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Library Listopia

One of the few things I love about January is Top Ten Lists. Yes, I admit, it’s a weird thing to love.   But I love LISTS!  At the beginning of each new year, the Top 10 Lists come out for the previous year’s Best of the Best –  Top 10 Places to Go,  Top 10 Things to Watch, Top 10 Reasons Why Homer Simpson Should Be the Next President (a la David Letterman).

And I don’t think I’m the only one who likes to see what other people are currently fawning over or what they think is a “must see” or “must do”.  We all need some inspiration or advice to spark that interest in… whatever topic that piques your fancy. And of course, for me at the library, the topic of choice is… BOOKS! (No surprise there.)

Which leads me to the real subject at hand (drum roll, please) : Our Top 10 Books in 2020. And for you Movie-Lovers out there: The Top 10 Kanopy Picks in 2020.

So now you can’t say, “I don’t know what to read!” or “I have nothing to watch!”  No excuses, People!  Read now. Thank me later.   🙂

Our Top 10 Books of 2020

Here’s where I add some caveats: this Top 10 lists the books that were checked out most often at our library in 2020, or what we Library Geeks call our “top circulations”, (or “top circs”, if you want to talk extra fancy-like.)  The books that EVERYBODY was checking out of our library last year. (Personally my favourite was American Dirt, and yes, that’s on the list. A Must Read, for sure!) These are the book titles  you can whip out at your next dinner party (when Dr. Bonnie gives us the nod) and say, perhaps in a faux British accent and wearing your best ballgown and tiara, “Darling, you absolutely MUST read this book.  It’s positively mahvelous!” That’s what I plan on doing, anyway.

Oh, and stay tuned next month for another juicy list: the BEST Books of 2020. (And I’ll give you a hint –  the books on that list are completely different.  What’s popular – our “top circs” –  and what’s best, aren’t always the same, right? Some overlap, but not all. See? You gotta love lists. There’s some fun for everyone!)

Top 10 Kanopy Picks of 2020

Looking for something to watch? Look no further! Here are the Kanopy Superstars of 2020. And when you get so intrigued that you feel simply compelled to watch these yourself, log into Kanopy with your Gibsons Library card here.

 10. The Hours

Three women (Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore) in different times are related by a parallel in their personal lives. One throwing a party for a friend suffering from AIDS. Another in 1949, suffering as a young wife. The last, Virginia Woolf, writing “Mrs. Dalloway”

9. Capital in the 21st Century

Based on the international bestseller by rock-star economist Thomas Piketty, this captivating documentary is an eye-opening journey through wealth and power, a film that breaks the popular assumption that the accumulation of capital runs hand in hand with social progress, and shines a new light on today’s growing inequalities.

8. You Are (Not) Small

Two fuzzy creatures can’t agree on who is small and who is big, until a couple of surpise guests show up, settling it once and for all! An original and very funny story about size – it all depends on who’s standing next to you.

7.  Edie

Following the death of her husband, EDIE (Sheila Hancock) breaks free from years of his control and rebels against her daughter’s wish for her to move into assisted living by embarking on an adventure she and her father had always longed for: a trip to the Scottish Highlands to climb the world famous Mt. Suilven.

6. Zodiac

A chilling crime thriller based on the Robert Graysmith books about the real life notorious Zodiac, a serial killer who terrorized San Francisco with a string of seemingly random murders during the 1960’s and 1970’s.

Jim Jarmusch’s latest film focuses on a working-class poet (Adam Driver) in a small New Jersey town who practices his craft amidst the quiet magic of everyday life. Nominated for a Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.

4. Arab Blues
Selma, a psychoanalyst, deals with a cast of colourful new patients after returning home to Tunisia to open a practice. In this sophisticated comedy, Manele Labidi opens a fascinating window into modern Tunisia at a crossroads, with a story of contrasts, contradictions and culture clashes, full of vitality and humour. Official Selection at the Venice Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival.

 3. Boy

Acclaimed director Taika Waititi presents a creative coming-of-age comedy set in 1984, following an eleven-year-old Michael Jackson fanatic nicknamed “Boy” (James Rolleston). With his mother dead and father AWOL, Boy becomes the head of a household full of kids when his Nana leaves town for a funeral. Out of nowhere, Boy’s Dad (Waititi) rolls up in a vintage car with his “gang”, and turns Boy’s life upside down.

2. Europe on the Brink of the Black Death
Begin to contemplate the enormity of the Black Death’s impact on the medieval world. As context for the harrowing events to come, take account of the state of medieval society on the eve of the plague. In particular, investigate the religious, economic, and political structures of mid-14th-century Europe.

 1. Stash Short Film Festival: Comedy

Spanning a spectrum of filmmaking styles, tones, and techniques, these seven films all have one goal common: to lighten your day with humor. From whimsical and ridiculous to dry and ironic, you’ll find the hit of comedy you need in this collection from the editors of Stash Magazine.

Thanks to Kanopy for all images and descriptions.