Twelve things to know about Natalia Estrada

We are pleased to welcome the newest librarian in the social sciences division, Natalia Estrada. She is the Political Science & Public Policy Librarian, and is responsible for reference, instruction and collection development for the department of political science, the Goldman School of Public Policy, and legal studies. She is also the specialist for California government documents.

In a vague mash-up of the Vanity Fair Proust Questionnaire, the New York Times Book Review’s By the Book column, and Us Weekly’s 25 Things You Don’t Know About Me feature, here are twelve things about Natalia:

  1. I was born and raised in Downey, CA, spent a good number of years in Chicago, and have lived in the Bay Area since 2011.
  2. Before UC Berkeley, my library and cultural center work experience has included UC Hastings, the Center for Research Libraries, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago.
  3. I’m very much a puzzle solving/trivia answering sort of a person. I used to participate in the UChicago Scav Hunt during my undergrad years, I’m still searching for a good bar trivia spot, and I used to complete Sporcle quizzes for fun.
  4. I actually don’t spend a lot of my free time reading, so I’m pretty selective about the books I’ll read. Usually I go with horror, maybe some sci-fi, and non-fiction.
  5. Most of my reading gets done either during my lunch break, or when I’m on a flight. Nothing makes a better reading environment than being stuck on a plane.
  6. The last book I finished was Severance by Ling Ma, I’m a quarter through House of Leaves by Mark Danielwski, and I’m hoping to read In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado.
  7. My favorite book is We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson. My older sister introduced me to Jackson via The Haunting of Hill House and “The Lottery” when I was in middle school, and I got hooked.
  8. The last great trilogy that I read was the Remembrance of Earth trilogy (aka Three Body Problem) by Cixin Liu.
  9. I have a small but mighty cookbook and food writing collection at home. It has your more popular cookbooks (Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat, Bar Tartine by Nicolaus Balla and Courtney Burns), but it also has some special finds, like the 1964 edition of the Joy of Cooking.
  10. I cringe whenever someone ties librarianship with a “love of books.” I’m focused on helping you find the right resources for your research. Books are just a part of that, not the whole thing!
  11. I listen to a lot of podcasts, especially when I need to do large chunks of work, chores, or working out. Many are news based (Morning Edition, The Daily), subject deep dives (Throughline, Science Vs., The Dream), and yes, true crime (the second season of You Must Remember This, with its focus on the Manson Family Murders and Hollywood, is one of my favorites).
  12. My favorite movie is Tampopo, but the movie I’ll always watch is Jurassic Park.