Remembering Chester Bennington

Chester Bennington, lead singer of the band Linkin Park, passed away on July 20th. If you’re looking to reflect back on Chester’s talent and work, here are some titles you can check out from the library. The remaining members of Linkin Park have set up a website in remembrance of Chester. You can find highlighted social media posts remembering Chester and information on suicide prevention.

One More Light by Linkin Park

Living Things by Linkin Park

A Thousand Suns by Linkin Park

Minutes to Midnight by Linkin Park

Meteora by Linkin Park

Hybrid Theory by Linkin Park

High Rise by Stone Temple Pilots featuring Chester Bennington


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Jane Austen, 200 Years Later

July 18th was the 200th anniversary of the death of Jane Austen. Love her or hate her, she has had a profound impact on literature and pop culture. I am definitely in the “love” camp, and with all of the media coverage of the anniversary, I’m feeling inspired to go back and re-read and re-watch everything Austen-related. This being the Multimedia blog, I’m highlighting our ebooks, audiobooks, and movies related to Jane.

If you would like to listen to Jane Austen’s books, we have a wide selection of audiobooks in various formats that you can check out. Pride and Prejudice will always be one of my favorites, but I think Persuasion’s heroine is one of Austen’s best.

If you prefer e-reading, we have a number of titles available via OverDrive/Libby that are either authored by Jane Austen or re-imagined renditions of her books, such as the modern retelling of Emma written by Alexander McCall Smith. Eligible, Curtis Sittenfeld’s modern version of Pride and Prejudice, has been quite popular.

death comes to pemberleyMovies
Ah, the movie adaptations. I love watching movie adaptations after just having finished a book, particularly for period dramas. You can check out the DVD and blu-ray selections of various Austen-related titles here. Colin Firth with always be my Darcy, but I also thought the more recent version with Keira Knightley and Matthew MacFayden was well done. Love and Friendship, the film based on Austen’s short novel Lady Susan, published after her death, was highly entertaining. P.D. James also put a murder mystery spin on Elizabeth and Darcy’s life as a married couple in Death Comes to Pemberley, and the miniseries version has some great actors: Matthew Rhys, Anna Maxwell Martin, Matthew Goode and Jenna Coleman. For something more modern, I highly recommend Clueless, where Emma is turned into a hilarious story about a Beverly Hills teenager. And for something completely different, check out Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

I hope you enjoy getting acquainted or reacquainted with Jane! If you need a primer to get you in the mood, I really loved this compilation of notes from readers of The Atlantic on their experiences with Austen.

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Jamie’s Staff Picks for June and July

Apologies for the lateness of this post–with summer arriving, the library has been very busy! Better late than never…

The Descendantsdescendants_xlg

“Matt King is an indifferent husband and father of two girls, who is forced to re-examine his past and embrace his future when his wife suffers a boating accident off of Waikiki. The event leads to a rapprochement with his young daughters while Matt wrestles with a decision to sell the family’s land handed down from Hawaiian royalty and missionaries.”

I often refer to this movie as the male version of Steel Magnolias. It’s an emotional and touching drama dealing with family and death, but for the most part it’s funny and real. The first time that I watched this movie, I had never seen Shailene Woodley in anything before and I was extremely impressed by her performance. George Clooney, as always, is great.

Love & Hate005557654_500
Michael Kiwanuka

I checked out this album because I wanted to hear more after Michael Kiwanuka’s song “Cold Little Heart” was used as the opening credit song for Big Little Lies (which also has Shailene Woodley!). After listening, “Cold Little Heart” is definitely still a standout track amongst the highly-orchestrated retro-soul songs, but “Black Man in a White World” is a close second for its timeliness and loneliness even with its punchy hand claps. It might take a few listens to sink into this one, but it’s definitely worthwhile.

La La Land1

“A jazz pianist falls for an aspiring actress in Los Angeles. This original musical about everyday life explores the joy and pain of pursuing dreams.”

I saw this movie in theaters and I LOVED it. I’ve heard some people criticize it for being another movie where Hollywood is patting itself on the back, but I’m a sucker for the LA landscape (especially that view from the Griffith Observatory featured in the iconic scene on the poster), and I apparently can’t turn down a good “actor/musician tries to make it” story. I loved the songs and had them stuck in my head for days afterward. I also wept uncontrollably at the ending (but that also could be because I was nine months pregnant at the time…). It was heartbreaking and beautiful. I can’t wait to watch this movie again.


I think a lot of people expect all Feist albums to have the cutesiness of “1234.” Not that I don’t love “1234,” but this album definitely has a more dramatic, lonely vibe and I really enjoyed it. I also found it to be great for summer night listening. The tracks fade in and out with sounds of crickets and passing car radios which really set the scene. My favorite tracks are “I Wish I Didn’t Miss You” and “A Man is Not His Song.”


All summaries from

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Free YA Audiobooks Week Thirteen

It’s Week Thirteen of SYNC’s YA audiobook giveaway!

SYNC is providing two YA audiobook downloads per week until August 16th. The current titles are available until July 26th, and while the title availability is time-limited, your listening time is not. Once you have downloaded the MP3 files, the audiobook is yours to listen to at your leisure.

Download this week’s pairing of free YA audiobooks!

Gone: Gone Series, Book 1
by Michael Grant
Read by Kyle McCarley
Published by Tantor Media

Summary:  In a small town on the coast of California, everyone over the age of fourteen suddenly disappears, setting up a battle between the remaining town residents and the students from a local private school, as well as those who have “The Power” and are able to perform supernatural feats and those who do not.


The One Safe Place
by Tania Unsworth
Read by Mark Turetsky
Published by HighBridge Audio

Summary: In a near future world of heat, greed, and hunger, Devin earns a coveted spot in a home for abandoned children that promises unlimited food and toys and the hope of finding a new family, but Devin discovers the home’s horrific true mission when he investigates its intimidating Administrator and the zombie-like sickness that afflicts some children.


Downloading Tips:
The OverDrive Media Console will deliver SYNC summer audiobooks to you via Overdrive Media Software installed on your computer (compatible with Windows and Mac) or through the Overdrive or Libby app on your mobile device (compatible with iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 8, Kindle, Nook, and MP3 players).
Visit our OverDrive website to download the apps or software.

All summaries are from and

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New Releases 7/18

Kong: Skull Island
Free Fire
The Promise
Elijah’s Ashes
Tommy’s Honour
Nature’s Great Race
Poverty: Politics and Profit
Second Chance Kids
Fight for Space
Ukraine on Fire
Shark Week: Shark ‘N’ Awe Collection
Great Yellowstone Thaw: How Nature Survives

T.V. Series
Grantchester, Season 3
The 100, Season 4
The Expanse, Season 2

Ultralife by Oh Wonder
Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star
Out in the Storm by Waxahatchee
Anthems for the Apocalypse by Jonathan Jackson & Enation
Quazarz Vs. The Jealous Machines by Shabazz Palaces
Night & Day by The Vamps
The Queen of Hearts by Offa Rex

The Breakdown by B. A. Paris
Blame by Jeff Abbott
The Late Show by Michael Connelly
Look Behind You by Iris Johansen & Roy Johansen

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Free YA Audiobooks Week Twelve

It’s Week Twelve of SYNC’s YA audiobook giveaway!

SYNC is providing two YA audiobook downloads per week until August 16th. The current titles are available until July 19th, and while the title availability is time-limited, your listening time is not. Once you have downloaded the MP3 files, the audiobook is yours to listen to at your leisure.

Download this week’s pairing of free YA audiobooks!

The Dorito Effect
by Mark Schatzker
Read by Chris Patton
Published by Dreamscape Media

Summary: Mark Schatzker shows us how our approach to the nation’s number one public health crisis has gotten it wrong. The epidemics of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes are not tied to the overabundance of fat or carbs. Instead, we have been led astray by the growing divide between flavor – the tastes we crave – and the underlying nutrition. Since the late 1940s, we have been slowly leeching flavor out of the food we grow. Simultaneously, we have taken great leaps forward in technology, allowing us to produce in the lab the very flavors that are being lost on the farm. Thanks to this largely invisible epidemic, seemingly healthy food is becoming more like junk food: highly craveable but nutritionally empty. We have unknowingly interfered with an ancient chemical language -flavor – that evolved to guide our nutrition, not destroy it.


by Deirdre Riordan Hall
Read by Tara Sands
Published by Brilliance Audio

Summary: Sugar Legowski-Gracia wasn’t always fat, but fat is what she is now at age seventeen. Not as fat as her mama, who is so big she hasn’t gotten out of bed in months. Not as heavy as her brother, Skunk, who has more meanness in him than fat, which is saying something. But she’s large enough to be the object of ridicule wherever she is: at the grocery store, walking down the street, at school. Sugar’s life is dictated by taking care of Mama in their run-down home—cooking, shopping, and, well, eating. A lot of eating, which Sugar hates as much as she loves. When Sugar meets Even (not Evan—his nearly illiterate father misspelled his name on the birth certificate), she has the new experience of someone seeing her and not her body. As their unlikely friendship builds, Sugar allows herself to think about the future for the first time, a future not weighed down by her body or her mother. Soon Sugar will have to decide whether to become the girl that Even helps her see within herself or to sink into the darkness of the skin-deep role her family and her life have created for her.


Downloading Tips:
The OverDrive Media Console will deliver SYNC summer audiobooks to you via Overdrive Media Software installed on your computer (compatible with Windows and Mac) or through the Overdrive or Libby app on your mobile device (compatible with iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 8, Kindle, Nook, and MP3 players).
Visit our OverDrive website to download the apps or software.

All summaries are from

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Build a Better World: Create a Soundtrack for Your Favorite Book

For Summer Reading 2017, one of the squares on the Build a Better World Bingo Card is “Create a Soundtrack of Your Favorite Book.” I put together Spotify playlists based on two of my favorite books. Check them out below and create your own playlist on Spotify to fulfill that particular bingo square!

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Eleanor & Park takes place in the late 80’s, and music plays a huge part in the story line. The 1980’s punk-rock scene was well before my time, but I still enjoyed listening to specific songs as they were mentioned throughout the book.  Some bands and musicians which were mentioned throughout Eleanor & Park are: Joy Division, Elvis Costello, Bryan Adams, Danzig, The Smiths, Simon & Garfunkel, The Smithereens, U2, The Beatles, and many more!

Rainbow Rowell also put together her own soundtrack which can be found on her website here!


The Raven Boys (Book #1 of The Raven Cycle Series) by Maggie Steifvater

Some of the artists featured on this album, which you can check out at the library, are: The Fray, Imagine Dragons, Fleetwood Mac, Fall Out Boy, Halsey, Hozier, and Twenty One Pilots.

Maggie Stiefvater put together a list of songs she was inspired by, while writing The Raven Cycle series. Check out her list here!



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New Releases 7/11

Smurfs: The Lost Village
Their Finest
The Fate of the Furious
The Lost City of Z
Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer
A Quiet Passion
A Woman, A Part
American Fable
Alive and Kicking
Mimi and Dona
The Penguin Counters
Contemporary Color

T.V Series
The Tunnel: Sabotage, Season 2
Prime Suspect: Tennison
My Mother and Other Strangers
The Magicians, Season 2
Underground, Season 2

A Walk with Love & Death by The Melvins
Every Valley by Public Service Broadcasting
American Grandstand by Rhonda Vincent and Daryle Singletary
Hug of Thunder by Broken Social Scence
Something to Tell You by Haim
Music in My Heart by Charley Pride
Boo Boo by Toro Y Moi

Down a Dark Road by Linda Castillo
Some Kind of Hero by Suzanne Brockman
House of Spies by Daniel Silva
Hello, Sunshine by Laura Dave
I Need a Lifeguard Everywhere But the Pool by Lisa Scottoline & Francesca Serritella

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New Releases 7/4

The Zookeeper’s Wife
Song to Song
You Can’t Have It
Don’t Be Bad
Food: Delicious Science

Lany by Lany
My Love Divine Degree by Cody Chesnutt
Gravebloom by The Acacia Strain
Hydrograd by Stone Sour
Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1 by Calvin Harris
The Storm by ZZ Ward
1967: Sunshine Tomorrow by The Beach Boys
London Southern by Jim Lauderdale

A Game of Ghosts by John Connolly
His Guilt by Shelley Shepard Gray

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The Curse of Elvis? You Be the Judge

One would think that getting a leading lady gig in a 1960s Elvis Presley movie would lead to something.  However, if the actress in question hadn’t already started her cinematic career and had some buzz, appearing with Elvis didn’t amount to much.  Naturally talent, a competent agent, persistence and luck played their part in achieving and maintaining stardom, whether or not you were in an Elvis film.

Those who failed or perhaps were not fanatical about their careers enough to leverage their presence in an Elvis vehicle into long-term, big-screen stardom included Joan Blackman (Kid Galahad), Blackman and Jenny Maxwell (Blue Hawaii), Laurel Goodwin (Girls! Girls! Girls!), Pamela Austin, Cynthia Pepper (Kissin’ Cousins), Joan Freeman (Roustabout), Jocelyn Lane (Tickle Me), Mary Ann Mobley (Harum Scarum), Shelley Fabares (Spinout and Clambake), Pat Priest (Easy Come, Easy Go), Donna Douglas (Frankie and Johnny), Susanna Leigh and Marianna Hill (Paradise, Hawaiian Style), Michele Carey (Live a Little, Love a Little), Annette Day (Double Trouble), Nancy Sinatra (Speedway), and Marlyn Mason (The Trouble with Girls).  It didn’t help that Elvis, who could have done so much more himself, was kept from even trying by his guru, Colonel Parker.  As a result, Elvis’ films became ever weaker as the decade came to a close.

Sometimes there was no expectation of superstardom via Elvis.  Anne Helm was his leading lady in 1962’s Follow That Dream (released in April), but she’d been very busy that year: The Couch (February), The Magic Sword (April), The Interns (August).  (The Swingin’ Maiden was a 1962 British film released in the U.S. in December, 1963.)

In April of this year Ms. Helm responded to a question about Follow That Dream:

I know there were quite a few names up for the part when I tested for it.  I loved the part but really didn’t think I would get it because of some of the names attached to it, one being Tuesday Weld.  I can’t remember the other ones.  I never really thought about future ambitions in those days.  God I was so young.  I think I was more intent on my prince coming along at that time of my life.  My career as an actress was not motivated by a lot of ambition, although I was always glad to be working.  Looking back now I see it all as a grand play unfolding and I just showed up…so happy to be working.  How lucky was I to have played so many different roles.


Three actresses not affected positively or negatively by being in a 1960s Elvis movie were Joan O’Brien, Stella Stevens and Ann-Margret.  O’Brien, a successful singer, transitioned into actress and had significant roles on TV and in Operation Petticoat (1959), The Alamo (1960) and It’s Only Money (1962) before playing opposite Elvis in It Happened at the World’s Fair (1963).  Stevens played opposite Elvis in Girls! Girls! Girls! (1962), but her cinematic career had begun in 1959 and included roles in Li’l Abner, The Blue Angel, and Say One for Me.  She was a Playboy centerfold in 1960 (another venue that rarely led to a significant acting career) and that same year guested on five TV series.  She was on her way and had a solid film career through the decade and beyond (The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, The Nutty Professor, The Silencers, The Ballad of Cable Hogue, Slaughter, The Poseidon Adventure).  Like Stevens, before she costarred with Elvis in 1964’s Viva Las Vegas, Ann-Margret had a big-screen career on the fast track:  Pocketful of Miracles (1961), State Fair (1962), and Bye, Bye Birdie (1963).  She was a multi-talented performer who could hold her own with The King.

Further corroboration that his leading ladies got short shrift is that except for a small frame of the prime cast in Kissin’ Cousins, they did not appear on the cover or reverse of Elvis’ soundtrack albums.  This includes the legendary Barbara Stanwyck (Roustabout).  The King Creole (1958) soundtrack reverse does feature a few black and white photos that include Carolyn Jones.  One can only surmise Colonel Parker demanded every column of space devoted to his protégé.

By Kim


Anne Helm email to author, April 18, 2017.  Helm made 77 guest appearances on 1960s TV series, from Route 66 to Gunsmoke, from Run for Your Life to Hawaii Five-O.  Her pal Yvonne Craig, who in addition to her role in Elvis’ Kissin’ Cousins briefly appeared at the beginning of his It Happened at the World’s Fair (1963), also had over 70 guest starring roles on 60s TV, including her stint as Batgirl on Batman.

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by | July 10, 2017 · 3:08 pm