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Book Review

New and notable LGBTQ+ titles, from novels to memoirs to photography

Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit Memoir by Akwaeke EmeziPublished June 8, 2021. Biography. The New York Times-bestselling author of “The Death of Vivek Oji” penned this memoir through letters, exploring their life from their childhood in Nigeria to their path to success as an author, all the while diving into spiritual and artistic explorations of… View more

Asian and Asian American Young Adult Books to Binge

Asian and Asian American authors and characters represent a wide variety of stories and cultures. Asia is, of course, an enormous continent home to a wide-ranging experiences and identities. It would be a mistake to look to Asian culture as a homogenous identity. Instead, we celebrate a variety of cultures and creators during Asian/Pacific Islander… View more

New and notable recommendations for National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month, and Librarian Kim Martens-Tyo gathered this list of recommended titles that are currently part of the Library’s collection or are on-order. All were published in 2020 or 2021, and they represent a diverse range of voices and poetry styles, from a collection documenting African American poetic history (African American Poetry:… View more

Read Woke: In conversation with Monsoon Asian and Pacific Islanders in Solidarity

Lata D’Mello, Co-Director of Programs at Monsoon Asian and Pacific Islanders in Solidarity, spoke with Librarian Meredith Crawford for the latest installment of the Cedar Rapids Public Library’s Read Woke discussion series highlighting organizations and books that center marginalized groups. The conversation followed the March 16 shooting in Atlanta that killed eight, including six women… View more

Women’s History Month: Celebrating women’s lives through literature

March is Women’s History Month, and Librarian Heather Meyer-Boothby has curated a list of recommended reads. Narrowing down a short list wasn’t easy when considering the literary impact of half of humanity. “I picked voices that I felt have had a profound cultural impact on women’s lives. I didn’t reach back into classics so much… View more

Read Woke: Books about protest and social justice

Throughout the Library’s Read Woke program, our librarians have been interviewing community members and collecting book recommendations designed to challenge people to educate themselves about others through deliberate, thoughtful reading.  For the “Read Woke: Policing and Protest” program, African American Museum of Iowa Executive Director LaNisha Cassell discussed the museum, how the museum’s “Unwavering: 21st… View more

Picture Books Celebrating Black Hair

Picture Books Celebrating Black Hair

Cool Cuts and Happy Hair by Mechal Renee Roe These two picture books from Roe celebrate many different haircuts and styles for Black children with full page illustrations. Each beautiful, confidence-boosting style highlighting variations in hair texture from person to person is paired with affirmations to charge up self-esteem. Cool Cuts is intended for masculine-presenting… View more