04 December 2007

Road Map:: Pittsburgh, Wilkinsburg and Edgewood, PA


As any student worth her latte knows, December represents the ultimate climax.

I have been neglecting this blog lately. That's only because I have been in search of a lovely Snitch in the form of a peaceful month of vacation filled with fantabulous teen fiction reading. To do that, I have to finish my schoolwork. But ah... I've been longing to have some more luscious Scott Westerfeld, Justine Larbalestier, and Markus Zusak luv in my life. Right now I am in the final throes of my second-to-last semester, but I still make time to share my recent library exploits.

By the way, next week I will be going to a "Meet the Author" event with Angela Johnson, writer of the magnificent Printz award winner The First Part Last. Anyone have any questions they'd like answered by her? Please comment and I'll post her thoughts later on this month.

In the meantime, here are pictures of winter library cheer in the Pittsburgh area. I have found the library system here alarmingly interesting, since the libraries are divided into city libraries (Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, or CLP) and county libraries (Allegheny County Library Association, or ACLA).

The way I understand it, funding at the county level is allotted through a pretty exceptional variety of sources. One library director I spoke to confided that though his branch was built by Andrew Carnegie, no endowment was left for the library's survival. It then made a trade with what is now the neighboring school district. In basic terms, the library had land but no money, and the school district had money but no land, so the trade helps each other co-exist. Fascinating!

The more I learn, the more I realize I haven't even scratched the surface of the amazing world of libraries.

Also, congratulations to Sherman Alexie for winning the 2007 National Book Award for Young People's Literature. I haven't reviewed that many books but his novel The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian is one of them. I just saw it sitting on the shelf at work and I thought, this is gonna be awesome! Here are our $0.02: mine and his.

a) Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh: Main (Oakland)
Pittsburgh, PA (12.4.07)
b) Wilkinsburgh Public Library
Wilkinsburg, PA (12.4.07)
c) C.C. Mellor Memorial Library
Edgewood, PA (12.4.07)