane Austen, and Charlotte Brontë, and forcing her family to listen to her rants on how books are better than movies.

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Five Interesting Facts About Maya Angelou

By Abigail Bekx. Apr 4, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Poetry, Music

Born in April 4, 1928 as Marguerite Johnson in St. Louis, Maya Angelou had a difficult childhood. Her parents divorced when she was three, leaving Angelou to be raised by her grandmother. When she was seven, Angelou was sexually assaulted by her mother’s boyfriend. After testifying against him, her attacker was beaten to death in an alley, causing Angelou to believe her voice was too powerful. She decided to remain nearly mute for the next five years. During this time Angelou connected with the written word, paving the way for her future as a writer.

     
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The Fascinating Life and Art of Vincent van Gogh

By Abigail Bekx. Mar 30, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Art

Art is and does many things. It chronicles history, shows culture, and provides insight into artists. Despite the vast number of artists, there are only a few who hold consumers’ attention long after their death. Included with artists like Michelangelo and da Vinci, is Vincent van Gogh. From novels like Lust for Life to an episode of Doctor Who, the general masses remain fascinated with the man who is known for such talent and for cutting off his own ear. 

     
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Book Spotlight: The Curious Case of Sidd Finch by George Plimpton

By Abigail Bekx. Mar 18, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: American History, Baseball

Baseball has long been America’s pastime. Heroes have thrilled fans and achieved glory. Lore has shrouded the sport in expectations and fantasies. But what about when someone uses America’s pastime to fool Americans? George Plimpton, editor, writer, and sportsman, did just that when he published The Curious Case of Sidd Finch. 

     
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Eight Mickey Spillane Quotes That Show His Writing Style

By Abigail Bekx. Mar 9, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Mystery, Suspense & Crime

Mickey Spillane, one of the most popular American mystery writers of the twentieth century, is known for his gritty, gruff writing. His work is violent, dark, and utterly successful; his first novel sold over one million copies. Known for the character Mike Hammer, Spillane’s work on his mystery novels did not limit his work as a writer. He wrote television shows, movies, and children’s books, winning the Junior Literary Guild award for his 1979 story, The Day the Sea Rolled Back. However, his writing is best remembered for his use of vivid descriptions, short words, and fast transitions to help immerse readers in the story. 

     
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Book Spotlight: The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

By Abigail Bekx. Mar 2, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Children's Books

Born Theodor Seuss Geisel on March 2, 1904, in Springfield, Massachusetts, Geisel started using the pseudonym “Seuss” during his time at Dartmouth when he was banned from editing and contributing to the campus’ humor magazine, Jack-O-Lantern. Geisel, after graduating from Dartmouth, attended Oxford thinking of becoming a professor, but left to start work as a cartoonist before eventually moving to work in Standard Oil’s advertising department for 15 years and contributing political cartoons to PM magazine.

     
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Bob Schieffer's Newsworthy Life

By Abigail Bekx. Feb 25, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: American History

In 2019, media—from social to news—plays an important role in the lives of consumers. People are constantly aware of newsworthy, and not so newsworthy, developments from around the world nearly as soon as they occur. With this ease of access, the time when newspapers and television were the main means of delivery for news can be easily forgotten. The men and women who spent their careers informing others and becoming household names may be all but forgotten by the new generation. Bob Schieffer dedicated his life to news. His work as a reporter and news anchor reached millions of viewers and helps define the role of television news today.  

     
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The Women of Group f/64

By Abigail Bekx. Feb 20, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Book Gift Ideas

In 1932, Ansel Adams and ten other photographers, announced their formation of Group f/64, a group devoted to straight photography and sharp focus images. It was Edward Weston and Ansel Adams at the center of the group, helping bring the group’s ideals to national attention. They adopted the name Group f/64 in reference to the smallest aperture available for large-format view cameras, which allows the picture to achieve as sharp of focus as possible. As a whole, the group focused on landscapes or close-up photographs of natural subjects. Despite differences in subjects and personal style, their efforts to perfectly show the exact features of their subjects brought them together in a shared venture. While not all official members of Group f/64, the female photographers showing their work in the first exhibit are especially interesting. Each possessed their own style, journey, and place in the history of photography. 

     
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Five Things You Might Not Know About Toni Morrison

By Abigail Bekx. Feb 18, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Book News

Toni Morrison is one of the foremost leaders who brought African-American literature from the fringes of literary circles into the mainstream. Born Chloe Ardelia Wofford on February 18, 1931, Morrison grew up in Lorain, Ohio. She attended Howard University in Washington, D.C. where she majored in English before earning a Master of Arts from Cornell University. Morrison began her career by teaching English at several universities. In 1970, she published her first novel, The Bluest Eyes. Her best known novel, Beloved, was published in 1987. In 1993, Morrison was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. She continues her work promoting and supporting the central theme of her novels: the experience of African-Americans in unjust societies. 

     
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Thomas Harris: A Modern Master of Suspense

By Abigail Bekx. Feb 8, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Horror, Legendary Authors, Book Collecting

Thriller and horror have long been a part of readers’ diets. From the Gothic to Edgar Allan Poe to Stephen King, readers find joy in the macabre. One of the most popular contemporary thriller writers is Thomas Harris. Already popular through his writing, the film adaptations of his work has helped to build his devoted audience. His creation of Hannibal Lecter has led to television series, plays, and parody musicals about the world’s favorite cannibal all while catapulting Harris into fame. 

     
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Literary Travel: Six Places Fans of the Little House Series Should Visit

By Abigail Bekx. Feb 7, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Literary travel

Laura Ingalls Wilder spent much of her life traveling with her family as pioneers. She grew up homesteading different farms all over the Midwest. As an adult, she chronicled her journeys in the Little House on the Prairie series. Wildly popular, the children’s series and resulting television show helped romanticize the experiences of the Ingalls family. Many places Laura described in her books have been restored and can still be visited today, helping return a sense of reality to the difficulties pioneers faced. 

     
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How can I identify a first edition? Where do I learn about caring for books? How should I start collecting? Hear from librarians about amazing collections, learn about historic bindings or printing techniques, get to know other collectors. Whether you are just starting or looking for expert advice, chances are, you'll find something of interest on blogis librorum.

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