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Showing posts from March, 2008

Book Review: Phantom Nights by John Farris

Take one rape and murder case, add a misunderstood child, and mix it all with some good old Southern hospitality, and you get a ghost tale that will make your skin crawl. Phantom Nights is an absorbing tale of murder, lust, racism, greed, and guilt. If you liked To Kill a Mockingbird or the film, In the Heat of the Night, you will find much to appreciate here.

Priest Howard, a wealthy Southern gent, has just died. Moments before his last breath, he accused his son, Leland, of being a thief in front of his black nurse, Mally Shaw. Leland is sure that Mally has evidence that will sink him in the upcoming elections. In the hopes of retrieving the evidence, Leland pays Mally a "friendly" visit, which ends badly for Mally. Leland covers up the evidence and believes the incident is over. There are only two problems. One, there was a witness. And two, Mally's ghost can't seem to rest until Leland's sins are brought to light and punished.

The characters are cl…

Movie Review: Michel Gondry's Be Kind Rewind (2008)

I expected Be Kind Rewind to be a seriously funny movie. I find anything Jack Black says to be funny. And I don't just mean the regular "funny" here. I mean laughing on the ground, snorting through your nose type funny. I was surprised instead to find a heartwarming tale of a community and how it comes together to support one of their own against that Big Bad Wolf called consumerism.

It is set in one of those neighborhoods where everyone knows everyone. There are crazy, quirky characters. They tolerate each other and even feel fondness for one another. On the corner is the little video shop where you can rent a video for a dollar a day.

The video shop is owned by Mr. Fletcher (Danny Glover), an aging man who is proud of his shop. He is equally proud of the history and tells everyone how Fats Waller was born in that building. The loyal clerk is Mike (Mos Def). Jerry (Jack Black) is Mike's friend who is always talking him into doing stupid stuff. On one s…

Library Program: Passion for Chocolate

What do you have to do to get guys to come to a teen program? Apparently offer fondue. My passion for chocolate program was a hit with guys and gals alike. The biggest surprise was that I had more guys than girls, though.

We started off by playing a few games. First, I had a jar of chocolate M & M's. They had to guess how many candies were in the jar. The winner got to take home the jar.


The next game I got from the ya-yaac listserv. I divided the groups into two teams. Each team got a pair of mittens. Each person had to run to the end of the room, open a mini chocolate with the mittens on, eat the chocolate, and run back. The people on the winning team each received a box of message heart. It was messy and lots of fun.