Reviews

Want to know what our librarians and staff are reading? Browse through a variety of reviews added to our catalog from a variety of genres.

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  • The hate U give
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 27, 2019

    Tagged: African American One Book, One Philadelphia History

    The

    Hate

    U

    Give ---is the movie based on the best-selling novel by Angie Thomas telling the story of Starr Carter who lives in two worlds: the poor/victimized black neighborhood where she resides and the mostly white prep school she attends. This uneasy balance is shattered when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood friend by a white police officer. Facing pressures from all sides, Starr must find her voice and stand up for what's right. There are multiple heros in this film and it's a must be seen for the whole family. Great acting and casting.

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  • Eat dirt : why leaky gut may be the root cause of your health problems and 5 surprising steps to cure it by Axe, Josh,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 27, 2019

    Tagged: Cooking & Nutrition Medical Science

    Dr. Axe explains that 70% of our immune system is located in the gut; when it's under attack, our health suffers. Leaky gut syndrome is thought to be the ground zero for many of the most confounding health crises including but not limited to allergies, asthma, food sensitivities, diabetes, digestive diseases, arthritis, chronic fatigue and even autism. By ditching hand sanitizers, and supplementing with more essential oils for personal products, reducing antibiotics usage, managing stress, and incorporating more pro and pre biotic rich foods into our diets we can conquer the over exposure to toxins in our lives. I really like the individual recepies, and candida gluten-free supplement recommendations and all the solutions at the end of the book. The only downside is that many authors are not accentuating the importance of proper label reading and sticking to exclusively organic products in order to avoid trace amounts of transfats and other toxins so I am not sure this book by itself is a good detox book; but very relevent and informative.

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  • Meaty : essays by Irby, Samantha,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 27, 2019

    Tagged: African American Art Biography & Autobiography Literature Social Science

    Samantha Irby has a very distinct voice. Deftly crafting a narrative of her awkwardest moments in life, what stood out to her and what will likely appeal most to you is her best skill. Succulent peaches is the best ladylike term I can come up with to describe the dexterity with which she explains the perverse situations she finds herself wading through in the modern social media fueled era. I could also tell you the writing is crass but digestible, un-becoming of a woman and possibly not fit to be shelved next to other more lawyerly books but who am I to judge? If you can't stomach the writing because it's too 'twenty first century' for you then at least check it out and take it home for three weeks and admire the jacket art because this is quite possibly the cutest book cover that will ever go to print. Ever.

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  • Ten arguments for deleting all your social media accounts right now by Lanier, Jaron,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 27, 2019

    Tagged: Databases & Electronic Resources Social Science Digital Media

    You might have trouble imagining life without social media but virtual reality pioneer Jaron Lanier insists you are better off without them and after reading his book I am inclinded to agree. Whether it's because it's poisonous grip tends to bring out the worst in us, it tends to make politics terrifying, and disconnect us from other people we are starving for real contact with I am certain you will find the strength to reduce, or cull your previously incessant usage of social media. Lanier manages to be uplifting while including a well organized argument, dry wit, novel acronymns to drive home his point. Do you really want to put an algorithm in charge of what you see all the time? Good I thought not. Happy Reading.

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  • One million followers : how I built a massive social following in 30 days : growth hacks for your business, your message, and your brand from the world's greatest minds by Kane, Brendan Michael,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 27, 2019

    Tagged: Business & Entrepreneurs Digital Media Digital Magazines

    In One Million Followers, Kane will teach you how to gain an authentic, dedicated, and diverse online following from scratch; create personal, unique, and valuable content that will engage your core audience; and build a multi-media brand through platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Snapchat, and LinkedIn. While I doubt this book is going to overnight us all into stardom/fandom the in-depth personal interviews with celebrities, influencers, and marketing experts create a sort of memoire effect which is captivating and impressive. If you are quitting social media or taking a break in the hopes of better options in the future this is not the book for you. This book is about dominance of the industry irregardless of the zombiefication of your soul and eyeballs. This book is for you if you are willing to invest the time money and energy it takes to grow digitally.

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  • How to be a bawse : a guide to conquering life by Singh, Lilly,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 27, 2019

    Tagged: Author Events Psychology Business & Entrepreneurs

    YouTube sensation Lilly Singh wants to share the lessons she learned while taking the world by storm, and the tools she used to do it. How to be a Bawse is the definitive guide to conquering life. Make no mistake, there are no shortcuts to success, personal, or professional. Just consider Lilly a personal trainer for your life as she divulges fifty rules to up your game.

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  • Alpha
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 26, 2019

    Tagged: History

    Ancient European language, hunting, nomadic tribal culture is explored in all it's probable forms in this tantalyzing boyhood to manhood coming of age story. No film has ever been made about this time period in history and it is alone in it's genre but loosely comparable to Dances with Wolves and possibly The Eagle Huntress. It's a little dark and heavy at times but overall uplifting about the triumph of different species' exploring the family unit and man and wolf. The language options are Ancient Nordic sounding gutteral viking speak, or French, or English. No subtitles. For the film to hold my attention I had to choose a language I am familiar with and I chose French. The context of the action is super understandable even with the Ancient European so feel free to try it just as is! A great indigenous Tribes/ First Nations genre film.
     

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  • They call it Myanmar lifting the curtain
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Apr 26, 2019

    Tagged: Environment & Nature History

    Myanmar (Burma) has been off limits to foreigners ever since the British returned power to the Burmese military who has held totalitarian control over the nation for the past over 50 years. Home to lush verdant tropical areas, millions of Buddhists and Temples, and a hard working people this largely illegal and difficult to obtain footage will impress you with equal parts examination of cultural wonders and the conditions under which the populace continues to stretch it's meager means to self-educate and survive. This is equal parts Travelogue and Sociological examination of the current childhood labor industry. Instead of traveling to Greece this year, consider applying for a Burmese visa at the border and supporting the local economy with your tourism.

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  • Into the Badlands by Anchor Bay Entertainment, Inc.
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Tamoul Q on Apr 3, 2019

    Tagged: Movies & Television

    In a Post-Apocalyptic age, Barons rule and the strongest take all. Clippers are the military might by which the Barons hold their territories or settle disputes.  Sonny is the best at what he does. His back is a testament to the numbers of lives he has clipped short in his Baron’s service.  He is content with his position and fate until the woman he loves in secret shares news that will end her life. She is carrying Sonny’s child. Will they be successful in making a bold escape into the Badlands where no man rules and mutants roam?

    Warning: Voilence, Strong Language and mild Adult content

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  • Feeding you lies : how to unravel the food industry's playbook and reclaim your health by Hari, Vani,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: Cooking & Nutrition House & Home

    Vani Hari is amazing and is quickly gaining mass recognition in a way she has long deserved. Here is her newest FDA whistleblowing guide to surviving all things modern day food pollution, water pollution, etc. If you are interested in getting your toes wet and detoxing from all the sodas, burgers, keto diet fad stupidity and other generic craziness you have been fed start with her first book The Food Babe Way which includes a 21day cleanse which is intense. The oil from the food truck could be making you sick and the soda you are drinking contains chemicals found in your yoga mat. Run, don't walk towards the book shelf and take this home and do not bring it back until you have finished it. Amazing research went into it. Bravo.

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  • The Food babe way : break free from the hidden toxins in your food and lose weight, look years younger, and get healthy in just 21 days by Hari, Vani,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: Cooking & Nutrition House & Home Science Self-Help

    I cannot say enough positive things about this book and Vani Hari in general. While she didn't come up as a Nutritionist she has literally made a 180 degree swivel in her career and become a full-time FDA whistleblowing activist and is really trying to change Americans' eating and purchasing habits to save us all from annihilation cancer and what is essentially starvation from lack of healthy food source options.

    This is her original book before she came out with Feeding You Lies. Words of caution: this book is not a fad diet book this is literally a how not to eat chemicals, save your liver, colon and other organs and how to view labels, sodas, and packaging in a whole new light book. My only argument is that I can't really think of a single person on earth who has the time to implement all of her ideas into their busy work week in a calender year let alone in the space of 21days. So when you get to the section on filtered shower water (yes you heard that right.) try not to roll your eyes and fall apart but really think about the long term benefits of these changes and what they will mean to you and your loved ones. You might look at your pets, pets water and even the water your plants are getting in a whole new light.

    In conclusion; I am curious to hear how long readers took to implement her ideas into their busy schedules. Please leave comments below and organic high fives to you all!

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  • The other 8 hours : maximize your free time to create new wealth & purpose by Pagliarini, Robert.
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: Self-Help Business & Entrepreneurs

    The Other 8 Hours might not be a total lifehack book; but it has enough nitche information on how to self-revise where your free time is going/being mis-spent by evaluating what truly matters and motivates you. Whether you are a creative, or a therapist, or wish you could become a professional blogger on the side, this book will help you do the grunt work of self analysis and say "If only I were doing this this and this differently I would have time to work on my real lifes work." This book is a hidden gem and has been around longer than the bestselling Timothy Ferris The Four Hour Workweek book so I highly recommend it. The only downside to this book is it doesn't come with some sort of insurance policy / task master magic wand you can wave to magically free up your time. Share your ideas on time management hacks in the comments section below.

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  • PK
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: Movies & Television

    Why watch a Bollywood movie with too much dancing and singing when you could be watching a deeper psychologically motivated flick examining what it means to be human, lovable, genuine, or 'Alien'. Totally hilarious scenes, clothing faux pas, and surrealism.

    Namaste.

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  • Mid90s
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: Movies & Television Sports & Recreation

    This is Unbelievably great! A rare coming of age story staring a 13year old who looks much younger and we feel for his young manhood, his invincibility, his coming of age innocence being broken and the bond of the skaters and all the time and energy they put into a sport that doesn't really pay them high dividends if you catch my drift. Also; a great surprise ending and an anti-drinking / driving warning message wether intentional or unintentional will empower many viewers to do the right thing; make better decisions, recognize that all the little decisions do matter. The only downside to this film is that it's not longer. Shoot.

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  • The Scorpion king
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: History

    Who doesn't want to see Dwayne The Rock Johnson at the height of his fitness take down an evil king, seduce Kelly Hu and enjoy modern day special effects thrust onto the contextual battlefield of ancient Accadian civilization? If you missed this film when it came out, or are any kind of aspiring professional performer take notes because this is how you own your character. Mesopotamia Styles.

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  • Becoming by Obama, Michelle,
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: African American Art Audiobooks Author Events Biography & Autobiography Business & Economics Children One Book, One Philadelphia History

    Without giving directly prescriptive advice to any aspiring future First Lady’s, here Mrs. Michelle Robinson-Obama Esquire and former First Lady, and Ivy League career woman extraordinaire not only tells all about her private life as a woman, as a mother, as a hardworking American but captures our hearts with managing to be the first to instill a large garden at the white house, the first to invite school children over for development activities, the first person to publically hug the Queen of England and not apologize for breaking protocol. What is most becoming about Mrs. Robinson Obama are her roots and parentage; her quick wit regarding exposing behind the scenes career hurdles that her husband overcame and her ability to craft the number one selling memoir of all time. She does not offer a "happy Hollywood ending" as she wraps up the difficulties yet to be dealt with in future generations but so much hope and achievement is achieved. Written in the style of My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsberg the reader is privy to accurate behind the scenes family moments as they played out during and before her husband’s campaigning as well as insight into Chicago in the 1990s and what it means to be FLOTUS; it's limitations and it's setbacks. We do not have a female POTUS yet but here is someone worthy of the role. Brook no foolishness; Mrs. Obama is a poetic, verbose, and heartfelt writer and alongside every great man standeth a strong woman.

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  • Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Mar 31, 2019

    Tagged: Children

    Begining with the inflation of Aunt Marge and the hailing of the nightbus and concluding with the rescuing of Buckbeak the Hippogriff this film does a wonderful job of weaving together the action of what is arguably the best book in the series. The Whomping Willow, Professor Lupin, Sirius Black and all the regular cast and crew are here to lead you through the awkwardness of youth and into a better tomorrow for all of wizarding kind.

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  • McGraw-Hill Education preparation for the GED test : your best study program for the new exam
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Feb 21, 2019

    Tagged: Test Preparation

    This is a very hefty over 800 page Test Preparation book for the GED. Depending on which Library branch you request it from you will be getting the 2015 or 2018 version. If you do even just the pre-test sections in all five subject areas you should be prepared and on your way to passing the GED. If by some chance you have concentration issues and require drilling and drilling the material more than five times through then this book is one stop shopping. If it were me I would study, take the Post-Test in the back of this book. Then Register for the GED. Then I would use this book to go back and study my weakest areas and re-take only the subject areas that I did not do well in. Due to the weight of this book it's going to be hard to use it on the go or at work. For those instances I would get the GED app. MHE FLASHCARD APP FOR THE GED TEST

    Go to mhprofessional.com/GEDTest click downloads & resources | click flashcards

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  • The GED crash course
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Feb 21, 2019

    Tagged: Test Preparation

    If reading is your strong suit and you hate graphs, tables, charts, snazzy colors and the like than this book is going to be your ideal book. It explains much of the theory behind the different test sections and how different components are put together. If you use only this book to study however, I feel your highest score might not be achieved only because it doesn't contain the maximum number of raw-whole tests and for the mathematically disinclined (or simply anxious!) I would go with the McGraw-hill Test Preparation series book. If you are not in a rush to take the test and you have time to dip your toes in the water slowly than this could be a great starting point.

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  • House of Flying Daggers Shi mian mai fu
    ★★★★★

    Reviewed by Ellen A on Feb 21, 2019

    Tagged: Movies & Television

    This is an epic Kung-Fu (GongFu) love story triangle. Full of love, lust, betrayal, lies, jealousy and mythical powers loyalty in the face of death is explored. To what ends would you go to save someone and risk your own life in the process? What if; eventually you made the wrong move and in the blink of an eye you mis-calculated and lost out on the great Chess game of life? This film will bring up many thought provoking philosophical questions regarding your approach to love and attachment. The technique for the physical stunts is impressive. A joy to behold!

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