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Monday, May 29, 2017

Hot This Week: May 29

The new thriller from M. Night Shyamalan leads four new titles on this Memorial Day movie list. Former One Direction member Harry Styles debuts at #1 on the music chart with his first solo outing. Dorothea Benton Frank is the top newcomer in fiction, which also sees the debut of a new novella from Stephen King. Nebraska senator Ben Sasse and basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar land on the non-fiction list with their new books.

DVD
  1. Split
  2. xXx: Return of Xander Cage
  3. Sleepless
  4. Hidden Figures
  5. Why Him?
  6. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  7. Sing
  8. Gold
  9. The Bye Bye Man
  10. Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
CD
  1. Harry Styles, Harry Styles
  2. Zac Brown Band, Welcome Home
  3. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  4. Chris Stapleton, From a Room: Volume 1
  5. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2: Awesome Mix, Vol. 2
  6. Paramore, After Laughter
  7. Machine Gun Kelly, Bloom
  8. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  9. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
Fiction
  1. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  2. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  3. Same Beach, Next Year, Dorothea Benton Frank
  4. The Fix, David Baldacci
  5. Testimony, Scott Turow
  6. Gwendy's Button Box, Stephen King and Richard Chizmar
  7. Golden Prey, John Sandford
  8. Against All Odds, Danielle Steel
  9. Full Wolf Moon, Lincoln Child
  10. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
Non-Fiction
  1. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  2. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  3. The Vanishing American Adult, Ben Sasse
  4. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  5. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann
  6. Shattered, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  7. Democracy, Condoleezza Rice
  8. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  9. Coach Wooden and Me, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  10. This Fight Is Our Fight, Elizabeth Warren

Thursday, May 25, 2017

40 Years of a Galaxy Far, Far Away

Written by Jon Williams

Forty years ago today, on May 25, 1977, Star Wars opened in just thirty-two theaters across the United States. That number quickly expanded as the film took off, and many theaters were still showing the film on its first anniversary. A lot has changed in the intervening years—even that first movie’s title, which has expanded to Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope—but the voracious appetite that fans have for stories set in the galaxy far, far away has not abated. Luckily, there’s a wealth of new material coming out.

Fans at the recent Star Wars Celebration in Orlando, as well as those streaming the event live around the world, were treated to the first teaser trailer for Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. Releasing in December, this will be the second in the new trilogy that picks up the story of the galaxy thirty years following the events of Return of the Jedi. The first installment, The Force Awakens, brought in nearly $1 billion at the box office in North America alone, and more than $2 billion globally. It came out in 2015; the most recent Star Wars movie, Rogue One, the first standalone, non-trilogy film, leads directly into the events of the original Star Wars.

Those who attended Celebration also got a first look at the upcoming fourth season of Star Wars: Rebels, the animated show that follows a small band of freedom fighters in the early days of the Rebel Alliance’s fight against the Galactic Empire. Show creator Dave Filoni also announced that the upcoming season will be the show’s last. The third season featured characters that appeared in Rogue One, such as Rebellion leader Mon Mothma and renegade Saw Gerrera, who was first introduced in Star Wars: Clone Wars.

The third season of Rebels also brought back Grand Admiral Thrawn, a beloved character from the old expanded universe that was wiped out to make way for new stories with Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm and the Star Wars franchise. Thrawn’s original entrance came in 1991’s Heir to the Empire, the popular novel by Timothy Zahn that revived interest in Star Wars and can be credited for everything that has come since. With the character coming back into the universe, Zahn stepped in once again to write a novel, released in April, detailing how the Grand Admiral rose to his rank in the Imperial military.

Novels and short stories are a great source of new stories in the Star Wars universe. Chuck Wendig’s recently concluded Aftermath trilogy picks up shortly after the destruction of the second Death Star and details the fall of the Empire and the first seeds of the First Order rising in its place. James Luceno’s Catalyst serves as a prequel to Rogue One, while Rebel Rising by Beth Revis and Guardians of the Whills by Greg Rucka (both unavailable on audio but available in eBook format on hoopla digital) give back stories for some of that movie’s heroes. Finally, releasing in October and celebrating forty years of the original Star Wars movie, From a Certain Point of View explores iconic scenes from that movie from the perspectives of background characters.

The popularity of Star Wars means that patrons will always be looking for the latest materials in your library. SmartBrowse on our website for more, and don’t forget to remind patrons that they can look on hoopla for even more Star Wars audiobooks, eBooks, comics, and music.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Hot This Week: May 22

Two new movies make the list this week, led by the smash hit success Hidden Figures. Logic's latest album edges out the new disc from Chris Stapleton as they debut atop the music chart. The new installment in Jo Nesbo's thrilling detective series is the hottest newcomer in fiction, while a new book by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice leads three new titles in non-fiction.

DVD
  1. Hidden Figures
  2. Why Him?
  3. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  4. Gold
  5. Sing
  6. The Bye Bye Man
  7. La La Land
  8. Assassin's Creed
  9. Moana
  10. Monster Trucks
CD
  1. Logic, Everybody
  2. Chris Stapleton, From a Room: Volume 1
  3. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  4. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2: Awesome Mix, Vol. 2
  5. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  6. Russ, There's Really a Wolf
  7. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  8. Gorillaz, Humanz
  9. NOW That's What I Call Music 62
  10. The Chainsmokers, Memories...Do Not Open
Fiction
  1. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  2. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  3. Against All Odds, Danielle Steel
  4. The Fix, David Baldacci
  5. Golden Prey, John Sandford
  6. The Thirst, Jo Nesbo
  7. Since We Fell, Dennis Lehane
  8. Men Without Women, Haruki Murakami
  9. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  10. A Dog's Way Home, W. Bruce Cameron
Non-Fiction
  1. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  2. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  3. Shattered, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  4. Democracy, Condoleezza Rice
  5. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann
  6. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  7. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  8. This Fight Is Our Fight, Elizabeth Warren
  9. Jackie's Girl, Kathy McKeon 
  10. Teammate, David Ross and Don Yaeger

Friday, May 19, 2017

Stephen King Fills 2017 with His Brand of Horror

Written by Jon Williams

Call it a hunch, but we’re guessing that a lot of your patrons are Stephen King fans. Luckily for those patrons, there’s plenty of recent and upcoming King material to keep them quivering in fear for quite some time.

To start, we need to go back almost to the very beginning. Now, of course, King is a well-known, bestselling author with more than fifty books to his credit, but that wasn’t always the case. The Dead Zone was just the fourth novel King published under his own name. Released in 1979, it deals with a young man both gifted and cursed with psychic abilities after a catastrophic car accident. The novel spawned both a 1983 movie and a 2002 TV series that ran for six seasons, but it has never been available in audiobook format until now. This classic is narrated by actor James Franco.

There’s also plenty of new material from King. His latest release, out this week, is Gwendy’s Button Box, a novella written with help from publisher, editor, and fellow horror writer Richard Chizmar. The story takes place in Castle Rock, Maine, a familiar setting for King fans. The Dead Zone was set in Castle Rock, as were Cujo, The Dark Half, and a number of novellas and short stories scattered throughout his collections. The 1991 novel Needful Things was originally billed as “the last Castle Rock story,” but apparently he wasn’t done with the little town after all.

And that’s not the only collaboration King has on his docket. Coming this September is Sleeping Beauties, a new novel written in tandem with his son Owen King. It details a dystopian future in which all women (except one!) fall prey to a strange cocooned state while they sleep, and men are left to their own devices. Of course, King is no stranger to this type of collaboration, having teamed up with his other son, author Joe Hill, for the short stories “Throttle” and “In the Tall Grass.”

As popular as his books are, when it comes to Stephen King, they’re only part of the story. Another part is all the adaptations that have taken his work from the page to screens both big and small. In that regard, there’s a pretty full slate on the horizon. First up is The Mist, a ten-episode series premiering on Spike on June 22. The novella, available on its own or collected with other short stories in Skeleton Crew, was previously made into a movie in 2007. Then, on August 9, Mr. Mercedes comes to the Audience Network, based on the first book of a trilogy King wrote about a retired detective facing off against a twisted killer.

In addition to regular TV, fans can also look to the streaming services for some upcoming adaptations. Coming to Netflix later this year is Gerald’s Game, the story of a woman who is trapped handcuffed to a bed after her husband dies suddenly. Much of the novel takes place within main character Jessie Burlingame’s head, so it will be interesting to see how it translates to the screen. Also coming to Netflix in 2017 is 1922, about a man who is convinced his murdered wife is haunting him. It’s based on a novella in Full Dark, No Stars, which also contains the story that was the basis for the movie A Good Marriage. Then, beginning production later this year with no set debut date, is the Hulu series Castle Rock. Not much is known about it other than the setting, the small Maine town mentioned above, but the first teaser contained elements of King classics like Misery and plenty of others.

And speaking of King classics, one of the biggest (both literally and figuratively) is coming to theaters on September 8. It, the epic novel about a shape-shifting creature that feeds on children and the gang of outcast kids that decide enough is enough, has engendered a fear of clowns in readers since its release in 1986. It’s a whopper: the print edition comes in at over 1,000 pages, and the audiobook narration takes up 35 discs. A previous adaptation came in the form of a 3-hour miniseries in 1990, and this time around will be split into two feature films, with the second installment coming in 2018.

And then there’s The Dark Tower…but we’ll have more to say about that soon. In the meantime, make sure you have plenty of Stephen King material on your shelves for patrons to explore and enjoy as these new works and adaptations come along. And don’t be surprised if some of them ask you if they can check out a nightlight, too.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Hot This Week: May 15

The comedy Why Him? spends another week atop the movie list, where it's joined by two new films. Likewise, Kendrick Lamar remains at #1 in music, which sees such heavy-hitting newcomers as Mary J. Blige, Willie Nelson, and John Mellencamp. In fiction, the latest collaborative novel from James Patterson debuts in the top spot, followed by a new thriller from the author of the breakout hit The Girl on the Train. In non-fiction, the only newcomer is the hottest of them all, a guide to astrophysics from Neil deGrasse Tyson.

DVD
  1. Why Him?
  2. Gold
  3. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  4. Sing
  5. La La Land
  6. Assassin's Creed
  7. Rings
  8. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  9. Monster Trucks
  10. Moana
CD
  1. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  2. Gorillaz, Humanz
  3. Mary J. Blige, Strength of a Woman
  4. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  5. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  6. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2: Awesome Mix, Vol. 2
  7. The Chainsmokers, Memories...Do Not Open
  8. Willie Nelson, God's Problem Child
  9. John Mellencamp, Sad Clowns & Hillbillies
  10. Moana Soundtrack
Fiction
  1. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  2. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  3. Against All Odds, Danielle Steel
  4. The Fix, David Baldacci
  5. Golden Prey, John Sandford
  6. The Broken Road, Richard Paul Evans
  7. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  8. Anything Is Possible, Elizabeth Strout
  9. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
  10. Beartown, Fredrik Backman
Non-Fiction
  1. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  2. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  3. Shattered, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  4. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann
  5. This Fight Is Our Fight, Elizabeth Warren
  6. The Operator, Robert O'Neill
  7. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  8. Old School, Bill O'Reilly and Bruce Feirstein
  9. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  10. Hallelujah Anyway, Anne Lamott