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Staff Picks

book tree

December

muppet

Muppet's Christmas Carol - DVD

The classic Christmas tale by Charles Dickens gets a slightly skewed and humorous treatment when it is retold by the Muppets.

Recommended by Alice

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Dickens

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

In October 1843, Charles Dickens, heavily in debt and obligated to his publisher, began work on a book to help supplement his family's meager income. That volume, A Christmas Carol, has long since become one of the most beloved stories in the English language. As much a part of the holiday season as holly, mistletoe, and evergreen wreaths, this perennial favorite continues to delight new readers and rekindle thoughts of charity and goodwill.

Recommended by Gwen

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Who's That

Who's That Knocking on Christmas Eve by Jan Brett

A boy from Finnmark and his ice bear help scare away some hungry trolls so that Kyri and her father can enjoy their Christmas Eve meal.

Recommended by Rebecca

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Skipping

Skipping Christmas by John Grisham

After their daughter leaves home for a stint in the Peace Corps, Luther and Norma Krank decide to take a Caribbean cruise instead of celebrating Christmas. All goes smoothly--until their neighbors hear of the plan.

Recommended by Becky

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Grinch

How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss

The Grinch tries to stop Christmas from arriving by stealing all the presents and food from the village, but much to his surprise it comes anyway. Could Christmas be more than presents?

Recommended by Gwen

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Wonderful

It's A Wonderful Life - DVD

A man is saved from a suicide attempt by an angel and is then shown how important he is to the people who love him. A Christmas classic.

Recommended by Sheryl

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The Santa Clause

The Santa Clause - DVD

Scott is distressed to learn that his ex-wife and her husband have informed his son, Charlie, that there is no Santa Claus. While a sullen Charlie visits his dad on Christmas Eve, a noise on the roof brings them outside. It turns out that there is a Santa after all, and Scott has just accidentally killed him. Because of "the Santa clause," Scott inherits the job of Santa. As the next year passes, Scott rapidly gains weight, grows a white beard and meets the elf Bernard. Charlie's stepdad becomes concerned about Scott and forces him to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

Recommended by Becky

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broken harbor

Broken Harbor by Tana French

In the aftermath of a brutal attack that left a woman in intensive care and her husband and young children dead, brash cop Scorcher Kennedy and his rookie partner, Richie, struggle with perplexing clues and Scorcher's haunting memories of a shattering incident from his childhood.

Recommended by Jeff

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Spivet

The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larson

When twelve-year-old genius cartographer T. S. Spivet receives an unexpected phone call from the Smithsonian announcing he has won the prestigious Baird Award, life as normal—if you consider mapping dinner table conversations normal—is interrupted and a wild cross-country adventure begins, taking T. S. from his family home just north of Divide, Montana, to the museum’s hallowed halls.

Recommended by Stacy

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Miss Pettigrew

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day - DVD

In 1939 London, Miss Guinevere Pettigrew is a governess who finds herself dismissed from her job. She accepts ajob as the social secretary of an American actress and singer. Suddenly, Miss Pettigrew finds herself swept into the world of high society.

Recommended by Sharon

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Sound

The Sound of Gravel by Ruth Wariner

The true story of one girl's coming-of-age in a polygamist family. Ruth Wariner was the thirty-ninth of her father's forty-two children. Growing up on a farm in rural Mexico, where authorities turn a blind eye to the practices of her community, Ruth lives in a ramshackle house without indoor plumbing or electricity. Ruth and her siblings are carted back and forth between Mexico and the United States, where Ruth's mother collects welfare and her stepfather works a variety of odd jobs. Ruth comes to love the time she spends in the States, realizing that perhaps the community into which she was born is not the right one for her. As she begins to doubt her family's beliefs and question her mother's choices, she struggles to balance her fierce love for her siblings with her determination to forge a better life for herself. Recounted from the innocent and hopeful perspective of a child, this is the memoir of one girl's fight for peace and love.

Recommended by Katie

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Band

The Band's Visit - DVD

The Alexandria Ceremonial Police Orchestra arrives in Israel from Egypt for a cultural event. Once there, they find the expected delegation is not there to meet them. Arrangements to get to their destination of Petah Tiqva have not been taken care of either. They find their own ride and arrive instead at the remote town of Beit Hatikva. Stuck there until the next morning's bus, the band, lead by the repressed Tawfiq Zacharaya, gets help from the worldly lunch owner, Dina, who offers to put them up for the night. As the band settles in the best it can, each of the members attempts to get along with the natives in their own way. What follows is a special night of quiet happenings and confessions as the band makes its own impact on the town and the town on them.

Recommended by Rebecca

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Kept Woman

The Kept Woman by Karin Slaughter

It's the most dangerous case of Will Trent's career. He knows this from the moment he sets foot in the abandoned Atlanta warehouse where a body lies on the floor--the body of an ex-cop. Bloody footprints leading away from the scene reveal that another victim, evidently a woman, was carried away ... and has vanished into thin air. And, worst of all, the warehouse belongs to the city's biggest and most high-profile athlete--a local hero protected by the world's most expensive lawyers.

Recommended by Stacy

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