Welcome back to another round of recommendations from the Staff of your local library. This time, Head of Circulation Kelly Bennett is offering some picks as she makes preparations for this month's local music showcase: First Stop Fridays! Local singer/songwriters Amy Saari and Bobby McManus will perform in our Community Room, Friday evening. Our doors will open at 7pm -with music starting around 7:30 p.m. First Stop Fridays, a special program spearheaded by Bennett, a strong supporter of local music, is entering its 4th year of regular recitals. First Stop Fridays are free and open to the public - so come rock out inside the library; it's the one time we'll encourage raised decibels!
I didn’t know I had a theme until I finished this list. That theme seems to be “realness”. I admit to a certain obsession for realisticness when it comes to my entertainment, even if it’s fantasy. I think when it comes down to it, I have to believe the story even if the environment is out of this world.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
What can I say about this book…. It’s beautiful, it’s heartbreaking, it feels real. It’s a heck of a tome, but I relished every moment. I found myself yelling out loud in my car when something bad happened (I listened rather than read this book), and felt myself wishing for the return of characters that seemed to be gone. It’s not a light read, but it feels more accessible than either of Tartt’s other books.
Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson
Stephenson is known as one of the best in speculative fiction, but this hefty tale is less about a slick cyber-future and more about the beginnings of computer technology and cryptography. The large cast, which spans 50 years is surprisingly easy to follow. The real delight for me, and probably for other geeks was Stephenson’s little tangents on science, technology and sometimes random minutiae. His comic voice is dry and though it may take a moment to get the joke, you’ll be laughing out loud when you do.
The World’s End
NEW DVD COMEDY
The other end of the world movie from 2013, this is also the final installment of the so-called Cornetto Trilogy from Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and director Edgar Wright. The reveal, which I won’t spoil for you, is shocking in the best way. The characters are the most well-developed of the trilogy so far, and you just can’t help but wish for them to make it to that last pub.
Inside Llewyn Davis: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
NEW CD SOUNDTRACK INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS
I’m a folk junkie, so
this (mostly) understated collection of tunes is right up my alley. The star of
the film, Oscar Isaac, was born to sing this kind of music, and though I’ve
only seen previews, I’m going to assume he was born to play a folkie, as well.
Justin Timberlake is practically hiding on the album, going for a beautiful
straight delivery and harmonies. Standout tracks: “Fare Thee Well (Dink’s Song)”
featuring Marcus Mumford and Oscar Isaac is gorgeous; Punch Brothers’ “The Last
Thing on My Mind” is simple but heartbreaking; and “The Auld Triangle,”
presumably an actual folk song from days of yore is brimming with olde tymey
strife and ear-tingling harmonies.
If you’re a fan of true-to-life crime dramas, then you can’t go wrong with The Killing. In fact, one of the criticisms of the first two seasons of the show (there are currently three) is that they spend too much time on the same murder. I disagree. *Warning: Criminal Justice nerd alert* Actual detective and police work takes time. There’s a lot of people to talk to when investigating a murder! What the show does masterfully is expose the underbelly of everyone, including the investigators, who is caught up in the maelstrom of one girl’s murder.