Libraries branch out with activities

In lieu of pushing a particular title or author of interest this month, I've got a laundry list of library news that I would like to share with the residents of North Seattle.

Going wireless

First off, the Seattle Public Library now offers free wireless Internet access at seven neighborhood branches.

There is no time limit, and a password is not required; simply bring a laptop computer with wireless capability and launch an Internet browser to establish a connection.

In addition to the Ballard, Beacon Hill, Capitol Hill and Rainier Beach branches, the service is also available at:

* Green Lake Branch, 7364 E. Green Lake Dr. N., (206) 684-7547

* Greenwood Branch, 8016 Greenwood Ave. N., (206) 684-4086

* North East Branch, 6801 35th Ave. N.E., (206) 684-7539

The Central Library downtown also offers free wireless Internet access and has since it opened in May 2004.

Eventually, all branches of the Seattle Public Library will offer the service.

Seattle Reads

Secondly, Marjane Satrapi, author of "Persepolis," will visit Seattle March 1 through 4 for the 2006 Seattle Reads series.

"Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood" is a "wise, funny and heartbreaking memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution," according to critics. The memoir is the first graphic novel in the eight years of Seattle Reads.

As the subject of Iran makes daily news, the timing couldn't be better to invite the public to attend a panel discussion at the Green Lake branch called "Persepolis: Iran's 1979 Revolution, Women in Islam and Graphic Novels" at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 1.

The panel is part of the Seattle Reads "Persepolis" series of programs. It will include faculty from the University of Washington's Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations and a representative from local graphic-novel publisher Fantagraphics Books.

The program is free, and everyone is welcome. Registration is not required. For a full listing of events surrounding Seattle Reads, visit or call me at 684-7547.

Book discussion groups

And lastly, the Green Lake branch hosts two book discussion groups, and we are always happy to welcome more participants.

The afternoon group, which meets on the second Friday of each month at 3:30 p.m., will discuss Sandra Benitez's "A Place Where the Sea Remembers" on Feb. 10.

The evening group, which meets on the third Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m., will discuss Tracy Kidder's "Mountains Beyond Mountains" on Feb. 15.

I have multiple copies of each title at the Green Lake Branch, so just swing by, pick up a copy for yourself and one for a friend, and we'll see you at the discussion in February.

Mark Pond is a librarian at the Green Lake branch, 7364 E. Green Lake Drive N. He can be reached via e-mail at

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