Category Archives: Staff Picks

Includes librarian recommended reading for fun and research

Aphorisms Add Spice

                So much writing advice focuses on negative rules — “never brashly split infinitives,” “idiomatic expressions won’t hammer home your point,” “avoid cliché like the plague” — but how’s this for a positive?: … Continue reading

Print on Demand Springer Books

The JHU Libraries purchase new books from Springer, a large STEM publisher, as ebooks. We’ve been doing this for about 4 years now, so there are thousands of them in Catalyst. If you’d like to purchase hard copy of one of … Continue reading

Virtual Reality, Virtual Worlds

What’s going on in the world of virtual worlds? Snow Crash (1992) — Okay, follow this: Facebook recently bought Occulus VR — the Federal Trade Commission said OK — because of course we all want to live in the Occulus … Continue reading

Sci Fi News – New Books and Movies

It’s so important to keep up on the science fiction news, especially when you’ve made it to Winter Break. William Gibson, the author of Pattern Recognition and The Difference Engine, has a new book out entitled The Peripheral. It involves … Continue reading

Library Tourism

At some point, we all travel and explore new places. While you’re globe-trotting, don’t forget to visit libraries! Seriously, some libraries are tourist attractions and well-worth a visit. Even the New York Times has recognized this insider’s tip! You could … Continue reading

Fairy Tales for Christmas Holidays

As a young girl growing up in Indonesia, I remember that Christmas was one of my most favorite times of the year. My parents bought us a small Christmas tree that my siblings and I decorated. Every evening, during the … Continue reading

Season’s Readings, Guilty Pleasures (and Gift Ideas)

Why do I love these lists so much? Every December, I look forward to the various year-end lists of best books put out by newspapers and other periodicals. True, they are a great place to find something to read, and … Continue reading

Let there be Light!

As our daylight hours dwindle, I am always reminded of Dylan Thomas. Not because he wrote “A Child’s Christmas in Wales,” but because of his poem “Do not go gentle into that good night.” Thomas of course was writing of … Continue reading

Snowflakes keep falling on my head…

While I know those are not quite the lyrics for that song, I can’t help but want to twist the words around slightly this time of year, particularly when the sky is gray and hats, gloves, and wooly socks are … Continue reading

The First Thanksgiving

Please note that MSEL and the BLC will be closed Thursday, November 27 for the holiday. We will close at midnight Wednesday and reopen Friday at 7:30am. When we think of Thanksgiving, what comes to mind? Turkey, parades, football, shopping and … Continue reading