7 Of The Most Beautiful Libraries In The World: Critical Linking, July 23, 2017

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The library at the Delft University of Technology was constructed in 1997 and has more than 862,000 books, 16,000 magazine subscriptions and its own museum. But it will only take a glance to be mesmerized, as it is a sight to remember.

The building itself exists beneath the ground, so you can’t really see the actual library. What makes it interesting is the roof, which is a grassy hill.

A huge cone pierces the grass roof, which symbolizes technology. This “gives (more) shape to the introverted reading rooms,” according to the library.

The roof covers 5,500 square meters. Construction of the roof posed several difficulties in terms of maintenance and leakage, but it has become one of the most striking and greenest (both literally and environmentally) structures in the area.

Road trip, anyone?


Turn up the speed. I know, I always say this. But truly, I think one of the best things about Audible is that you can crank up the speed. I usually listen at 1.75 or 2x, depending on the narrator, but Audible is also the only audiobook service I know of that goes up to triple speed (I don’t listen on this speed, but Bart listened to The Way of Kings series at triple speed when he was driving back and forth to Las Vegas from Arizona a few summers ago during his internship). Even just bumping up to 1.25x will help you get through a lot more books than you would otherwise and you’ll be amazed how fast you stop noticing the faster talking.

Five tips for increasing your audiobook listening, and the tip above? Game changer.


I was struck by how tenderly Konigsburg wrote Claudia and Jamie—readers will remember the pleasure and financial anxiety of each meal they take at the Automat—and by the humor she found in their voices. Claudia’s main reason for running away is, vaguely, “injustice,” and when the narration shifts to Jamie’s perspective Konigsburg uses “sculpture” as a verb. But there is no sentimentality in the book. The kids aren’t homesick for their parents, they don’t romanticize the museum, and there’s not a hint of moral instruction throughout the whole thing. They do have their adventures: at one point, they rent a post-office box and send the Met an anonymous letter, which they type on a display Olivetti that’s sitting out on Fifth Avenue; they even get a reply. But, as Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler tells Claudia, the real adventure is coming home with a secret. “Secrets are the kind of adventure she needs,” Frankweiler says. It’s an adult conclusion, complicated and true.

This piece about revisiting The Mixed-Up Files and The Met’s event honoring the classic children’s read is so, so good.


More than 20 years ago, Ann Staup and her late husband Mike took on a business venture they weren’t sure their company, Direct Mail Services, could handle.

The task at hand? Mail almost 1,000 books every month to children in the Sevierville, Tenn., area for a brand new program called Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.

Today, Direct Mail Services — with a team of 26 people — sends more than 1 million books every month to children across the United States. The company is on track to mail its 100,000,000th book by the end of 2017.


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