Richmond Public Library Staff Picks

News, reviews, and ideas you can use from librarians and library staff at RPL

RPL Blog

Read Harder, Smaller, in 2018

Book Riot has challenged us once again to Read Harder with a list of reading challenges for 2018. You can find neat recommendations all over, such as here and here. And of course, here. Welcome to the Richmond Public Library very long list of recommendations to tackle Book Riot’s admirable annual challenge post. I want to combine the […]

Resolve to Read Small in 2018

Huh? Small presses, I mean. They make a big impact! If you’re looking for daring, inventive, exciting new voices, award-winning books, books that make you go “hmmm!”, then look to the little guys, many of which are nonprofits motivated more by art than profit. These are a few of my favorite small presses: Coffeehouse Press “is […]

Best of 2017: Staff Picks

We believe that books make great gifts so, just in time for you last minute shoppers, here is our gift to you: the ultimate list of Richmond Public Library staff picks from 2017. Nideria: You are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero. I love this book because it has helped me to develop a […]

‘Tis the Season…

Is your favorite Christmas movie Gremlins, or Die Hard? Well, we’re here today with 5 gif reasons why your favorite should be Desk Set. For those not yet in the know, Desk Set is the 1957 romantic comedy about a news librarian (Katherine Hepburn) afraid a new computer will automate her out of a job. […]

On Millennials, Minimalism, Self-Sufficiency… and Library Use

Two of the biggest trends among Millennials in 2017 are de-cluttering our lives (thanks in part to Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up) and becoming more self-sufficient as we bake our own bread or raise adorable urban chickens. And maybe that’s why Millennials are the biggest users of public libraries in America today […]

Tiny and Terrific: A long list of short books

Looking at your 2017 reading goal got you all… Not to worry. Time to get minimal. Down-size your life. Tiny houses are all the rage, you know? What kind of book goes best in a tiny house? A tiny book of course, and bonus minimalist points for checking it out at the library. We’ve got […]

Windy City Report

Dispatch from Robert @ Westover Hills: Back from my terrific trip to the 53rd Chicago Film Festival and I think the best overall slate (13 films in 4 days!) I have seen there. All were good—not a dud in the bunch—and a couple were truly outstanding. French films topped the selections in number—I was able […]

A different kind of haunting

Two of the best books I’ve read this year will haunt me for a long time: Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann “History, is a merciless judge.” This riveting work of narrative nonfiction by the author of The Lost City of Z reads like a masterful detective novel, and if you are unfamiliar […]

The tale of the haunted book blog

Get ready to be skeered right out of your pants, dear readers. The faint of heart should look away as we present to you our best fearsome October recommendations, complete with terrifying gifs! First off, duh: if you need the daylights (or deadlights?) scared out of you, read It by Stephen King. No lie, I actually had […]


What’s it like to work as a bartender? Are you still teaching yoga? Will your travels to Ireland find a place in your next novel? Why’d you drop the research science gig and start writing fiction? When you judge the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, do you have to read every single book […]

Meanwhile…comics, heroes, & origin stories

I was compelled by otherworldly forces to come up with a list of read-alikes inspired by a recent favorite: Dear Cyborgs by Eugene Lim. The narrative shifts between a couple of Midwestern best friends growing up together immersed in comic books, and a group of adult superhero/secret agents fighting for social justice–sort of. The novel […]