Monday, December 20, 2010

Favorite Reads of 2010

It's that time of year again--your friendly neighborhood librarians are eager to tell you about their favorite reads of 2010. Here is Jeff W. with several reviews:

Late, Late at Night, by Rick Springfield
This surprisingly well-written memoir by Australian power popper Springfield is as guilty-pleasurable as his '80s classic hits. And weirdly inspiring.

Sunset Park, by Paul Auster
Auster is my favorite living writer, so I always dig his thought-provoking, deceptively simple tales. Sunset Park is by no means his finest work, but it’s a fair-enough outing from a true master!

Will Grayson, Will Grayson,
by John Green and David Levithan
On the teen fiction front, WG, WG by YA powerhouses Green and Levithan was definitely the big winner for me this year. I wasn’t expecting all that much—the premise of alternating chapters from the two writers about two different people with the same name seemed pretty gimmicky—but I found the book to be as good as anything I’ve read by Levithan, and perhaps Green’s best work since Looking for Alaska. Lotsa fun!

But my number one book of 2010 is the lovely and talented The Making of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, by J.W. Rinzler. When we talk about lotsa fun, this is the book we’re talking about! What a book! This is the 30th-anniversary tribute, and with hundreds of previously unpublished pictures and graphics from the film’s development—like early design sketches of tauntauns (they were more like lizards) and Darth Vader’s castle (he was going to have a castle!)—and tons of items charting the evolution of the script (boring subplots like Han Solo’s union president stepfather were taken out), The Making of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back features busloads of new information about the making of the film. It is a deluxe volume that should stand as the definitive story behind the greatest Star Wars movie of them all, and as Star Wars-related books go, it really is as good as it gets. It would make any coffee table proud, and every friend I showed it to wanted to borrow it. (I said no.)

But YOU can borrow it (and the rest) from Burbank Public Library!

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