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  • Ross Johnson 3:30 pm on 2018/01/10 Permalink
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    16 Books Coming to the Big Screen in 2018 

    People sometimes say that they’ll wait for the movie version. That’s not us—we look forward to the movie precisely because we loved the book so much. On that score, there’s a lot to look forward to in 2018. Here are 16 books coming to the screen this year.

    12 Strong, based on Horse Soldiers, by Doug Stanton (January 19)
    Led by Chris Hemsworth, this film follows Stanton’s non-fiction account of a small band of Special Forces who, vastly outnumbered, captured Mazar-i-Sharif in Afghanistan before finding themselves besieged. Michael Shannon and Michael Peña also star.

    Maze Runner: The Death Cure, based on the novel by James Dashner (January 26)
    The Maze Runner trilogy is set to conclude with this adaption of the final book (if you don’t count the ongoing prequel series). The truth behind WCKD and the tests will be revealed, but not before the Gladers run one more maze in the legendary Last City.

    Fifty Shades Freed, based on the novel by E. L. James (February 9)
    You know the score by now: Christian and Ana’s R-rated naughtiness is going to get complicated. Classed as an erotic psychological romantic thriller, the big finish sees the two happily married until Ana’s old boss begins stalking and threatening her, and Christian’s former dom and lover (played by Kim Basinger) pops back into town.

    The War with Grandpa, based on the novel by Robert Kimmel Smith (February 23)
    The multiple award-winning children’s novel is getting a film adaption with an all-star cast, including Robert DeNiro, Christopher Walken, and Uma Thurman. The novel is the story of Peter and the grandfather he adores—until grandpa comes to live with the family and takes over Peter’s room. From there, it’s war. With DeNiro in good form, it sounds like the movie will be fun.

    Every Day, based on the novel by David Levithan (February 23)
    Levithan’s young adult novel follows Rhiannon, a 16-year-old who develops a relationship with a traveling spirit named A. Every day, A wakes up in a different body and thus lives a variety of human experiences. Rhiannon encounters the traveller when A wakes up in the body of Justin, her troubled boyfriend. If the filmmakers can translate Levithan’s humanistic and empathetic style to the screen, it should do well.

    Annihilation, based on the novel by Jeff VanderMeer (February 23)
    Multi-talented director/novelist/screenwriter Alex Garland is helming the adaption of VanderMeer’s first Southern Reach novel. The series is all about the mystery of Area X, a region of the southern U.S. that’s been cut off for decades by a strange barrier. Each expedition into Area X has produced wildly different results and observations, with the most recent trip leaving only one grievously injured survivor, husband to a biologist played in the movie by Natalie Portman. She volunteers for a new expedition into the zone in order to figure out what exactly happened. There’s been some behind-the-scenes scuffling about the finished film being overly cerebral (and diverging greatly from the source material), but that doesn’t necessarily make for a bad film.

    Red Sparrow, based on the novel by Jason Matthews (March 2)
    Matthews’ novel goes deep into the intertwined worlds of Russian and American espionage to tell the story of Dominika Egorova, an operative trained from an early age in the arts of infiltration and seduction, and whose synesthesia allows her to see the world in unique ways. She might sound a bit like Marvel’s Black Widow, but there are no superheroics in Matthews world. Jennifer Lawrence stars.

    A Wrinkle in Time, based on the novel by Madeleine L’Engle (March 9)
    It’s not the first adaption of L’Engle’s beloved, influential, and controversial 1962 science fantasy novel, but this one should make a much bigger splash than the earlier television production. For starters, multiple-award winner Ava DuVernay is directing an all-star cast, led by Oprah Winfrey. Newcomer Storm Reid stars as Meg Murray, who fights to save her father from captivity on a distant planet.

    Love, Simon, based on Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, by Becky Albertalli (March 16)
    Greg Berlanti, best known these days for his work writing and producing the various DC shows on the CW, is directing the adaption of Albertalli’s coming-of-age story about a closeted high schooler coming to terms with his sexuality. Simon has an online relationship with a boy he knows as “Blue,” but the correspondence is uncovered by one of his classmates who blackmails Simon into setting him up with a girl named Abby.

    Ready Player One, based on the novel by Ernest Cline (March 30)
    Just a few months after the release of historical drama The Post, Steven Spielberg’s much-anticipated adaption of the Cline novel is coming to the big screen.  It’s the story of a dystopian future world in which there’s not much to do but hang out in a virtual space called the OASIS. The creator dies and promises ownership of the realm to anyone who can find his hidden easter egg. Like the book, the movie promises a plethora of 80s pop-culture references.

    Guernsey, based on The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows (April 20)
    Note to the producers: the original novel’s title is better, if tough to squeeze onto a marquee. Shaffer and Barrows popular novel introduces Juliet Ashton, a London writer looking for a new book subject following the Blitz. Unexpected correspondence draws her into the funny, eccentric, charming, and weird world of occupied Guernsey.

    Where’d You Go, Bernadette, based on the novel by Maria Semple (May 11)
    A new Richard Linklater film is always an event for true movie buffs. The Before Midnight/School of Rock/Boyhood director is taking on Semple’s funny, quirky novel about an agoraphobic mom who goes missing. Her daughter Bee, who had been preparing for a family trip to Antarctica, searches through documents and correspondence in order to figure out exactly what happened.

    Crazy Rich Asians, based on the novel by Kevin Kwan (August 17)
    Kwan intended his 2013 novel, based partly on his childhood in Singapore, to provide a contemporary view of Asian culture for Americans. Probably not a bad idea. It’s the story of a marriage between the incredibly rich Colin Khoo and his fashion icon fiancée. The original book has been followed by two sequels thus far, so a successful film could potentially kick off a franchise.

    Boy Erased, based on Boy Erased: A Memoir, by Garrard Conley (September 28)
    Conley’s 2016 memoir, describing his experiences in gay conversion therapy, serves as a testimonial to the dangers of such programs, as well as a nod toward the belief systems that encourage them. Conley was the son of a Baptist minister in a small town who was outed during college and pressured into conversion therapy. It didn’t go well. Lucas Hedges stars, with Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman as his parents.

    The Girl in the Spider’s Web, based on the novel by David Lagercrantz (October 5)
    Bear with me now: this is the fifth film adaption of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium series, about world-class hacker Lisbeth Salander and investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist. It’s based on the fourth book in the series, the first not to have been written by Larsson, but it’s also reboot of the David Fincher’s series of American adaptations, which only ever got around to adapting the first book. In short, it’s a whole new start, so don’t worry about it! The Crown’s Claire Foy takes over as Lisbeth, with Don’t Breathe director Fede Alvarez directing.

    First Man, based on First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong, by James R. Hansen (October 12)
    Hansen’s 2005 biography focuses largely on Armstrong’s life before and after the moon landing, charting his upbringing and involvement in the space program, as well as life as one of the most famous people in the world. Ryan Gosling and Claire Foy star.

    What’s on your book-to-movie calendar for 2018?

    The post 16 Books Coming to the Big Screen in 2018 appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Ross Johnson 8:30 pm on 2018/01/03 Permalink
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    The Best Biographies & Memoirs of January 2018 

    All-American Murder: The Rise and Fall of Aaron Hernandez, the Superstar Whose Life Ended on Murderer’s Row, by James Patterson and Alex Abramovich with Mike Harvkey
    One of the most shocking and sad sports stories of the past five years, the murder conviction and subsequent suicide of NFL superstar Aaron Hernandez left sports fans reeling. A young man who seemed to have it all was implicated in multiple killings, and thriller writer Patterson and company promise a thorough and unvarnished true-crime look at the real Hernandez, with accounts from those who knew him, a look at his hometown, and an account of his final days.

    When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir, by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and asha bandele
    Advocate, artist, and queer activist Patrisse Cullors was one of the principal founders of the Black Lives Matter movement following the 2013 acquittal of George Zimmerman for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. It’s hard to overstate the influence that movement has had on our culture in the years since, both as inspiration and flashpoint. She’s joined by author and fellow activist asha bandele to tell her personal story of BLM and to talk about the culture that necessitated it.

    Tell Me More: Stories About the 12 Hardest Things I’m Learning to Say, by Kelly Corrigan
    Corrigan structures a series of essays around some of the seemingly simple words and phrases that serve as gateways and barriers to communication. In her human and self-deprecating style, she examine the power of saying “no,” or “I don’t know,” or even “I was wrong.” If there’s ever been a need to think thoughtfully and compassionately about the ways in which we communicate, it’s now.

    The Monk of Mokha, by Dave Eggers
    McSweeney’s founder Eggers tells the true story of Mokhtar Alkhanshali, a San Franciscan child of Yemeni immigrants who became fascinated with Yemen’s rich history of coffee production. Traveling to his parent’s homeland, he became a student of coffee, visiting farms all of the country to collect samples and discover new means of cultivation with a goal of restoring a proud tradition and global market for Yemeni coffee. It was going well until 2015, when the Yemeni civil war broke out overnight, forcing Alkhanshali to attempt a daring escape. Those are just a few of the many layers to a fascinating true story.

    BRAVE, by Rose McGowan
    McGowan was born to members of the notorious Children of God cult before running away as a teenager and finding her way to Hollywood, where she quickly discovered that the sexism and exploitation of celebrity culture was a cult of its own. She’s been inspiration and provocateur ever since, unapologetically and controversially speaking her mind about Hollywood and her life as a female star. In the wake of her recent revelations about her abuse at the hands of Harvey Weinstein comes this frank memoir, which pulls no punches, and then some.

    Single State of Mind, by Andi Dorfman
    Bachelorette star Dorfman is back with a new memoir of life as a single celebrity in New York, pulling back the curtain on living as a reality star as well going behind the scenes on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. Described as a real-life Sex and the City, Dorfman’s book has everything that her legions of fans crave.

    Jackie, Janet & Lee: The Secret Lives of Janet Auchincloss and Her Daughters Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Lee Radziwill, by J. Randy Taraborrelli
    There are plenty of biographies about Jackie Kennedy Onassis, mostly centered around her marriages to JFK and Aristotle Onassis and her extraordinary and tragic term as First Lady. Taraborelli’s book shifts the focus to the family, particularly the mother who taught Jackie and her sister Lee to walk in the most rarified circles. A socialite, a First Lady, and a princess, these three women walked the corridors of power in the 20th century.

    Whose story intrigues you most?

    The post The Best Biographies & Memoirs of January 2018 appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Ross Johnson 5:00 pm on 2017/12/29 Permalink
    Tags: david zinczenko, fresh starts, , , keenan mayo, meditation for fidgety skeptics, melissa hartwig, , , the super metabolism diet, the whole30 fast & easy cookbook, the wisdom of sundays: life-changing insights from super soul conversations   

    7 Books for a New Year, New You 

    January is almost here! Now’s the time to get your resolutions on the fast-track with 7 books that will help you achieve a happier, healthier 2018.

    The Whole30 Fast & Easy Cookbook: 150 Simply Delicious Everyday Recipes for Your Whole30, by Melissa Hartwig
    Whole30 is all the buzz lately when it comes to fitness and healthy eating, refining a diet style based around eating unprocessed foods with minimal carbs, and eliminating sugars and alcohol. Which will be a lot easier now that the holidays are over, am I right? This new cookbook focuses on convenience, with recipes from Whole30 co-creator Hartwig designed to get you feeling right with minimal time in the kitchen.

    Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics: A 10% Happier How-to Book, by Dan Harris, Carlye Adler, and Jeffrey Warren
    Science has begun to back up the promise of meditation, with benefits that many of us could be enjoying. There are a lot of barriers, though, from misconceptions to confusion about where to begin. ABC News anchor Harris teams up here with meditation teacher Warren to take a cross-country journey exploring some of the myths that keep people from trying it out and interviewing people who’d like to try about why they haven’t. From it all emerges some simple, practical instructions about how to get started and why.

    The Whole30 Day by Day: Your Daily Guide to Whole30 Success, by Melissa Hartwig
    If you’ve started on the Whole30 program of eating minimally processed foods and cutting out sugars, or if you’re just interested, this book is designed to make it easy. It’s intended by program co-creator Hartwig as a daily guidebook to healthy eating; sort of like a portable eating coach. It’s got day-to-day reminders, tips, guidelines, as well as inspiration and ideas for tracking your progress and staying motivated.

    Bobby Flay Fit: 200 Recipes for a Healthy Lifestyle, by Bobby Flay, Stephanie Banyas, and Sally Jackson
    Bobby Flay’s method here is less about eliminating anything from your diet, and more about making the most of each meal. The idea being that you can make satisfying, flavorful recipes using lean protein, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables by knowing how to use your spice drawer. The balanced recipes utilize low-calorie flavor enhancers like rubs and marinades to jazz up meals, and Flay also offers up some satisfying breakfast, snacks, and smoothies as well as some fitness tips to keep your energy up and the weight off.

    The Little Book of Lykke: Secrets of the World’s Happiest People, by Meik Wiking
    Inspired by the happiness habits of his homeland of Denmark, Wiking set out to discover not just what makes Danes so generally happy, but what secrets could be found in other parts of the world. Focusing on six factors—togetherness, money, health, freedom, trust, and kindness—Wiking looks at what makes people content and satisfied all over the world, whether it’s by savoring a meal or dancing a tango. It’s full of tips based on Wiking’s journeys and research into what makes people happy, and how we can apply those lessons to our own lives.

    The Super Metabolism Diet: The Two-Week Plan to Ignite Your Fat-Burning Furnace and Stay Lean for Life!, by David Zinczenko and Keenan Mayo
    Eat This, Not That! author Zinczenko joins Keenan Mayo to provide a complete guide to getting your metabolism going in 2018. Many of us are feeling pretty sluggish this time of year, so it’s a good time to get things cranking. The book includes recipes and menus for keeping that engine going in-between meals, along with shopping guides and workouts. The focus is on balanced proteins and carbs as a way to feel full and full of energy.

    The Wisdom of Sundays: Life-Changing Insights from Super Soul Conversations, by Oprah Winfrey
    Going beyond just our bodies in 2018, Oprah’s new book collects some of the most extraordinary moments of insight and inspiration from her Super Soul Sunday television show. Authors, teachers, writers, and celebrities—people like Shonda Rhimes, Thich Nhat Hanh, Wayne Dyer, and Arianna Huffington share what they’ve learned about finding purpose and making connections in a busy world. The book includes several photographs, as well as an intimate essay from Oprah herself.

    What’s on your new you to-do list?

    The post 7 Books for a New Year, New You appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Ross Johnson 8:00 pm on 2017/11/01 Permalink
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    The Best Bios & Memoirs of November 2017 

    Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose, by Joe Biden
    The former vice president’s new memoir, his first since before entering the White House, covers an extraordinary and difficult year in the life of Biden’s family: the twelve months surrounding the decline and death of his son, Beau, from a malignant brain tumor in 2015. The book promises a portrait of life in and out of the White House during a year of political challenges and world travel, all while facing the loss of a son and navigating family responsibilities.

    Bobby Kennedy: A Raging Spirit, by Chris Matthews
    Following up his JFK biography, MSNBC anchor Matthews turns his eye on Bobby, whose impact on the 1960s was almost as great as his brother’s. In Matthews’ extensively researched book, it becomes clear that Bobby had the potential to go even further than Jack, having eschewed becoming a naval officer in favor of a joining on as a common sailor. Through that experience, he developed the skills that Matthews suggests lead him to connect with voters from all walks of life.

    Bannon: Always the Rebel, by Keith Koffler
    In 2017, there’s probably no more impactful political operative than former White House Chief Strategist Bannon. Not only did he help engineer Donald Trump’s upset victory, he was one of the key voices guiding the administration over much of its first year. Whether you feel that’s very good or very bad thing, there’s no question the man has had a stunning impact on American life. Bannon gave pundit Keith Koffler hours of exclusive insider access with which he’s crafted a portrait of the controversial and consequential figure’s life and ideas.

    Avedon: Something Personal, by Norma Stevens and Steven M. L. Aronson
    Over the course of a 60-year career, Richard Avedon became the worlds most famous fashion and portrait photographer. In all that time, he cultivated a carefully controlled image and an impenetrable mystique. This new biography, co-written by his longtime business partner and friend, provides an intimate portrait of the man and his studio. The book also includes interviews and reminiscences from many of the famous faces who Avedon photographed.

    Growing Up Fisher: Musings, Memories, and Misadventures, by Joely Fisher
    The multi-talented actor/singer/director Joely Fisher has an incredible Hollywood pedigree: daughter of Eddie Fisher and Connie Stevens,  next-door neighbor to Debbie Reynolds and her half-siblings, Carrie and Todd, she’s also managed an impressive career and a 20-plus-year marriage in a town where such things just don’t happen. In her new memoir, she reflects on her unconventional upbringing, her wide-ranging career, and the loss of her friend, sister, and mentor Carrie.

    President McKinley: Architect of the American Century, by Robert W. Merry
    Often overshadowed by the president who succeeded him, Theodore Roosevelt, there’s very little that’s conventionally sexy about the career of the 25th U.S. president. Robert W. Merry makes the strong case that there’s much more to the life story of this two-term executive than debates over the gold standard and a dramatic and prolonged assassination. The last president to have served in the Civil War, McKinley’s reconfiguration of American’s global relationships lead us away from colonialism into a more modern form of power, setting the stage for the entire 20th century.

    Franklin D. Roosevelt: A Political Life, by Robert Dallek
    Dallek’s career bona fides, dating back over 50 years, make him one of our indispensable presidential historians. Here he turns his eye on the second President Roosevelt, a figure whose legacy remains as relevant as ever. Dallek focuses on the things that make him so consequential: his ability to build consensus, and his willingness to put the presidency at the center of America’s political life. As an incredibly wealthy man who became a champion of the poor, Roosevelt was a study in contrasts with lessons that Dallek explores in this biography.

    Lenin: The Man, the Dictator, and the Master of Terror, by Victor Sebestyen
    The history of the early 20th century feels very present a century on, and it’s impossible to understand modern Russia with a grasp of the people and events surrounding the fall of the Empire and the rise of the Soviet Union. Central to that story is Lenin, whose life story is told here in the first major English-language biography in decades, drawing on new documents and papers only recently made available.

    A Good Life: Newspapering and Other Adventures, by Ben Bradlee
    During Bradlee’s tenure as executive editor at The Washington Post, the newspaper won eighteen Pulitzer prizes, evolving under his leadership into an essential source of news and investigative journalism. His classic memoir, reissued with a new foreword by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, covers the scope of his career, including the Watergate stories and the battles over the Pentagon Papers.

    Rasputin: Faith, Power, and the Twilight of the Romanovs, by Douglas Smith
    The life and death of Russian mystic, healer, and political consigliere Grigori Rasputin is shrouded in mystery and legend, and the true story has been incredibly hard to suss out. Douglas Smith gives it a go in this new biography, combining thorough new scholarship with documents that have long been forgotten or ignored. It’s not only the fascinating story of a pivotal and unique figure, but of the final days of imperial Russia.

    Whose story most intrigues you?

    The post The Best Bios & Memoirs of November 2017 appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Ross Johnson 7:00 pm on 2017/10/31 Permalink
    Tags: , , vinyl weekend 2017   

    Celebrate Vinyl Weekend 2017 at Barnes & Noble 

    LPs are back in a big way, and not just for hipsters. The harsh truth is, digital formats have yet to fully replicate the warm, natural sound of vinyl, which means there are truly great albums you simply haven’t heard unless you’ve put needle to record. B&N is celebrating the new age of vinyl the weekend of November 17-19 with 10 percent off offers, special in-store events, and select titles at 30 percent off. (There’s even a big discount on the B&N Exclusive Crosley Turntable bundle if you need something to get you started.)  Here are some of the albums we’ll be spinning on Vinyl Weekend.

    Charlotte’s Web
    The 1973 film version of Charlotte’s Web is almost as beloved as E.B. White’s book, losing none of the novel’s poignance, and adding in musical numbers by some of the biggest voice talents on the scene in the ‘70s. The late, great Debbie Reynolds heads up a cast that includes Paul Lynde, Agnes Moorehead, and Henry Gibson as Wilbur, the pig whose life is spared with the help of a particularly literate spider. That’s some talent right there. This B&N-exclusive edition features a pink LP with black webbing.

    The Thrill of It All, by Sam Smith
    Though it might be hard to believe, The Thrill of It All is only Smith’s second studio album, after 2014’s In the Lonely Hour. The singles we’ve heard so far suggest the singer has only gotten better, as his soothing and soulful voice soars over songs about lost love and relationships gone sour. Vinyl excels at capturing the nuances of this already legendary voice.

    Serenity [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack], by David Newman
    Making a perfect companion to vinyl edition of the Firefly TV soundtrack, this vinyl edition of David Newman’s film score for Serenity is a Barnes & Noble exclusive. Newman brings old west-style to a science fiction playground, peppering the score with western themes, but doesn’t skimp on the big action beats, nor on powerful emotion. Haunting themes for River Tam and for Serenity herself are among the highlights.

    Charlie Brown Christmas
    Given his pedigree in the hip west coast scene, San Francisco jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi must have seemed an odd choice to compose music for the ’60s-era Peanuts TV specials. Yet more than 50 years later, it’s impossible to think about Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Peppermint Patty, and the gang without hearing Guaraldi’s signature piano compositions. In addition to those iconic Peanuts tracks, this album includes a variety of Christmas standards, all given the cool, jazzy treatment. It’s a great album for Charlie Brown fans, and anyone looking to put a different spin on their holiday favorites. The B&N exclusive edition features a picture disc.

    Colors, by Beck
    The multi-talented Beck has dabbled in a variety of genres and styles, but his most recent work has been a little on the melancholy side. He puts that aside on the latest release, an album full of up-tempo, energetic tracks. We’ve been telling anyone who’ll listen that we need a little fun in our music right about now; thankfully, one of our most reliable musicians listened. The B&N exclusive edition features a unique album cover and white vinyl.

    Game of Thrones: Season 7 [Original TV Soundtrack], by Ramin Djawadi
    From the very beginning, Ramin Djawadi’s scores for Game of Thrones have been an essential part of each season of the series—so much so that entire concerts have been held just to showcase them. Who can’t hum that opening theme? Season seven is no different, and as the stakes have increased in the narrative, so has the drama in the music. This album begins by chronicling a dramatic journey to Dragonstone, and concludes with the ominous declaration that “Winter is Here.” Barnes & Noble’s exclusive edition features records swirling with fiery dragon’s breath orange hues.

    The post Celebrate Vinyl Weekend 2017 at Barnes & Noble appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

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