Page to Screen: Never mind The Dark Tower – here comes IT!

Okay, so the new film adaptation of Stephen King’s Dark Tower series wasn’t quite what we’d hoped for. Many fans of the books feel the film entirely missed the mark, while newcomers to King’s elaborate mythos wonder what all the fuss was about. As a film sequel seems unlikely and it may be some time until somebody brings this to big budget television where it naturally belongs, we suggest you try out the books. Better yet, listen to the audiobooks, masterfully read by Frank Muller and George Guidall over 145 hours, or as we call it in Seattle, a couple of months’ worth of commuting.

Continue reading “Page to Screen: Never mind The Dark Tower – here comes IT!”

Banned! Books in Drag

The Seattle Public Library is very excited for our upcoming event “Banned! Books in Drag” that will be taking place on September 27, 2014 at Neighbours Nightclub on Capitol Hill. This free event will be hosted by The Stranger’s associate editor David Schmader and will feature some of Seattle’s favorite drag performers and comics giving performances inspired by their favorite works of literature.

AleksaWe recently caught up with one of the performers, Aleksa Manila, and asked her about her early literary experiences, her favorite books, and why she’s excited to take part in this awesome Library event.

Here’s what she had to say!

Seattle Public Library: Aleksa, what was your first LGBTQ book? Continue reading “Banned! Books in Drag”

Long May You Run

Photograph courtesy of Rosemary Washington.

If the Solstice Parade and Pride festivities have you all worn out and you’re planning to take it easy next weekend, come on over to the Greenwood Car Show! Take a leisurely stroll down Greenwood Ave N. on Saturday, June 30th, where you’ll be able to drool over 1.5 miles of hot rods, collector cars, antique gems and modern masterpieces. While you’re there, swing by the Greenwood Library on 81st  and Greenwood Ave N., where we’ll be stocked up on car books and movies for all ages!

You can also get a head start by requesting some of these fun films today:

Photograph courtesy of Rosemary Washington.

Nothing says summer like a good old-fashioned car chase movie. The French Connection includes one of the most iconic car chases in film history, where a 1971 Pontiac Le Mans pursues an elevated train through Brooklyn. Or maybe it’s time to revisit Bullitt, in which Steve McQueen roars through the hills of San Francisco in a 1968 Ford Mustang, sealing his place as one of the coolest guys in film history. If you’re wondering where all the women are, look no further than Death Proof. One and a half hours of Quentin Tarantino’s trademark snappy dialogue concludes with one of the most thrilling and satisfying car chases ever. Honorable mention goes to the The Italian Job (1969), a silly British caper film involving three Mini Coopers. Compared to Mustangs and Pontiacs, these little cars are just so darn cute. Plus, they can weave through the buildings (and pipes!) of Turin like no other car can.

If one too many car chases has desensitized you to that kind of thrill, get your heart racing with a horror movie.  A product of Stephen King’s and John Carpenter’s sick imaginations, Christine is the love story of a teenager and his demonically possessed – and extremely possessive – 1958 Plymouth Fury. This unstoppable car from hell stops at nothing to make sure that no one gets between her and her man. Not scared yet? Try Duel, in which a mysterious tanker truck relentlessly stalks a single unlucky motorist down a remote road. The omnipresence of the tanker leaves little time to figure out WHY this is happening, and ultimately it is this lack of any kind of explanation that makes the pursuit so horrifying.

If you’re looking for less mayhem and more family-friendly viewing, try The Love Bug, which follows the adventures of Herbie, a VW Beetle who loves to race. And if you fall in love with this funny little car, there are several more Herbie movies to enjoy! The 60’s also produced such gems as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and The Absent-minded Professor, both of which involve offbeat gentlemen adapting their vehicles to do magical things. (Of course, if that’s what you’re looking for you could just watch Back to the Future for the millionth time). Sure, these aren’t as flashy as Speed Racer or Cars, but they’ll give you an evening of wholesome family fun nonetheless.

A wise man once said “cars are the dinosaurs of tomorrow,” and despite their powers to destroy all of mankind, both are still pretty cool. So snuggle up with a bowl of Orville Redenbacher and hunker down with a classic car or two.

See you at the Greenwood Car Show!

The Blurb King

A couple of summers ago, I checked out the novel Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn, seduced by the cover and a glowing endorsement from Stephen King. “To say this is a terrific debut novel is really too mild. I haven’t read such a relentlessly creepy family saga since John Farris’s All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By, and that was thirty years ago,” began Mr. King in a rather lengthy endorsement. The next week I picked up The Ruins by Scott Smith, also with a King blurb (“the best horror novel of the new century”).

“How many ‘favorite books of the year’ can he have?” asked my friend and co-worker Hayden, who had just encountered three new teen novels, all with glowing endorsements from King.

The answer, apparently, is: a bunch. So Hayden and I gathered a few of Continue reading “The Blurb King”