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Monday, June 26, 2017

Hot This Week: June 26

Keanu Reeves's second turn as hitman John Wick takes over the top spot on this week's movie list. Four hot new CDs are led by the new album from pop diva Katy Perry at #1. John Grisham holds onto his spot in fiction, with the new novel from Elin Hilderbrand coming in as the top newcomer at #2. In non-fiction, a book about the president and a memoir from Roxane Gay join the fray.

DVD
  1. John Wick Chapter 2
  2. Beauty and the Beast
  3. Fist Fight
  4. A Dog's Purpose
  5. Fifty Shades Darker
  6. The Shack
  7. Split
  8. The Space Between Us
  9. The Great Wall
  10. Sleepless
CD
  1. Katy Perry, Witness
  2. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  3. SZA, Ctrl
  4. Lady Antebellum, Heart Break
  5. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  6. Halsey, Hopeless Fountain Kingdom
  7. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  8. Rise Against, Wolves
  9. Post Malone, Stoney
  10. The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Fiction
  1. Camino Island, John Grisham
  2. The Identicals, Elin Hilderbrand
  3. Tom Clancy: Point of Contact, Mike Maden
  4. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  5. Dragon Teeth, Michael Crichton
  6. Come Sundown, Nora Roberts
  7. Nighthawk, Clive Cussler and Graham Brown
  8. The Fix, David Baldacci
  9. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  10. The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O., Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland
Non-Fiction
  1. Understanding Trump, Newt Gingrich
  2. Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, Al Franken
  3. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  4. I Can't Make This Up, Kevin Hart and Neil Strauss
  5. Theft by Finding, David Sedaris
  6. Bill O'Reilly's Legends and Lies: The Civil War, David Fisher
  7. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  8. Hunger, Roxane Gay
  9. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  10. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann

Monday, June 19, 2017

Hot This Week: June 19

It's a big week for new movies with four of them making the list, led by the Ice Cube comedy Fist Fight. Pop singer-songwriter Halsey's follow-up to her platinum-selling debut lands at #1 on the music chart. Four new titles on the fiction list are headed up by perennial favorite John Grisham, while comedian Kevin Hart's memoir is tops in non-fiction.

DVD
  1. Fist Fight
  2. Beauty and the Beast
  3. Fifty Shades Darker
  4. A Dog's Purpose
  5. The Shack
  6. The Great Wall
  7. Split
  8. Aftermath
  9. xXx: Return of Xander Cage
  10. Sleepless
CD
  1. Halsey, Hopeless Fountain Kingdom
  2. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  3. The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
  4. Luke Combs, This One's for You
  5. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  6. All Time Low, Last Young Renegade
  7. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  8. Roger Waters, Is This the Life We Really Want?
  9. Post Malone, Stoney
  10. Bryson Tiller, True to Self
Fiction
  1. Camino Island, John Grisham
  2. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  3. Come Sundown, Nora Roberts
  4. Dragon Teeth, Michael Crichton
  5. Love Story, Karen Kingsbury
  6. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, Arundhati Roy
  7. Nighthawk, Clive Cussler and Graham Brown
  8. The Fix, David Baldacci
  9. Indecent Exposure, Stuart Woods
  10. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
Non-Fiction
  1. I Can't Make This Up, Kevin Hart and Neil Strauss
  2. Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, Al Franken
  3. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  4. Theft by Finding, David Sedaris
  5. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  6. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  7. Bill O'Reilly's Legends and Lies: The Civil War, David Fisher
  8. If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face?, Alan Alda
  9. The Vanishing American Adult, Ben Sasse
  10. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann

Monday, June 12, 2017

Hot This Week: June 12

Two new titles land at the top of this week's movie listing. Bryson Tiller debuts at #1 on the music chart, which also sees the return of a classic Beatles album fifty years after its release. Bestselling authors Nora Roberts and Clive Cussler bring new novels to the fiction list, while comedian/politician Al Franken's new memoir takes over in non-fiction.

DVD
  1. The Shack
  2. A Dog's Purpose
  3. The Great Wall
  4. Split
  5. xXx: Return of Xander Cage
  6. Sleepless
  7. Hidden Figures
  8. Why Him?
  9. Rock Dog
  10. Sing
CD
  1. Bryson Tiller, True to Self
  2. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  3. The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
  4. Lil Yachty, Teenage Emotions
  5. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  6. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  7. Chris Stapleton, From a Room: Volume 1
  8. Harry Styles, Harry Styles
  9. Post Malone, Stoney
  10. Migos, Culture
Fiction
  1. Come Sundown, Nora Roberts
  2. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  3. Dragon Teeth, Michael Crichton
  4. Nighthawk, Clive Cussler and Graham Brown
  5. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  6. The Fix, David Baldacci
  7. Same Beach, Next Year, Dorothea Benton Frank
  8. Testimony, Scott Turow
  9. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
  10. Golden Prey, John Sandford
Non-Fiction
  1. Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, Al Franken
  2. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  3. Theft by Finding, David Sedaris
  4. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  5. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  6. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  7. The Vanishing American Adult, Ben Sasse
  8. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann
  9. Shattered, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  10. Born a Crime, Trevor Noah

Monday, June 5, 2017

Hot This Week: June 5

The Matt Damon action hit The Great Wall takes over this week's movie list. Rockers Linkin Park land their new album at #1 in music, joined by fellow newcomers Rascal Flatts. A recently found novel from Michael Crichton, the late author of Jurassic Park, joins the fiction list at #2, while a dual biography of a pair of British icons debuts in non-fiction.

DVD
  1. The Great Wall
  2. Split
  3. xXx: Return of Xander Cage
  4. Sleepless
  5. Hidden Figures
  6. Rock Dog
  7. Why Him?
  8. Sing
  9. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  10. Moana
CD
  1. Linkin Park, One More Light
  2. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  3. Harry Styles, Harry Styles
  4. Chris Stapleton, From a Room: Volume 1
  5. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  6. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  7. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2: Awesome Mix, Vol. 2
  8. Migos, Culture
  9. Rascal Flatts, Back to Us
  10. Post Malone, Stoney
Fiction
  1. Into the Water, Paula Hawkins
  2. Dragon Teeth, Michael Crichton
  3. 16th Seduction, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  4. The Fix, David Baldacci
  5. Same Beach, Next Year, Dorothea Benton Frank
  6. Testimony, Scott Turow
  7. The Frozen Hours, Jeff Shaara
  8. Golden Prey, John Sandford
  9. Against All Odds, Danielle Steel
  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. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  8. This Fight Is Our Fight, Elizabeth Warren
  9. The Operator, Robert O'Neill
  10. Churchill and Orwell, Thomas E. Ricks

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Come See Us at ALA in Chicago

Written by Jon Williams

The ALA Annual Conference & Exhibition is on the horizon, taking place in Chicago June 22-27. We’ve made our travel plans, and we’re looking forward to connecting with our many library partners. So come see us! You can get all the latest information on Midwest Tape, hoopla digital, and Dreamscape Media at Booth #4420. Our booth hours are as follows:

Friday, June 23:  5:30pm – 7:00pm
Saturday, June 24:  9:00am – 5:00pm
Sunday, June 25:  9:00am – 5:00pm
Monday, June 26:  9:00am – 2:00pm

We’ll have a few special guests making appearances at our booth as well. Stop by and have a book signed!

Sarah Beth Durst has written several novels for young adults, and burst onto the adult fantasy fiction scene in 2016 with The Queen of Blood, winner of a 2017 Alex Award from ALA/YALSA. The second book in the Queens of Renthia series, The Reluctant Queen, will be released on July 4. She will be at our booth on Saturday from 2:00 to 3:00pm.

Shea Fontana has written for the animated children’s TV show Doc McStuffins and the movie Twinkle Toes Lights Up New York, among many others. One other project she’s been involved with is DC Super Hero Girls, and her latest outing is the graphic novel Summer Olympus, featuring Wonder Woman! You’ll find her at our booth on Sunday from 10:00 to 11:00am.

Kate White is a bestselling author of mystery and thriller novels whose most recent release, The Secrets You Keep, released in March of this year. This fall she’ll release Even if It Kills Her, the first new installment in her popular Bailey Weggins mystery series in five years. She will be at our booth on Sunday afternoon from 3:30 to 4:30pm.

Dates and times for these author appearances are subject to change, so be sure to stop by our booth ahead of time to make sure they still hold. We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

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

Monday, May 8, 2017

Hot This Week: May 8

This week sees three new additions to each of our formats. In movies, those three include the first Harry Potter spinoff and the critical darling La La Land. New additions to the music chart range from Barry Manilow to Incubus. John Sandford, Elizabeth Strout, and Fredrik Backman all join the hot fiction list, while the non-fiction list sees Caitlyn Jenner's new memoir make its debut.

DVD
  1. Why Him?
  2. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  3. Sing
  4. La La Land
  5. Assassin's Creed
  6. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  7. Live by Night
  8. Monster Trucks
  9. Office Christmas Party
  10. Moana
CD
  1. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  2. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  3. Incubus, 8
  4. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  5. The Chainsmokers, Memories...Do Not Open
  6. Moana Soundtrack
  7. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2: Awesome Mix, Vol. 2
  8. The Weeknd, Starboy
  9. Migos, Culture
  10. Barry Manilow, This Is My Town: Songs of New York
Fiction
  1. Golden Prey, John Sandford
  2. The Fix, David Baldacci
  3. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  4. Anything Is Possible, Elizabeth Strout
  5. Beartown, Fredrik Backman
  6. All by Myself, Alone, Mary Higgins Clark
  7. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
  8. One Perfect Lie, Lisa Scottoline
  9. Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman
  10. The Women in the Castle, Jessica Shattuck
Non-Fiction
  1. Option B, Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant
  2. Shattered, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  3. This Fight Is Our Fight, Elizabeth Warren
  4. The Operator, Robert O'Neill
  5. Old School, Bill O'Reilly and Bruce Feirstein
  6. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann
  7. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  8. The Secrets of My Life, Caitlyn Jenner and Buzz Bissinger
  9. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  10. Black Privilege, Charlamagne Tha God

Monday, May 1, 2017

Hot This Week: May 1

The first of May sees four new movies make the list, including the two at the top. Kendrick Lamar's acclaimed new album jumps atop the week's music chart. Perennial bestsellers David Baldacci and Stuart Woods land new novels on the fiction list, while the non-fiction list undergoes a significant refresh with six new titles.

DVD
  1. Sing
  2. Assassin's Creed
  3. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  4. Live by Night
  5. Collateral Beauty
  6. The Founder
  7. Office Christmas Party
  8. Monster Trucks
  9. Patriots Day
  10. Moana
CD
  1. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  2. John Mayer, The Search for Everything
  3. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  4. The Chainsmokers, Memories...Do Not Open
  5. Moana Soundtrack
  6. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  7. Beauty and the Beast Soundtrack
  8. The Fate of the Furious: The Album
  9. Migos, Culture
  10. The Weeknd, Starboy
Fiction
  1. The Fix, David Baldacci
  2. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  3. Fast and Loose, Stuart Woods
  4. Star Wars: Thrawn, Timothy Zahn
  5. All by Myself, Alone, Mary Higgins Clark
  6. Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman
  7. The Women in the Castle, Jessica Shattuck
  8. Two from the Heart, James Patterson, Frank Constantini, Emily Raymond, and Brian Sitts
  9. One Perfect Lie, Lisa Scottoline
  10. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
Non-Fiction
  1. This Fight Is Our Fight, Elizabeth Warren
  2. Shattered, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  3. Note to Self, Connor Franta
  4. Old School, Bill O'Reilly and Bruce Feirstein
  5. Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann
  6. Black Privilege, Charlamagne Tha God
  7. The American Spirit, David McCullough
  8. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  9. Hallelujah Anyway, Anne Lamott
  10. The True Jesus, David Limbaugh

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Period Dramas Draw TV Viewers

Written by Jon Williams

Based on a series of memoirs by Jennifer Worth, the hit TV show Call the Midwife focuses on a group of midwives and nuns working at Nonnatus House, a convent in post-WWII London. The show debuted to high ratings in 2012, and it has steadily gained popularity ever since. The sixth season currently airing on PBS (it concluded in March on BBC One in the UK) takes place in 1962 and sees the first effects of the cultural changes that took place in that tumultuous decade.

This sixth season is notable for another reason, as it will be the last as a series regular for Ben Caplan. The actor, who previously starred in HBO’s World War II drama Band of Brothers, has played policeman Peter Noakes since Call the Midwife’s first season in 2012. He’s looking to add some more variety to his acting career, but fans can rest easy. With the show already renewed through Season 9, Caplan is certain that his character will resurface somewhere down the line. The same is true of another fan-favorite that left the series previously. Miranda Hart, who played Sgt. Noakes’s wife Chummy, left the show after Season 4. Like Caplan’s character, a reappearance for Chummy is not out of the question for the show’s future.

British period dramas are very popular for PBS right now. The trend got rolling with Downton Abbey, which ran for six seasons beginning (on PBS) in 2011. That show was both critically acclaimed and very popular, leading the way for the current wave of shows, including Call the Midwife. The series Poldark follows a man returning to the shattered remains of his former life in Cornwall following America’s Revolutionary War. Beginning in 2015, it’s an update of a 1975 BBC series, and both are based on a series of novels by Winston Graham. Beginning earlier this year, Victoria details the early life of the UK’s long-serving queen. Former Doctor Who companion Jenna Coleman plays the role of the queen in question, and there’s also a companion novel by show creator Daisy Goodwin.

Of course, the phenomenon isn’t limited to just PBS. With the popularity of these shows and others like them, it’s no surprise that the streaming services have jumped in to bring some to their audiences as well. When the show Ripper Street was threatened with cancellation after its second season, it was picked up by Amazon Video in the UK (the series has been available on BBC America in North America). Focusing on the aftermath of Jack the Ripper’s reign of terror, the recently concluded sixth season was the show’s last. Still in progress, on the other hand, is Peaky Blinders, a show about a criminal organization in the days after World War I. The first three seasons are available from Netflix in the US, and at least two more seasons are in the offing.

This is just a small sampling of the period dramas that are so popular right now. TV lovers will love to see these in your library so they can check them out and binge-watch, and that’s especially true for shows on cable and streaming services, which everyone may not have access to. What’s popular in your library right now? Let us know your patrons’ current favorites in the comments section below.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Hot This Week: April 24

Five new movies crack this week's hot list, led by the first standalone Star Wars film in the top spot. In music, the Chainsmokers' new release bumps Ed Sheeran from the top spot, with three other albums also debuting. Star Wars shows up again on the fiction list, with the long-awaited backstory of Grand Admiral Thrawn placing author Timothy Zahn at #2. In non-fiction, two new titles explore the divinity of Jesus Christ and the state of the American healthcare system.

DVD
  1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  2. Collateral Beauty
  3. Office Christmas Party
  4. Monster Trucks
  5. Lion
  6. Patriots Day
  7. Moana
  8. Passengers 
  9. War on Everyone
  10. Trolls
CD
  1. The Chainsmokers, Memories...Do Not Open
  2. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  3. Pentatonix, PTX Vol. IV
  4. Joey Bada$$, All-Amerikkkan Bada$$
  5. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  6. Moana Soundtrack
  7. Father John Misty, Pure Comedy
  8. Beauty and the Beast Soundtrack
  9. Migos, Culture
  10. The Weeknd, Starboy
Fiction
  1. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  2. Star Wars: Thrawn, Timothy Zahn
  3. All by Myself, Alone, Mary Higgins Clark
  4. One Perfect Lie, Lisa Scottoline
  5. The Burial Hour, Jeffery Deaver
  6. Two from the Heart, James Patterson, Frank Constantini, Emily Raymond, and Brian Sitts
  7. Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman
  8. Song of the Lion, Anne Hillerman
  9. The Lost Order, Steve Berry
  10. Mississippi Blood, Greg Iles
Non-Fiction
  1. Old School, Bill O'Reilly and Bruce Feirstein
  2. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  3. Hallelujah Anyway, Anne Lamott
  4. The True Jesus, David Limbaugh
  5. Killing the Rising Sun, Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard
  6. An American Sickness, Elisabeth Rosenthal
  7. The Most Beautiful, Mayte Garcia
  8. The Book of Joy, Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu
  9. When Breath Becomes Air, Paul Kalanithi
  10. The Magnolia Story, Chip and Joanna Gaines

Monday, April 17, 2017

Hot This Week: April 17

We may have just passed the Easter weekend, but it's a Christmas-themed movie atop this week's movie list with the ensemble comedy Office Christmas Party. Heavy metal masters Mastodon land their new album at #5 on the music chart while Ed Sheeran spends another week at #1. Four new novels debut this week in fiction, and that number is topped by the five new titles in non-fiction.

DVD
  1. Office Christmas Party
  2. Patriots Day
  3. Moana
  4. Passengers
  5. Trolls
  6. Doctor Strange
  7. Jackie
  8. Hacksaw Ridge
  9. Fences
  10. Shut In
CD
  1. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  2. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  3. Beauty and the Beast Soundtrack
  4. Moana Soundtrack
  5. Mastodon, Emperor of Sand
  6. Migos, Culture
  7. MercyMe, Lifer
  8. The Weeknd, Starboy
  9. Miranda Lambert, The Weight of These Wings
  10. Keith Urban, Ripcord
Fiction
  1. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  2. All by Myself, Alone, Mary Higgins Clark
  3. The Chosen, J.R. Ward
  4. The Lost Order, Steve Berry
  5. Mississippi Blood, Greg Iles
  6. Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman
  7. The Women in the Castle, Jessica Shattuck
  8. If Not for You, Debbie Macomber
  9. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
  10. The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane, Lisa See
Non-Fiction
  1. Old School, Bill O'Reilly and Bruce Feirstein
  2. Hallelujah Anyway, Anne Lamott
  3. The Most Beautiful, Mayte Garcia
  4. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  5. Nevertheless, Alec Baldwin
  6. Ballplayer, Chipper Jones and Carroll R. Walton
  7. Killing the Rising Sun, Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard
  8. Prince Charles, Sally Bedell Smith
  9. The Magnolia Story, Chip and Joanna Gaines
  10. When Breath Becomes Air, Paul Kalanithi

Monday, April 10, 2017

Hot This Week: April 10

Two new movies make this week's list, led by the Peter Berg-directed depiction of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and its aftermath. Trey Songz brings his latest album to the music chart, where it debuts at #2. Perennial bestseller James Patterson's latest collaborative novel tops the fiction list, while in non-fiction, a new title from Fox News host Bill O'Reilly claims the top spot.

DVD
  1. Patriots Day
  2. Passengers
  3. Moana
  4. Trolls
  5. Doctor Strange
  6. Shut In
  7. Hacksaw Ridge
  8. Fences
  9. Nocturnal Animals
  10. Masterminds
CD
  1. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  2. Trey Songz, Tremaine the Album
  3. Beauty and the Beast Soundtrack
  4. Metallica, Hardwired...To Self-Destruct
  5. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  6. Moana Soundtrack
  7. Rick Ross, Rather You Than Me
  8. The Weeknd, Starboy
  9. Migos, Culture
  10. Khalid, American Teen
Fiction
  1. The Black Book, James Patterson and David Ellis
  2. Mississippi Blood, Greg Iles
  3. Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman
  4. Vicious Circle, C.J. Box
  5. If Not for You, Debbie Macomber
  6. The Women in the Castle, Jessica Shattuck
  7. Dangerous Games, Danielle Steel
  8. The Cutthroat, Clive Cussler and Justin Scott
  9. Lincoln in the Bardo, George Saunders
  10. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
Non-Fiction
  1. Old School, Bill O'Reilly and Bruce Feirstein
  2. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  3. Killing the Rising Sun, Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard
  4. A Colony in a Nation, Chris Hayes
  5. The Cubs Way, Tom Verducci
  6. Portraits of Courage, George W. Bush
  7. The Magnolia Story, Chip and Joanna Gaines
  8. Big Agenda, David Horowitz
  9. Trump's War, Michael Savage
  10. Born a Crime, Trevor Noah

Monday, April 3, 2017

Hot This Week: April 3

Two new movies make this week's list, led by Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt in Passengers, which can't quite overtake Moana for #1. It's another week for Ed Sheeran atop the music chart, where he's followed by the new release from Rick Ross. There's a lot for audiobook lovers to be excited about as six new novels make their debuts on the fiction list, and two fascinating accounts make the list in non-fiction.

DVD
  1. Moana
  2. Passengers
  3. Trolls
  4. Doctor Strange
  5. Nocturnal Animals
  6. Solace
  7. Hacksaw Ridge
  8. Fences
  9. Masterminds
  10. Arrival
CD
  1. Ed Sheeran, Divide
  2. Rick Ross, Rather You Than Me
  3. Beauty and the Beast Soundtrack
  4. Depeche Mode, Spirit
  5. Bruno Mars, 24K Magic
  6. Moana Soundtrack
  7. The Weeknd, Starboy
  8. Elevation Worship, There Is a Cloud
  9. Trolls Soundtrack
  10. Big Sean, I Decided.
Fiction
  1. Mississippi Blood, Greg Iles
  2. Vicious Circle, C.J. Box
  3. If Not for You, Debbie Macomber
  4. Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman
  5. The Cutthroat, Clive Cussler and Justin Scott
  6. The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane, Lisa See
  7. Dangerous Games, Danielle Steel
  8. Mangrove Lightning, Randy Wayne White
  9. The Devil's Triangle, Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison
  10. Man Overboard, J.A. Jance
Non-Fiction
  1. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
  2. A Colony in a Nation, Chris Hayes
  3. Trump's War, Michael Savage
  4. Killing the Rising Sun, Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard
  5. Portraits of Courage, George W. Bush
  6. Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari
  7. The Magnolia Story, Chip and Joanna Gaines
  8. The Stranger in the Woods, Michael Finkel
  9. The Book of Joy, Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu
  10. When Breath Becomes Air, Paul Kalanithi

Thursday, March 30, 2017

What’s the Deal with James Patterson?

Written by Jon Williams

First off, a happy belated birthday to the author, who turned 70 last week.  As a librarian, you are no doubt aware of Patterson’s prolific nature and his constant presence on the bestseller lists. Have you ever wondered, though, exactly how he manages to put out so many books?

Patterson published his first novel, The Thomas Berryman Number, in 1976, before he turned 30, but it wasn’t an easy road. He had a full-time job in advertising as he wrote it, and the novel was rejected 31 times before it finally found a home. It won the 1977 Edgar Award for Best First Novel by an American Author, but did not sell many copies. Nevertheless, his career path was set. For the next twenty years, he continued to work in advertising as he wrote novels, including two of his best known: Along Came a Spider and Kiss the Girls.

Those two novels introduced detective Alex Cross, one of Patterson’s most lucrative creations. As of now, there are 25 Cross novels, the most recent of which, Cross the Line, was published in November. The character has also made the jump to the big screen: Kiss the Girls (1997) and Along Came a Spider (2001) starred Morgan Freeman; then, in 2013, the character was rebooted in Alex Cross, with Tyler Perry in the title role. That movie was based on Patterson’s 2006 novel Cross, and a second movie starring Perry is in production based on 2007’s Double Cross.

For twenty years after The Thomas Berryman Number was published, Patterson continued to work full-time as he wrote. He retired from advertising in 1996 (although he continues to be involved in campaigns for his own work). In those twenty years, he published eight novels. Following his retirement, his publication pace really picked up. In 1996 alone, he released three novels: Hide & Seek, Miracle on the 17th Green, and Jack & Jill. Since then, not a year has passed without the publication of at least one Patterson book, and most years have featured several.

How does he do it? For one thing, the writing in Patterson’s books is relatively simple, streamlined for maximum readability. Secondly, he has turned his books into a cottage industry, collaborating with a number of other writers to produce many of them. This 2015 article in Vanity Fair describes the process, in which Patterson provides his collaborator with an extensive outline that details the plot from beginning to end, and then revises and rewrites the manuscript to his specifications once it is fleshed out. Some of his collaborators have included Richard DiLallo, Mark Sullivan, Michael Ledwidge, Liza Marklund, and Maxine Paetro. Patterson’s most recent novel, Black Book, published earlier this week, is a collaboration with David Ellis.

Part of the strategy behind Patterson’s writing style is his intention to appeal to an audience that may not otherwise be interested in reading, as a way of promoting literacy. When he noticed that his own son Jack was a reluctant reader, Patterson decided to jump into the arena of young adult literature. Thus, in 2005, the Maximum Ride series was born with the first book, The Angel Experiment. Now his involvement in the genre has grown to include seven more series (including Middle School, which led to the recent feature film) as well as quite a few standalones. Lately, Patterson has turned his attention to adults as well, launching a series of Bookshots: short, exciting reads that can be easily consumed in one sitting (and although he’s not as involved in the writing process, there’s also a line of Bookshots Flames aimed at romance readers).

So that’s the “secret” behind how James Patterson writes to many books. Needless to say, such a large share of the market has made him quite a wealthy man, and he has put a substantial amount of that money where his mouth is, donating large sums to fund scholarships and literacy programs, in addition to launching ReadKiddoRead, a website devoted to providing resources to parents in the effort to pass the joy of reading to their kids. That being the case, there’s really not much else to say, other than: Go, James, go! To share more of his impressive oeuvre with your patrons, SmartBrowse his name on our website, and point them toward our collection of his audiobooks on hoopla digital.