Black History Month
Library Lovers Month
Tweet us today with author birthdays!
|Mark Watson (b. 1980) – U.K. comedian, novelist – Eleven (2010)|
Read the Wikipedia article about Mark Watson
More about Mark Watson here
Born February 13
|Beejan Olfat (b. 1985) – Australian actor, playwright – The Arrival|
Read the Wikipedia article about Beejan Olfat
Born February 14
|Miep Gies (b. 1909) – Dutch humanitarian – Anne Frank Remembered (1987)|
Visit the Miep Gies websitehttp://www.miepgies.nl/en/
[From the Miep Gies website FAQ]
9. What made you risk your life to help the families?
Answer Miep Gies: “An important factor in taking this load on my shoulders was my personal history. My home country Austria engaged itself in a war, that lasted from 1914 till 1918. It lost everything it once had. Food became very scarce and I, eleven years old, fell ill with tuberculosis. My parents could not give me the nourishment and medicine I needed. Therefore, they accepted the offer from a Dutch family to take me in on a temporary basis. I remember sitting lonely and crying in a train with a cord around my neck and a sign hanging from it, stating my name: Hermine Santruschitz. After a 700 mile train ride I arrived in the Netherlands, welcomed by a family that spoke a strange language. They already had five kids and had to live on a modest salary. Still they shared everything they had with me and sent me to fine schools. In return for this good fortune, I was now able to help other people!
I further foresaw, that if I would not help, my conscience, later, would torture me. So, I helped, hoping that all, who would meet the same dilemma, would understand my reasoning and will reach out too.”
Born February 15
|Elisabeth Eybers (b. 1915) – South African poet|
Read the Wikipedia article about Elisabeth Eybers
EERSTE LIEFDE / First Love
Ons liefde het gesterf met die oggendstond, / The love we shared died in the early morning light,
En ons het haar begrawe, bleek en stom; / and we buried her cold and pale;
teer lentegras en geurige voorjaarsgrond / tender spring grass and fragrant early-year’s ground covers her,
bedek haar, sonder smuk van krans of blom. / without mourning by wreath or flower.
Onthou jy haar?…. Sy was tingerig-fyn, / Do you remember her?…
She was fine and delicate,
met vingers slank en lig, haar stem was sag, / with fingers long and slender, her voice was soft,
en haar blou wonder-oë vreemd en rein. / and her astounding blue eyes, pure and bewildering.
Haar dood was vreedsaam, sonder rougeklag. / Her death was peaceful, without cries of heartache and pain.
Ek mag nie om haar ween: haar stil vertrek / I may not mourn her loss: Her quiet departure
was beter as ‘n kwynende bestaan / was better than a dying existence.
– maar, ag, ek wonder of jy ooit, soos ek, / But, oh, I wonder if you ever, like me,
‘n oomblik by haar graf in mym’ring staan. / just for a moment at her grave in mourning stand.
[Translation by Melissa at her “Not Much To Say” blog]
Born February 16
|Julia de Burgos|
Read about Julia de Burgos here
Read Lisette Flores-Nieves’ blog about Julia de Burgos
Born February 17
|Leonard (Len) Deighton (b. 1929) – U.K. novelist, illustrator – The Ipcress File (1962)|
Read the Authors Calendar biography of Len Deighton
Visit the Len Deighton fan website
An Interview with Len Deighton
He looks like a well-preserved retired don, but doesn’t sound like one, his cockney accent undiluted by four decades of living away from England.
His first four novels are a wonderful mixture of the exciting and the amusingly humdrum, narrated by an unnamed working-class intelligence officer from Burnley who spends as much time trying to reclaim his expenses as he does searching for kidnapped scientists. His Eton- and Oxbridge-educated superiors are usually incompetent – “what chance did I stand between the communists on the one side and the establishment on the other” – or treacherous.
Deighton doesn’t see the character as an anti-hero, and stresses that he is a romantic, incorruptible figure in the mould of Philip Marlowe. “This is not the way it is now. Modern fiction is not so keen to guard the integrity of our heroes … When I started writing I had rules. One was that violence must not solve the problem, and I cannot have the hero overcome violence with a counterweight of violence.”
Born February 18
|Jaan Kross (b. 1920) – Estonian novelist, short story writer – Väljakaevamised / Excavations (1990)|
Born February 19