Image of Coronavirus

As we reopen, we want to be sure our customers have the most up-to-date information about COVID-19. These resources provide accurate information about the pandemic and research on COVID-19. To see how Queens Public Library is reopening and responding to COVID-19, visit our reopening landing page. For updates on our COVID-19 response, visit this blog post


CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention This is the source for comprehensive and reliable information on COVID-19.  The CDC is the leading data-driven, science-based, service organization concerned with protecting the public’s health. As a federal agency, it provides updates on the government’s response, as well as, resources and guidance for employers, households, schools, and travelers.

NYC COVID-19 Citywide Information Portal Get information about testing in New York City, resources for New Yorkers and businesses, NYC COVID-19 data, and info on Restart NYC.

New York State – Department of Health This provides the latest news on the state’s response to COVID-19.  The site includes what you need to know about testing, symptoms & prevention, travel advisories, your rights, protecting yourself and others, and New York Forward, the plan to get people back to work.

World Health Organization - COVID-19 Pandemic This offers advice for the public on how to deal with COVID-19, along with global situation reports, numbers at a glance, and research provided by the United Nations agency that educates and monitors public health around the world.

National Institutes of Health – Coronavirus (Covid-19) COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.  Get the latest research information from the National Institute of Health (NIH).  Find information and articles about clinical trials, treatment guidelines, testing, clinical studies, and more.


Here is a link to Newspaper Articles on COVID-19 from our database GaleOneFile: Health & Medicine.  From that page, click on other formats to see Academic Journal articles, Magazine articles, Images, and Videos.

The New England Journal of Medicine - Explore a collection of articles and other resources on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, including clinical reports, management guidelines, and commentary.

Global research database - WHO is gathering the latest international multilingual scientific findings and knowledge on COVID-19. The global literature cited in the WHO COVID-19 database is updated daily (Monday through Friday) from searches of bibliographic databases, hand searching, and the addition of other expert-referred scientific articles. This database represents a comprehensive multilingual source of current literature on the topic. While it may not be exhaustive, new research is added regularly.

The Stephen B. Thacker CDC Library Article Database is collecting COVID-19 (2019 Novel Coronavirus) research articles and compiling them into an easily accessible and downloadable database to help researchers find the latest COVID-19 research.

PubMed - Looking to do in-depth research on COVID-19?  Click PubMed to find the latest journal article citations on COVID-19 (PubMed - National Library of Medicine).

The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) - Browse the JAMA Network COVID-19 collection , including Q&As with NIAID's Dr. Anthony Fauci, an interactive map of the outbreak courtesy of The Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering, and past publications on vaccine development, infection control, and public health preparedness.

Posts in This Series

  1. QPL’s COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Response (Updated 6/25/20)
  2. Mayor De Blasio Expands Testing Sites Citywide and Opens Mobile Units
  3. At-Home Ways to Keep Your Mind and Body Healthy During The Covid-19 Outbreak
  4. Virtual Resources for Parents to Help Your Child Continue Learning and Coping
  5. QPLAnywhere: Our Digital Resources
QPL Logo

Update: June 25, 2020, 10:00AM

QPL’s “To-Go” Service Starts July 13 at 7 Branches

Dear Queens Public Library Customer,

I am very pleased to announce that Queens Public Library will reopen seven branches across the borough with “to-go” service and returns six days a week, starting on Monday, July 13. Nine additional locations will accept returns around the clock, seven days a week.

These initial steps to gradually reopen our physical locations while protecting the health and safety of our staff and the public are part of the Library’s reopening plan, QPL’s Path Forward in the Era of COVID-19.

The following seven branches will provide to-go service for customer pickup of materials in a designated area of each building and will accept returns at their exterior return machines. Materials can be requested online, through the QPL app, or by phone, starting July 6.

The hours at each of these locations will be: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday (with a one-hour closure from 1 to 2 p.m. for cleaning); 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday; and 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday (with a one-hour closure from 3 to 4 p.m. for cleaning).

In addition to their geographic location, the seven sites were selected for their size, layout, and condition as we assess whether and how the new service model and operating procedures, including physical distancing and other safety measures, would work in other libraries.

The following group of nine locations will accept returns at external return machines or book drops but remain closed to the public. They will be open to staff for fulfilling materials requests and supporting our other functions.

UPDATE 7/8/20: the return machine at Flushing Library is currently out of service. We apologize for any inconvenience.

In addition, our Mail-a-Book home delivery service will resume.

Each of the buildings that will be in use during this stage will undergo extensive cleaning, and spaces will be configured for physical distancing. In accordance with expert recommendations, all returned materials will be set aside, or “quarantined,” for 72 hours before they are put back into circulation.

All staff and visitors will be required to wear masks and practice physical distancing. Hand sanitizer will be available at all open branches. At this time, there will be no on-site public programs, browsing, meeting room availability, seating, public computers, or in-person reference service, and book donations will not be accepted.

Customers can check out materials without accruing fines until October 1, 2020 at the earliest, and fine-based library card blocks will be temporarily lifted. Applications for library cards will be accepted online only, and cards can be picked up at one of the locations offering to-go service.

Depending on the experiences of the initial locations and as circumstances allow, we will gradually and carefully open more branches and provide additional services. In the meantime, we remain committed to offering virtual programs, eBooks, and other online resources, which we know have been vital for many of you.

Thank you for your support and understanding as we navigate our new realities together. The Library’s incredible staff are working hard to prepare for this next step, and we look forward to welcoming you back safely.

Best wishes,
Dennis M. Walcott
President and CEO, Queens Public Library

P.S. You can also visit our Reopening website to watch our instructional video about to-go service, get answers to frequently asked questions, and find out how we’re protecting everyone’s health and safety.



Update: June 4, 2020, 11:00AM

A Plan to Reopen Our Physical Locations

Dear Customers,

In the past three months, New York City has endured unprecedented heartache, economic hardship, and turmoil as we confront the COVID-19 pandemic and the manifestations of racial injustice across the country and here at home. It is at times like these when we especially miss being able to offer a welcoming physical place where people can gather, connect and celebrate the richness of our diversity, and where we can look them in the eye and ask what we can do to help.

It seems that the world now demands even more of us than the one we left behind when we temporarily shut the doors of our 66 locations on March 16. Since then, we have strengthened our resolve to meet our mission, delivering critical services and resources remotely and offering everyone, no matter who they are or where they come from, the chance to realize the promise of their lives.

At the same time, we have been thoughtfully and carefully formulating a plan for our locations’ eventual reopening, keeping at the forefront of our minds the health and safety of the public and our staff.  While we are still working through many of the details, I would like to share with you how and when in-person service is expected to resume.

We, along with the Brooklyn and New York public library systems, aim to start reopening our physical locations in mid-July, barring unforeseen circumstances. Our plan will be continuously refined as we open each branch, and informed by city, state and federal guidance, executive orders, and laws, information and recommendations from public health authorities and the experiences of other organizations around the world.

The Library will reopen its locations for public service in stages, starting with six to eight branches where customers can make returns and pick up requested materials in a designated area of each building.

Prior to their reopening, the buildings will undergo extensive cleaning, and our staff will configure spaces for social distancing. In accordance with the latest guidance, all returned materials will be set aside, or “quarantined,” for a period of time based on national standards before they are put back into circulation.

All visitors will be required to wear masks, and we will provide masks to people who do not have them. All Queens Public Library staff also will be required to wear masks, and hand sanitizer will be available at all open branches. At this time, there will be no public programs, browsing, meeting room availability, chairs and tables for public use, public computers, or in-person reference service. Book donations will not be accepted.

We will continue to increase our collection of ebooks and other digital resources, and to offer virtual programs, services, activities, and events on our social media channels and other platforms. As we learn from the initial branch reopenings, we will gradually open other locations and expand services. Again, I want to reinforce that the health and safety of our customers and our staff are our top priorities, and we are undertaking this process slowly and with the utmost caution.

We realize that there are many questions and issues that still need to be addressed, and we will share more details and updates with you as soon as we have them. Until then, we look forward to seeing you again as we face—and rebuild—this new world together.

Take good care, and thank you for being part of the Queens Public Library community.

Best wishes,
Dennis M. Walcott
President and CEO, Queens Public Library



Update: March 15, 2020, 5:00PM

To the Queens Public Library Community,

Starting Monday, March 16 and until further notice, Queens Public Library will be closed to the public in order to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of our staff and the public we serve.

To ensure you can continue to learn and grow with the library, we are expanding our collections of digital materials, which are always available, including thousands of free eBooks, audiobooks, eMagazines, songs, movies, and videos.

We ask that you keep the items you have checked out until we reopen or announce other options. Note that all due dates will be automatically extended and late fees will be suspended during the closure.

Please keep checking the QPL website and social media channels for new content as well as for updates about our plans to reopen.

We know how much our communities depend on our libraries and thank you for your understanding during this challenging time.

Dennis M. Walcott, President and CEO, Queens Public Library



March 12, 2020

Queens Public Library is suspending all programs, events, classes, community room requests, and workshops from Friday, March 13 through at least the end of the month.

We, along with the Brooklyn and New York public libraries, are taking this step to limit the number of public gatherings throughout our respective systems in an effort to help the City slow the spread of the coronavirus.

QPL continues to carefully monitor the rapidly evolving information and guidance about COVID-19 from the New York City Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help you, your families, and our staff stay informed and healthy, and to respond to the situation as needed.

To limit the spread of the coronavirus, we have

  • Significantly increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting surfaces like door handles and knobs, tabletops, counters, check-out and check-in machines, elevator buttons, and computer equipment at all of our locations.
  • Stepped up the number of times we service our public restrooms each day.
  • Removed all toys from the children’s areas in our libraries.
  • Encouraged our customers, staff, and the public to wash their hands properly, get the flu vaccine, cover coughs and sneezes, avoid touching their faces, stay at home if they feel sick, and contact their medical provider if they have traveled to certain countries.

We also are purchasing substantially more eBooks, audiobooks, and streaming films. If you would prefer not to visit our locations in person at this challenging time, you can reach one of our librarians over the phone or online through our Ask-a-Librarian service.

If you do visit, we ask that you consider practicing “social distancing” and limiting contact with others by:

  • avoiding handshakes
  • using our check-out machines
  • giving yourself ample space in our computer and seating areas
  • sharing your library card number verbally instead of providing your physical card.

There is a great deal of false information on social media and certain online news sites about how COVID-19 is transmitted and who has been affected. Below are reliable sources of the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus and how to stay safe during this difficult time.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The federal agency, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, provides updates about the government’s response, answers to frequently asked questions, and resources and guidance for employers, schools, households, and travelers.

New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
The mayoral agency is monitoring the City’s response to the outbreak and updating the public about symptoms, prevention, and the number of cases in the five boroughs.

New York State Department of Health
The state agency is monitoring the spread of the disease across the state of New York and its response to the outbreak.

World Health Organization
The United Nations agency monitors public health around the world and educates people how to achieve good health.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation as the situation with COVID-19 unfolds. Please visit this page for updates. We are more committed now than ever to serving our communities and the people of Queens and beyond, no matter who you are or where you are from.

Vote Here Sign

Tuesday, June 23, 2020 is Primary Election Day, and several of our branches will serve as polling sites.

Queens residents will cast their votes at the Briarwood, Central, East Elmhurst, Elmhurst, Forest Hills, Kew Gardens Hills, Lefferts, Lefrak City, North Forest Park, Peninsula, Ridgewood, Seaside, and St. Albans libraries, from 6AM to 9PM.

Please Note: these library buildings will be open ONLY to serve as polling sites. You WILL NOT be able to borrow books or other library materials or use library services. You WILL NOT be able to return books or other library materials.

Is your library where you should vote? Please visit or call 866-VOTE-NYC (866-868-3692) to confirm the correct location for you to vote in your neighborhood!

QPL President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott visited the new NYC Health + Hospitals COVID-19 testing site at Windsor Park Library on June 18, 2020.

QPL President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott visited the new NYC Health + Hospitals COVID-19 testing site at Windsor Park Library on June 18, 2020.


Mayor De Blasio Expands Testing Sites Citywide and Opens Mobile Units

New NYC Health + Hospitals testing sites to launch today in the Bronx, Staten Island, Queens and Brooklyn

New York, NY (June 17, 2020)—Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced the launch of five new testing sites citywide. Mobile testing trucks in the Bronx and Staten Island will also offer free tests for the remainder of the week. The City is continuing to expand its mobile testing apparatus to reach a total of 10 trucks by July, bringing the cumulative number of citywide testing sites to over 200.

“Widespread testing remains our best defense against the virus,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “With over 200 sites across our city, we are bringing testing to the doorstep of every New Yorker, making it as fast and convenient as possible to keep yourself safe.”

Today, NYC Health + Hospitals’ Bronx mobile truck will be offering free tests in the Clinton playground from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. On Thursday and Friday, the truck will be parked in Gouverneur Playground from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Health + Hospitals’ Staten Island mobile truck will also offer free tests today through Friday at 1441 Richmond Avenue from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. By July, the City will conduct a total of up to 800 tests per day out of its 10 testing trucks.

With the goal of building capacity to reach 50,000 tests per day by July, the City will open five additional NYC Health + Hospitals testing sites, with 2 in Staten Island, 1 in Queens, 1 in the Bronx, and 1 in Brooklyn.

Staten Island
Mariners Harbor Library, 206 South Avenue
Greenbelt Recreation Center, 501 Brielle Avenue

Windsor Park Library, 79-50 Bell Boulevard

Rain Boston Road Senior Center, 2424 Boston Road

Maria Lawton Senior Center, 400 Hart Street

Testing is available free of charge. New Yorkers should visit to find the site closest to them.

Contact: Office of the Mayor—, 212-788-2958; Queens Public Library—Elisabeth de Bourbon and Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska


Black hands raised

Juneteenth is an annual celebration of the end of slavery in the United States. This year, as we continue to stand up for racial justice, we're hosting two events and sharing booklists. Join us to hear the powerful experiences of black men as collected in the anthology Our Stories, Our Voices: Black Men Speak Their Truth and to go on a journey through the African struggle for liberation in the United States with musician, poet, and storyteller Atiba Wilson. 


Juneteenth: A Celebration of Self-Emancipation

Join Atiba Wilson as we celebrate Juneteenth together with music and storytelling.  Wilson, an acclaimed musician, poet, and storyteller, will take us through a historical look at the struggle for liberation by African people in the United States and the post-Reconstruction efforts for full citizenship. Watch live on our Facebook page.

Friday, June 19

A Tribute to Fatherhood: Our Stories, Our Voices: Black Men Speak Their Truth

The book Our Stories, Our Voices: Black Men Speak Their Truth is an open dialogue of healing and growth led by 13 powerful men of color who share stories of love and pain. Black male writers want their stories to create new realities of understanding and love for themselves with their families, communities, and the world. This event will be moderated by the book's editors Julia Shaw & Toni Coleman Brown. Visit here to attend this program.

Friday, June 19



Browse our Celebrate Juneteenth eBook collection on OverDrive.

Browse our Activism & Social Justice eBook collection on OverDrive.


QPL Staff Rally for Racial Justice

See our pictures from this special Juneteenth event.


Books from 30s to 80s

This year marks the 90th anniversary of Central Library! To celebrate, our librarians created a list of a book, song, and movie for every year the library has offered service. To see the complete list, click here. To search for a book in our catalog, simply type in the item's Bib ID. Below, we offer you highlights from the list, with songs and eBooks for each decade. 

Listen to our complete playlist of songs from the 1930s to the present day, available on Freegal. Log in to your free account first to hear the playlist.

We hope you enjoy these snapshots of each decade! 



Wodehouse, P.G. Right-ho, Jeeves

In this, the second novel in P.G. Wodehouse's delightful Jeeves series, the family fumbles through a comedy of errors that is set in motion by a marriage proposal and a downward spiral of miscommunication and crossed wires. This hilarious novel contains many of the most beloved scenes and set pieces from the series. A must-read for Wodehouse fans and lovers of top-notch humor writing.

"Autumn In New York" / Vernon Duke


Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God

One of the most important and enduring books of the twentieth century, Their Eyes Were Watching God brings to life a Southern love story with the wit and pathos found only in the writing of Zora Neale Hurston. Out of print for almost thirty years due largely to initial audiences' rejection of its strong black female protagonist, since its 1978 reissue Hurston's classic has become perhaps the most widely read and highly acclaimed novel in the canon of African American literature.

"They Can’t Take That Away From Me" / George and Ira Gershwin


Wright, Richard. Native Son

Right from the start, Bigger Thomas had been headed for jail. It could have been for assault or petty larceny; by chance, it was for murder and rape. Native Son tells the story of this young black man caught in a downward spiral after he kills a young white woman in a brief moment of panic. Set in Chicago in the 1930s, Richard Wright's powerful novel is an unsparing reflection on the poverty and feelings of hopelessness experienced by people in inner cities across the country and of what it means to be black in America.

"I Could Write a Book" / Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart


Orwell, George. 1984

In 1984, London is a grim city in the totalitarian state of Oceania where Big Brother is always watching you and the Thought Police can practically read your mind. Winston Smith is a man in grave danger for the simple reason that his memory still functions. Drawn into a forbidden love affair, Winston finds the courage to join a secret revolutionary organization called The Brotherhood, dedicated to the destruction of the Party. Together with his beloved Julia, he hazards his life in a deadly match against the powers that be.

"Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend" / Jule Styne and Leo Robin


Nabokov, Vladimir. Lolita

Awe and exhiliration along with heartbreak and mordant wit abound in Lolita, Nabokov's most famous and controversial novel, which tells the story of the aging Humbert Humbert's obsessive, devouring, and doomed passion for the nymphet Dolores Haze. Lolita is also the story of a hypercivilized European colliding with the cheerful barbarism of postwar America. Most of all, it is a meditation on love: love as outrage and hallucination, madness and transformation.

"Unchained Melody" / Alex North and Hy Zaret


MacDonald, John D. Cape Fear (originally published as The Executioners)

Sam Bowden has it all: a successful law career, a devoted wife, and three children. But a terrifying figure from Bowden's past looms in the  shadows, waiting to shatter his pristine existence. Fourteen years ago, Bowden's testimony put Max Cady behind bars. Ever since, the convicted rapist has been nursing a grudge into an unrelenting passion for revenge. Cady has been counting the days until he is set free, desperate to destroy the man he blames for all his troubles. Now that time has come.

"Do You Want to Dance?" / Bobby Freedman


Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird

A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father, a crusading local lawyer, risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.

"Never on Sunday" / Manos Hatzidakis


Herbert, Frank. Dune

Set on the desert planet Arrakis, Dune is the story of the boy Paul Atreides, heir to a noble family tasked with ruling an inhospitable world where the only thing of value is the "spice" melange, a drug capable of extending life and enhancing consciousness. Coveted across the known universe, melange is a prize worth killing for. When House Atreides is betrayed, the destruction of Paul's family sets the boy on a journey toward a destiny greater than he could ever have imagined. And as he evolves into the mysterious man known as Muad'Dib, he will bring to fruition humankind's most ancient and unattainable dream.

"On a Clear Day" / Burton Lane and Alan Jay Lerner


Morrison, Toni. The Bluest Eye

Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl, prays every day for beauty. Mocked by other children for the dark skin, curly hair, and brown eyes that set her apart, she yearns for normalcy, for the blond hair and blue eyes that she believes will allow her to finally fit in. Yet as her dream grows more fervent, her life slowly starts to disintegrate in the face of adversity and strife.

"What’s Goin’ On?" / Marvin Gaye


King, Stephen. Salem’s Lot

Stephen King's second novel, the classic vampire bestseller Salem's Lot, tells the story of evil in small town America. For the first time in a major trade edition, this terrifying novel is accompanied by previously unpublished material from King's archive, two short stories, and eerie photographs that bring King's fictional darkness and evil to vivid life.

"Say Goodbye to Hollywood" / Billy Joel



Books from 80s to Today


Follett, Ken. The Key to Rebecca

A Nazi agent possesses the secret that will open the doors of Cairo to Rommel's advancing army. Only two people can stop him: a down-on-his-luck English officer and a beautiful Jewish girl who serves as bait.

"Celebration" / Kool & The Gang

Clancy, Tom. The Hunt for Red October

The Soviets' new ballistic missile submarine is attempting to defect to the United States, but the Soviet Atlantic fleet has been ordered to find and destroy her at all costs. Can Red October reach the U.S. safely?

"Hallelujah" / Leonard Cohen


Crichton, Michael. Jurassic Park

An astonishing technique for recovering and cloning dinosaur DNA has been discovered. Now humankind's most thrilling fantasies have come true.  Creatures extinct for eons roam Jurassic Park with their awesome presence and profound mystery, and all the world can visit them, for a price, until something goes wrong.

"Let It Be Me" / Social Distortion


Martin, George R.R. A Game of Thrones

A tale of court intrigues in the land of Seven Kingdoms, a country "blessed by golden summers that go on for years, and cursed by cruel winters that can last a generation." The cold is returning to Winterfell, where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime. A time of conflict has arisen in the Stark family, as they are pulled from the safety of their home into a whirlpool of tragedy, betrayal, assassination plots, and counter plots. Each decision and action carries with it the potential for conflict as several prominent families, comprised of lords, ladies, soldiers, sorcerers, assassins, and bastards, are pulled together in the most deadly game of all, the game of thrones.

"Quit Playing Games With My Heart" / Backstreet Boys


Hosseini, Khaled. A Thousand Splendid Suns

Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss, and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul, they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation.

"Home" / Daughtry


Larsson, Stieg. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Harriet Vanger, a scion of one of Sweden's wealthiest families, disappeared over forty years ago. All these years later, her aged uncle continues to seek the truth. He hires Mikael Blomkvist, a crusading journalist recently trapped by a libel conviction, to investigate. He is aided by the pierced and tattooed punk prodigy Lisbeth Salander. Together they tap into a vein of unfathomable iniquity and astonishing corruption.

"Pocketful of Sunshine" / Natasha Bedingfield


Flynn, Gillian. Gone Girl

On the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary, Nick's wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police immediately suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him and that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they aren't his. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone. So what really did happen to Nick's beautiful wife?

"Feel So Close" / Calvin Harris


Owens, Delia. Where the Crawdads Sing

For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life until the unthinkable happens.

"Havana" / Camila Cabello feat. Young Thug



Understanding This Moment: A Message from QPL President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott

Dear Queens Public Library Family,

The horrific killing of George Floyd by a white police officer in Minneapolis last week and the disproportionate toll the coronavirus outbreak has wrought upon people of color have fueled a level of rage and unrest this country has not seen in decades. I want to express my deepest condolences to all of those who have been affected by these twin injustices.

I know firsthand the pain and frustration of being involved with the police for no other reason aside from being black. Many years ago when I was a teenager, I was driving with some friends about four blocks from my house in St. Albans when two police officers pulled us over. They approached our car, guns drawn, ordering us to keep our hands visible and not to move. With a pistol not far from my face, I was able to de-escalate the situation. I do not remember what I said, but I will never forget the anger and the hurt.

I have another memory from that time that gave me an alternate perspective. One night the police were called to investigate a possible break-in at a house a few doors down from mine. With a street light shining behind them, the officers entered the house practically blind, not knowing if anyone was waiting inside to harm them. For the first time, I recognized the difficulty and danger police officers face, an understanding that only deepened as I grew older.

My respect for their sacrifices is why I find even more disheartening the death of Mr. Floyd and those of many other unarmed black people at the hands of police across the nation. The officers involved in those incidents failed to live up to their sworn duty to protect the public. The vast majority do, and some with tragic outcomes—I have attended too many police funerals.

The grief, heartache, and fury the nation is experiencing now have the potential to polarize us even further. Still, I am optimistic that before that happens, we will come together, and we will do better. It will not be easy, but I cannot imagine what the future holds for our children and our grandchildren if we fail to address these seemingly intractable issues now.

Through our commitment to understanding, inclusion and unity, Queens Public Library is here to bring our communities together in the most diverse urban area in the world in the most dynamic city in America.

The doors to our physical locations may be temporarily closed, but the Library remains open to all, regardless of their circumstances or background. As we have for the past 124 years, we continue to offer to everyone the chance to realize the promise of their lives through free access to knowledge and ideas to help us walk in other people’s shoes.

Thank you for being part of the Queens Public Library family as we work shoulder to shoulder to ensure equity and opportunity for all. I look forward to seeing you in person one day soon, and I hope you and your loved ones stay safe and healthy.

With my best,
Dennis M. Walcott
President and CEO, Queens Public Library

Kids' Books Suggestions

There is still time this May to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. We recognize contributions to our collective culture, history, and advancements in the United States.

Below are some highlights of electronic resources selected by librarian Thomas Maxheimer, manager of Ridgewood Library, and his husband E.K. Tan, a professor of comparative literature at Stony Brook University.


Children's Books: 

Kids’ books are not only for kids. There is nothing more pure and reassuring as a great children’s book.

Alvin Ho: Allergic to Camping, Hiking, and Other Natural Disasters by Lenore Look 

Have you heard of Diary of a Wimpy Kid? Alvin Ho is similar if not even more fun to read. Alvin is an Asian American second grader who happens to be a bit of a scaredy cat. If it turns out you like Alvin, it’s a series, so there are many more to enjoy.

See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng 

When I was growing up we watched Carl Sagan videos in science class and used his textbooks to learn about the stars, planets, outer space, and our own humanity. This book has been compared to Wonder and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Check out a collection of Asian American children's literature here.


Adults' Books 

Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning by Cathy Park Hong

This is poet Cathy Park Hong’s latest collection of essays since her debut work Dance, Dance Revolution. In this collection, Hong brings together memoir and cultural critique to engage in serious issues relating to the identity, history, and politics of Asian America in a nation that continues to struggle with the status of immigrant families.

Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu

Charles Yu’s second novel takes a satirical approach to unveil Hollywood’s race problem through the perspective of a protagonist who happens to be an Asian extra. This story of the the “Generic Asian man” not only critiques Hollywood’s perpetuation of Asian stereotypes in the industry and the American society in large, but it also stresses the importantance of being more than just this stereotype through the wise advice of the protagonist’s own mother.

Sigh, Gone by Phuc Tran

Sigh, Gone is Phuc Tran’s coming-of-age memoir that documents his life growing in Carlisle, Pennsylvania in the 1980s. As an immigrant growing up in a predominantly white neighborhood and a new culture, Tran finds solace in literature, punk rock, and art as he struggles with feelings of isolation, challenges of immigration, and teenage angst.

The Leavers by Lisa Ko

This finalist for the 2017 National Book Award for Fiction is a story of longing and belonging. Told from the dual perspective of Polly, an undocumented Chinese immigrant woman in New York, and her son Deming/Daniel, the novel examines the truth behind Polly’s disappearance when her son is at the tender age of eleven and Deming’s struggle to reconcile his mother and his own past as he matures into adulthood as Daniel Wilkinson.

No One Can Pronounce My Name by Rakesh Satyal

Set in a suburb outside Cleveland, this novel tells the story of a community of South Asian Americans learning how to find a balance between their Eastern traditions and beliefs and their desires to embrace the American optimism of success and freedom. The novel offers vignettes about multiple characters of different generations in the community to depict their individual and collective attempt to become a part of American society.

The Truths We Hold by Kamala Harris

Daughter of an esteemed economist from Jamaica and a cancer researcher from India, Kamala Harris discusses her commitment to social and political justice in the United States in her book. During challenging times when truth is under attack and the nation is divided, she seeks truth as the common denominator to unify the nation.

Adults' Books



If you’re like us, you’re cooking more than ever. Explore some new recipes in the form of eBooks. Borrow these and view them on your phone, tablet, ereader, or computer from Axis360.

Like sandwiches? Try The Banh Mi Handbook! Who doesn't like pho? Try The Pho Cookbook

View more cooking options.

Cookbook Suggestions

Posts in This Series

  1. Celebrate Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month!
2020 Pulitzer Prize winners

QPL’s eBook collection is at your fingertips and we’re pleased to have the following recent award winners available for you to check out from anywhere! 

2020 Pulitzer Prize Winners:

Pulitzer Prize in Poetry: Jericho Brown’s The Tradition 

Beauty abounds in Jericho Brown’s Pulitzer Prize-winning poetry collection, despite and inside of the evil that pollutes the everyday. A National Book Award finalist, The Tradition questions why and how we’ve become accustomed to terror: in the bedroom, the classroom, the workplace, and the movie theater. From mass shootings to rape to the murder of unarmed people by police, Brown interrupts complacency by locating each emergency in the garden of the body, where living things grow and wither—or survive. In the urgency born of real danger, Brown’s work is at its most innovative. – Copper Canyon Press 

Pulitzer Prize in Fiction: Colson Whitehead’s The Nickel Boys 

When Elwood Curtis, a black boy growing up in 1960s Tallahassee, is unfairly sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, he finds himself trapped in a grotesque chamber of horrors. Elwood’s only salvation is his friendship with fellow “delinquent” Turner, which deepens despite Turner’s conviction that Elwood is hopelessly naive, that the world is crooked, and that the only way to survive is to scheme and avoid trouble. As life at the Academy becomes ever more perilous, the tension between Elwood’s ideals and Turner’s skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades. Based on the real story of a reform school that operated for 111 years and warped the lives of thousands of children, The Nickel Boys is a devastating, driven narrative that showcases a great American novelist writing at the height of his powers. – Penguin Random House 

Edgar Allan Poe Award Winners: 

Edgar Award for Best First Novel: Angie Kim’s Miracle Creek 

How far will you go to protect your family? Will you keep their secrets? Ignore their lies? In a small town in Virginia, a group of people know each other because they’re part of a special treatment center, a hyperbaric chamber that may cure a range of conditions from infertility to autism. But then the chamber explodes, two people die, and it’s clear the explosion wasn’t an accident. A powerful showdown unfolds as the story moves across characters who are all maybe keeping secrets, hiding betrayals. Chapter by chapter, we shift alliances and gather evidence: Was it the careless mother of a patient? Was it the owners, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? Could it have been a protester, trying to prove the treatment isn’t safe?  – Macmillan 

Edgar Award for Best Mystery Novel of 2019: Elly Griffiths' The Stranger Diaries  

Death lies between the lines when the events of a dark story start coming true in this haunting modern gothic mystery, perfect for fans of Magpie Murders and The Lake House. Clare Cassidy is no stranger to murder. A high school English teacher specializing in the Gothic writer R. M. Holland, she teaches a course on it every year. But when one of Clare’s colleagues and closest friends is found dead, with a line from R. M. Holland’s most famous story, “The Stranger,” left by her body, Clare is horrified to see her life collide with the storylines of her favorite literature. To make matters worse, the police suspect the killer is someone Clare knows. Unsure whom to trust, she turns to her closest confidant, her diary, the only outlet she has for her darkest suspicions and fears about the case. Then one day she notices something odd. Writing that isn't hers, left on the page of an old diary: Hallo Clare. You don’t know me. Clare becomes more certain than ever: “The Stranger” has come to terrifying life. But can the ending be rewritten in time?  - Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 

Mary Higgins Clark Award: Carol Goodman’s The Night Visitors 

Alice gets off a bus in the middle of a snowstorm in Delphi, NY. She is fleeing an abusive relationship and desperate to protect Oren, ten years old, a major Star Wars fan and wise beyond his years. Though Alice is wary, Oren bonds nearly instantly with Mattie, a social worker in her fifties who lives in an enormous run-down house in the middle of the woods. Mattie lives alone and is always available, and so she is the person the hotline always calls when they need a late-night pickup. And although according to protocol Mattie should take Alice and Oren to a local shelter, instead she brings them home for the night. She has plenty of room, she says. What she doesn't say is that Oren reminds her of her little brother, who died thirty years ago at the age of ten. But Mattie isn't the only one withholding elements of the truth. Alice is keeping her own secrets. And as the snowstorm worsens around them, each woman's past will prove itself unburied, stirring up threats both within and without. – Harper Collins 

2020 Edgar Award Winners
2020 G.E.M. Volunteer Award Recipients

For the third year, Queens Public Library has awarded the Go the Extra Mile (G.E.M.) Award to our volunteers who go above and beyond in their service and embody the Library’s mission “to transform lives by cultivating personal and intellectual growth and by building strong communities.”

Four of our volunteers have received G.E.M. Awards, and three have been recognized as Honorable Mentions. Learn more about them below.

Thank you to them, and to every QPL volunteer, for their service!

2020 G.E.M. Volunteer Award Recipients

Ariana Islam

Ariana Islam, Library Aide, Broadway Library
"Ms. Islam joined Broadway Library shortly after Steinway Library closed for renovation. Her contribution was essential and indispensable. The staff rejoiced upon her arrival each day! She was exceptionally dynamic, eager, motivated, and sharp. Her work was on-point, accurate, precise, and detailed. She worked tirelessly to assist the staff with absolutely every assignment necessary. She would complete an assignment in record time and ask for more. She assisted with everything from backyard gardening to shelving books to tracking down missing books to supporting children’s programs. Ms. Islam’s insightful reflections on her generation—Generation Z—greatly helped us improve Broadway’s teen collection and programming. At summer’s end, she gifted the staff a heartfelt thank-you card and yummy treats. In part, she wrote 'All of you feel like part of my family. Thank you for being so nice. I love you all.'”—Abigail Goldberg, Assistant Community Library Manager, Broadway Library


May Ding

May “Hui-Chien” Ding, Clerical Aide/ESOL Conversation Group Facilitator, Flushing Adult Learning Center
"Hui-Chien started as an ESOL student in 2011. Seeing that she was an excellent student, helping other students who were having trouble in our English program, we asked her to take the formal training to become a Clerical Volunteer. She assists staff during registrations and computer orientations. She also became an ESOL Conversation Group Facilitator, helping students who have had very little schooling in their native country. When our volunteer facilitator program changed from one day a week to two, she willingly agreed. When we lost another evening volunteer, she also helped in that class. And when we needed a Saturday volunteer, yes, she helped during that class too! Last year, we lost half our paid administrative staff. Without a volunteer like Hui-Chien, we wouldn’t have been able to sustain the same level of service. Hui-Chien willingly steps in when we need extra help. She is a team player and, most importantly, she does it all with enthusiasm and a smile on her face."—Gary Beharry, Supervising Museum Instructor, Adult Learner Program

Rezwanuddin “Rezwan” Ahmed, Chess Club Leader, Flushing Library
"Rezwan is without parallel. Not only is he deeply interested in chess as a game, but he’s gone above and beyond in finding opportunities to improve and strengthen our Chess Club every week. Typical Chess Club volunteers commit 2 hours a week, and aren’t expected to have more than a basic understanding of chess gameplay. Rezwan has a deeper understanding of chess than most people, but that’s not all—without being asked, he stepped up when we needed a leader for our Chess Club and we were short on staff and volunteers. He keeps the club going when we’re not able to directly supervise it on busy Saturdays, recruits additional volunteers, and designed an ongoing series of strategy classes that have a devoted following, not least because he's an inspiring and talented teacher. All this while remaining courteous, friendly, and polite to our customers! He’s here every single Saturday without fail...except for once...when he was defending his doctoral thesis! (And he even apologized for taking the day off!)—Red Coffey and Angela Perez, Children's Librarians, Flushing Library

Anita Harvey-Edwards, Homework Helper, Rosedale Library
"Ms. Anita joined us to provide homework help for our younger customers, especially those whose parents couldn’t help them due to a language barrier. The children themselves were limited in the English language, thus affecting their reading comprehension. Ms. Anita helps them both with reading and with their homework. She does this with love and care, and the children and their parents are so endeared to her. She extended her work to parents who were willing to learn English as well and schedules time with them to come in while their children are at school. One parent in particular had a very challenging situation; she didn’t speak a word of English and her native language is Arabic, so Ms. Anita used online sources, including the Library’s Rocket Language and Transparent Language databases. She also taught another Spanish-speaking parent how to speak English. Ms. Anita even comes in when she is not 100% feeling well so her students will not miss out on learning. Recently, at our Spelling Bee contest, two of her students participated and won prizes. Ms. Anita shows so much respect to both customers and staff. She sure is an asset to the Rosedale community."—Olga Gordon-Murray, Community Library Manager, Rosedale Library


2020 G.E.M. Volunteer Award Honorable Mentions

Caroline LaMarr, Library Aide, Pomonok Library
"Since I started here, I have not come across a volunteer who is as dedicated and consistent to their branch as Ms. LaMarr. She takes pride in ensuring that the library DVDs are always kept in perfect condition. She shelves them, organizes them, and repairs any damage to cases or labels. Ms. LaMarr also loves to water and maintain the many plants that we have here at Pomonok. If she misses a regular workday, she will come in on another day just to take care of the plants. She knows that the day after a holiday closing, our workload will be more than usual, so she takes it upon herself to come in the day after any library holiday. She will come in the day after Christmas, New Year’s, and any and every holiday to make sure we have extra help. Ms. LaMarr is very friendly and is a familiar face to many of our customers. She also recommends books and DVDs to them. She has been volunteering here for so long and we love her commitment and dedication."—Nadia Mubarez, Pomonok Library


Oluwapelumi Fasola

Oluwapelumi Fasola, Homework Helper, Central Library Teen Space
"Mr. Fasola deserves this recognition because staff and customers alike have a tremendous amount of appreciation for the work that he does in the Teen Space. He has developed quite a following of customers who come to him for assistance with specialized examinations, including the TASC, Regents, and SAT. Mr. Fasola has so much patience with customers, he explains complex math problems in a language that it is easy for them to understand, and he does not hesitate to go over the content with them for however long is necessary for the material to sink in. Mr. Fasola is frequently here with children and teens well after his scheduled time to leave has come and gone. Many of the students, and the parents of the students that he works with, come in and ask for him specifically. I believe that Mr. Fasola’s presence in the Teen Space reinforces our mission of 'cultivating intellectual growth.' Our customers have an invaluable opportunity for test review and learning thanks to him."—Christiana Parish, Assistant Community Library Manager, Central Library Teen Space


Israel Weiss

Israel Weiss, Tabletop Gaming Aide, Queensboro Hill Library
"For months, the Queensboro Hill Teen Tabletop Gaming Club was merely a placeholder on the calendar. Then Israel Weiss walked in and asked about volunteering at Queens Public Library. Perhaps out of desperation, I asked if he knew anything about tabletop gaming. His eyes lit up. I told him not to get his hopes up that anyone would come to the gaming club. His first day, I drafted two tweens to participate. Israel taught them Catan, and they were hooked. They returned with friends. The group grew to seven. After a few months, they asked if we would add another day, so more could come. 'Yes!' Israel agreed. Watching him run the games is delightful. The tweens love him—more accurately, they love teaming up against him. They've even tweaked cooperative games to find a way to make him 'lose.' Israel tolerates it all with excellent humor. He makes every game accessible. He even sat down with me and taught me to play Catan, going over my 1,000 confused questions with no hint of impatience. He seems 'unfazeable,' which is exactly what this group of tweens needs. He is always pleasant, always punctual, always looking to help. We are so glad he chose to walk into our library. We wish every library could have an Israel Weiss."—Amber Loveless, Assistant Community Library Manager, Queensboro Hill Library

Posts in This Series

  1. QPL Volunteer Spotlight: Our 2019 GEM Award Winners!