Book and science lectures planned at Schenectady Library – The Daily Gazette

SCHENECTADY — The Friends of Schenectady Library invites the community to participate in their spring series of “Books Sandwiched In” and a few science conferences in March.

Some of the programs will be virtual. The Zoom link can be found by going to the library’s website,, and checking the events calendar or the friends’ website

If a program is not listed as entirely virtual, it will be held in person in the McChesney Room at the Karen B. Johnson Library, as well as streamed live on Zoom. All programs run from noon to 1 p.m. on Mondays and are free and open to the public.

The Spring series kicked off March 7 with a virtual review of Alice Hoffman’s “The Marriage of Opposites.” Rosalind Horowitz was the presenter.

Sandwiched Books Spring 2022 Session

March 14 — What’s New in Dental Technology?
Presented by Frank Strauss DDS
Over the past 10 to 15 years, dentistry has entered the digital age with force. Technological innovation, especially digital innovation, has occurred in general dentistry and in all specialty areas of the profession. During this program, we will look at some of the innovations. No one really likes going to the dentist, not even dentists. technology has helped make dentistry a better experience.

March 21 — Cryptocurrency
Presented by Rich Alben
Is cryptocurrency the greatest advancement in finance since the invention of money, which is sure to enable many new financial products and services, and a great investment that people can add to their wallets? Or is it just a complicated technology that does little (like protecting the anonymity of criminals) that cannot be better handled by other advanced digital technologies and whose bubble is about to burst? This talk will examine these questions while describing some of the major cryptocurrencies, what they do, and how they work.

March 28 — “Onward,” a memoir presented by author Paul O’Brien.
The forward movement is always marked by uncertainty and mystery. The best way forward might be to rely on our past and a more accurate measurement of our present. In “Onward,” Paul O’Brien considers some of his recent adventures since retiring from the teaching profession. It also profiles eight former students and their journeys since graduating from high school. The book does not lose sight of the fact that for two years we have all been moving forward in a COVID world.

April 4 — “Metrofix: The Fighting Return of a Company City”
What are the forces that have changed the direction of Schenectady, a city in near peril, a city on the verge of collapse? This is the question that William Patrick answers in his book “Metrofix”.
Exploring the history of Schenectady in the 20th century and beyond, specifically as a General Electric Company town, Patrick shows what happened when the town began to fail and then found its way when the Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority was established in 1998 and introduced a thoughtful and imaginative management team.
Book by William Patrick; presented by patrick

April 11 — “Troy: A History of the Collared City”
In “Troy: A Collar City History”, author and local historian Don Rittner tells the story of Troy’s birth and its growth into a modern industrial city. The evolving city comes to life through photos that date back to the 19th century and through its large cast of characters who helped shape the city, such as Emma Willard, “Uncle Sam” Wilson and Amos Eaton, the founder of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Rittner also takes a critical look at municipal planning and the need to think carefully about how a city is changed. Originally from Troy, Rittner brings great care and concern to his portrait of Troy.
Book by Don Rittner; presented by Rittner

April 18 — “The Age of Worry”
What if your daughter started showing harmful behaviors that sounded like another older member of your family? This is the problem Daniel Wunsch wrestles with as he watches Cordelia, his teenage daughter, begin to drink excessively. His mother also struggled with alcoholism and suddenly disappeared from the family when Daniel was 17. Although worried about his daughter, Daniel began to receive advice on where his mother might be. The tension mounts as Daniel tries to hold his daughter back while feverishly searching for his long-lost mother. Mother, son, daughter – three generations seeking to find themselves in this thoughtful and psychologically compelling novel.
Book by Steven Sandler; presented by Sandler

April 25 – “Mason and Dixon”
This fiery, noisy and joyful novel takes us along with English astronomers and surveyors in their incomparable adventures in pre-revolutionary America. Pyncheon’s 1997 novel transcends storytelling in a way that very few books have. He does this by writing that is consistently compelling, hilarious, insightful, and delightful from start to finish. Hero conversations with Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Samuel Johnson & Boswell, plus the Sons of Liberty in many East Coast taverns, are triumphs of imagination and fun.
Book by Thomas Pynchon; presented by Bob Wakeman

May 2 — “Safe”
Narrator Gary Waldman works as a transportation security guard at a small airport in upstate New York. Having recently experienced the death of his wife and struggling to be a good father to his 6-year-old son, Gary finds some kind of stability in the routines and regulations of his job with the TSA. The plot becomes dramatic and convoluted after Gary uses CPR to save an elderly man who has collapsed at the airport. The novel then enters a world of terrorist intrigue and dramatic twists. As the novel moves towards its conclusions, Gary realizes more than ever the limits of safety and control.
Book by Edward Schwarzschild; presented by Schwarzschild

May 9 — “These Precious Days”
In her collection of essays “These Precious Days”, Ann Patchett says, “Again and again I asked what mattered most in this precarious and precious life.” The book is Patchett’s invitation to share moments and experiences that have shaped and illuminated his life. With humor and often with wonderful intensity, she helps us see more clearly what really matters in this short and precious journey.
Book by Ann Patchett; presented by Patricia Rand

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