Saturday, April 12, 2014

QR Hunt Clues

HUH?! Do you have absolutely no idea what this is about? It's part of our QR Hunt, which starts tomorrow (Sunday) at the Collinsville Library and on Tuesday at the Fairmont City Library! Stop by the Main Desk to register. One lucky competitor will win a Chromebook next Saturday!

Monday, April 07, 2014

Top Ten Reasons Why We Will Miss Jessica

Adult Services Librarian Jessica Lawrence will say goodbye to the MVLD on April 15th, as she prepares to start a new job in her home state of Indiana. In honor of her departure we have compiled a list of the top ten reasons our library will miss Jessica.

#10 - Kyla's new husband is not named Kyla.
#9 - We only have the other kind of Hoosier on staff now.
#8 - Patrons really enjoyed discussing The Mentalist with her.
#7 - PNG Turkey Shoot - Cancelled.
# 6 - That's $10 less for Theo to win in our annual Oscar pool.
#5 - A sump pump may be the only practical remedy for some wet basements, particularly those where water is forced up through the floor by a fluctuating water table or during severe storms.
#4 - She made all of her subordinates refer to her as Priscilla the Hardcover Librarian.
#3 - Three words - SUGAR CREAM PIE!
#2 - Now who is going to dress like Stevie Nicks?
#1 - Obviously, the ladies.

Posted by Grahm Underwood, Library Clerk

Saturday, April 05, 2014

April 5

Grunge rocker Kurt Cobain committed suicide on this day in 1994. His body was not discovered until April 8th however, when an electrician came to his house to install security lighting. The electrician promptly called 911, right after contacting a local radio station to inform them of the situation. Cobain had attempted suicide a month earlier in Rome, and released songs like "I Hate Myself and Want to Die" with his band Nirvana, so news of the suicide was not exactly shocking. Still his wife, the ever tasteful Courtney Love, thought that it would help fans process Cobain's death if she publicly read his suicide letter, while adding her own color commentary. The letter itself focuses quite a lot on empathy, although it is never really clear if Cobain feels that this is a quality of which he has too much or not enough. Of course, most people who commit suicide are probably pretty confused, but very few sell over 75 million records.


Key Library Checkouts:

Kurt Cobain: About A Son - This documentary is both revelatory and haunting. Cobain himself provides all of the film's narration thanks to over 25 hours of audio-taped interviews that writer Michael Azerrad compiled when working on his book "Come As You Are: The Story of Nirvana".

Nevermind by Nirvana – 20 years of modern rock ubiquity has certainly taken a toll, but this record still sounds pretty great. 

Posted by Grahm Underwood, Library Clerk

Monday, March 31, 2014

Film Review - The Lego Movie

The idea of a big budget Hollywood movie based on toy building blocks that are over sixty years old sounds ludicrous on the surface. It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise then that the execution is suitably zany, imaginative, and off-the-walls wacky. The Lego Movie is fun for both the young and young-at-heart, making it the perfect family movie and a treat for all ages.

Lego has come to be one of the most powerful brands in entertainment with tie-ins to the biggest franchises around, such as Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings, and a slew of DVD releases and video games. Most of the A+ top-tier brands, from Star Wars to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, at least make a cameo in The Lego Movie. Poetically, in a movie filled with such an awe-inspiring all star line up of beloved fictional characters, it is a little ordinary “yellow guy” lego man who is the most relatable character and the hero of the story.

The Lego Movie’s plot is so steeped in humor and subtlety that a synopsis doesn’t do it justice. Needless to say all the elements of a grand adventure story are at work with epic spectacle, explosive action, and even heart tugging emotion coming in to play. For a fun children’s movie there is a surprising amount of depth to The Lego Movie.

At first it is a little jarring to have everything on screen, from the locations to the characters, represented by the famous little cubes. However the characters are so likable and the animation so gorgeous that the novelty remains inspired throughout and never felt like a gimmick.  The visuals are beautiful and unique, offering a trademark look for the inevitable ensuing franchise.

There is already a video game and toy line. A sequel has been announced and with all the television Lego already does a spin-off show is likely. The Lego Movie has already successfully created an encompassing world for all of its star power and thus solidified an empire.

Grade: B

Posted by Terry Pierson, Library Clerk

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

March 26

On this day in 1969 author John Kennedy Toole committed suicide by running a garden hose from his car's exhaust pipe into its window. Toole is best known for his comedic masterpiece A Confederacy of Dunces, a novel he completed in 1964 but was unable to get published in his lifetime. It was not until 1980, eleven years after his suicide, that A Confederacy of Dunces was finally published. A year later Toole was posthumously awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Being dead made it difficult for Toole to follow up on the success of Dunces, and it was another nine years before his second and final novel The Neon Bible was released.

Key Library Checkouts:

A Confederacy of Dunces - Rory Gilmore once flirted in front of a poster of this book's cover. There is no greater endorsement.

The Neon Bible - Toole was just 16 years old when he wrote this coming of age novel. It holds up incredibly well though, and a film adaptation was even made in 1995.

Posted by Grahm Underwood, Library Clerk

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Friends of the Library Book Sale

Grab your reading list and join us at the Collinsville Public Library for our Friends of the Library Book Sale, which offers books, records, videos and more all ready for you to take home!  Held every other month throughout the year, this book sale offers hundreds of items on every subject including biography, romance, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and cook books to name just a few! Our sale dates for 2014 are Tuesday March 25th, May 27th, July 22nd, September 23rd, and November 25th, from 9-8pm. Please call 618-344-1112 for more information.

Posted by Jessica Lawrence, Librarian

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Page to Screen

On the main floor of the library we are currently showcasing a display called “From Page To Screen” which features stories that have crossed mediums between book and film. In most cases it was a bestselling or highly acclaimed book that received the “Hollywood treatment” years after its release but there are also a few novelizations of narratives that sprung from cinema. All genres and reading levels are included, from Harry Potter to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Stop in today and check out a bundle and have fun analyzing how the art of storytelling differs between mediums.
Here are just a few of the titles available on display:

Harry Potter
In print Harry Potter is one of the most successful series of all time, breaking countless records and igniting a mainstream popular culture frenzy like few other brands in any medium ever have. The unparalleled success of the books was nearly matched by the box office shattering reception of the movies. Most fans seem thoroughly satisfied concerning the transition from page to screen, perhaps with an understanding that considering the massive size of the books there was never a chance the story could be copied verbatim. 

The Hunger Games
The Hunger Games trilogy was always well received but there is no doubt that the book series exploded in popularity following the release of the 2012 film starring Jessica Lawrence.  While the trio of books were all on the New York Times best seller list prior to the film adaptation, only a few months after the ground shattering success of the movie announced that the series by Suzanne Collins surpassed the Harry Potter series to become its top seller. The second film, Catching Fire, was the highest grossing film in 2013 with more than 400 million dollars in domestic revenue alone.

The Dark Knight
In recent years superheroes have become almost more synonymous with the big screen than their pioneering yet comparatively humble roots in graphic novels, aka comic books. Many reading careers start in the company of heroes like Superman and Spider-Man and considering the genres nearly century old history there is no denying its significance in print narrative. However the heroes have blossomed with the times and their high octane, special effects laden adventures are perfectly suited to the fast paced, high stakes, spectacle driven blockbusters summer audiences crave. Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight is arguably the pinnacle of this courtship and is most inspired by Jeff Loeb’s Dark Victory.

The Da Vinci Code
Dan Brown’s professorial super sleuth Robert Langdon is a character born for the big screen. Langdon’s episodic adventures take him to exotic and famous locales all over the world in pursuit of mystery and adventure. Cinema characters like Indiana Jones and James Bond (sorry Ian Fleming, Bond belongs to film now) are clear components in the character’s make up. The overwhelming success of Langdon’s adventures at the box office and a string of copycat historical adventure films like National Treasure are evidence to the concept’s staying power with audiences.

Life of Pi
Life of Pi is a fantasy adventure unlike any other. In both book and film the story’s heavy themes of spirituality, isolation, and death are in contrast to its remarkable imagery, high stakes action, and sometimes playful tone. A string of writers and directors falling through on the production of the film adaptation led some to call the story “unfilmable”. Any thought of that was subsequently silenced when the film, directed by Ang Lee, grossed more than 600 million dollars and won four out of eleven Academy Award nominations.


These are just a few of the beloved stories that have made the jump from page to screen. Other favorites on display include The Lord of the Rings, The Help, The Devil Wears Prada, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Twilight, and many more. Stop in today to check out a book and movie bundle!

Posted by Terry Pierson, Library Clerk