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.

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

Superheroes Are Everywhere by Kamala Harris, illustrated by Mechal Renee Roe (Ages 3-7)

Diverse Children’s books

Superheroes Are Everywhere

Superheroes Are Everywhere by Kamala Harris
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a children’s book that talks about finding superheroes everywhere in everyday people. I found that it is a child’s version of the author’s autobiography. It think it would keep a child’s interest. The pictures are great to follow while reading. 

View all my reviews

Top Checkouts of 2019 – NYPL

NYPL Top Checkouts of 2019

The above linked article talks about the most checked out books in the NYPL system in 2019. They are all wonderful books and I look forward to reading those that I haven’t read yet.

Top 10 Books Systemwide

  1. Becomingby Michelle Obama
  2. Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover
  3. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
  4. A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult
  5. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
  6. Pachinkoby Min Jin Lee
  7. Circeby Madeline Miller
  8. Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty
  9. Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startupby John Carreyrou
  10. Milkmanby Anna Burns

Top 10 Books in the Bronx

  1. Becomingby Michelle Obama
  2. Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover
  3. Ambush by James Patterson and James O. Born
  4. The Chef by James Patterson
  5. A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult
  6. Liar Liar by James Patterson and Candice Fox
  7. The 18th Abduction by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  8. Long Road to Mercy by David Baldacci
  9. Target: Alex Cross by James Patterson
  10. The House Next Door by ​James Patterson, Tim Arnold, Max DiLallo, and Susan DiLallo

Top 10 Books in Manhattan

  1. Becomingby Michelle Obama
  2. Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover
  3. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
  4. Circeby Madeline Miller
  5. Pachinkoby Min Jin Lee
  6. Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startupby John Carreyrou
  7. Milkmanby Anna Burns
  8. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
  9. Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty
  10. An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Top 10 Books in Staten Island

  1. A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult
  2. Ambush by James Patterson and James O. Born
  3. The Reckoning by John Grisham
  4. Target: Alex Cross by James Patterson
  5. Liar Liar by James Patterson and Candice Fox
  6. The Chef by James Patterson
  7. Turning Point by Danielle Steel
  8. The House Next Door by ​James Patterson, Tim Arnold, Max DiLallo, and Susan DiLallo
  9. Unsolved, Book 2 by James Patterson and David Ellis
  10. Juror No. 3 by James Patterson and Nancy Allen

Park Library Branch

27 branches

This is the branch that I haven’t visited, but I am way too familiar with. When I send holds to the Parkside Branch, about 5% of the time, the hold ends up at the Park Branch. One of these days, I’ll have to find out where the Park Branch is, so I can retrieve my misguided holds.

PARK (415) 355-5656
1833 Page St. (at Cole) 94117
M: 12-6; Tu: 10-9; W: 1-9; Th: 10-6; F: 1-6;
Sat: 10-6; Sun: 1-5

How to Read Harder

How to Read Harder

The above linked article talks about books that are thought provoking and are recommended by librarians.

1. An epistolary novel or collection of letters

Twain & Stanley Enter Paradise by Oscar Hijuelos

When the English Fall by David Williams

Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

The Letters of Sylvia Plath by Sylvia Plath

2. An alternate history novel

The Arrival of Missives by Aliya Whiteley

The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal

Dread Nation by Justina Ireland

3. A book by a woman and/or AOC (Author of Color) that won a literary award in 2018


Lucky Broken Girl by Ruth Behar (Pura Belpré Author Award)

Macy McMillan and the Rainbow Goddess by Shari Green (Schneider Family Book Award)

Piecing Me Together by Reneé Watson (Coretta Scott King Book Award)

Stay with Me by Ayobami Adebayo (ALA’s Notable Books List)

4. A humor book


My Life as a Goddess: A Memoir Through (Un)popular Culture by Guy Branum

Gmorning, Gnight! Little Pep Talks for Me & You by Lin-Manuel Miranda, art by Jonny Sun

You Can’t Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain by Phoebe Robinson

How to Ruin Everything by George Watsky

5. A book by a journalist or about journalism


Stranger: The Challenge of a Latino Immigrant in the Trump Era by Jorge Ramos

Reporter: A Memoir by Seymour Hersh

No Turning Back: Life, Loss, and Hope in Wartime Syria by Rania Abouzeid

Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America by Beth Macy

6. A book by an AOC set in or about space


Nigerians in Space by Deji Bryce Olukotun

Exo by Fonda Lee

Dawn by Octavia Butler

Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

7.  An #ownvoices book set in Mexico or Central America


The Body Where I Was Born by Guadalupe Nettel (Mexico)

The Dream of My Return by Horacio Castellanos Moya (El Salvador)

The Story of My Teeth by Valeria Luiselli (Mexico)

A novel or book of poetry in Spanish by Gioconda Belli (Nicaragua)
 

8. An #ownvoices book set in Oceania

Terra Nullius by Claire Colman

Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak

The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings

Rani Patel in Full Effect by Sonia Patel


9. A book published prior to January 1, 2019, with fewer than 100 reviews on Goodreads

Trust by Cynthia Ozick

Brazil-Maru by Karen Tei Yamashita

Mrs. Hollingsworth’s Men by Padgett Powell

Selected Tales by Henry James


10.  A translated book written by and/or translated by a woman


Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata, translated from Japanese by Ginny Tapley Takemori

Waking Lions by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, translated from Hebrew by Sondra Silverton

Ladivine by Marie Ndiaye, translated from French by Jordan Stump

Human Acts by Han Kang, translated from Korean by Deborah Smith

11.  A book of manga


The Promised Neverland by Kaiu Shirai

My Hero Academia by Kohei Horikoshi

Skip Beat by Yoshiki Nakamura

Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa

12.  A book in which an animal or inanimate object is a point-of-view character


Fox 8 by George Saunders

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

Watership Down by Richard Adams

Empire of the Ants by Bernard Werber

13.  A book by or about someone that identifies as neurodiverse


On the Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyvis

Autism Adulthood: Strategies and Insight for a Fulfilling Life by Susan Senator

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

The State of Grace by Rachael Lucas

14.  A cozy mystery


One Day in December by Josie Silver

Born of Persuasion by Jessica Dotta

What the Dead Leave Behind by Rosemary Simpson

12 Clues of Christmas by Rhys Bowen

15.  A book of mythology or folklore


Mythology by Edith Hamilton

Don’t Know Much about Mythology: Everything You Need to Know about the Greatest Stories in Human History but Never  Learned by Kenneth C. Davis

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

Asian Mythology: Myths and Legends of China, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia by Rachel Storm

16.  An historical romance by an AOC

Tempest by Beverly Jenkins

An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole

A Dance with Danger by Jeannie Lin

As Rich as a Rogue by Jade Lee

17.  A business book


The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters by Priya Parker

Rework: Change the Way You Work Forever by Jason Fried and David Hansson

The Magic of Tiny Business: You Don’t Have to Go Big to Make a Great Living by Sharon Rowe

Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

18.  A novel by a trans or nonbinary author


Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan

Confessions of the Fox by Jordy Rosenberg

Little Fish by Casey Plett

Nevada by Imogen Binnie

19.  A book of nonviolent true crime


Our Bodies, Our Data: How Companies Make Billions Selling Our Medical Records by Adam Tanner

Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou

Red Card: How the U.S. Blew the Whistle on the World’s Biggest Sports Scandal by Ken Bensinger

Chain of Title: How Three Americans Uncovered Wall Street’s Great Foreclosure Fraud by David Dayen

20.  A book written in prison

The Greybar Hotel: Stories by Curtis Dawkins

Conversations with Myself by Nelson Mandela

Inside: Life Behind Bars in America by Michael Santos

Our Lady of the Flowers by Jean Genet

21.  A comic by an LGBTQIA creator

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

Wuvable Oaf by Ed Luce

The Backstagers, vol. 1: Rebels Without Applause by James Tynion IV, art by Rian Sygh

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

22.  A children’s or middle grade book (not YA) that has won a diversity award since 2009

Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart (Rainbow Book List, 2017)

The Three Lucys by Hayan Charara (Arab American Book Award, 2017)

Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin (Dolly Gray Award, 2016)

How I Became a Ghost by Tim Tingle (American Indian Youth Literature Award, 2014)


23.  A self-published book

Different libraries have different policies about including self-published books in their collections, but Book Riot suggested a great place to start!

24.  A collection of poetry published since 2014


Ordinary Beast by Nicole Sealey

Cenzontle by Marcelo Hernandez Castillo

Wade in the Water by Tracy K. Smith

When I Grow Up, I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities by Chen Chen