West Portal Library Branch

WEST PORTAL (415) 355-2886
190 Lenox Way (at Ulloa) 94127
M: 1-6; T: 10-9; W: 10-9; Th: 10-9; F: 1-6;
Sat: 10-6; Sun: 1-5

27 branches

This is one of my favorite places to read quietly. The children’s area is to the right, and the noise doesn’t leak into the adult area. There are tables with charging areas for adults to read and charge at the same time. The tables are close to the restroom, so it’s easy to be there for hours. Also, there are couches if you don’t need to charge. They are comfortable and it is easy to read there, too.

This is also an easy spot for an Uber pickup or to catch the K, L, or M streetcar. Down the street are many restaurants and shops, and a movie theater and bookstore. It’s a perfect place to spend a day visiting.

Las Vegas

There are drink holders in the bathroom stalls at the Binion. The bus runs from Fremont Street to the strip.  It’s much cheaper than taking a cab or Uber. They had milkshake and alcohol options.   We also got cheese curds and fries. Boozy milkshakes. They do fake weddings here.  It was on the way to the karaoke place. This was essentially Hennessy and cranberry. After karaoke, we wandered off to the piano bar.  He wasn’t bad, but he wasn’t good, either. The MLK day parade ran right by our hotel.

A Reader's Dozen – NYPL

A Reader’s Dozen

NYPL librarians put together a dozen book bundles. These are books that go together somehow. The above linked article tells about them. Some of the topics are interesting and some are unusual. The books that I know of on the list are good choices. I am interested in most of them.

Books with an Intriguing Setting 

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

The Snow Child: A Novel  by Eowyn Ivey

Dark Brooding Love Interests

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Heroes and Villains by Angela Carter 

Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt

Level Up! Video Game Fiction!

Warcross by Marie Lu

Otherworld by Jason Segel

For the Win by Cory Doctorow 

Women in STEM 

Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

Silent Spring by Rachel Carson; introduction by Linda Lear; afterword by Edward O. Wilson; drawings by Lois and Louis Darling

The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars by Dava Sobel

True Crime

The Road to Jonestown: Jim Jones and Peoples Temple by Jeff Guinn

The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir by Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich

Black Dahlia, Red Rose: The Crime, Corruption, and Cover-up of America’s Greatest Unsolved Murder by Piu Eatwell 

Cozy Smalltown Murder Mystery Series

Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder: a Hannah Swensen Mystery by Joanne Fluke

Still Life by Louise Penny

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Ladies of Mystery

Cocaine Blues by Phryne Fisher

A Cast-off Coven by Juliet Blackwell

The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency Series by Alexander McCall Smith

Unreliable Narrators

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

Twists and Turns

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey

In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

Get Ready to Cry

I Know This Much is True by Wally Lamb

The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

Feminist Science Fiction

The Female Man by Joanna Russ

Dawn by Octavia Butler

Midnight Robber by Nalo Hopkinson

Trilogies: The Best Things Come in 3s!

The Captive Prince Trilogy by C.S. Pacat

Annihilation (The Area X Trilogy) by Jeff VanderMeer

Oryx and Crake (The MaddAddam Trilogy) by Margaret Atwood

Non-Committal Short Stories

Look Alive Out There by Sloane Crosley

Certain American States: Stories by Catherine Lacey

Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang

Carnegie Hill by Jonathan Vatner

Carnegie Hill

Carnegie Hill by Jonathan Vatner
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I picked this up because I didn’t have an audiobook hold available from the library, and this was available. 

I felt that the author tried to touch on many controversial topics – racism, homophobia, classism, suicide, etc – and did none of them well. There were too many characters to cover in such a short book. 

Also, the editor needed a little help with the hospital scene. The description of the oxygen mask and respirator made very little sense. Also, he was sent from the ICU to the ICU ? It didn’t make a lot of sense all around. A little bit of research would have made a world of comprehension. 

Did we really need the food descriptions to be so detailed.? Who cares what the characters had for breakfast? 

I wasn’t thrilled about the way the author wrote a lot of the female characters as jealous. Each time a man didn’t answer his phone, the female character assumed he was out cheating. Most women wouldn’t necessarily assume this. Dead on the street somewhere, sure. But ourt cheating? Not the first thought unless she had a guilty conscience herself, and not one of the female characters did, other than one who flirted a little with a doctor. 

I rated it with 3 stars because with a little more editing, and a longer story, it could have been good. It just missed good and hit ok. 

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