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By: David Hiscoe

The Hunt Library is a finalist in two categories in the “Your Beautiful Library Photo Contest,” a celebration designed to show off some of the most photogenic libraries in the United States.  The winners will be showcased during National Library Week, April 13-19.

Check out the great images at

And vote for your favorites!

By: David Hiscoe

Observing that “the future of literature was the theme of this year’s North Carolina Literary Festival,” the News and Observer concludes “that future seemed already here, with attendees using the free festival app to navigate the main venue, N.C. State University’s futuristic Hunt Library” while the program of writers allowed “future, present literary lights [to] shine.”

By: David Hiscoe

The Rain Garden Reading Room. © Jeff Goldbery/Esto

The James B. Hunt Jr. Library will be profiled this month in the nationally syndicated PBS series, Cool Spaces!, a new prime-time program that promises to “profile some of this century’s most exciting architecture in the U.S.”

UNC-TV will make the Hunt Library episode available to its viewers on Thursday, April 10, at 9 p.m. and at multiple other times on that date. You can catch an earlier show on Wednesday, April 9, at 4:00 p.m. A listing of schedules for PBS stations nationwide can be found on the Cool Spaces! website.

Sponsored by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Bluebeam Software and hosted by Boston architect and educator Stephen Chung, the new series focuses “on presenting cutting-edge, contemporary public buildings and spaces and the daring architects who push the boundaries of design and materials.”

Cool Spaces! is scheduled to appear on over 100 public television stations across the country, with coverage in about 95% of households with televisions.

The hour-long episode that features the Hunt Library focuses on three libraries that have been dramatic additions to the cultural lives of their communities.  The Hunt Library shares the stage with the Seattle Central Library—listed by the AIA as one of American’s favorite 150 buildings—and the South Mountain Community Library, celebrated for a bold design that encourages interaction between students and local residents.

Featured in almost 300 media pieces since its opening in January 2013, the Hunt Library has gained an international reputation as “the library of the future” for its immersive technologies and for inspiring learning and teaching spaces that encourage collaboration and cross-disciplinary research. The library’s lead designer, Snøhetta, is known for its work on the National September 11 Memorial and Museum pavilion, the new look for Times Square in New York City, and the Golden State Warriors complex on the San Francisco waterfront.  In 2012, Architecture Magazine ranked executive architects Pearce Brinkley Cease + Lee (now Clark Nexsen) as the15th best firm in the United States.

The companion book to Cool Spaces!—also featuring the Hunt Library—can be preordered online from the publisher’s website or from Barnes & Noble.  The book will be available in Barnes & Noble bookstores starting in mid April.

By: Miranda Forman

Lev Grossman

The NC State Bulletin just published an insightful interview with Lev Grossman, senior writer and book critic for Time magazine, bestselling novelist, and headliner author at the North Carolina Literary Festival.

An interview teaser:

“Lev Grossman’s parents are both college professors, so when he entered the doctoral comparative literature program at Yale, it looked like he was fated to follow in their footsteps. But Grossman left Yale without finishing his dissertation and became a freelance journalist instead, writing for a wide variety of publications including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and Salon. With his freelance career going gangbusters, Grossman seemed to have landed, but right away he set out on another path: writing novels that chronicle the mysteries of nerddom.

Grossman’s first novel, “Warp,” is about a person who has trouble distinguishing between “Star Trek” and reality. His second novel, “Codex,” is about uncanny linkages between a legendary 14th-century book and a strange computer game. But it was his third novel, “The Magicians,” that catapulted him onto the New York Times bestseller list and onto bookshelves in 22 countries.”

For more information about Lev Grossman, including his own words about journalism, fantasy writing, and the future of reading, please check out the rest of the interview!

As part of the NC Literary Festival, Grossman will be speaking on Thursday, April 3rd, at 7:30PM in NC State’s Hunt Library. We hope to see you there!

For more information and a full schedule of events, please visit the Festival website.

By: David Hiscoe

On April 3-6, the NCSU Libraries will host the 2014 North Carolina Literary Festival.

On Saturday and Sunday, April 5-6, many of the Festival’s readings, panels, and events will take place inside and around the Hunt Library.  This is a once-in-a-decade event that will introduce your “library of the future” to thousands of people from around the state.  The innovative “Future of Reading” theme for the Festival is also a significant validation of NC State’s role as a transformational university.

Almost all of the public spaces in the Hunt Library will remain open as usual for university users, but on Saturday and Sunday the building may be even more lively than usual with visitors to the Festival.

During this time, the Ask Us staff will be glad to help you find an appropriate space to work. For quiet study and work, we recommend using the D.H. Hill Library or other branches during the Festival’s hours from 10am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.  The Festival will not affect the D. H. Hill Library or the three branch libraries.

We hope that you’ll also have a chance take some time off from your work and enjoy the great writers and programs at the Festival.

By: Miranda Forman

GoosebumpsWith only one week before the NC Literary Festival starts on Thursday, April 3rd, it’s more important than ever to finalize your list of authors to see.

Meet R.L. Stine, one of the top best-selling children’s series authors of all time. Stine is best known for his series Goosebumps, but he is phenomenally prolific and wrote several more series including Fear Street, Rotten School, and The Nightmare Room. At the end of 2012, CNN reported that “Stine has written more than 300 books that have sold a combined 350 million copies around the world.”

In addition to being one of the world’s top-selling and prolific children’s authors, Stine is an accomplished screenwriter, short story writer, and author of adult literature. He was lead screenwriter of the children’s television show “Eureeka’s Castle” for six years, and his adult thriller Eye Candy is currently being made into a TV series for MTV. Paradoxically enough, while Stine is commonly regarded as a horror writer, he has published a series of joke books under the pen name Jovial Bob Stine.

So, whether you’re a Goosebumps fan, a jokester, or interested in learning about how to write an astounding number of bestsellers, come meet R.L. Stine at the Hunt Library on Saturday, April 5. Stine will be available from 11:15-12:15 for one of our Family Fun events. Later on Saturday from 12:30-1:30, he will discuss the horror genre with Peter Straub. We hope to see you there!

For more information about the schedule and programs of the North Carolina Literary Festival, please visit the Festival website.

By: Miranda Forman

For mobile information about the North Carolina Literary Festival, there’s an app for that! If you’re wondering when to catch your favorite Pulitzer Prize winners, video game designers, and aerial storytellers, this guide will be your guide. Our mobile guide should also make it easy to plan your experience at the Literary Festival and navigate Hunt Library when you get there.

On your smartphone, check out and scan the bottom QR code, or search on for “North Carolina Literary Festival.” The Festival starts in less than two weeks! We hope to see you there!

By: Library Staff

ArduinoHave you ever wanted to build a robot that interacts with Twitter, a banana piano, or your own wearable electronics project? NCSU Libraries checks out two electronics kits, the SparkFun Arduino-based Inventor’s Kit, and the MaKey MaKey, that make it easy for anyone to create interactions between the physical world and computers. “Recent innovations around Internet-connected Smart Home technology, smartwatches, and many other interactive systems have become possible because of inexpensive, easy-to-use microcontrollers such as Arduino”, says Brendan O’Connell, NCSU Library Fellow. “I’m very excited that it’s easier than ever for our students, faculty, and staff to experiment with these technologies for free through the Libraries’ Technology Lending Program.”

Two workshops on Arduino will be offered at Hunt Library to NCSU faculty, staff, students, and the general public on March 28th as part of THATCamp RTP, a free one-day “unconference” on technology, humanities, social sciences, arts, and libraries. Registrants will be able to experiment with building circuits and developing code with Arduino, and develop their own interactive creative projects as part of the workshops. No coding, programming, or electronics experience is required for participation.

By: Miranda Forman

With only ten days before the NC Literary Festival, it’s more important than ever to finalize your list of authors to see. We’ve introduced Richard Ford and Junot Díaz, so now it’s time for James McBride—bestselling memoirist, saxophonist, and songwriter.

James McBride is perhaps best known for his landmark memoir The Color of Water—a book which stayed on the New York Times bestseller list for two years. The Color of Water is a moving, thoughtful account of McBride’s life that enables its readers to look inside themselves at their own decisions and beliefs. McBride’s latest novel The Good Lord Bird features the American revolutionary John Brown, and won the 2013 National Book Award.

In addition to being one of America’s best contemporary writers, McBride is a phenomenal saxophonist and songwriter. As a musician, he toured with jazz legend Jimmy Scott, is an accomplished songwriter, and co-wrote the musical “Bo-Bos.” Even more, McBride is a successful screenwriter and prolific journalist, and has written for news outlets including The Boston Globe, Washington Post, and People Magazine.

McBride will be speaking at the Literary Festival on Saturday, April 5 from 2:00-3:00PM in the Hunt Library. We are honored to have him join us for the NC Literary Festival.

For more information about the Literary Festival’s events and schedule, please visit the Festival website.

By: Miranda Forman

Junot DiazWith the North Carolina Literary Festival less than two weeks away, it’s time to start thinking about who you’ll want to hear. Meet Junot Díaz, one of our keynote authors.

The list of Díaz’s awards and accolades could fill all five of the high-resolution MicroTile walls in the James B. Hunt Jr. Library, and rightfully so. Along with the Pulitzer Prize, Díaz has won the National Book Critics Circle Award and has been honored with a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship, Dayton Literary Peace Prize, Guggenheim Fellowship, PEN/O. Henry Award, and more.

The New York Times has called Díaz’s voice “one of the most distinctive and magnetic … in contemporary fiction: limber, streetwise, caffeinated and wonderfully eclectic.” In an interview with Díaz, Sam Anderson writes that Díaz’s “receptivity to all the possible sources of inspiration is what makes Díaz’s work … so distinctively rich.” Díaz draws from every aspect of his history and our entire literary tradition to create vibrant characters who survive on many different borders, both physically and emotionally.

Díaz’s first book Drown was published to critical acclaim, featuring themes of absent fathers, immigrating from the Dominican Republic, and Díaz’s hallmark character Yunior—a nerdy, quirky teenager. The stories of Drown set the stage for Díaz’s later work, including his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and This is How You Lose Her. If you’re looking for heartbreaking and inspiring reading from one of the most acclaimed writers in the country, pick up any one of Díaz’s books.

We are honored to welcome Díaz to the North Carolina Literary Festival where he will read and hold a book signing at 7:00-9:00pm on Friday, April 4th, at the Hunt Library—1070 Partners Way, Raleigh.

While the Festival is free and open to the public, space is limited, and we ask that you reserve tickets for two of our authors, Junot Díaz and Richard Ford. For free tickets to see Junot Díaz, please visit this link: Richard Ford tickets can be reserved here: You may also reserve tickets at Quail Ridge Books & Music.

For more information about the programs of the Literary Festival and to download the full schedule of events, please visit the Festival website.