Readers' Services

The Readers’ Services staff can help you find specific materials and can offer reading suggestions. Please phone (847) 448-8620 for assistance. Use Novelist, to find reviews, reading guides, and reading lists for fiction lovers.

Jupiter Ascending

titleJupiter Ascending. 2015. (DVD Sci-Fi Jupiter)

I wanted to see this movie because it had a lot of things going for it: Channing Tatum, Mila Kunis, Eddie Redmayne, it was filmed in Chicago, and...Channing Tatum.  But, alas, even Channing cannot pull off space werewolf.  Yeah – spoiler alert – he’s a “genomegeneered lycantant,” which is a genetically engineered human/wolf space.  Brought to you by the minds that developed The Matrix, Jupiter Ascending could have been good, but is gets bogged down in weird Russian family dynamics, drawn out fight sequences, and the business of harvesting humans.  The former and the latter of those have very little plot development.  Maybe, had they made it a trilogy and actually provided the background on the basics, like character, setting, and plot, it would have been good.  There were some interesting sci-fi ideas in there, but it was too much and too little all at the same time.  Save your time and watch The Fifth Element if you want an awesome sci-fi/romance/action movie.  (Kim - Reader's Services)



titleKingsman: The Secret Service. 2015. (DVD Action Kingsma)

I love James Bond movies (the ones with Pierce Brosnan, if you must know), so, naturally, I was very excited to this movie.  And it did not disappoint.  The Kingsmen are part of a privately funded, non-governmental spy agency operating out of London and the movie follows the newest class of recruits.  But this movie is haha funny, not weird funny.  It borderline spoofs spy movies, even referencing their ridiculous tendency to allows spies an inordinate amount of time to get out of life-threatening situations once they are caught.  But, then it goes a different direction with one bullet.  I really enjoyed this movie.  The only thing I could have lived without was the crude sexual comment/act at the end - which, normally, I’m all for, but it didn’t fit with the rest of the movie.  (Kim - Reader's Services)


The Bridge

titleThe Bridge. 2013-2014.  (DVD TV Bridge Season 1).

Last fall I binged on the Swedish/Danish version (the original) of this gripping, gritty, extremely addictive detective thriller. The American version does not disappoint at all. Almost point for point, the complex plots jive. On the bridge across the U.S.-Mexico border between El Paso and Juarez, a grisly murder is discovered. The body of a woman judge lies smack dab on the border--half in one country, half in the other-- requiring the police departments of both cities to collaborate on the case.  Sonya Cross, brilliantly portrayed by Diane Kruger, is the American detective. She's socially awkward and abrupt, maybe autistic. Marcos Ruiz, played by newcomer (to us) Damian Bichir is a people person and has methods that are way more relaxed. As the case plays out, more horrific murders are discovered, and a serial killer begins making demands. There's corruption, human trafficking, drugs, and coverups. Whether you see the U.S. version or the Swedish one, you'll be wowed by the quality of these TV series. Can't wait for season 2 of either of them.

(Wait, wait! This just in--there's an Anglo/French version out there in videoland called The Tunnel, but not available here yet. I'll keep tabs on that one, too.)

(Barbara L., Reader's Services)



Behind the Scenes at the Museum


Atkinson, Kate. Behind the Scenes at the Museum. 1995 (CD Fiction Atkin.K)

I just finished listening to this on CD and loved it so much, I'm listening to it again. Kate Atkinson's first novel won the 1995 Whitbread (now Costa) book of the year award, and ranks as one of my favorite fiction books ever. Beginning with the words "I exist”, this is the story of Ruby Lennox (“a precious jewel, a drop of blood”). It is also the story of five generations of Ruby's family from her great-grandmother Alice, to her grandmother Nell and then to her mother Bunty. Time, spanning World War I through the 1950s, plays a big role here (as it does in much of Ms. Atkinson’s work).

Read more: Behind the Scenes at the Museum


Five on Thursday: Dance Biographies


In celebration of Misty Copeland being named the first African American principal ballerina at the American Ballet Theater this week, here's a list of five great books about dancers:


1. Isadora: A Sensational Life by Peter Kurth

2. Mao's Last Dancer by Cunxin Li

3. Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina by Misty Copeland

4.The Making of Markova by Tina Sutton

5. Last Night on Earth by Bill T. Jones


Read these, and more, as part of the Read to the Rhythm: Summer Reading Program!


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