The Farm

From Eileen Effrat

Author:  Tom Rob Smith

Title:  The Farm

The Farm is a psychological thriller that centers around a 29 year old torn between his two parents.  Which one do you believe?  His father claims his mother has had a mental breakdown,  while his mother insists she has unearthed a conspiracy of murder involving his father. The reader witnesses this drama unfold through Daniel’s eyes as family secrets and deceptions are laid to bare.  Ultimately, the plot boils down to how well do we really know are parents. This is a quick read  with a very unexpected twist.

The craft of film acting [videorecording DVD]

From Ellen Druda

Author:  J. Patrick McNamara

Title:  The craft of film acting [videorecording DVD] 

You don’t know how they do it, but you know it when you see it. Great film acting takes talent but it also needs practical skills. Professional actor McNamara walks us through 13 “scenes” in lecture format, covering everything from the audition and callback to matching shots, finding your mark, shooting the master and coverage, recording sound and translating director-speak. His emphasis is on the craft, not the art, and he uses entertaining anecdotes and examples (some of them from his movies) to make his points. Students will be armed with the real-life, useful knowledge needed to handle the demanding days and last-minute calls in this competitive field. You’ll never watch movies the same way again.

MOZART [SOUND RECORDING CD] : PIANO CONCERTOS K 503 & K 466 / MARTHA ARGERICH, CLAUDIO ABBADO

From  Edna Susman

Author:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Title:   MOZART [SOUND RECORDING CD] : PIANO CONCERTOS K 503 & K 466 / MARTHA ARGERICH, CLAUDIO ABBADO.

As with preserving photos from the past by scanning and saving to computer or disc, the music world is fortunate to have recordings of the great conductors and performers to enjoy long after their passing. The library is acquiring this recording of the brilliant pianist Martha Argerich with conductor Claudio Abbado, who passed away January 2014. The performance was recorded live in 2013 at the Lucerne Festival.  Anthony Tommasini of the New York Times calls the performances “phenomenal”.  Abbado’s conducting specialites included opera as well as the standard classical and contemporary works. This beautiful recording should be enjoyed by all as among one of the last by the great conductor.

Smoke gets in your eyes : and other lessons from the crematory

From Margaret Mezzacapo

Author:  Caitlin  Doughty

Title:  Smoke gets in your eyes : and other lessons from the crematory  

What? An interesting, informative, and occasionally amusing book about death and cremation?In a word, yes. Caitlin Doughty, a licensed mortician, has managed to pull off this seemingly incongruous combo. She recounts her experiences work-wise, beginning with her first job as a crematory operator, and gives a lot of background information about what she refers to as the “death industry.”  Witty, irreverent, and sometimes graphic, this memoir provides food for thought.

The frozen dead

From Eileen Effrat

Author: Bernard Minier

Title: The frozen dead

This fast paced French thriller has it all—-a decapitated horse hanging from a cable car, three men brutally murdered with similar modus operandi, and patients on the loose from  a  maximum security psychiatric hospital. Commandant Martin Servaz, a city cop from Toulouse, leads the investigation as past nefarious deeds in a small village in the French Pyrenees finally come to roost.  This is a police procedural with some rather grisly details.  Only recently translated into English from the French, this is Minier’s  first novel and I can’t wait for more.

The teacher wars : a history of America’s most embattled profession

From Edna Susman

Author: Dana Goldstein

Title:   The teacher wars : a history of America’s most embattled profession 

Coming from a long line of teachers, the author, Dana Goldstein, is a Spencer Fellow in educational journalism, a Schwarz Fellow at the New America Foundation and a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow at the Nation Institute. Numerous issues such as overcrowding, teaching ESL, educational fads, federal funding, teachers’ unions, and the use of test scores and ratings are addressed. Many of these issues have been part of our American educational debates throughout history. Even with this, the author remains optimistic about the profession.

8:46 [videorecording DVD] : never forget

From Ellen Druda

Author: Jennifer Gargano

Title:   8:46 [videorecording DVD] : never forget

There are no surprises in a film about September 11th. We all know how it’s going to end.  Filmmaker Jennifer Gargano imagines stories about some people caught in the event: the victims and their families, workmates, friends and lovers, and what was happening in their lives that day.  The characters are fictional but possible amalgamations of stereotypes based on many real lives.  The film spends most of the time leading up to the attacks in order for us to get to know the individuals.  When the planes hit the buildings, we see the panic and heroics of these everyday people from inside the towers and those in the immediate area.  Ms. Gargano has created a heartfelt, if a little clichéd, tribute to the casualties and heroes of 9/11, with a portion of the proceeds going to Tuesday’s Children, a charity for those impacted by the events.