See What We Are Reading, Read What We Are Watching

Recognize any of these people?

The Clone Wars TV showSupernatural TV showThe Big Bang Theory TV showThe Walking Dead TV showTrue Blood TV show

Chances are, you’ve seen one of these shows, or have heard of them. It’s a varied bunch, too – we’ve got nerds, monster hunters, zombies, Southern vampires, and Star Wars. Even if you’re not a fan of any of these shows, you might be in interested in the subject matter, and in that case, we’ve got some recommendations for you.

Christina: Let’s take Supernatural. Two brothers, travelling across the country to save innocent people from monsters and ghosts, occasionally stopping the Apocalypse on the way with some help from angels and demons. What’s not to love about that?

If you’re looking to doing some of your own detective work on the supernatural and strange, you can always check out Dewey numbers 133.4 and 398.3 in the nonfiction section at your local library, but of course there are plenty of fictional ghosts and goblins out there. One that comes to mind is Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake, a young adult novel that tells the story of Cas, a ghost hunter. He’s taken over his father’s job of disposing of dangerous spirits, and his latest conquest is the violent Anna Dressed in Blood. What’s supposed to be a routine ghost killing turns into something much more personal and deadly, and soon Cas finds himself drawn to the tortured soul of a young girl who still wears the bloody dress she wore on the night she was killed.

Another take on the ghost genre is Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill. Judas Coyne is an aging rock star, complete with a young girlfriend and a taste for the strange. His assistant buys a haunted suit for him online, and it doesn’t take long until Judas realizes that the ghost is a vengeful spirit who is intent on destroying Judas and everyone around him. Soon Judas realizes that he and his girlfriend (Marybeth, aka Georgia) have to find a way to keep the ghost from killing them.

Chris:  Since we are talking about the supernatural let me mention the Southern Vampire Mysteries series by Charlaine Harris.  There are 12 novels in the series and counting, and a television adaptation called True Blood.  Set in rural Louisiana, the protagonist is a waitress by the name of Sookie Stackhouse.  Sookie is a telepath, a talent that always made her life very difficult.  But when the vampires and werewolves come out of hiding she finds that she is no longer such an oddity, and her life grows far more complicated.  It can be fun to note the differences between the show and the books.

One type of creature Sookie doesn’t have to deal with is zombies.  You can find plenty of them in The Walking Dead.  Originally a comic book, it has also been adapted to the small screen.  This series focuses on everyday people trying to survive the zombie apocalypse.  It does a nice job of focusing on the day to day trials and horrors they go through.  The graphic novels in particular are unrelentingly grim.

On a lighter note we have Star Wars: The Clone Wars.  I say lighter because this is a series aimed at kids.  I know some people take their Star Wars very seriously.  (I think my wife agrees, as she eyes my 70+ LEGO Star Wars sets.)  Anyway, The Clone Wars is a show that focuses on the adventures of Anakin Skywalker (before he becomes Darth Vader, of course), Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Anakin’s apprentice Ahsoka Tano.  It is animated, so the accompanying Clone Wars Adventures books are comics.

Christina:  Anyone who can relate to being the nerd or geek in high school probably loves The Big Bang Theory. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a show about two physicists, Leonard and Sheldon, and their relationship with their fellow nerd friends and Penny, the beautiful blond who lives in the apartment across from theirs. The show is chock full of geeky references, like superheroes, science, science fiction, and technology.

Sheldon often brags about his impressive accomplishments as a child (writing dissertations, graduating from high school and college with honors), and would probably get along with The Radioactive Boy Scout, which is a true story about a boy who built a nuclear conductor in his backyard. Needless to say, his parents were less than pleased.  David Anderegg has a great book titled Nerds : how dorks, dweebs, techies, and trekkies can save America and why they might be our last hope. It’s a great take on nerd culture and how nerds are bullied in school and often fawned over in adulthood.

If you’d prefer something a little more animated, you could peruse through the Dewey call number 741.5 in both nonfiction and the YA section, where you can find graphic novels featuring the likes of Batman, the X-Men, and other superheroes. You can also find The Walking Dead and Star Wars in there as well.

Chris:  Anyone who watches television these days is well aware of the plethora of reality shows.  One that we like is Pawn Stars.  Filmed at the World Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas, it takes a close look at some of the fascinating and historical items people bring in to pawn and sell.  It goes beyond the daily drama of the shop, as you learn about the history of many of these items.  And of course the library has owner Rick Harrison’s book License to pawn : deals, steals, and my life at the Gold & Silver.

So while we love reading, reading, and more reading, we also enjoy tv, and we know that many of you do as well.  And we really enjoy it when these two pastimes come together.

Find the titles mentioned in this blog in our library catalog here:  https://fontana.nccardinal.org/eg/opac/results?bookbag=39566;page=0;locg=155;depth=0

(Edited 10/31/14 to fix broken links, correct typos, and add bookbag)

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