Staff Recommendation: Princess Mononoke

Released in 1999 and holding a 94% audience approval rating, this Miyazaki film was hailed as “The ‘Star Wars’ of animated features!” by the New York Post. Princess Mononoke brings together the world of the spiritual and the realities of man. Similar to Pan’s Labyrinth, and Miyazaki’s later movie Spirited Away, this film exists in a world where fantasy and reality push against each other as humans seek to destroy the old ways to make way for new.

At the center of the story is a young man named Ashitaka, who makes his way to a mining village after being cursed by a dying animal god.  There he meets Lady Eboshi, whose desire to acquire more iron for the village has put her in direct conflict with the nature gods that inhabit the land nearby who are lead by Princess Mononoke, a human girl raised by the wolf god. As his curse spreads, Ashitaka seeks to find a balance between these two opposing forces before both are destroyed by their own short sightedness.

This incredible film asks the questions; ‘Can Man and Nature coexist?’ ‘Is it possible to stand in the middle of conflict, or must we choose sides?’ ‘Who is really the villain?’ ‘Is there a place for those who are different?’With beautiful animation and subtle storytelling, Hayao Miyazaki asks us to come to our own conclusions through the actions of Ashitaka, Lady Eboshi and Princess Mononoke.

You can find this DVD at the Greenfield Library, stop by the circulation desk and ask for call # GD1475

~ Recommended by Lauralee Martin, Greenfield Library Work Study Assistant

Staff Recommendation: Look Inside, Cutaway Illustrations and Visual Storytelling

LookInside

This fascinating book reveals a variety of cross sections for the reader to gaze at, appreciate, and ponder. The Velasco brothers take the reader through the history and theory of these artistic cutaways, while delving into their aesthetic and edifying qualities.  From grand 19th century buildings, to modern transportation vehicles, and through wild rain forests and the human body itself, the book covers a lot of ground and explores the myriad ways in which these cross sections can be beautiful and educational. Large colorful prints of the cutaways dominate the book and are a reason, in and of themselves, to pick it up and start learning!

This book is available for check out at the Greenfield Library.  Just stop by the circulation desk and ask for call # T11.8 .V85 2016

Mike Romano – Circulation Assistant

Staff Recommendation: The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas is heart-wrenching, thoughtful, and compelling. Starr, a high school student, is the lone witness to the shooting of one of her childhood friends, Kahlil. While dealing with the trauma of this experience, the incident gets national attention, flooding hashtags and news stations. She is caught between two worlds: her predominantly black neighborhood and her predominantly white private school. Tension from bothsides ignites, with Starr under pressure as the only one able to get Kahlil justice. This book is an absolute must read for it’s empathic perspective and political relevance.

This book is available in the Greenfield Library open stacks at call #PZ7.1 .T448 H3 2017  

Recommended by Alyssa Winscom, Greenfield Library Work Study Assistant

Staff Recommendation: Asterios Polyp

Asterios Polyp, a graphic novel by David Mazzucchelli is a dynamic story that holds the reader’s interest from page one. It follows the titular Asterios, a middle aged architect who has his fair share of bad character traits, as he reinvents himself from nothing after his New York apartment goes up in flames. Weaving in and out of present, past, and introspection, this witty and engaging story shows it’s never too late to change. Mazzucchelli, who is also known for his work on multiple marvel titles such as Batman: Year One and Daredevil: Love’s Labors Lost turns every page into a masterpiece of engaging and exciting illustration. Even if you’re not acquainted with graphic novels, Asterios Polyp is a powerful and unique experience that is sure to make you think.

This book is available in the Greenfield Library open stacks at call #741.50924 M459a 2009

~ Recommended by Angela Smith, Greenfield Library Work Study Assistant

Staff Recommendation – Cultural Resistance: A Reader

tumblr_oktcpnXixC1tmeqwzo1_500Cultural Resistance: A Reader, presents a historical look at the ways in which human cultures have been used and inspired by resistance to oppression. From the English Levellers of the 1600s, to the the 19th century marxists and anarchists, to the feminists and Black power activists of the 20th century, this work explores culture as a weapon through varied and interesting essays. In these pages we hear from such notables as Theodor Adorno, Virginia Woolf, Mikhail Bakhtin, Stuart Hall, Bertolt Brecht, Janice Radway, Abbie Hoffman, and Mahatma Gandhi. We glimpse into how the realms of art, music, and philosophy have helped define resistance. And, importantly, we are presented with examples of how to use and build cultures which create a more just, free, world.

This book is available in the Greenfield Library open stacks at call # 306.2 C485.

— Mike Romano, Circulation Assistant