Here's What We're Reading At Welch

 

Before we leap into our Welch Library reading escapades, let's take a moment for some.....

Recognition

We just want to show some appreciation for our own Dongming Zhang, Director of Advanced Technologies and Information Services at Welch and Director of the Office of Information Technology. (Here’s Dongming enjoying some casual time ---we believe he was in Canada --- away from work)

 

Dongming, received the Thomas C. Chalmers Award from the Cochrane Collection, the world’s largest group of volunteer scientists and physicians, who create systematic reviews of the health science literature to study the effectiveness of different treatments or systems. Dongming was recognized for his unique approach to optimizing biomedical text classification when updating systematic reviews. Major congrats to Dongming for the award, and for his continued efforts with the Welch Library.

What We’re Reading At The Welch Library

What do the good people at the Welch Library do when we’re not working? Among other things --- Surprise! We read books. Here’s a small sampling of who’s reading what, and why.

Stella Seal, Associate Director of the Welch Service Center, has a pretty full plate. Stella says her Non-Fiction consists of (the-too-scary-for-words)  “The Coming Plague” by Laurie Garrett. A chronicle of the spread of infectious diseases in the last 50 years. And for Fiction I just finished “Bastion: Book 5 of the Collegium Chronicles” by Mercedes Lackey. Yet another story installment in her Heralds of Valdemar series.”

Welch Informationist Jaime Blanck chimed in with “I just started reading “The Power Habit: Why we do what we do in life and business,” but I haven't read far enough to be able to offer any thoughts. And I am almost finished with “Straight Man”. This is a VERY funny book about an academic whose goal is to be the straight man amongst the unintentional comedy provided by his colleagues in the English department of a small college in a rust-belt town.” Alonzo instantly chirped to Jaime that it sounds a bit like “Wonder Boys,” by Michael Chabon. But boy, don’t you just hate when somebody comments on what you’re reading and says it’s reminds them of such-and-such. Takes a little away from the authenticity in the original comment. Glad I don’t do that……….

And from our Cataloguing Department, Marsha Jolly has a few books she’s juggling. Some new reads and some old ones. I’ll let Marsha explain, “I went to the Potbelly Sandwich shop on Charles St. and they had “107 and Living by Myself – Reflections on Life without Bessie.” And then I picked up “Having Our Say” about the Delany Sisters. (Sadly Sadie Delany passed away not too long ago). I’ve read both these books twice! Also, I recently read one of my favorite plays (and mine too!) “A Raisin in the Sun” by Lorraine Hansberry”. If you want to see the movie, the entire film is available on youtube. I love the movie, I love the play, and the all-too-brief life of Lorraine Hansberry is well worth examining. A theatre in her name resides in San Francisco. Marsha also lists “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter” by Carson McCullers (a good friend of Truman Capote and Tennessee Williams, btw), who also wrote “The Member of the Wedding,” which starred the recently departed Julie Harris (again, if you haven’t seen the movie --- it’s worth putting it in your cue). Marsha also included the “Collected Autobiography of Maya Angelou” and mentions that she enjoyed it as a reflective “mix of joy and sorrow dancing together.” As the saying goes, our dear Marsha “might be a poet and don’t know it.”

Next up, Service Center staff member Vivian McCall confesses to having her crime genes revved up by “The Girl who played with Fire” - It's the 2nd book in the trilogy, and Vivian says it’s “a VERY good crime thriller.” Viv’s also been charmed by “First Class: The legacy of Dunbar, America's First Black Public High School”-online via Eisenhower.  “I was interested in this story after watching the author on Hardball speaking about the quality of public education and the prominent leaders that came out of that institution.”

Informationist Carrie Price has her Lorrie Moore groove on. I likeLike Life" by Lorrie Moore (a book of short stories), and I read Lorrie's "Birds of America" (another collection of short stories) and was pretty amazed with her insight into human nature, eye for detail, and of course, her prose.”

As for myself, I’ve been re-reading Peter Bogdanovich’s “Who The Hell’s In It” for the ump-teenth time. And never stop lingering over the interview with Jerry Lewis. In case you didn’t know, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis created “funnymen chaos” at a time when nightclubs were still huge --- Martin and Lewis completely overturned all the reigning dynasties of comedy. Together they were the second coming of the Marx Brothers. The silly slap-stick shenangigans never end. As you watch the clip it may seem a bit dated, but boy did they have some fun onstage. And they genuinely seemed to care for each other.

That’s a short summary from our end. If you’re in the mood, feel free to leave a comment below. We definitely welcome all comments.

So let us know what’s sitting on your reading table, or what you're carrying around with you that you just can't put down.

 

Alonzo LaMont

 

alonzo@jhmi.edu

 


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