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Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Come See Us at ALA in New Orleans

Written by Jon Williams

The ALA Annual Conference & Exhibition is on the horizon, taking place in New Orleans June 21-26. We’ve made our travel plans, and we’re looking forward to connecting with our many library partners. So come see us! We’ll be at Booth #2852. You can get all the latest information on Midwest Tape, hoopla digital, and Dreamscape Media, including enhancements to our patented SoundSafe™ audiobook cases, our customized processing services, updates to our website, and more!

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

Andrea Beaty is an acclaimed children’s author with a number of books to her name. Her recent books Ada Twist, Scientist; Rosie Revere, Engineer; and Iggy Peck, Architect are all perfect for STEAM programming, and are available in both audiobook and read-along video format from Dreamscape Media. She’ll be at our booth on Friday from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.

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 upcoming outing is the graphic novel Search for Atlantis, featuring the Teen Titans! You’ll find her at our booth on Saturday from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.

Emma Wunsch made her debut in 2016 with the hit young adult novel The Movie Version. Now she’s getting ready to release The Princess and the Absolutely Not a Princess, the first in her Miranda and Maude chapter book series about two unlikely friends! Stop by to meet her at our booth on Saturday from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

Jonathan Auxier won two prestigious Canadian children’s literary awards for his first novel, The Night Gardner. He has published two books and won more awards since then, and his new book, Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster, will be out this fall. He will be at our booth on Saturday from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m.

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 and find out about all the other fun and informative things we have going on. We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

Monday, June 18, 2018

Hot This Week: June 18

This is a big week for new titles. The remake of the 1974 action classic Death Wish leads four new titles on the list, which also include the blockbuster adaptation of the beloved sci-fi novel A Wrinkle in Time. The week's biggest addition is in fiction, where bestselling author James Patterson teams up with former president Bill Clinton for a fascinating new novel. Four new non-fiction titles include a look at the current U.S. president as well as an examination of the former career for one of the most revered past presidents. The only exception is in music, where the lone debut is the new album from heavy metal band Ghost, which comes in at #2.

Movies
  1. Death Wish (Blu-ray)
  2. Game Night (Blu-ray)
  3. Black Panther (Blu-ray | 4K)
  4. Red Sparrow (Blu-ray | 4K)
  5. The Hurricane Heist (Blu-ray | 4K)
  6. A Wrinkle in Time (Blu-ray | 4K)
  7. Annihilation (Blu-ray)
  8. Gringo (Blu-ray)
  9. The 15:17 to Paris (Blu-ray)
  10. Peter Rabbit (Blu-ray | 4K)
CD
  1. Post Malone, Beerbongs & Bentleys
  2. Ghost, Prequelle
  3. Luke Combs, This One's for You
  4. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  5. Shawn Mendes, Shawn Mendes
  6. Jason Aldean, Rearview Town
  7. Maroon 5, Red Pill Blues
  8. J. Cole, KOD
  9. BTS, Love Yourself: Tear
  10. Post Malone, Stoney
Fiction
  1. The President Is Missing, James Patterson and Bill Clinton
  2. The Outsider, Stephen King
  3. Shelter in Place, Nora Roberts
  4. The Death of Mrs. Westaway, Ruth Ware
  5. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  6. The Gray Ghost, Clive Cussler and Robin Burcell
  7. When Life Gives You Lululemons, Lauren Weisberger
  8. Us Against You, Fredrik Backman
  9. Turbulence, Stuart Woods
  10. Something in the Water, Catherine Steadman
Non-Fiction 
  1. Calypso, David Sedaris
  2. Trump's America, Newt Gingrich
  3. The Sun Does Shine, Anthony Ray Hinton and Lara Love Hardin
  4. How to Change Your Mind, Michael Pollan
  5. The Soul of America, Jon Meacham
  6. The World as It Is, Ben Rhodes
  7. The Restless Wave, John McCain and Mark Salter
  8. Lincoln's Last Trial, Dan Abrams and David Fisher
  9. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  10. Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston

Monday, June 11, 2018

Hot This Week: June 11

Three new movies this week are led by the Jennifer Lawrence thriller Red Sparrow, which falls just short of unseating Game Night at the top. Shawn Mendes takes over the #1 spot in music, joined by new releases from CHVRCHES and J Balvin. Stephen King keeps his spot on the fiction list, trailed by four new titles, and a new book of essays from David Sedaris takes over in non-fiction.

Movies
  1. Game Night (Blu-ray)
  2. Red Sparrow (Blu-ray | 4K)
  3. Black Panther (Blu-ray | 4K)
  4. Annihilation (Blu-ray)
  5. The 15:17 to Paris (Blu-ray)
  6. 12 Strong (Blu-ray)
  7. Peter Rabbit (Blu-ray | 4K)
  8. Den of Thieves (Blu-ray)
  9. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
CD
  1. Shawn Mendes, Shawn Mendes
  2. Post Malone, Beerbongs & Bentleys
  3. BTS, Love Yourself: Tear
  4. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  5. J. Cole, KOD
  6. CHVRCHES, Love Is Dead
  7. Post Malone, Stoney
  8. Black Panther: The Album
  9. Migos, Culture II
  10. J Balvin, Vibras
Fiction
  1. The Outsider, Stephen King
  2. Shelter in Place, Nora Roberts
  3. The Gray Ghost, Clive Cussler and Robin Burcell
  4. The Death of Mrs. Westaway, Ruth Ware
  5. To the Moon and Back, Karen Kingsbury
  6. The 17th Suspect, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  7. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  8. By Invitation Only, Dorothea Benton Frank
  9. The Cast, Danielle Steel
  10. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
Non-Fiction 
  1. Calypso, David Sedaris
  2. The Restless Wave, John McCain and Mark Salter
  3. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  4. The Soul of America, Jon Meacham
  5. How to Change Your Mind, Michael Pollan
  6. Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston
  7. Facts and Fears, James R. Clapper and Trey Brown
  8. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  9. Educated, Tara Westover
  10. Three Days in Moscow, Bret Baier and Catherine Whitney

Friday, June 8, 2018

2018 Audie Awards Announced

Written by Jon Williams

AudioFile, a magazine dedicated to reviewing audiobooks, calls the annual Audie Awards “the Oscars of the audiobook industry.” Since 1996, the Audio Publishers Association has handed out these prestigious awards to the best audiobooks of the year. This year’s gala was held at the New York Historical Society on May 31, hosted by Simon Vance, himself an Audie-winning narrator several times over.

The novel Lincoln in the Bardo (written by George Saunders and narrated by Nick Offerman, David Sedaris, and a star-studded full cast) took home the night’s biggest prize, the coveted Audiobook of the Year award. Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give (narrated by Bahni Turpin) scored wins in two categories: Young Adult and Best Female Narrator. Born a Crime by Daily Show host Trevor Noah (self-narrated) won for Best Male Narrator, while Neil Gaiman’s Norse Mythology won in the Narration by the Author category.

Finally, we offer hearty congratulations to our friends at Dreamscape Media, who produced the winner in History/Biography. Written by Patricia Hruby Powell and narrated by Adenrele Ojo and MacLeod Andrews, Loving vs. Virginia is the tale of a landmark civil rights case that went all the way to the Supreme Court. Well done to everyone involved!

Click here for our collection of all the Audie Award-winning audiobooks, or see the list below for individual titles.

Audiobook of the Year: Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders (narrated by full cast)
Audio Drama: Brother Francis by Paul McCusker (various narrators)
Autobiography/Memoir: Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen (narrated by the author)
Best Female Narrator: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (narrated by Bahni Turpin)
Best Male Narrator: Born a Crime by Trevor Noah (narrated by the author)
Business/Personal Development: Peak Performance by Brad Stullberg and Steve Magness (narrated by Christopher Lane)
Erotica: Claim & Protect by Rhenna Morgan (narrated by John Lane)
Fantasy: The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss (narrated by Kate Reading)
Fiction: Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman (narrated by Cathleen McCarron)
History/Biography: Loving vs. Virginia by Patricia Hruby Powell (narrated by Adenrele Ojo and MacLeod Andrews)
Humor: Carpet Diem by Justin Lee Anderson (narrated by Matthew Lloyd Davies)
Inspirational Fiction: Catching the Wind by Melanie Dobson (narrated by Nancy Peterson)
Inspirational Non-Fiction: Fire Road by Kim Phuc Phan Thi (narrated by Emily Woo Zeller)
Literary Fiction: House of Names by Colm Toibin (narrated by Juliet Stevenson, Charlie Anson, and Pippa Nixon)
Middle Grade: See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng (narrated by full cast)
Multi-Voiced: Restart by Gordon Korman (various narrators)
Mystery: The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye by David Lagercrantz (narrated by Simon Vance)
Narration by the Author: Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
Non-Fiction: American Wolf by Nate Blakeslee (narrated by Mark Bramhall)
Original Work: Romeo and Juliet: A Novel by David Hewson (narrated by Richard Armitage)
Paranormal: Curse on the Land by Faith Hunter (narrated by Khristine Hvam)
Romance: The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare (narrated by Mary Jane Wells)
Science Fiction: Provenance by Ann Leckie (narrated by Adjoa Andoh)
Short Stories: The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo (narrated by Lauren Fortgang)
Thriller/Suspense: The Fourth Monkey by J.D. Barker (narrated by Edoardo Ballerini and Graham Winton)
Young Adult: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (narrated by Bahni Turpin)
Young Listeners: Trombone Shorty by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews (narrated by Dion Graham)

Monday, June 4, 2018

Hot This Week: June 4

We're moving ever closer to full summer, and as the weather heats up, so do these titles. In movies, the dark comedy Game Night bumps the blockbuster Black Panther down to #2. BTS brings the K-pop genre to the top of the music chart for the first time. In fiction, horror master Stephen King's latest novel tops the list, while non-fiction is headed up by a new book from longtime senator John McCain.

Movies
  1. Game Night (Blu-ray)
  2. Black Panther (Blu-ray | 4K)
  3. 12 Strong (Blu-ray)
  4. Peter Rabbit (Blu-ray | 4K)
  5. Den of Thieves (Blu-ray)
  6. Fifty Shades Freed (Blu-ray | 4K)
  7. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  8. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
  9. Maze Runner: The Death Cure (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. Early Man (Blu-ray)
CD
  1. BTS, Love Yourself: Tear
  2. Post Malone, Beerbongs & Bentleys
  3. Five Finger Death Punch, And Justice for None
  4. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  5. J. Cole, KOD
  6. Black Panther: The Album
  7. Post Malone, Stoney
  8. Migos, Culture II
  9. Jason Aldean, Rearview Town
  10. Taylor Swift, Reputation
Fiction
  1. The Outsider, Stephen King
  2. The Cast, Danielle Steel
  3. The 17th Suspect, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  4. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  5. By Invitation Only, Dorothea Benton Frank
  6. Beach House Reunion, Mary Alice Monroe
  7. Warlight, Michael Ondaatje
  8. The High Tide Club, Mary Kay Andrews
  9. Twisted Prey, John Sandford
  10. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
Non-Fiction 
  1. The Restless Wave, John McCain and Mark Salter
  2. The Soul of America, Jon Meacham
  3. Facts and Fears, James R. Clapper and Trey Brown
  4. How to Change Your Mind, Michael Pollan
  5. Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston
  6. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  7. Three Days in Moscow, Bret Baier and Catherine Whitney
  8. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  9. Educated, Tara Westover
  10. Robin, Dave Itzkoff

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Hot This Week: May 29

We hope everyone had a safe and happy holiday weekend! There's just one new movie on this week's list, but it's a doozy: the superhero blockbuster Black Panther. Three new albums make the list while Post Malone holds onto the top spot on the music chart. In fiction, Danielle Steel and Dorothea Benton Frank debut new novels, while a new book from Michael Pollan leads the way for three new titles in non-fiction.

Movies
  1. Black Panther (Blu-ray | 4K)
  2. 12 Strong (Blu-ray)
  3. Fifty Shades Freed (Blu-ray | 4K)
  4. Peter Rabbit (Blu-ray | 4K)
  5. Den of Thieves (Blu-ray)
  6. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  7. Maze Runner: The Death Cure (Blu-ray | 4K)
  8. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
  9. The Commuter (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. Winchester (Blu-ray)
CD
  1. Post Malone, Beerbongs & Bentleys
  2. P!nk, Beautiful Trauma
  3. Charlie Puth, Voicenotes
  4. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  5. J. Cole, KOD
  6. Arctic Monkeys, Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino
  7. Black Panther: The Album
  8. Migos, Culture II
  9. Post Malone, Stoney
  10. XXXTENTACION, ?
Fiction
  1. The Cast, Danielle Steel
  2. The 17th Suspect, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  3. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  4. By Invitation Only, Dorothea Benton Frank
  5. The High Tide Club, Mary Kay Andrews
  6. Twisted Prey, John Sandford
  7. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
  8. Warlight, Michael Ondaatje
  9. The Crooked Staircase, Dean Koontz
  10. The Woman in the Window, A.J. Finn
Non-Fiction 
  1. How to Change Your Mind, Michael Pollan
  2. The Soul of America, Jon Meacham
  3. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  4. Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston
  5. Three Days in Moscow, Bret Baier and Catherine Whitney
  6. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  7. Robin, Dave Itzkoff
  8. Educated, Tara Westover
  9. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  10. Fascism: A Warning, Madeleine Albright and Bill Woodward

Friday, May 25, 2018

American Idol Is Back!

Written by Jon Williams

On Monday of this week, the popular reality singing show American Idol capped off its sixteenth season by crowning Maddie Poppe as its new champion. This season was the show’s first on ABC following fifteen on Fox followed by a two-year hiatus. Ryan Seacrest returned as the show’s host, where he was joined by new judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan. Along with Poppe, some other names to watch for from this season as their musical careers unfold include Caleb Lee Hutchinson, Gabby Barrett, Cade Foeher, Michael J. Woodard, Catie Turner, and Ada Vox.

Once one of the most popular shows on television, if not the most popular, ratings had declined for Idol’s last few seasons on Fox. Nevertheless, it still managed to produce some phenomenal musical talent. The most recent winner, Trent Harmon, released his debut album You Got ‘Em All last week, while that season’s runner-up, La’Porsha Renae, released hers last year. Other winners from this stretch include Nick Fradiani, Caleb Johnson (whose debut album is currently out of print), and Candice Glover.

Prior to that, Seasons 1 through 11 were the show’s heyday, shining a spotlight on a number of young singers that would emerge as musical superstars. The audience was hooked from the start, when Kelly Clarkson took the first season crown over runner-up Justin Guarini. She is now one of the biggest names in music. The same can be said for Carrie Underwood, the winner of Season 4, who served as a mentor this season and whose new album Cry Pretty is coming in September. She’s carved out an enormous career in country music, as has Season 10 winner Scotty McCreery, who dropped his most recent album, Seasons Change, in March. Other winners from these seasons are Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Taylor Hicks, Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Kris Allen, Lee DeWyze, and Phillip Phillips.

Of course, sometimes contestants that don’t win end up doing pretty well for themselves in the music world as well. One of the biggest names to come out of American Idol has been Jennifer Hudson, who actually placed seventh in the show’s third season, and who has won an Academy Award for her acting skills in addition to two Grammy Awards for her music. The Season 8 runner-up was Adam Lambert, who has had an impressive solo career, toured as the frontman for Queen, and starred as Eddie in the 2016 version of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Other notables include Katharine McPhee, Chris Daughtry, Kellie Pickler, Danny Gokey, Crystal Bowersox, and Colton Dixon, while a number of alumni, including Season 10’s Haley Reinhart and Casey Abrams, have performed as part of musical sensation Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox.

So make sure you have music from all these winners and contestants on your shelves and be on the lookout for upcoming albums from this season’s performers as well, because Idol is back. The show has already been renewed for a second season on ABC and seventeenth overall, with Ryan Seacrest and all of this season’s judges returning. With the show back in the spotlight, your patrons will be looking for music from all these incredible performers.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Hot This Week: May 21

The final installment in the Fifty Shades trilogy tops this week's movie list. Post Malone holds on for another week at #1 in music as well as another week with two albums on the chart, while Leon Bridges has the week's top newcomer. Likewise in fiction, James Patterson stays strong at the top, with new novels by Mary Kay Andrews, Dean Koontz, and Michael Ondaatje making their debuts. In non-fiction, three new titles include a political examination by Jon Meacham and a long-long book on slavery from acclaimed author Zora Neale Hurston.

Movies
  1. Fifty Shades Freed (Blu-ray | 4K)
  2. 12 Strong (Blu-ray)
  3. Peter Rabbit (Blu-ray | 4K)
  4. Den of Thieves (Blu-ray)
  5. Maze Runner: The Death Cure (Blu-ray | 4K)
  6. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
  7. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  8. The Humanity Bureau (Blu-ray)
  9. The Commuter (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. Winchester (Blu-ray)
CD
  1. Post Malone, Beerbongs & Bentleys
  2. J. Cole, KOD
  3. Leon Bridges, Good Thing
  4. Shinedown, Attention Attention
  5. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  6. Lake Street Drive, Free Yourself Up
  7. Black Panther: The Album
  8. Migos, Culture II
  9. Post Malone, Stoney
  10. Jason Aldean, Rearview Town
Fiction
  1. The 17th Suspect, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  2. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  3. The High Tide Club, Mary Kay Andrews
  4. Twisted Prey, John Sandford
  5. The Crooked Staircase, Dean Koontz
  6. Warlight, Michael Ondaatje
  7. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
  8. The Hellfire Club, Jake Tapper
  9. The Great Alone, Kristin Hannah
  10. The Woman in the Window, A.J. Finn
Non-Fiction 
  1. The Soul of America, Jon Meacham
  2. Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston
  3. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  4. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  5. Educated, Tara Westover
  6. The Light Within Me, Ainsley Earhardt and Mark Tabb
  7. Fascism: A Warning, Madeleine Albright and Bill Woodward
  8. The Best Cook in the World, Rick Bragg
  9. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  10. The Order of Time, Carlo Rovelli

Friday, May 18, 2018

Ron Howard Brings a Steady Hand to Solo

Written by Jon Williams

We’re now just a week away from the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story into theaters. This will be the second non-trilogy, standalone film in the Star Wars saga, following the huge success of Rogue One in 2016. Like that film, Solo will also dive into the period of time leading up to the events that take place in the original 1977 Star Wars. It will detail the early life of Han Solo, the smuggler turned rebel originally played with such swagger by Harrison Ford, as he meets Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian and embarks on his life on the fringes of society. An impressive lineup fills the cast, and bringing it all together from the director’s chair is Hollywood veteran Ron Howard.

Although he’s just 64 years old, Howard’s career spans nearly six decades itself. It began in front of the camera, of course, including two very high-profile television roles. He began playing Opie Taylor, son of the title character on The Andy Griffith Show, in 1960, when he was just six years old. That ran for eight seasons, and he also played the character in single episodes of Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. and Mayberry R.F.D., as well as a 1986 reunion movie that was his last significant acting role. In 1974, he began playing Richie Cunningham on Happy Days and served as the main character of that series for most of its run. As with Opie Taylor, he also crossed the role of Richie Cunningham over to Laverne & Shirley.

Those are his long-running and best-known roles, but as a young actor he also made appearances in a number of other popular shows, including The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, Dennis the Menace, The Fugitive, M*A*S*H, and The Waltons, among many others. And those are just his television roles. He also appeared in a number of films, such as The Music Man, The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, and The Shootist, John Wayne’s final film. In 1973, a starring role in the teenage comedy-drama American Graffiti was Howard’s first encounter with George Lucas’s then-burgeoning Lucasfilm company. He also starred in the 1979 follow-up More American Graffiti, but by then his acting career was winding down.

In 1977, Howard got his first chance to direct a feature film with Grand Theft Auto, a rollicking car chase adventure that he also wrote (with his father Rance) and starred in. His big break in directing was 1982’s Night Shift, a buddy comedy starring Michael Keaton in his first major role and Howard’s Happy Days co-star Henry Winkler. He then went on to bring Tom Hanks to the big screen for the first time in the 1984 romcom Splash, and later directed Steve Martin in Parenthood. While his first few films were comedic in nature, in 1988 he returned to the Lucasfilm fold by directing George Lucas’s fantastical Willow (currently unavailable).

Howard’s career has only continued to grow from there. The 1990s saw him direct such box office hits as Backdraft, Far and Away, Apollo 13, and Ransom. In 2000 he brought the Dr. Seuss classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas to the big screen, and then followed that up in 2001 with A Beautiful Mind, which earned him an Academy Award for Best Director. He was nominated again for 2008’s Frost/Nixon but lost out to Slumdog Millionaire’s Danny Boyle. Other notable directorial outings include the boxing drama Cinderella Man, the Jay-Z music festival documentary Made in America, and the trilogy of Robert Langdon films based on Dan Brown’s bestselling novels: The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons, and Inferno.

Many fans still recognize Ron Howard from his earliest roles as Opie Taylor and Richie Cunningham; more currently he may be known as the narrator for the comedy series Arrested Development, which he also produces. But whether it’s in front of or behind the camera, his vast Hollywood experience made Howard the perfect choice to take over the reins of Solo when the film’s original directors departed, bringing his practiced eye to bear on the latest movie from a galaxy far, far away. His most high-profile project to date will have patrons excited to check out more from his filmography, which is well worth exploring in its own right. Click any of the links above to add these movies to your collection, or SmartBrowse his name on our website for a more complete collection of his acting and directing roles.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Hot This Week: May 14

We hope everyone had a wonderful Mother's Day weekend! There are four new movies on this week's list, led by the war drama 12 Strong. In music, Post Malone brings his new album to the top of the chart, where it joins his debut album, Stoney, which is still holding strong at #7. There are also four new novels on the fiction list, where James Patterson and Maxine Paetro debut at the top, while the non-fiction list remains largely the same from last week.

Movies
  1. 12 Strong (Blu-ray)
  2. Maze Runner: The Death Cure (Blu-ray | 4K)
  3. Den of Thieves (Blu-ray)
  4. Peter Rabbit (Blu-ray | 4K)
  5. Winchester (Blu-ray)
  6. The Commuter (Blu-ray | 4K)
  7. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
  8. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  9. Hostiles (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. Paddington 2 (Blu-ray)
CD
  1. Post Malone, Beerbongs & Bentleys
  2. Keith Urban, Graffiti U
  3. J. Cole, KOD
  4. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  5. Janelle Monae, Dirty Computer
  6. Godsmack, When Legends Rise
  7. Post Malone, Stoney
  8. Jason Aldean, Rearview Town
  9. Migos, Culture II
  10. Black Panther: The Album
Fiction
  1. The 17th Suspect, James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  2. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  3. Twisted Prey, John Sandford
  4. The Mars Room, Rachel Kushner
  5. The Perfect Mother, Aimee Molloy
  6. The Forgotten Road, Richard Paul Evans
  7. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
  8. The Hellfire Club, Jake Tapper
  9. The Woman in the Window, A.J. Finn
  10. The Great Alone, Kristin Hannah
Non-Fiction 
  1. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  2. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  3. Fascism: A Warning, Madeleine Albright and Bill Woodward
  4. Educated, Tara Westover
  5. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  6. The Light Within Me, Ainsley Earhardt and Mark Tabb
  7. The Best Cook in the World, Rick Bragg
  8. Russian Roulette, Michael Isikoff and David Corn
  9. The Girl Who Smiled Beads, Clemantine Wamariya and Elizabeth Weil
  10. Chasing Hillary, Amy Chozick

Monday, May 7, 2018

Hot This Week: May 7

The first hot list of May brings with it a wealth of new titles your patrons will be clamoring for. In movies, four new titles are led by the thrilling heist film Den of Thieves at #1. Rapper J. Cole's new album lands atop the music chart, where it's joined by new albums from A Perfect Circle and Lord Huron. John Sandford and Jake Tapper bring new novels to the fiction list, while fully half of the non-fiction list is new with a wide variety of great new titles.

Movies
  1. Den of Thieves (Blu-ray)
  2. The Commuter (Blu-ray | 4K)
  3. Hostiles (Blu-ray | 4K)
  4. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
  5. Paddington 2 (Blu-ray)
  6. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  7. Forever My Girl (Blu-ray)
  8. The Post (Blu-ray | 4K)
  9. Thor: Ragnarok (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. Father Figures (Blu-ray)
CD
  1. J. Cole, KOD
  2. A Perfect Circle, Eat the Elephant
  3. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  4. Jason Aldean, Rearview Town
  5. Migos, Culture II
  6. The Weeknd, My Dear Melancholy
  7. Lord Huron, Vide Noir
  8. Black Panther: The Album
  9. Post Malone, Stoney
  10. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
Fiction
  1. Twisted Prey, John Sandford
  2. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  3. The Hellfire Club, Jake Tapper
  4. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
  5. I've Got My Eyes on You, Mary Higgins Clark
  6. The Female Persuasion, Meg Wolitzer
  7. After Anna, Lisa Scottoline
  8. The Woman in the Window, A.J. Finn
  9. The Great Alone, Kristin Hannah
  10. Circe, Madeline Miller
Non-Fiction 
  1. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  2. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  3. Fascism: A Warning, Madeleine Albright and Bill Woodward
  4. The Light Within Me, Ainsley Earhardt and Mark Tabb
  5. Educated, Tara Westover
  6. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  7. The Girl Who Smiled Beads, Clemantine Wamariya and Elizabeth Weil
  8. The Best Cook in the World, Rick Bragg
  9. Chasing Hillary, Amy Chozick
  10. Edge of Chaos, Dambisa Mayo

Friday, May 4, 2018

MCU Going Strong with Infinity War

Written by Jon Williams

Last week, Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War thundered into theaters across the country to the tune of a nearly $258 million opening. That total pushed it past 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens for the highest grossing opening weekend of all time. Going into its second weekend, it looks likely to dominate the box office once again, and in fact may continue to do so until the next Marvel movie, the much-anticipated Deadpool sequel, opens on May 18.

We last checked in on the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) nearly two years ago, with the release of Captain America: Civil War. That movie kicked off Phase 3 of Marvel’s ongoing interconnected movie universe, and the post detailed the films that made up the first two phases. Phase 3 continued in 2016 with Doctor Strange, which brought Benedict Cumberbatch’s reality-bending sorcerer into the mix. The following year saw three MCU blockbusters, starting with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in May. The action returned to Earth with Spider-Man: Homecoming in July, the webslinger’s first solo outing since Civil War introduced him to the Avengers team. Then, in November, Thor: Ragnarok showed the exploits of the two Avengers (Hulk being the second) who weren’t around for the events of Civil War. And 2018 has really brought the power: before Infinity War’s incredible opening weekend, Black Panther, which opened in February, became the third highest-grossing film of all time in North America. That movie, which is still showing in many theaters nearly three months later, comes to video on May 15.

So where do the Avengers go from here? For those that have seen the movie (no spoilers!), that is a very pressing questions. The immediate answer is Ant-Man and the Wasp, which comes to theaters on July 6. It’s a sequel to 2015’s Ant-Man (Phase 2), which saw Paul Rudd’s character Scott Lang get the suit that allows him to shrink or grow at will. However, the film is set in the time period between Civil War and Infinity War, so don’t expect too many answers as to what happens next. From there, fans will have to wait until next March, when Captain Marvel is set to be released, with Brie Larson in the title role. Likewise, though, there isn’t likely to be any closure here, either, as it’s set in the 1990s. No, for that, everyone is just going to have to wait for the as-yet-untitled fourth Avengers movie, currently slated for release on May 3, 2019. That will bring the curtain down on Phase 3 and lead into Phase 4, about which little is known at this point.

A year is a long time to wait for the next Avengers, but on the bright side, it’s also plenty of time for patrons to relive or get caught up on all the incredible movies that have brought us to this point—starting, of course, with Iron Man, which kicked off the MCU when it was released almost exactly ten years ago, on May 2, 2008. And for those who want to dig a little deeper, we have curated a collection of Infinity War-related comics on hoopla, as well as a wealth of other Marvel titles.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Hot This Week: April 30

We're closing out April with a bang. The Liam Neeson thriller The Commuter leads three new movies on the list. Country star Jason Aldean and rockers Breaking Benjamin land new albums at the top of the music chart. In fiction, David Baldacci and Christopher Moore debut their new novels, and in non-fiction, former FBI director James Comey's new book tops the list.

Movies
  1. The Commuter (Blu-ray | 4K)
  2. The Greatest Showman (Blu-ray | 4K)
  3. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Blu-ray | 4K)
  4. The Post (Blu-ray | 4K)
  5. Father Figures (Blu-ray)
  6. Proud Mary (Blu-ray)
  7. Ferdinand (Blu-ray | 4K)
  8. Justice League (Blu-ray)
  9. Thor: Ragnarok (Blu-ray | 4K)
  10. All the Money in the World (Blu-ray)
CD
  1. Jason Aldean, Rearview Town
  2. Breaking Benjamin, Ember
  3. The Greatest Showman Soundtrack
  4. John Prince, The Tree of Forgiveness
  5. The Weeknd, My Dear Melancholy
  6. Migos, Culture II
  7. Black Panther: The Album
  8. Pentatonix, PTX Presents: Top Pop, Vol. I
  9. Rich the Kid, The World Is Yours
  10. Post Malone, Stoney
Fiction
  1. The Fallen, David Baldacci
  2. After Anna, Lisa Scottoline
  3. Noir, Christopher Moore
  4. I've Got My Eyes on You, Mary Higgins Clark
  5. The Female Persuasion, Meg Wolitzer
  6. Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
  7. Circe, Madeline Miller
  8. The Woman in the Window, A.J. Finn
  9. The Great Alone, Kristin Hannah
  10. Shoot First, Stuart Woods
Non-Fiction 
  1. A Higher Loyalty, James Comey
  2. Fascism: A Warning, Madeleine Albright and Bill Woodward
  3. Russian Roulette, Michael Isikoff and David Corn
  4. Fire and Fury, Michael Wolff
  5. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, Neil deGrasse Tyson
  6. Educated, Tara Westover
  7. I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara
  8. Make Trouble, Cecile Richards and Lauren Peterson
  9. Secret Empires, Peter Schweitzer
  10. This Is Me, Chrissy Metz