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11/20/2020 - 10:57am

Native American Heritage Month is an ideal time to learn about the rich cultural heritage and the many contributions of our first people. Our national narrative has been greatly enhanced by a diverse cast of Native American voices, including Louise Erdich, Sherman Alexie, James Welch, Leslie Marmon Silko and many others. As we celebrate this Thanksgiving, let's honor and remember the Native American people who helped shape our country's heritage. 

MI staff has compiled...

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11/17/2020 - 9:43am

The new Netflix series, The Queen's Gambit, has received largely positive reviews from critics and viewers. I have enjoyed the acting, the chess, the human drama and the music supporting the storytelling. Throughout the series, the beauty and power of chess shine and its powerful message about one individual's ability to change the world through kindness resonates.

In the first episode, we are introduced to the central character, 9-year old Beth Harmon, wh...

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11/12/2020 - 10:51am

Michael Crichton Sphere
Suzanne Rindell The other typist
Bobbie Ann Mason Feather crowns
C Pam Zhang How much of these hills is gold
Ivy Pochoda These women
Yaa Gyasi...

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11/12/2020 - 10:28am

If witches could ride, they'd choose hockey sticks, or they do in Quan Barry's new book, We Ride Upon Sticks. This pop-culture packed novel will plunge you back to 1980s Massachusetts to witness the Danvers High School Girls Field Hockey team make a dark pledge of amateur witchcraft - wickedly funny in a Stranger Things kind of way. There's a bit of 1692 Salem Witch Trial history here as well...speaking of history, Sharon Kay Penman's medieval story of King Baldwi...

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11/10/2020 - 4:42pm

All of us at Mechanics’ Institute hope that you and your loved ones are doing well. This year has brought challenges to all of us, and the future can feel unpredictable. And yet we have confidence that the Mechanics’ Institute will emerge stronger and nimbler than...

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11/07/2020 - 11:57am

It is truly unfortunate in 2020 that Veterans Day gathering is discouraged due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, military personnel will never be forgotten as long as we read to remember their sacrifice and service to our country. Here is a sampling of MI Library's extensive American history collection in honor of Veterans Day as well as a list of virtual events to celebrate this momentous day. 

The Mechanics' Institute Library will be closed on November 11 in honor...

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11/05/2020 - 12:59pm

Lindsey Crittenden celebrates her tenth year on Mechanics' Institute's Board of Trustees. Since 2018, Lindsey has served as president. She is the author of two published books,The Water Will Hold You: a skeptic learns to pray and The View From Below: stories, as well as numerous short stories, articles and essays. A San Francisco-based writer, Lindsey has taught at the high-school, community...

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11/03/2020 - 3:06pm

If you haven't seen the new Netflix miniseries The Queen's Gambit, you're missing out. The series, based on Walter Tevis' 1983 novel by the same title, is an electrifying view of the 1950s chess circuit.Tevis' story follows Beth Harmon, a quiet, withdrawn 8-year-old orphan who learns how to play chess from the janitor at the Methuen Home in Kentucky. Captivated, Beth's thinking grows clearer, her sens...

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10/27/2020 - 4:28pm

Sometimes it seems appropriate to turn off the news, disconnect from social media and take a deep breath to soothe the nerves. Climate change, COVID-19 resurgences, and election pandemonium can force the best of us to take an enormous step back. So, grab a warm beverage, put the world on pause and read yourself calm with a little help from your friends at MI. All titles are available for checkout through the library'...

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10/23/2020 - 11:23am

    James McBride's first book since winning the National Book Award for The Good Lord Bird has finally arrived! Set in 1969, Deacon King Kong, McBride's dark comedy about an aging, boozy old church deacon has been heralded as a 'love letter to New York City' and the Sister Production Company has snapped up the TV rights to the book. But McBride is no stranger to adaptation -- his Miracle at St. Anna was a 2008 film directed by Spike Lee and The Go...

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