Monthly Archives: September 2018

Tenth Annual Tricycle Music Fest Kicks Off September 30

For Immediate Release:  September 26, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252;

Tenth Annual Tricycle Music Fest Kicks Off September 30
Free Grammy Music Line Up

San Francisco – San Francisco Public Library proudly announces the 10th Anniversary of the Tricycle Music Fest, welcoming parents and their little ones to free concerts across the City. We are celebrating ten years of Rock! Play! Learn! with Grammy-award winning or nominated performers.  So release the foot break on the stroller and boogie on down to the library to catch a concert with us!

tricycleTricycle Music Fest kicks off with a special concert at our newest branch, Public Knowledge at SFMOMA, on Sunday, September 30. At 11:30 a.m., 2017 Grammy nominee Alphabet Rockers take the stage and drop beats inspiring social justice and youth empowerment.  After the performance, concertgoers can enjoy SFMOMA’s Family Free Day.  Alphabet Rockers will also rock the books at Parkside on October 6th and Bernal Heights on October 7th.

On Sunday, October 14, Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band, the 2013 Latin Grammy winner, will have kids tapping their feet, jumping and hopping to their international sounds.  Jose-Luis Orozco, 2015 Grammy nominee, brings out his guitar on Saturday, October 20th encouraging all to sing and learn Spanish and will delight the audiences at Merced and West Portal branches.

Lastly, due to popular demand, we bring back the Okee Dokee Brothers, 2012 Grammy winners, who bring Americana folk music, banjo included!  Our Sunday morning October 28th show at the Main Library is almost filled (via Eventbrite), but families can see them at the SFMOMA for an afternoon show starting at 3:00 p.m.  Space is limited to seating capacity.

Tricycle Music Fest is proudly sponsored by Friends of the San Francisco Public Library and co-presented by San Mateo County Library. Together we bring the biggest and best kindie rock music to Bay Area families. Because playing is just as important as singing in early childhood learning, we will raffle off one tricycle to a lucky concert goer at each event.  Families, get ready for a hip-shaking, head bopping dance party explosion of indie fresh pop rock beats—only at the library!

For the full 2018 Tricycle Music Fest line-up and to hear sounds of the Grammy performers, go to and

2018 Schedule

Alphabet Rockers

Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band

José-Luis Orozco

The Okee Dokee Brothers

Urban Libraries Council Recognizes San Francisco Public Library for Library Innovation

For Immediate Release:  September 10, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252;

Urban Libraries Council Recognizes San Francisco Public Library for Library Innovation

FOG Readers Demonstrates the Irreplaceability of the Library as a Community Institution

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The Urban Libraries Council announced San Francisco Public Library as one of 10 Top Innovators during the 2018 ULC Annual Forum on September 5-7 in Baltimore, MD. A panel of expert judges selected SFPL’s “FOG Readers: Helping Struggling Readers Succeed” from 220 submissions in 10 categories that demonstrate the value and impact of public library service. The San Francisco Public Library won the Top Innovator award in the category of “Education: Birth through Teens.”

The 2018 Top Innovators and Honorable Mentions were announced during a special Innovations Celebration. Award winners were recognized for their innovative programs, services and operating practices. “Today’s public libraries are bold and pioneering community leaders that play many roles, from educational institutions to technology centers and entrepreneurial hubs,” said Urban Libraries Council President and CEO Susan Benton. “I congratulate San Francisco Public Library for illustrating a persistent commitment to realizing a groundbreaking initiative that has transformed their community.”

San Francisco’s Top Innovator awardee, FOG Readers, helps elementary students overcome reading difficulties, using Orton-Gillingham methodology and multisensory techniques. The free program bridges a gap between a child’s current reading level and his or her full reading potential. FOG Readers breaks reading and spelling into smaller skills involving letters and sounds, and builds on these skills over time.

Half of SFUSD 3rd and 4th graders are not meeting grade level standards for reading. In San Francisco, intervention costs $65-95/hr. For many students, FOG Readers is their best chance to build the skills they need to succeed. On average, the Library’s students are about 1.3 grade levels behind when they start the program, and gain more than half a grade level just in the first three months. Parents say FOG students are reading more at home and have increased confidence in all of their school subjects.

Tutors meet with students once a week at a library, teaching critical reading skills and enjoying books together. Currently there are 120 active tutor/student pairs at 23 of our 28 neighborhood libraries. The library trains and pairs tutors with students and we’re always looking for new volunteers.

“San Francisco Public Library is committed to excellence in the delivery of innovative programs and services to meet the needs of our residents,” said Acting City Librarian Michael Lambert. “Recognition from the Urban Libraries Council is a tremendous honor for the City and County of San Francisco and a testament to our staff’s passion for helping young people overcome their struggles with reading in order to enrich themselves and thrive.”

For more information about FOG Readers and volunteer tutor opportunities, see the webpage.

About San Francisco Public Library

San Francisco Public Library is dedicated to free and equal access to information, knowledge, independent learning and the joys of reading for our diverse community. The library system is made up of 27 neighborhood branches, the San Francisco Main Library at Civic Center and four bookmobiles. For more information, see

About Urban Libraries Council

Urban Libraries Council (ULC), founded in 1971, is the voice for public libraries and the force that inspires them to evolve. ULC creates the tools, techniques, and ideas to make ongoing improvements and upgrades in services and technology. ULC also speaks loudly and clearly about the value public libraries bring to communities, and secures funding for research that results in the development of new programs and services. And by serving as a forum for library leadership, ULC produces innovative ideas and best practices that ensure community impact. To learn more about ULC and to view all the 2018 ULC Innovations, see


San Francisco Public Library Announces 2018 One City One Book – The Best We Could Do, an illustrated memoir by Thi Bui

For Immediate Release: September 6, 2018

Media Contact: Katherine Jardine
(415) 557-4295 /

Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252/


San Francisco Public Library Announces 2018 One City One Book

The Best We Could Do, an illustrated memoir by Thi Bui


San Francisco, CA — San Francisco Public Library is excited to announce that The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui has been selected as the 2018 One City One Book. Published by Abrams ComicArts, this is the first graphic novel that has been selected for One City One Book.

bestcoverIn what Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist Viet Thanh Nguyen calls “a book to break your heart and heal it,” The Best We Could Do explores the anguish of immigration and the lasting effects that displacement has on a child. Thi Bui documents her family’s daring escape after the fall of South Vietnam in the 1970s and the difficulties they faced building new lives for themselves in America. The Best We Could Do is a haunting memoir about the search for a better future and a longing for a simpler past. As the child of a country and a war she can’t remember, Bui’s dreamlike artwork brings to life her journey to understanding her own identity in a way that only illustrations can.

“I am truly honored that The Best We Could Do has been selected for One City One Book 2018,” says author Thi Bui. “As a refugee of the Vietnam War and an Asian American woman, the Bay Area’s rich history is incredibly important to me. It is where the term ‘Asian American’ was coined in the 60’s by student activists at Berkeley, and was also the site of historic protests against the Vietnam War. We are living in a time in U.S. history where anti-immigration policies are simultaneously closing doors on displaced people and separating families currently living in the U.S, and it is incredibly important that communities come together on a local level to speak out against these injustices. The Best We Could Do is a book about the traumatic effects displacement has on families and the individual, and I hope that in being selected for the One City One Book program it is able to inspire Bay Area readers not just to have thoughtful and nuanced conversations about these issues, but also to take action.”

Since the publication of the hardcover in March 2017, The Best We Could Do has made a place for itself in the graphic novel canon and has received 5 starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Booklist, Library Journal, School Library Journal and Shelf Awareness. It was also nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award in the autobiography category and made it onto over thirty “Best of 2017” lists everywhere from the Washington Post to Entertainment Weekly. Thi Bui is a rising star in the comics and literary world, and her debut work is not to be missed.

Read The Best We Could Do and join the Library for the 14th Annual One City One Book program extravaganza. Copies of The Best We Could Do will be featured in all San Francisco libraries and at bookstores around the city.

Citywide programming will take place in October. Participants can join book discussions, check out themed exhibits, attend author talks and participate in many other events.

Featured Event

Thi Bui in Conversation with Author Lauren Markham – Oct. 25, 6 p.m., Main Library, Koret Auditorium

For more information, see  View the program guide here.

About the Author

thibuiThi Bui was born in Vietnam three months before the end of the Vietnam War and came to the United States in 1978 as part of the “boat people” wave of refugees from Southeast Asia. Her debut graphic memoir, The Best We Could Do (Abrams ComicArts, 2017) was a national bestseller and has been selected as National Book Critics Circle finalist, an Indies Introduce pick, a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers title, and a Junior Library Guild selection. She is also the illustrator of A Different Pond, a children’s book by acclaimed poet Bao Phi (Capstone, 2017). Bui taught high school in New York City and was a founding teacher of Oakland International High School, the first public high school in California for recent immigrants and English learners. She currently teaches in the MFA in Comics program at the California College of the Arts. She lives in Berkeley with her son, her husband and her mother.

Editorial Reviews + Awards

National bestseller
2017 National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) Finalist
ABA Indies Introduce Winter / Spring 2017 Selection
Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Spring 2017 Selection
ALA 2018 Notable Books Selection

“Be prepared to take your heart on an emotional roller-coaster journey with this thought-provoking account that completely satisfies as the story comes full circle.”

— Library Journal

“Like Art Spiegelman’s masterpiece, “Maus,” Bui’s memoir elicits complex emotions from understated pen-and-ink drawings.”

— The San Francisco Chronicle

“…a nuanced and heartfelt immigrant tale, brought to true life through beautiful and brilliant illustration. On top of that, it’s an especially poignant read from the vantage point of 2017.”

— Refinery29

“…a cinematic epic that poignantly tracks several generations through immigration and emotional dislocation. At its best, this memoir feels not just created but also deeply lived.”

Michael Cavna, The Washington Post

“When Bui began work on The Best We Could Do in 2005, she couldn’t have predicted the significance it would hold when it was released in 2017, but now that it’s here, it feels like one of the first great works of socially relevant comics art of the Trump era…Bui presents that saga in a way that is narratively intricate, intellectually fastidious, and visually stunning.”

— Vulture

“Thi Bui’s stark, compelling memoir is about an ordinary family, but her story delivers the painful truth that most Vietnamese of the 20th century know in an utterly personal fashion—that history is found in the marrow of one’s bones, ready to be passed on through blood, through generations, through feelings. A book to break your heart and heal it.”

Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize winning novelist

“In creatively telling a complicated story with the kind of feeling words alone rarely relay, The Best We Could Do does the very best that comics can do. This is a necessary, ever-timely story to share far and wide.”


“She does not spare her loved ones criticism or linger needlessly on their flaws. Likewise she refuses to flatten the twists and turns of their histories into neat, linear narratives. She embraces the whole of it… In this mélange of comedy and tragedy, family love and brokenness, she finds beauty.”

— Publishers Weekly

“The Best We Could Do burns back the dead skin of public War memory. Underneath is the raw flesh of another kind of war story—of mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, brutally intimate and intimately brutal. This book is a must-read.”

— Lawrence-Minh Bùi Davis, The Asian American Literary Review, curator for the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center

“This bold, brutal book is the new calligraphy—an exquisite marriage of alphabet and imagery. Each sentence, each scene, and each story breaks down a country, a family, and a father. Then, frame by frame, with artistic vigor and monastic devotion, Thi Bui rebuilds a world in which guilt conquers grief and gratitude becomes not only a guide, but our new Deity. The Best We Could Do teaches us how to say no to fear and yes to truth.”

 Fae Myenne Ng, author of Bone, a PEN/Faulkner Award Finalist, Steer Toward Rock, winner of the American Book Award

About One City One Book

onecityOne City One Book: San Francisco Reads is an annual citywide literary event that encourages members of the San Francisco community to read the same book at the same time and then discuss it in book groups and at events throughout the City. By building bridges between communities and generations through the reading and most importantly the discussion of – one book, we hope to help to make reading a lifelong pursuit and to build a more literate society. Sponsors for One City One Book include the San Francisco Public Library and Friends of the San Francisco Public Library. The program is also supported by many bookstore partners, program partners and media sponsors.

September is National Library Card Sign-Up Month

For Immediate Release:  September 4, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252;


September is National Library Card Sign-Up Month

Sign up for a new SFPL library card for a chance to win a pair of JetBlue tickets

SAN FRANCISCO, CAnewcardWith a library card, you can download books and magazines; stream music and movies; borrow new vinyl records, best sellers, cook books, DVDs, CDs, magazines, and more; enroll in online high school; hang out at a teen center; attend story times every day; learn a foreign language online; gain financial planning help; learn to read; obtain museum passes; make guacamole with your neighbors; watch movies; borrow a MIFI; research your family history; digitize old photos; take computer classes; and of course, check out a book. The sky’s the limit with a new library card!   

jetblueThis September, the library is encouraging everyone to check out your neighborhood branch and see what you’ve been missing. Sign-up for a new library card or renew your existing card for a chance to win a pair of JetBlue tickets. More details at

National Library Card Sign-Up Month is sponsored by the American Library Association. The campaign started in 1987 as a response to then Secretary of Education William Bennett, who stated, “Let’s have a campaign … Every child should obtain a library card and use it.” ALA’s theme this year is “The Incredibles” and we think the San Francisco Public Library is pretty incredible as the winner of the 2018 Library of the Year award.

pickcardThere are ten San Francisco library card designs to choose from including Warriors’ cards! Anyone who lives in California and presents a valid photo ID at any of our 27 library locations or at our four bookmobiles is eligible for a new library card.

One winner will be chosen at random from a list of all patrons who received a new library card or renewed their existing library card during the month of September. All existing rules and requirements for obtaining and renewing a San Francisco Public Library card apply. One winner will receive vouchers for a pair of round-trip JetBlue tickets which are valid until August 15, 2019 and are good to and from any city that JetBlue serves. Terms and conditions and blackout dates apply. #LibraryCardSignUp