Staff Choices

Posted by lsears on 08/13/15
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Right from the start with Nina George’s dedication of the book to her father I was under the spell of this novel. First published in German, it illustrates how beautiful language can be; nothing was lost in the translation. Some may find this tale a little fanciful, but this is one reason why I enjoyed it: to be taken on someone else’s journey yet find elements that resonate with me. This book is best read leisurely to savor the beautifully worded passages.

A Literary Apothecary is the name of a book store located on a barge floating on the Seine River in Paris owned by a man named Jean Perdu. His talent lies in his ability to intuit what his customers need to read rather than what they came in to get. Troubled for years mourning a lost love, lost time and a lost opportunity he unmoors his barge to travel to the south of France where his beloved Manon once lived to make peace with his decisions. Unexpectedly joining him is a young man from his apartment building, Max Jordan, who views Jean as a father figure. Max is a first time novelist who has experienced success too soon, too overwhelmingly fast.  He is both running from something and running toward something, just like Perdu. Another apartment building resident, Catherine, provides the catalyst for this trek and a renewed sense of hope for the future for Perdu. Along their way on the Seine, Perdu and Max meet others who help guide them and add flavor to their journey.
Nina George has created a winsome, imaginative story deftly wrought. Bonus material at the end of the book includes recipes typical of the Provence region of France and Perdu’s own Emergency Literary Pharmacy title recommendations. The author is also a writer’s rights advocate.
Posted by jfreier on 07/30/15
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The long awaited sequel to "Power of the Dog", Don Winslow's epic novel about the drugwars set in the 1970's. The author picks up the story starting in 2004 with DEA agent Art Keller back to kill drug lord Adan Barrera who has just escaped from a mexican prison, much like the real "El Chapo".
The story shows Keller's relationship working with the DEA and with the mexican authorities, who he never knows who he can trust. The corruption rises to the top of the Mexican government and the power and influence of the cartels is all encompassing.
The parrallel story Of Adan and the cartel families is just as fascinating and truly frightening. A truly great novel, the Godfather of the war on drugs.
Posted by jdunc on 07/30/15
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No Bro-Country here.
I love country music, but I am getting a little tired of hearing about trucks, cut off shorts, and beer in pop country that is on constant loop on the radio. What happened to classic country music? Chris Stapleton’s debut solo album, Traveller, brings real, gritty country music back to the mainstream. With roots in bluegrass and Southern rock, the former lead singer of the SteelDrivers, already has several songwriting accolades. His songs have appeared on albums for Tim McGraw, Dierks Bentley, and Darius Rucker.
From the title track, I was hooked "I’m just a traveller on this earth, Sure as my heart’s behind the pocket of my shirt, I’ll just keep rollin’ until I’m in the dirt”. His heartbreaking voice and raw feeling come through on the acoustic “Daddy Doesn’t Pray Anymore” and “Whiskey and You”. There are some really great Southern rock and blues inspired tracks as well.
Posted by bweiner on 07/29/15
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In 2014, science fiction fans were delighted to experience the debut of a new film, Interstellar, helmed by Christopher Nolan. This brilliant and inventive film dared to challenge our astronomical awareness and broaden our scientific knowledge to include the known and the predicted.
The story of Interstellar is familiar to fans of space movies. The Earth is no longer able to sustain human life, so scientists are constructing a plan to use a wormhole that will transport them to a planet habitable by humans. What makes this story different is the remarkable scientific integrity of the information presented.
This is where The Science of Interstellar comes in. This extraordinary book, written with flair and determination by theoretical physicist Kip Thorne, attempts to elucidate the complexities of the universe and make the science of this movie accessible to all.
Kip Thorne was the scientific collaborator who Christopher Nolan relied on to take the story to the brink of what we know and then move one step beyond. Thorne introduces us to the foundations of physics while guiding us through a universe of black holes and gravitational anomalies. There is also a section devoted to extreme physics; the conjecture of what may be yet to come.
In addition to all this, we are privy to some humorous anecdotes about Thorne’s brush with the rich and famous of Hollywood. Take a voyage into The Science of Interstellar, it will be a journey you will not regret.
Posted by Uncle Will on 07/24/15
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What does one say about a film that was made for less than 2 million dollars and has grossed over 14 million to date? This film had an extremely limited opening at the theaters, but the buzz it created was passed quickly via word-of-mouth. Soon it was opening all over the USA and drawing packed audiences.
It Follows is a different kind of horror/mystery/thriller.  There really isn't any blood or gore.  Its subject matter is quite controversial on several social levels. It isn't fast-paced, but moves more at a zombie-like creep.  What this film does have is goosebumposity.  There were several times, while watching, that I got the whole-body-shivers and progressive goosebumps that began at my toes and rapidly moved north.
This film isn't perfect, but it's perfect to watch on a late Friday night. Just make certain that there are two exits from where you are watching it. Just in case.
Posted by annetteb on 07/16/15
Are you a musician? Do you enjoy creating effective voiceovers to accompany your work? If so, the Shure SM57 microphone could be a great asset to your next project.
The SM57 is especially great for musical instrument pickup and vocals. It is an ideal microphone for live sound reinforcement and recording. The SM57 isolates the main sound source, while minimizing background.
In our studio setting, the SM57 can easily be used to record drums, guitar, and woodwinds.
According to, the SM57 possesses the following features:
  • Contoured frequency response for clean, instrumental reproduction and rich vocal pickup
  • Professional-quality reproduction for drum, percussion, and instrument amplifier miking
  • Uniform cardioid pickup pattern isolates the main sound source while reducing background noise
  • Pneumatic shock-mount system cuts down handling noise
  • Extremely durable under the heaviest use
  • Frequency response: 40 to 15,000 Hz
  • Replacement cartridge:  R57
Put the Shure SM57 to the test the next time you book one of our studio spaces
Posted by Kelley M on 07/14/15
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Two and a half months after the death of Harper Lee's sister and longtime lawyer/executor, it was announced that Go Set A Watchman would be released in the summer of 2015.  Over half a century after having been written, Go Set A Watchman was found in a Lee Family safety deposit box with a To Kill A Mockingbird book jacket hiding Go Set A Watchman.
Go Set A Watchman readers should keep in mind that Go Set A Watchman has been published with very little editing.  It was a "draft", but was never truly "finalized" by the author or even an editor. The author was asked to utilize Go Set A Watchman to write the To Kill A Mockingbird that we know today. So, this new novel is not actually a sequel to To Kill A Mockingbird.  Read it and tell us what you think of the book.  Whether you love Go Set A Watchman or find issues in the book that you'd like to discuss, please join us for a lively book discussion on Tuesday, August 18th at 10am or Thursday, August 20th at 7pm.  Register today!
Posted by lsears on 07/12/15
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How far would you go to help a stranger? On his way to work one day author Steve Lopez stops to listen to a disheveled, homeless man playing a battered violin on a busy, noisy city street corner. After introducing himself as a columnist for the Los Angeles Times to Nathaniel Ayers, he recognizes that this man is also suffering from mental illness. Despite this, there is a rumpled elegance to the man and a refinement to his playing. Lopez discovers Ayers was once a student at Julliard School of Performing Arts.
Lopez struggles with how much he can or should do. Over time Lopez writes several articles about Ayers.  The publicity brings an outpouring of support from readers, donations of instruments, offers of music lessons and some accusations of exploitation.
This is a memorable story that began with a chance encounter and develops into a friendship between two very different men. It shines a spotlight on mental illness, on vulnerable members of society, our responsibility to them and is a tribute to the human spirit.
This title is our Book Club on the Green selection. Please join us on Thursday, August 6, 7:30pm at Arlington Lakes Golf Club to discuss this book in depth.
Posted by annetteb on 07/09/15
Are you an artist? Do you love to share your creative work with others? Fantastic! And even if you're not an artist, drawing, painting, and mixed media effects will all feel much easier with a pen in hand.
With our Wacom pen tablets, you'll be able to use a pen and tablet through a mixed media approach, rather than having to deal with the expenses, supplies, and clean-up of traditional media. When you work on paper (or use traditional media), you may use pencils, ink, paintbrushes, several paints, chalk, or even an airbrush. Working with the Wacom pen and tablet lets you use these tools digitally! Our pen tablet is fluid, natural, and intuitive. Best of all, it beautifully mimics the work of creative output through traditional media tools. 
Our Wacom package is available for in-house use, and is best utilized with one of our studio spaces. The Wacom package includes a tablet, pen, stand, and USB cable. 
Posted by Ultra Violet on 07/08/15
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Who was the Arab that Meursault killed?
A parallel novel to Albert CamusThe Stranger, The Meursault Investigation gives an alternate perspective to the classic story. The brother of the murder victim tells his story and his family’s story as Arab Algerians living under the shadow of the French before and during independence. It is a beautifully told novel even if you have never read The Stranger, but as a companion to Camus; this is genius. Daoud uses the framework of the original story but tells it in a photo-negative style. Where Camus is terse, cold and logical; Daoud is obtuse, poetic and impassioned.
Like Camus, Daoud is a journalist. He lives in Oran, Algeria where The Stranger was set. Throughout The Meursault Investigation, it is apparent that Daoud is in awe of Camus’ skill, while resenting the treatment of Arabs in the classic novel. The psychological remnants of colonialism are painfully defined by the feeling of loss and dehumanization of the Arabs juxtaposed with their envy of the French Algerians.
I would recommend reading The Stranger first, but The Meursault Investigation is a brilliant novel that stands on its own and tells a story that is, unfortunately, still very relevant.
Want recommendations on what to read next? Email and we will be happy to assist you in finding a great book to read.
Browse our collection of eBooks and eAudiobooks and learn how to use them with your eReader, tablet, or computer.

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