Author Archives: Jamie

Multimedia Roundup: Top Titles of 2017

Here are the most popular Multimedia titles checked out at Chester County Library and the Henrietta Hankin Branch this year!*

DVDs1
Moana
La La Land
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Sully
The Girl on the Train

Adult Books on CD
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Adult Music CDsblue-and-lonesome
25 by Adele
Blue & Lonesome by The Rolling Stones
Now That’s What I Call Music! 60
1989 by Taylor Swift
Now That’s What I Call Music! 59

eBooks
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
The Goldfinch by Donna TarttGoldfinch
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by Jack Thorne
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

eAudiobooks
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter
You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
1984 by George Orwell

 

 

*Source: http://chescolibraries.org/news/most-popular-titles-2017

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, DVDs, eAudiobooks, eBooks, Movies, OverDrive

Jamie’s Staff Picks for November

Big Little Liesbig little lies

I love the fact that this is a miniseries and I am kind of hoping that they do not make a second season, as is rumored (though I’m sure I would watch anyway). Since it’s based on a book and the “first” season completely covers the material, there’s a concrete beginning, middle and end. No need to mess with something so perfect as this! The plot is enticing, and you will find yourself theorizing on the various mysteries going on amongst the children and parents of Otter Bay Elementary. The acting is fantastic; Nicole Kidman got a lot of attention for the series, but I found Reese Witherspoon’s Madeline to be the most compelling. The Monterey scenery with its beautiful bay views from these women’s luxury homes will make you want to get up and move there immediately (if only we could all afford it). The best part about this series, however, is the soundtrack and the innovative way the music is integrated into the action of the show. This was definitely one of my favorite TV shows of 2017.

The Ocean at the End of the Laneocean at the end of the lane.jpg
by Neil Gaiman

A fantastical and somewhat terrifying allegory for childhood. A small boy finds magic, wonder, and terror all contained within the country lane on which he lives. The story reminded me so much of how big a world the street that I lived on seemed as a child and the endless possibilities for adventure and discovery that my neighbors and I found there. I found myself believing that the narrator was truthful about what had happened to him, but at the same time… maybe it was just an elaborately imagined tale to cope with different things going on in his life, something that he convinced himself was real? Each scenario is somehow plausible, and the dual possibilities make the text even more interesting. I don’t think this story is extremely scary, but don’t be fooled by the fact that the protagonist is seven years old. This does not preclude him from danger, even from those who are supposed to protect him. A great tale for dark and cold winter!

Also available as an ebook and eaudiobook on OverDrive and Libby.

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, DVDs, eAudiobooks, eBooks, OverDrive, TV, TV review

Jamie’s Staff Picks for October

The Guestthe guest

Summary: A soldier introduces himself to the Peterson family claiming to be a friend of their son who died in action. After the young man is welcomed into their home, a series of accidental deaths seem to be connected to his presence.

One of my favorite movies for Halloween! This movie isn’t really scary (which is probably one of the reasons why I like it), but it plays on horror movie tropes in the best way. Dan Stevens is decidedly not the Dan Stevens you know from Downton Abbey in this movie, and I think I love him more this way. His character has a Midwestern drawl, never seems to blink, is unfailingly charming in a creepy way, and is a Bond-worthy action villain. I also love Maika Monroe in this movie, and the way that it employs the “kids solve the mystery” trope from sci-fi and adventure movies, even if this movie is really not for kids and Monroe’s character isn’t really a kid (but she’s not the parent! And that’s all that matters). The way the soundtrack is woven into the film is fantastic, but if you don’t think you’d like lots of pulsing ’80s-esque electronica, then you may not enjoy it. I highly recommend this as background viewing while you answer the door for trick-or-treaters.

Graveyard Whistlinggraveyard whistling
Old 97’s

This newer release from the Old 97’s has their signature rockabilly sound but the lyrics are generally much darker than their usual fare. Still a highly enjoyable, solid record from this group that has been at it for so long! Rhett Miller is one of the best frontmen in the business.

Leave a comment

Filed under DVDs, Movies, Music

New Releases 10/17

Moviesspiderman
Spider-Man: Homecoming
Girls Trip
Lady Macbeth
Landline
Shot Caller
The Real Story: Saving Private Ryan
America: Promised Land
The Skyjacker’s Tale
Farewell Ferris Wheelthe collection

TV Series
The Collection
Marcella, Season 1
American Gods, Season 1

Music
Beautiful Trama by P!nk
Colors by Beck
Add Violence by Nine Inch Nailspink
Queens of the Breakers by The Barr Brothers
WOW Christmas Volume 1
Carry Fire by Robert Plant
Mr. Davis by Gucci Mane
Christmas Together by The Tenors
Our Christmas Wish by The Ten Tenors

Audiobooks
Deep Freeze by John Sandfordit devours
It Devours! by Joseph Fink
Killing Season by Faye Kellerman
Lilac Lane by Sherryl Woods
Endurance by Scott Kelly
Leonardo da Vinci by Walter Isaacson
We’re Going to Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, Movies, Music, New Releases, TV

Nobel Prize in Literature 2017: Kazuo Ishiguro

 

Congratulations to author Kazuo Ishiguro, who has been named this year’s winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature! Ishiguro was chosen for his “novels of great emotional force… [he] has uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world” (The Nobel Prize in Literature 2017).

If you’d like to become familiar with this newly-minted Nobel Laureate, you can check out one of his books on CD. We also have also have ebooks and eaudiobooks available via OverDrive, which you can access using the OverDrive or Libby apps, or via https://chester.overdrive.com/. Enjoy!

 

“The Nobel Prize in Literature 2017”. Nobelprize.org. Nobel Media AB 2014. Web. 10 Oct 2017. <http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/2017/index.html&gt;

Images from http://catalog.ccls.org/.

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, eAudiobooks, eBooks, OverDrive

Jamie’s Staff Picks for September

The Graveyard Bookthe graveyard book
by Neil Gaiman
Read by Neil Gaiman

Summary: Nobody Owens is a normal boy, except that he has been raised by ghosts and other denizens of the graveyard.

I think any Harry Potter fan would really enjoy this book. Orphaned boy? Check. Mysterious prophecy? Check. Magical underworld? Check. Someone out to kill said orphaned boy? Check. My only criticism is that I think Gaiman could go into more depth with world-building in this book, and I’m hoping he’ll eventually write a sequel (or sequels?) so that he can. I enjoyed Gaiman’s narration and the voices he did for the different characters; whenever I think of the name “Nobody Owens,” I now think of it in Gaiman’s British accent. There’s also something great about listening to characters express their lines in a book in the way that the author imagined it. Definitely worth checking out no matter what age you are!

Also available as an ebook and audiobook using the Libby and OverDrive apps here.

Episodesepisodes

Summary: Husband and wife writing team Sean and Beverly can’t wait to bring their successful British television series across the pond to make it big in America. But in true Hollywood fashion, it quickly becomes a laughable, cliched sitcom starring Matt LeBlanc who not only messes with their beloved show, but rocks the foundation of their relationship. So now, even if they survive the absurdity of show business, will their marriage survive Matt LeBlanc?

Matt LeBlanc must feel pretty vindicated that this show has gotten great critical reception after his disastrous Joey spinoff. He plays a fictionalized version of himself in a timeline where he just kept going from bad project to bad project after Joey, rather than taking a break and being more selective as he did in real life. He is driven by the desire to be taken seriously, but often finds himself accepting projects for the money. This version of LeBlanc is a less lovable Joey Tribbiani, and this show in general is far more cynical than Friends ever was. It really demonstrates that LeBlanc has great comedic range, however. Joey tended toward more bombastic and expressive outbursts, while the fictional LeBlanc is far more subdued but still funny. It also helps that the show is well-written and the other cast members are great– I was a fan of Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Greig from the excellent show Green Wing, and have also really enjoyed Kathleen Rose Perkins’ character Carol. Also, like all good shows, this one knows when to exit: the last season is airing now.

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, DVDs, eAudiobooks, eBooks, OverDrive, TV, TV review

Jamie’s Staff Picks for August

Veepveep

Summary: ” Former Senator Selina Meyer was a charismatic leader and a rising star in her party with her eye on the White House, then she became Vice President. VEEP follows the whirlwind day-to day existence of Vice President Meyer as she puts out political fires, juggles a busy public schedule and demanding private life, and defends the President’s interests, even as she tries to improve her dysfunctional relationship with the Chief Executive.”

A wonderfully irreverent, cringingly funny show about a power-hungry, self-absorbed politician and her bumbling staff. I was almost going to call Selina and her staff “inept,” but that doesn’t really describe it. In some ways they are surprisingly skilled, but I think they are all generally so busy trying to look good and one-up others, and get so caught up in the heart-racing insanity of running the country, that they make many, many, missteps. By the same token, though, they often find themselves bumbling their way to a win. Watching VEEP is sort of like tossing a coin to predict how these horrible people are going to come out of whatever predicament they are in. However, I think what really keeps me watching, other than the amazing performances and right-on comedic timing of this ensemble cast, is the colorful and creative insults that they throw at one another. This Office of the Vice President would be a terrible place to work if you were in it, but it’s oh-so-entertaining to watch.

If you like VEEP and are looking for something similar, we also have Armando Iannucci’s British political TV show, The Thick of It, and similarly-structured movie (which is great), In the Loop.

Southeasternsoutheastern
Jason Isbell

Jason Isbell has been quite open about his struggles with alcoholism, and this album seems to address those struggles, but not in an obviously autobiographical way. Each song tells the story of a different character, addressing different aspects of life that I think Isbell can relate to as he fights his daily battle to stay sober. If you enjoy the more alternative rock side of country music, then I highly recommend checking this album out.

Leave a comment

Filed under Albums, Country Music, DVDs, Music, TV, TV review

Final Week of Free YA Audiobooks

It’s the sixteenth and final week of SYNC’s YA audiobook giveaway!

SYNC is providing two YA audiobook downloads per week until August 16th. The current titles are available until August 16th, 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!

Shadowshaper
by Daniel José Older
Read by Anika Noni Rose
Published by Scholastic Audiobooks

Summary: When the murals painted on the walls of her Brooklyn neighborhood start to change and fade in front of her, Sierra Santiago realizes that something strange is going on–then she discovers her Puerto Rican family are shadowshapers and finds herself in a battle with an evil anthropologist for the lives of her family and friends.

 

Metamorphosis
by Franz Kafka
Read by Martin Jarvis
Published by Naxos AudioBooks

Summary: Gregor Samsa, a seemingly typical man, wakes up one morning to discover he has been transformed into a gigantic insect. Frustrated and depressed about his physical alteration – and his family’s rejection – Samsa’s plight is filled with underlying meaning. This important literary work, written against the backdrop of increasing turmoil in central Europe, remains not just an extraordinary tale of imagination, but also a disturbing allegory.

 

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 http://catalog.ccls.org.

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, E-audiobooks, OverDrive

Free YA Audiobooks Week Fifteen

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

SYNC is providing two YA audiobook downloads per week until August 16th. The current titles are available until August 9th, 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!

Between Shades of Gray
by Ruta Sepetys
Read by Emily Klein
Published by Listening Library

Summary: In 1941, fifteen-year-old Lina, her mother, and brother are pulled from their Lithuanian home by Soviet guards and sent to Siberia, where her father is sentenced to death in a prison camp while she fights for her life, vowing to honor her family and the thousands like hers by burying her story in a jar on Lithuanian soil.

 

In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer
by Irene Gut Opdyke, Jennifer Armstrong
Read by Hope Davis
Published by Listening Library

Summary: Recounts the experiences of the author who, as a young Polish girl, hid and saved Jews during the Holocaust.

 

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 http://catalog.ccls.org.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, E-audiobooks, OverDrive

Free YA Audiobooks Week Fourteen

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

SYNC is providing two YA audiobook downloads per week until August 16th. The current titles are available until August 2nd, 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!

Airborn
by Kenneth Oppel
Read by David Kelly
Published by Full Cast Audio

Summary:  Matt, a young cabin boy aboard an airship, and Kate, a wealthy young girl traveling with her chaperone, team up to search for the existence of mysterious winged creatures reportedly living hundreds of feet above the Earth’s surface.

 

Shadows on the Moon
by Zoe Marriott
Read by Amy Rubinate
Published by Brilliance Audio

Summary: Trained in the magical art of shadow-weaving, sixteen-year-old Suzume, who is able to re-create herself in any form, is destined to use her skills to steal the heart of a prince in a revenge plot.

 

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 http://catalog.ccls.org.

Leave a comment

Filed under Audiobooks, E-audiobooks, OverDrive