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Stop by the library to learn more about Black History Month

February is Black History Month
February is Black History Month

The Fresno County Library’s Bookshelf column shares suggestions for books, music, and other items, and provides information about library programs.

Celebrating Black History Month

▪ “The Annotated African American Folktales,” edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Drawing from familiar (Joel Chandler Harris, Zora Neale Hurston), unfamiliar and oral sources, this anthology pays homage to an uncommonly rich storytelling tradition.

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“The Annotated African American Folktales” by Henry Louis Gates Jr. LIVERIGHT

▪ “Defining Moments in Black History: Reading Between the Lies,” by Dick Gregory. Autobiography, commentary and six centuries of the African American experience blend effortlessly in this final book from the noted comedian-activist.

▪ “Black Fortunes: The Story of the First Six African Americans Who Escaped Slavery and Became Millionaires,” by Shomari Wills. The inspiring life histories of people who built whole empires from nothing, based on personal care products, real estate and investments.

Top 5 Most Requested Books

▪ “The Woman in the Window: A Novel,” by A.J. Finn.

▪ “The Wife Between Us,” by Greer Hendricks.

▪ “Robicheaux: A Novel,” by James Lee Burke.

▪ “Little Fires Everywhere,” by Celeste Ng.

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“Little Fires Everywhere” by Celeste Ng PENGUIN PRESS

▪ “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter,” by Margareta Magnusson.

New Arrivals

▪ “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos,” by Jordan B. Peterson. By taking a long view of worldwide history, conventional wisdom and tradition, the author distills the must-know guidelines for personal and professional fulfillment.

▪ “Good Neighbors: A Novel,” by Joanne Serling. In a suburban New England town, four families believe they’re all the best of friends. When an adopted girl from Russia enters this circle, deep mutual suspicions threaten to make the bonds fly apart.

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“Good Neighbors” by Joanne Serling TWELVE

▪ “Keep Her Safe: A Novel,” by K.A. Tucker. When the female police chief of Austin, Texas makes a shocking confession and kills herself, her son is left to straighten out some very large messes—and try to find out how his family could have gone so wrong.


▪ Open Mike of Love: Bring love to the library! Recite favorite poems or stories, your own writing, or special memories for a general audience, in five minutes or less. Sign up ahead of time to make sure you will be on the program. 6:30-7:30 p.m., at three different branches: Tuesday, Sanger Branch Library, details 559-875-2435; Wednesday, Reedley Branch Library, details 559-638-2818; and Thursday, Sunnyside Regional Library, details 559-600-6594.

▪ Author Talk: Saul Maskell will discuss his new novel, “Shark,” about a race to thwart a deadly plot spawned in North Korea and China and orchestrated by a terrorist mastermind only known only as Abu Sharq–Father of the East. 6-7 p.m., Thursday, Clovis Regional Library. Details: 559-600-9531.

▪ Timely Exposures: Join author Jackie Weiner as she discusses C.C. Curtis’s early photography of the San Joaquin Valley’s east side and the Sierra Nevada. His images of farming, logging and everyday life form a unique record of a region moving out of its pioneer era and into modern times. 7:30-8:30 p.m., Thursday, Betty Rodriguez Regional Library. Details: 559-600-9245.

This is a weekly column written by the Fresno County Public Library staff. Events are usually free. Visit, or call 559-600-6227 or details.