Websites of interest


Debbie Jacob-


THE LIBRARIAN in me can’t help but seek out and pass on interesting internet links. Explore some of the best sites to learn about movies, food, literature, history, exercise and more by checking out the links below.

1. Script Sleuth – Why Casablanca is the Greatest Movie of All Time – If you’re an aspiring screenwriter, a movie buff who wants to analyze movies on another level, or just want to understand why certain movies appeal to you, watch this YouTube link which covers scenes from Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. The link features information on cinematic structure, dialogue, lighting, and how to frame shots. Casablanca is far from being a perfect film, so what made it successful? Search for Sleuth Script + Casablanca, or follow the link:

2. Tom Wolfe on Stephen Crane – In this talk, journalist/fiction writer Wolfe discusses why Crane belongs to the Golden Age of American Literature, spanning the period 1893-1939. Zora Neal Hurston, Edith Wharton, William Faulkner, Ernest Hemingway, John Steinbeck all belong to this period. Wolfe says, “There has never been anything like it (this period) and it looks like there will never be anything like it again.” Calling Crane’s Red Badge of Courage “a soldier’s greatest betrayal in battle,” Wolfe supports Crane’s importance in war literature.

This 14 minute video is a good visual example of how to construct an argumentative essay. Also check out Paul Auster’s Burning Boy, The Life and Times of Stephen Crane, a recent biography of Crane which represents an exceptional blend of biography and literary analysis. Crane produced an astonishing amount of significant journalism and fiction before he died of tuberculosis aged just 28. Search for Tom Wolfe talks about Stephen Crane or follow the link below.

3. The Poynter Institute, a US-based nonprofit media center well known for its fact-checking, media literature and journalism, offers an invaluable lesson in filmmaking with a YouTube video called What the Budweiser” Puppy Love” Super Bowl Ad Teaches about Video Tale.

4. Many children and adults love epistolary novels like Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid or Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Books written in the form of a letter or a diary make readers feel as though they are aware of the characters’ most personal feelings. has an interesting link to popular epistolary novels to explore.

5. A site called features some of the most popular free classics available on Project Gutenberg. These books are in the public domain and do not violate copyright laws.

6. On another site, discover American classics that have fallen into the public domain in 2021. These include The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald, Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf and In Our Time by Ernest Hemingway. You can now read these books for free online without violating US copyright laws. It is important that readers respect intellectual property. To verify:

7. For international news, most of us look to UK or US sources, but it’s always good to explore credible alternative sources. Al Jazeera, based in Qatar, is an excellent source of international news, especially from Africa and the Middle East.

8. Take a free trip around the world visiting some of the best UNESCO World Heritage sites. Just type in UNESCO World Heritage Sites or click on this link:

9. Prevention, a popular magazine that focuses on physical and mental health, now features a list of some of the best health-related podcasts. Each recommended podcast has a link for you to sample it.

10. Food blogs are becoming an increasingly popular alternative to old-fashioned cookbooks. I sampled many foodie sites and found that Pinch of Yum had one of the best layouts for a food blog. You can search for several of the site’s menus, including quick and easy, vegetarian, healthy, instant, vegan, and more. Mouth-watering images of food make this blog stand out. It is an easy and fun site to navigate.

11. Many people have turned to online fitness classes during the pandemic. There’s no such thing as a qualified strength training trainer, but on a tight budget, online classes can be perfect for supplementing one-on-one training. The site below offers online training suggestions with just about every type of exercise you can think of.

The internet is an invaluable resource that can entertain you and improve your knowledge – once you’ve researched credible sites – so check out some of these sites.