Quarantine Diary 7: TV and Tutorials

Hi, I’m Simone! As the semester wraps up, I have attempted to get into Westworld, at the suggestion of a friend. I have finally arrived on the current season, season three. I have binged watched every weekend for the last three weeks. While I do not think it will ever be a favorite show of mine, it is interesting. I now understand all the memes and references on YouTube about Ford (Anthony Hopkins’ character), so that’s a plus. However, my favorite way to relax and destress has been YouTube. I am a devoted watcher of Desus and MeroCinemaWins, and CinemaSins and I am lucky that they are still posting (I am a movie nerd, sue me 😉). 

Kind Of Wink GIF by Desus & Mero - Find & Share on GIPHY

I am ever hopeful that soon the shelter in place order will be lifted. I signed up on the TRX website for a teacher training course and unfortunately, I do not have TRX cables or the ability to hoist TRX cables in my building. Thus, I am hoping that I will be able to take the course at a gym facility in May, if the order is lifted.  

However, when I am not trying to destress by watching television or exercising (I am quite fond of the Les Mills BodyCombat series), I found a great library resource created by Scholarly CommonsMallory Untch has put together a series of resources that are downloadable. One I have been exploring in depth is Python Anywhere. It’s a free website where you can code in the python language. If you have never coded before (I am a novice, as well), there are many helpful sites like W3 Schools, which has a tutorial on Python that you can test out on the Python Anywhere console.  Right now, I am trying the tutorials on tuples. There’s also a hands-on tutorial hosted by Matt Harrison through PyCon 2020. 

Hack Coding GIF by Matthew Butler - Find & Share on GIPHY

I hope wherever you are that you and your loved ones are safe and healthy.

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Quarantine Diary 6: Parents & Zoom

Hello world!! My name is Lauren (also known as Coolest Graduate Assistant at the UGL, I respond to either) and I’m writing to you from warm, sunny, Dallas, Texas! Let me just take this moment to brag; please see the weather forecast for today below……..*chef’s kiss*Screenshot of weather forecast for Monday, April 27, reads a high of 82 and low of 69. The perfect day. As I’m sure many of you did, I ended up quarantining at home after Spring Break aaaanndd……never left. I am currently with my family (M56, F49, F17, F15), which has been /an experience/. There was definitely a period of adjustment and there were many times I wanted to pause my Zoom calls to enjoy food made by my mom;

Screenshot of tweet reads: sorry professor can we pause the zoom lecture my immigrant mother has cut me some fruitwe are finally starting to eat the 20lbs of bulk dried pinto beans that my dad bought when our local grocery store had a half price sale;

Screenshot of tweet reads: My mom was prescient when she bought 2 years worth of TP after a Walgreens closed. The best way to save money is to invest in commodities. Sometimes the survivalist immigrant mentality pays off in times of crisis. I am also constantly finding MY things in my sisters’ room that I have been looking for since the semester began.

Screenshot of tweet reads: #GrowingUpWithSiblings going into their room to steal stuff and seeing stuff stolen from your roomAll in all, there are no other people that I’d rather be doing this with than them!! I have also been spending this time searching for the best Zoom backgrounds to use. My favorite so far is the This Is Fine meme (see image below), but you can decide for yourself and reference this Mary Sue list for more options.

Screenshot of cartoon room on fire, with a dark cloud covering the ceiling and a cup of coffee casually sitting on a tableI’ve also loved scrolling through the memes about Zoom meetings in general


Screenshot of a man in an office saying “if you could just mute yourself during the zoom meeting that’d be great” but he looks very sarcasticScreenshot of two dogs: one is captioned with “Audio only” with a dog with scraggly hair, and the other is captioned with “With video” and the dog is neatly groomed and wearing clothes


It hasn’t been too bad (yet)!!! I only have one last final research project (20 pages — excuse me while I cry) to do before GRADUATION!! If you’re finding yourself in the same position and have no idea what to do about your research assignment, feel free to ‘drop in’ or schedule a Research and Writing Consultation with me, or other Graduate Assistants at the UGL!! You can schedule an appointment though the UGL website, or ‘drop in’ by saying “I would like a research consultation” in the Ask a Librarian chat.

Still of Laurence Fishburne from The Matrix movie saying “What if I told you there are research methods besides your favorite one”

Finally, I wanted to take this opportunity to congratulate all of you who are graduating this semester. You are about to embark on a new journey – ready or not – and this final semester has not been an ideal end. Thank you for choosing to attend the University of Illinois; the UGL, at least, has been better for your interaction with our collections, staff, and faculty, in any capacity – large or small. Best of luck, now and always.

Screenshot of tweet reads: First-gen Latinx PhD candidtate here. Was chatting with Mom about possible cancellation of commencement ceremony. Me (in Spanish): I’m bummed cuz I wanted to share that moment with you. Mom: Mijo, I was with you every step of the way. One day doesn’t define the journey. Crying emoji.

Written and Edited by: Lauren



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Quarantine Diary 5: Yoga With Adriene

Hi all! I’m Izzy, and I’m hiding out in my apartment in Urbana for the foreseeable future. When this whole “stay-at-home” thing first started, I was ambitious. In addition to working remotely and continuing to take classes, I wanted to use this time to work on new hobbies and activities. The list included baking, hiking, learning to play guitar, learning a new language, crocheting, finishing a puzzle, and yoga.

I made cookies! Out of silly putty…

A few weeks later (I have truly lost count), the list remains largely untouched. It has been much harder to stay motivated and focused than I was expecting, so most of my energy goes to work and school and making sure I get enough to eat. My blueberry lemon bars turned into more of a crumble. Attempts to crochet concluded with yarn throwing in frustration. But the one recreational activity that has been easy to keep up has been yoga, all because of my friend Adriene.

When people talk about doing yoga online, they are usually talking about Yoga with Adriene. This YouTube channel, with almost 7 million subscribers and a seemingly endless number of videos, is one of the first things that pops up when you Google “yoga.” Adriene’s yoga instruction videos are perfect for just about everyone. You can find videos for beginners, for specific moods you might be in, or even to compliment activities you may like to do, like yoga for runners or writers. And best of all, she doesn’t take herself too seriously, so her videos are fun and lighthearted while getting the job done. She really does feel like a pal, and she manages to make these asynchronous classes feel like a community. And the best part is her dog Benji, who regularly makes appearances.

When I do have the attention to do something a bit more cerebral, there are a lot of choices out there right now, especially through the University Library. One of the options I’m most excited about is MIT Press. They are offering free online access to their catalog of e-books to libraries until May 31st. Whether you’re in need of some additional research for a course, or you just want to learn something new, they’ve got a huge selection of titles on just about every subject you could imagine. I recommend starting with their Essential Knowledge Series, which gives concise overviews on a variety of topics from “Irony and Sarcasm” to “Extraterrestrials.”

In between all the yoga and reading, I’m still finding time to fit in TV watching, staring at walls, and plenty of existential dread. Who knows how long this will last, and in the meantime, I’m staying busy.

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Quarantine Diary 4: Tips for a Healthy (Indoor) Lifestyle

Hello world! My name is Annabel, and I am coming to you live from quarantine in West Michigan! If you’re like me, you’re a person who can’t sit still for five seconds, craves productivity, and is fueled by an anxious energy, which is maddening unless you’re busy. We are the Leslie Knopes of the world, and I would argue that quarantine is essentially the antithesis of our entire beings. While I haven’t yet completely come to peace with the situation, in order to stave off existential dread and debilitating uncertainty, I am here to advocate for a practice that has kept me sane – proper exercise!

Exercise is vitally important for not only your physical health, but also your mental health. Of course, as a graduate assistant for the university libraries, I can point you towards numerous library guides which are full of information on various facets of health. For example, check out this guide on wellness and personal wellbeing, this guide on campus resources for health education, or this guide for mental health resources. !]. In addition, the University has provided us with a free subscription to Les Mills home workout videos! If you haven’t tried them out yet, I have tested a few of them for you, and here are my reviews:

1. LES Video still of LES MILLS GRIT #29 CardioMILLS GRIT #29: I thought I was in pretty decent shape… until I tried this HIIT workout. Let me tell you, it kicked my butt. I had to keep hitting pause so I could breathe! This definitely disrupted my elevated heart rate, but I couldn’t have made it through without some extra breaks. If you’re in an apartment, I don’t recommend this video because it is a lot of jumping around. You will definitely disturb your downstairs neighbors! However, I often find that workout videos are never hard enough. This one is an exception. It’s a great video for an intense cardio workout!

Video still from SH'BAM #36 45 min2. SH’BAM #36: This workout was similar to Zumba or any other dance-based workout you’ve tried! The workout was definitely on the easier side – it was fun, but repetitive and even a little boring at times. The music was great, and the hosts are vivacious, but in the end, I didn’t get as much of a workout as I would have liked. I did this video with my mom though, and we had a lot fun! This video is great for freestyling and it’s also great for beginners.

Video still from LES MILLS BARRE #07 30 min3. LES MILLS BARRE #07: For this workout, you only need a couple of small weights. I didn’t have any, so I improvised with jars of pasta sauce! I think this was my favorite workout of the three I attempted. It was challenging, hit all of the major muscle groups, but it was quick! I want to do this workout over and over, because I feel that I can improve each time I do it. This video also brought me back to my days in ballet class and made me a little nostalgic! I highly recommend this workout for anyone with a dance background, or anyone who wants a quick & efficient burn!

There’s a multitude of other great workout resources online too! One of my favorite places to go for free yoga instruction is doyogawithme.com – my favorite video is ‘Rise and Shine.’ I also love to run, so I’ve been hitting the trails to clear my mind. Exercise is super important, but a healthy lifestyle is made up of a lot of components. To summarize, here are my top ten tips for staying fit and healthy to survive the quarantine:

Annabel’s Top Ten Tips for a Healthy (Indoor) Lifestyle 1. Do something every day. Whether it is going on a walk or doing a full home workout, it’s imperative that you get some exercise every single day! 2. Set a timer. Sitting for prolonged periods can lead to serious health effects such as weight gain or increased blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol. I recommend standing up and walking around every 45 minutes. 3. Set a goal. Setting an intention before you start exercising will remind you why you keep at it. Big or small, goals keep you focused and motivated! 4. Get enough sleep. Get plenty of sleep. Go to bed at a regular time each day and practice good habits to get better sleep. Sleep restores both your mind and body. 5. Stay hydrated. Water is our body’s fuel. It keeps us energized, flushes out our system, and promotes other health benefits – like clear skin! 6. Meditate. Exercising has a lot of positive mental health effects, but it’s important to supplement by checking in with yourself and doing some deep breathing exercises once in a while. 7. Stay accountable. Find a friend to do workouts with, post your progress on social media, or keep track of what you’ve done by writing it down. Anything to keep you coming back! 8. Eat well. Eating and exercise go hand in hand. In fact, the more you exercise, the more your body will crave whole, healthy foods. I can’t stress the importance of fruits and veggies enough! 9. Take time for you. Working out is an opportunity to appreciate yourself and your amazing body. Take this time to be proud of yourself – you can do anything you put your mind to! 10. Get creative. There are millions of ways to fit exercise into your daily routine. Whether that is going on a daily walk, dancing in front of a mirror, or doing squats while you make dinner. Do anything and everything to stay active because it will keep you health – and sane!

Written by: Annabel

Edited by: Amy

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Quarantine Diary 3: A Few of My Favorite Things

Hello! Nicole here. I’m currently sequestered on top of a mountain outside of Boulder, CO, which is beautiful even though I’m extra stuck inside due to 16 inches of snow. I am very thankful to have a nice view and good company, but it’s been a struggle to focus on work and school while the world is filled with much uncertainty. Every night I go to bed thinking that tomorrow I’m going to be productive, work on finals, and exercise. Every morning (or afternoon) I wake up and…don’t. At first, this made me feel guilty and, on top of the regular stress and anxiety, I’d be mad at myself. Recently I’ve decided to be kinder to myself and embrace just doing what I can. I don’t know if you’ve heard, but these are unprecedented times. I also realized that almost every conversation I was having was filled with worry and negativity, so I’ve started asking people about the best things they’ve been doing during quarantine. So for this blog, I’ve decided to share five of the best things that I’ve done these past few weeks! Or months or years or however long it’s been. 

The outside table covered in a mound of snow

Isn’t it supposed to be spring?

Sourdough Cinnamon Buns

My partner has a sourdough starter that I am not trusted to maintain (I was gifted one and promptly killed it within a week). My attempt to make sourdough bread was a disaster – it turned out like if someone tried to bake playdough, aka it was completely inedible. However, these cinnamon buns came out so delicious that I made them twice in a week. They take a whole day to make when you consider the rising time, so the sense of accomplishment is extra high. I don’t have a mixer, so I got the therapeutic experience of kneading the dough by hand. An excellent way to get out some frustration. Plus, you might get flour all over your kitchen and by the time you clean it up, you’ve really spent an entire day not laying in bed. No matter how they turn out, I’d call that success. 

Watching Movies

It takes a lot of time to watch all the extended editions of Lord of the Rings, but 12 hours seems like nothing these days. Wow, those Hobbits really understand my quarantine eating schedule.There’s also 12 hours of special features if you want to be that annoying person who interrupts the movie every few minutes to share exclusive, behind-the-scenes info as if you were there. Fun fact, did you know that every single piece of chainmail in the movie was handmade? They linked almost 7 miles of rings together, and the whole process took 2 years! After Lord of the Rings, Star Wars was the logical next binge. Can we all agree that Episode I is the worst, and Rogue One is the very best? 

The Getty Challenge 

Recreating famous art using items/people around your house? Yes, please. I was certain my creation would turn out horribly, but I laughed a lot and it came out less terrible than expected! Even if you don’t participate, I would recommend checking out what other people have created for a good laugh.

Rosetta Stone

We have free access to Rosetta Stone through our university, and I’ve been saying that I’m going to use it to learn Spanish since September. Obviously school, work, and Netflix were higher priorities, so I never got around to it until now. I haven’t done it every day like I planned, but that’s okay because we’re being nicer to ourselves, remember? I do a 15-30 minute lesson a couple of times a week, and then I proudly point at things, say the Spanish word for them, and expect my partner to tell me what an inspiring genius I am. 


As a librarian-in-training, it feels obligatory to mention books. I am not reading as much as I thought I would; some days it’s hard to find the motivation to pick up a book instead spending infinite hours on TikTok. I’ve been finding it easier to get into light-hearted or short reads, so here are a few suggestions that might make you feel happy and distracted from the real world.

Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. When this book was recommended to me, I read the description and assumed it would be eye-roll inducing. After reading it, I have been hypothetically shoving it at everyone I know. Seriously, it’s what the world needs now and always, and it might make you laugh out loud.

Gmorning, Gnight!: Little Pep Talks for Me & You by Lin-Manuel Miranda. These are daily/nightly greetings, reminders, and words of encouragement that will make you feel like someone is giving your heart a hug. Don’t we all need some hugs right now?

Lord of the Butterflies by Andrea Gibson. Ok so this is not completely light-hearted, some of these poems actually made me curl into a ball and sob. But there is also so much hope and love, and I will recommend an Andrea Gibson collection any chance I get. Unlike what I was forced to read in school, their poetry is relatable and easy to understand.

Even though libraries are closed, there are still ways to get books! Look into your local library’s digital options, hosted on apps such as Libby or Hoopla. You can also support local bookstores by purchasing through Bookshop, Indie Bound, or see if your bookstore is still selling online. 

I hope you’re all finding enjoyable things to do during quarantine too! 


Written and edited by Nicole

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Quarantine Diary 2: Pilates and Cake

Hey everyone! I’m writing to you from a small town in southern Illinois, just twenty minutes outside of St. Louis. Like many of you, when the governor issued the shelter in place order, I moved home with my parents to be with family during quarantine. I don’t know about the rest of you, but for me “moving out” consisted of packing bags as quickly as I could, shoving in clean comfortable clothes and whatever I thought I couldn’t live without for a week or two. I cleaned out my fridge, put my Cavalier spaniel Hattie in the car, and took off. It’s been four weeks now and our house is bustling with my parents, sister, brother, myself, Hattie, and two cats.

Cavalier spaniel, named Hattie, sitting on couch

One of my favorite things to do, especially with my mom and sister, is to bake and cook. However, not leaving the house + constant baked goods and carbo-loaded recipes + a small dose of stress/bored eating = a dangerous combination. To offset the calories we’ve been eating, we’ve been taking advantage of free yoga and Pilates on YouTube. My favorite Pilates channel on YouTube is Blogilates with Cassey Ho. She does a great job of walking you through each exercise at the beginning of the video and explaining which muscle groups you’ll be working. She has a huge library of past workouts available, and there is something for toning just about any part of your body! All I use when following along to her videos is my yoga mat, but even that is optional. The workouts are very home/apartment friendly and Cassey has even been posting workout calendars for the COVID-19 quarantine, so you can follow along with her recommended workouts, or create your own routine. Hattie is an overall great workout buddy and huge help…

Maybe some of you are experiencing the odd time warp we seem to be in where each day feels like a week and yet each day slides into the next and it’s easy to lose track. One of the best methods I’ve found to fight this is to spend some time in the sun or to break up the day by going outside. We’re lucky to be in a rural area, so we are still able to go for walks and enjoy our yard! In fact, the only one who might not be enjoying our walks is poor Hattie. She’s only two, but she is the biggest couch potato you can imagine! While I think she felt spoiled at first with everyone home, now she just wishes we would leave her alone to take her naps. I have also been going out to the trampoline to get some cardio in since I can’t go to the gym. Apparently, this is a highly entertaining part of the morning for Hattie and the cats. The cats typically spend the day bullying poor Hattie, but they call an armistice for the hour or so that I’m on the trampoline every day to sit and watch their human.

Hattie and Lyla watching Jayde jump on the trampoline from the sunroom

Hattie after her second walk for the day









After burning some calories, my mom, sister, and I love to head to the kitchen! For one of my quarantine projects I am transcribing and posting all of my grandma’s old handwritten recipes onto a blog for my aunts and cousins. We’re making as many of the recipes as we can so that I can add in little notes and pictures of the finished products. One recipe that will always hold a special place in my heart (especially around Easter) is my Grandma Ruth’s pineapple upsidedown cake. It’s sweet as can be and just makes you happy. It’s the kind of dessert where you can have just a little square and have to cut yourself a generous rectangle. My grandma makes her cake batter from scratch, but here’s a quick and simplified version using yellow cake mix. Now Grandma Ruth had a couple tricks to truly knock this recipe out of the park that you can still use with the easy cake mix version. First, toast some pecans in a small pan. You add these to the top of the cake at the same time as the cherries and pineapple. The crunch and texture that these add just takes the cake to another level. Also, if you don’t mind sacrificing some of the neat presentation, use crushed pineapple instead of the rounds. This makes the cake even more moist and ensures you get a bit of pineapple with every bite. If you have enough leftover, you should also consider using a full cup of pineapple juice rather than any water with the cake mix. Finally, use a little extra brown sugar than this recipe calls for. Don’t pat the sugar down, rather make sure it’s well blended with the butter, but leave the top “crumbly.” I hope some of you get the chance to try this and it spreads a little joy! Ours didn’t last long past Easter dinner.

pineapple upside down cake, made with pineapples, cherries, and toasted pecans

My family and I have really enjoyed exploring and preserving my grandma’s recipes, especially those that we know were passed down through generations. If you’ve ever been curious about exploring your own family’s history, consider checking out this guide from UIUC’s Main Library about how to research your genealogy. The guide includes an explanation of free resources available online as well as recommendations from UIUC’s own collections. This is an activity that the whole family can enjoy and get involved in.

That’s all for now! I’m going to get back to my 1000 piece puzzle and maybe sneak one of the last slices of pineapple upsidedown cake. Hattie says she can’t wait until she can get back to Champaign and all our friends–apparently, we’re a little too boring for her!

Hattie, exhausted, lounging on the couch

Written by: Jayde

Edited by: Lauren

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Quarantine Diary 1: Harry Potter Movie Rankings

Graduate Assistant (noun): Master’s student with multiple jobs such as supervising the UGL, teaching, and helping people with research. Relies heavily on coffee and occasional social interactions. 

Hi everyone! It may come as a shock to learn that our Graduate Assistants (GAs) don’t live at the UGL. If this is as jarring as figuring out that your teachers have lives outside of school, we apologize. While they would probably be having more fun quarantined together, each of our GAs is finding their own way to keep healthy and sane during these crazy times. This blog is the beginning of a series called The Quarantine Diaries, in which each GA will share a piece of their current experience. We’re kicking it off with Ryan, who chose a topic so divisive that the rest of the GAs might not even want to see him when this quarantine is over.


Hi all! With quarantine in full swing, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to revisit the Harry Potter series (for scientific purposes). The Harry Potter franchise is ubiquitous at this point, with longevity that is uncommon in popular culture. With this newfound time on my hands, I decided to binge watch the series and give you my rankings of the Harry Potter movies from worst to best. I entirely expect this to be a controversial list, so let me know your thoughts if you disagree!

Obvious spoilers ahead!

8. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

Goblet of Fire is a great spectacle, with wondrous wizard battles, and the introduction of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named in full. While the film checks all of the boxes in regards to effects and spectacle, it unfortunately lacks a bit in the story department. Outside of the Dark Lord returning near the end of the film, the rest of the movie feels almost superfluous.

“Did you put your name in the Goblet of Fire, Harry? he asked calmly.

7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010)

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (P1) is a good movie, great in fact. Unfortunately it serves as a prelude to an even better movie. The final book has a plethora of subplots and story-lines that are unfortunately left by the wayside in this movie. The movie has some amazingly memorable scenes that still give off the quintessential “Harry Potter” vibe. And lastly, I cannot forget Hedwig.

6. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets holds a special place in my heart, with the introduction of Dobby the house elf, Harry’s iconic battle against the Basilisk, and the destruction of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’s first horcrux. The film is extremely nostalgic, but unfortunately comes up a bit dated. With a darker tone, and a lot of tween sass, the film was a great stepping stone for the rest of the story to unfold.

5. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001)

Sorcerer’ Stone is iconic, blasting the (already wildly popular) franchise into a global phenomenon. Extremely nostalgic, the movie has a way of hitting old Harry Potter fans right in the feels. That being said, it’s a story about a young 11 year-old and his first wizarding experiences. Fun, but at the end of the day it feels like a children’s movie.

4. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (2009)

The Half Blood Prince is where stuff starts to get real. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named is rising to power, and Harry, Dumbledore, and the Order are doing their best to battle him and his followers back. The movie has some of the best Hogwarts scenes in the franchise, and it’s nice to finally see Harry actually kick some butt. Draco’s fall to the “dark side” is moving, and you notice yourself actually feeling sorry for him. The movie ends with a beautiful scene of the Hogwarts’ teachers and students mourning Dumbledore’s death.

3. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)

Order of the Phoenix is where the viewer gets to see all of Harry’s (and the gang!) work come to fruition. Dumbledore’s Army is one of my favorite story-lines throughout the series, and I loved seeing Harry and his peers prepare for the war to come. I also can’t forget to mention one of the most unlikable villains to ever be on the big screen….Umbridge! The film has a bit of everything, with wonderful magic, intense wizard duels, and a lot of emotion!

2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (2011)

This movie is the culmination of 7 books and movies before it. There are so many memorable scenes…The Battle of Hogwarts, Ron and Hermione’s kiss, the death of Lord Voldemort, and many more. Outside of the action, it also has meaningful character moments as well, with Harry coming to terms with his own death, Neville’s courageous rise, and the many sacrifices that people made along the way to stop the dark forces of the wizarding world.




1: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)

Prisoner of Azkaban is regarded by many as the best Harry Potter movie, and for good reason. Dementors, Patronuses, the introduction of Sirius, and a few great twists towards the end have my heart pumping every time I sit down to watch it. Really, this movie has everything I want out of a Harry Potter movie!


If, like me, you enjoy watching and reviewing films, feel free to check out our Library Guide on Film Reviews. All of these resources are available online, so it’s perfect for the would-be-reviewer to get some practice in while we are all stuck at home. My favorite resource is the FIAF International Film Archive Database. Look up your favorite movie and see what other people are saying about it! Rob White, from Sight and Sound, called the first Harry Potter movie “oddly anticlimactic”, and while I couldn’t disagree further, his review is an interesting one!



Written and Edited by: Ryan



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Book Bracket – Best Books of the Decade

With March Madness cancelled and everyone quarantined at home there isn’t a better time to vote on your favorite book of the past decade! For the next three weeks we will be hosting two separate polls, on both our Twitter and Facebook, that pit two of the most popular books of the past decade against each other. You’ll notice a variety of genres, ranging from young adult fiction, historical non-fiction, memoirs, and fantasy!

Some of our favorite books include:

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Divergent by Veronica Roth

And many, many more!

Let us know what you enjoyed! Keep tabs on our Facebook and Twitter in the coming weeks (first poll on April 6th!) to keep up to date on the bracket and let us know your thoughts and opinions!



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April is Poetry Month!

April is National Poetry Month, and since we are all stuck inside for now, there couldn’t be a better time to dive into some verse. If you don’t happen to have any poetry books wherever you’re at, or you’re just looking to read something new, check out these five e-books available through the library.  

  1. Ross Gay’s poems are exactly what we all need right now: thoughtful, playful, and full of moments that gracefully hold the joys and pains of life simultaneously. Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude is a collection on themes of loss. Cover art of poetry collection titled: Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude by Ross Gay
  2. bell hooks is an activist and writer from Kentucky whose work explores sexism and racism. Check out Appalachian Elegy, a collection of poems about her home state.cover art of Appalachian Elegy by bell hooks
  3. Jack Kerouac, best known for his novel On the Road, was also a successful poet, even inventing his own form of haiku. Readings by Jack Kerouac on the Beat Generation is a spoken word album recorded in 1959.cover art of Readings by Jack Kerouac on the Beat Generation by Jack Kerouac
  4. Sarah Blake infuses her poetry with pop culture references and insights into her own experiences in Mr. West, a portrait of Kanye West.cover art of Mr. West by Sarah Blake
  5. Nate Marshall is a poet from the South Side of Chicago. In Wild Hundreds, Marshall composes a love song to his city.cover art of Wild Hundreds by Nate Marshall

Bonus: Homopup: Queer Dog Poetry. Speaks for itself, really.cover art of Homopup by Gerry Pearlberg

To find more e-books available through the library, check out the Library Catalog. Be sure to narrow your search results by format and choose “electronic.” If you have questions about accessing these, or other, electronic resources, feel free to Ask a Librarian!

Information from poetryfoundation.org.

Written by: Izzy

Edited by: Lauren

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