Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Rona's Urban Fiction Picks

Rona, at the Spring Valley Library, is the one who knows her Urban Fiction. They're gritty, sexy and exciting, and she has them on tap! Each month, Rona suggests three tantalizing Urban Fiction titles.

Here are Rona's picks for the month:

Torn between two lovers
Carl Weber


One of Richmond, Virginia's hottest, most successful women, Loraine Farrow is finally putting the relationship drama behind her. There's nothing she wants more than to settle down with her husband, Leon, and focus on her marriage. Trouble is, her ex-lover, Michael, isn't about to let her go so easily.

But things aren't so simple with Leon either. He's dealing with painful issues from his childhood - and some of them are starting to surface in the bedroom. Leon's seeing a therapist, but what he's uncovering could destroy their marriage for good - unless Michael does it first.

The short time Michael spent with Loraine was the happiest he's ever known, and he's fired up about winning her back - until he discovers a secret Leon's been hiding. Now he's faced with a wrenching choice: either sacrifice what he wants most, or cause the woman he loves unbearable heartbreak.

Taking us on a passion-filled wild ride, here is a gripping novel of three indomitable people torn between love and lust, secrets and lies - and the momentous decisions they must ultimately make...


Tempted by Trouble
Eric Jerome Dickey


Dmytryk was a respectable man...once. College educated, happily married, a stable job at a car factory in Detroit. He's the king of the world with nowhere to go but up. But when a crippling recession annihilates the auto industry, Dmytryk and his wife Cora suddenly find themselves without jobs. And after two years of trying to live honestly, they begin to realize that honesty just doesn't pay the bills.

Afraid of losing her home and her marriage, Cora compromises her faith and makes some choices that she isn't proud of. And when a powerful and ruthless crime boss named Eddie Coyle gives them an opportunity to buy back their old lives, Cora urges Dmytryk to man up. All he has to do is join Eddie's crime ring and rob some banks: two minutes, in and out, nobody gets hurt. Torn between desperation and his moral integrity, Dmytryk gives in, but no sooner does he enter a life of crime than Cora abandons him, taking with her his dreams for a better life and disappearing without a trace.

Now, more determined than ever to get his life back on track, Dmytryk is only one bank job away from having enough money to leave Eddie Coyle and find Cora. But when the job goes dangerously wrong, he realizes yet again that destiny has another plan for him. Forced into seclusion with one of his partners - a dangerous and damaged woman with a plan of her own - Dmytryk wonders if he'll ever find his way back to his old life. And in the end, will he even want to?


I'm Still Wifey
Kiki Swinson


While Kira's husband Ricky is behind bars serving federal time, she clings onto the hope that one day she'll get a taste of sweet revenge for Russ - the nigga who played her! In the mix of all the drama, Kira unintentionally falls for a new 'hood rich cat who has it all. Money, good looks, and yes, a girl back home in Jersey! This time around Kira plans to play by a different set of rules!

Although, Ricky is locked down in a Virginia federal prison, it doesn't stop his reign of terror. He gets wind of everything that went down with Kira and gives her a life altering ultimatum. Nevertheless, Kira refuses to adhere to his demand and Ricky has no choice but to suit up his street team. The question is: How will it end this time?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tuesday's New DVD Releases

Here are the DVD releases for next Tuesday, 4 January 2011:

Case 39
Emily, a social worker, is assigned to the unusual and disturbing case of ten-year-old Lilith Sullivan, a girl with a strange and mysterious past. When Emily opens her home in an attempt to help Lilith, it turns into a deadly nightmare she may not survive.

Catfish
In late 2007, filmmakers Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost sensed a story unfolding as they began to film the life of Ariel's brother, Nev. They had no idea that their project would lead to the most exhilarating and unsettling months of their lives. A reality thriller that is a shocking product of our times, Catfish is a riveting story of love, deception and grace within a labyrinth of online intrigue.

Dinner for Schmucks
Tim is a guy on the verge of having it all. The only thing standing between him and total career success is finding the perfect guest to bring to his boss' annual Dinner for Extraordinary People, an event where the winner of the evening brings the most eccentric character as his guest. Enter Barry, a guy with a passion for dressing mice up in tiny outfits to recreate great works of art. When the duo shows up to dine, the lunacy kicks into high gear.

The Last Exorcism
A reverend travels to a farm to perform and film what he believes to be his last routine exorcism, and finds himself unprepared for the unspeakable horror he finds. Now he must find a way to save the family, film crew, and himself before it's too late.

Machete
Set up, double-crossed, and left for dead, Machete is a tough-as-nails ex-Federale who lays waste to anything that gets in his path. As he takes on hitmen, vigilantes, and a ruthless drug cartel, bullets fly, blades clash, and the body count rises. Any way you slice it, vengeance has a new name; Machete.


Which of these will have the most requests next week?

This week’s release with the most requests is The American with 553 requests.

Resident Evil: Afterlife had 489 requests,
WWE: Bobby "The Brain" Heenan had 19 requests, and
Emergency Mine Rescue had 4 requests.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Carla & Jaime's Teen Picks

Carla and Jaime, out at the Summerlin Library, are wired into the best Teen books! You want to know what's hot? Or just what you want to read next? They're the ones! Each month, Carla and Jaime suggest three wonderful books for teens.

Here are Carla and Jaime's picks for the month:

Witch Child
Celia Rees


"First they 'walked' her, marching her up and down, up and down between them for a day and a night until she could no longer hobble, her feet all bloody and swollen. She would not confess. So they set about to prove she was a witch. . . ."

Enter the world of young Mary Newbury, a world where simply being different can cost a person her life. Hidden until now in the pages of her diary, Mary's startling story begins in 1659, the year her beloved grandmother is hanged in the public square as a witch.

Mary narrowly escapes a similar fate, only to face intolerance and new danger among the Puritans in the New World. How long can she hide her true identity? Will she ever find a place where her healing powers will not be feared?


Incarceron
Catherine Fisher


Incarceron is a prison so vast that it contains not only cells, but also metal forests, dilapidated cities, and vast wilderness. Not only is the gate sealed, but the prison itself is alive.

The world inside the prison is dark, violent and terrifying, especially for Finn, who cannot remember how he came to be there. From time to time Finn has shadowy memories of a time before he was inside Incarceron, yet he can never quite piece his past together. All he knows is that he has to try to escape, even though legend has it that only one man has ever reached the outside world.

And in that outside world lives Claudia, the daughter of the Warden of Incarceron. While she lives Outside, Claudia is trapped in other ways: by an arranged marriage to a prince she despises, by her tense relationship with her harsh father and by her entire society, which has been virtually frozen in a past era.

Claudia and Finn each find a crystal key, and the ability to communicate. Claudia suspects that she has uncovered something else as well: the secret of Finn's true identity.


The Truth about Forever
Sarah Dessen


Macy's summer stretches before her, carefully planned and outlined. She will spend her days sitting at the library information desk. She will spend her evenings studying for the SATs. Spare time will be used to help her obsessive mother prepare for the big opening of the townhouse section of her luxury development.

But Macy's plans don't anticipate a surprising and chaotic job with Wish Catering, a motley crew of new friends, or ... Wes. Tattooed, artistic, anything-but-expected Wes. He doesn't fit Macy's life at all--so why does she feel so comfortable with him? So ... happy? What is it about him that makes her let down her guard and finally talk about how much she misses her father, who died before he eyes the year before?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Andrew's Graphic Novel Picks!

Andrew, at the Centennial Hills Library, is the Go To Guy for Graphic Novels. He reads 'em, enjoys 'em, and knows which are the best! Each month, Andrew suggests three wonderful graphic novels for Teens or Adults. (Sometimes for Kids too!)

Here are Andrew's picks for the month:

Northwest Passage
Scott Chantler

After Fort Newcastle is brutally captured by invading French mercenaries, Charles Lord and a band of his surviving soldiers, trackers, and explorers embark on one last, great adventure to unite the people of Rupert's Land to reclaim their home.

This rollicking historical adventure fights its way on land and sea, all in search of and control of the mythic Northwest Passage.


Life, in Pictures
Will Eisner

In what will be the closest thing Eisner fans will see to an autobiography, the great master and pioneer of American graphic arts presents the most intimate and personal perspective yet on his life as a writer, a professional, and an artist.

“The Dreamer” and “To the Heart of the Storm” describe Eisner's gritty early life and career, while “The Name of the Game” chronicles a personal history of his wife's family.

Finally, two shorter pieces illuminate the bookends of a legendary career: “The Day I Became a Professional” - which will appeal to any hopeful young artist - describes Eisner's first rejection from a potential publisher, and “A Sunset in Sunshine City” provides a poignant portrait of Eisner in old age.

The book features famous characters from the world of comics (under pseudonyms, of course) and other historical figures and family members, all drawn with Eisner's characteristic mastery and technique.


Alice in Sunderland
Bryan Talbot

Sunderland! Thirteen hundred years ago it was the greatest center of learning in the whole of Christendom and the very cradle of English consciousness.

In the time of Lewis Carroll it was the greatest shipbuilding port in the world. To this city that gave the world the electric light bulb, the stars and stripes, the millennium, the Liberty Ships and the greatest British dragon legend came Carroll in the years preceding his most famous book, Alice in Wonderland, and here are buried the roots of his surreal masterpiece.

Enter the famous Edwardian palace of varieties, The Sunderland Empire, for a unique experience: an entertaining and epic meditation on myth, history and storytelling and decide for yourself - does Sunderland really exist?

Friday, December 24, 2010

Catie's Picture Book Picks!

Catie, at the Clark County Library, is a magician with a picture book! She can spot the best ones a mile away. She knows what will make a kid start giggling and getting involved with the story. Each month, Catie suggests three wonderful picture books!

Here are Catie's picks for the month:

Where the Giants Hide
Mij Kelly


A young girl can no longer see the enchantment in her world. She embarks upon a journey-searching far and wide-to find that one amazing thing that will make her believe in extraordinary possibilities once again.

"I went hunting for giants. I searched far and wide. They're bigger than houses. So WHERE do they hide?"

It's only when she realizes the power of believing in her own dreams that she discovers the magic that's been inside her all along.


Can't Sleep Without Sheep
Susanna Leonard Hill


Whenever Ava can't sleep, she counts sheep.

But Ava takes so long to fall asleep, it's the sheep that are growing tired--until finally, they quit.

Finding the perfectly peaceful replacement for sheep might not be so easy after all.


We are in a book!
Mo Willems


When Piggie discovers that she and Gerald are in a book and she can make the reader say a funny word out loud, Gerald is tickled pink.

But then Gerald realizes that the book is going to end soon--ack! What will happen then?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Book Review: The Atlas of the Real World

The Atlas of the Real World--mapping the way we live
Daniel Dorling

This book will truly change the way you look at the world. Compiled by a geographer and a physicist, this psychedelic collection of 366 maps--one for each day of the year, I guess--distort the world map to show trends.

Major topics include:
  • The Resourceful World--Land Area and Population; Travel and Transport; Natural Resources and Energy
  • The Trading World--Globalization and Internationalism; Food and Consumables; Minerals, Natural Products and Petrochemicals
  • The Economic World--Manufactured Goods and Services; Wealth and Poverty; Employment and Productivity
  • The Social World--Housing and Education; Communication and Media; Health and Illness
  • The Perilous World--Death and Disaster; War and Crime
  • The Environmental World--Pollution and Depletion; Extinction and Endangerment
But these topics don't really do justice to this extraordinary book. Specific topics include:
  • Increase in Piped Water (map 352)--where China dominates
  • Reptiles at Risk (of extinction) (map 362)--where the Caribbean dominates
  • Televisions in Use (map 245)
  • Housing Prices (accounting for local purchasing power) (map 208)
  • Films Watched (in theaters) (map 251)--dominated by India, with nearly 40% of the worldwide total.
  • and of course, Books Borrowed (from libraries) (map 250)
Some of the most interesting maps are simply the historic population maps, highlighting the years 1, 1500, 1900, 1960, and projections for 2050 and 2300.

Some of the most distorted maps include net income or loss from tourism and also the location of container ship ports and the country of registration of cargo ships.

This book could be shelved in the art section as well, thanks to the variety of colors and of course, the psychedelic maps. I think the lesson of this atlas is that there is more than one way of looking at the world. Isn't that what all great art teaches? And how is that for a New Year’s resolution—practice looking for other perspectives!

Check out www.worldmapper.org

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

CD Review: Jingle All the Way, Bela Fleck and the Flecktones

Jingle All the Way
Bela Fleck and the Flecktones
Audio CD

This is a Christmas album that will make you go "huh?" Entertaining in its peculiarity, my favorite track is none other than Jingle Bells, only this time performed with banjo and throat singing. This is definitely not your grandpa's banjo.

Throat singing? This is where the "huh?" comes in. Isn't all singing "throat singing?" Well, actually no. Throat singing involves isolating harmonic overtones while singing, allowing a performer to produce multiple pitches at the same time. The technique has been practiced by various tribes around the world for millenia. The sound is something like an Australian Aboriginal didgeridoo.

Along with Fleckitizations--I made that up--of a dozen classic Christmas carols, this recording includes a selection from Johann Sebastian Bach's Christmas Oratorio--performed with banjo, of course--followed shortly by "Linus and Lucy" from the movie A Charlie Brown Christmas. That is just a sample of the virtuosic quirkiness represented by the Flecktones.

For those who don't know, Bela Fleck is a banjo player. He has pushed the limits of the instrument to the future and to the past. Most recently he recorded Throw Down Your Heart on both CD and DVD, in Africa with well known African musicians and with villagers. Today's banjo evolved from instruments brought by slaves to America. Mr. Fleck has won 13 Grammy awards and has been nominated in more categories than any other musician, including pop, country, bluegrass, jazz, classical, spoken-word, composition and arranging.

If you are the type of person who wishes you could find the holiday spirit but can't quite muster a festive mood, this CD is for you!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Tuesday's New DVD Releases

Here are the DVD releases for next Tuesday, 28 December 2011:

The American
After a job ends more violently than expected, Jack retreats to the Italian countryside and accepts one last assignment to construct a deadly weapon for a mysterious contact. But when he pursues a relationship with a beautiful local woman, he may be tempting fate by stepping out of the shadows. Jack soon finds himself in an escalating battle to escape from his secretive past.

Emergency Mine Rescue
With special access to the site of the San Jose, Chile mine, the mining engineers and the miners' families, NOVA chronicles the miners' 69-day ordeal and the work of a global team of engineers who struggled tirelessly around the clock in a desperate bid to bring the trapped miner safely to the surface.

Resident Evil: Afterlife
In a world ravaged by a virus infection, turning its victims into the undead, Alice continues on her journey to find survivors and lead them to safety. Her deadly battle with the Umbrella Corporation reaches new heights, but Alice gets some unexpected help from an old friend. A new lead that promises a safe haven takes them to Los Angeles, but when they arrive the city is overrun by thousands of undead, and Alice and her comrades are about to step into a deadly trap

WWE: Bobby "The Brain" Heenan
Fans loved to boo Bobby Heenan but despite their vocal displeasure with 'The Weasel,' everyone acknowledges he's the greatest manager in the history of sports entertainment. He guided members of the infamous 'Heenan Family' to great heights in both the AWA and WWE, even occasionally stepping into the ring himself. Packed with vignettes, interviews, and matches, this is the life story of Bobby Heenan.

Which of these will have the most requests next week?

This week’s release with the most requests is Salt with 1016 requests.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps had 550 requests,
Easy A had 511 requests,
Devil had 339 requests,
Step Up 3 had 338 requests,
WWE Survivor Series 2010 had 42 requests,
History Classics - Famous Figures of the Civil War had 5 requests, and
History Classics - American Adventures had 1 request.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tuesday's New DVD Releases

Here are the DVD releases for next Tuesday, 21 December 2010:

Devil
Trapped in an elevator high above Philadelphia, five people discover that the Devil is among them, and no one can escape their fate. This chilling, supernatural thriller will keep you on the edge of your seat all the way to a heart-stopping ending with a truly wicked twist.

Easy A
After a little white lie about losing her virginity gets out, a clean cut high school girl sees her life paralleling Hester Prynne's in 'The Scarlet Letter, ' which she is currently studying in school. Hoping to become popular, she decides to use the rumor mill to advance her social and financial standing.

History Classics - American Adventures
They are some of America's most famous folk heroes, men and women of legend who challenged, made and changed history. Reacquaint yourself with the pioneers, politicians, icons and rebels who helped shape our nation in this fascinating collection of documentaries from history.

From the remarkable life of Davy Crockett, who went from uneducated backwoodsman to celebrity frontiersman, to the dramatic story of Amelia Earhart, the revolutionary aviator whose baffling disappearance is one of the greatest mysteries of all time, to one of the country's most infamous outlaws, Jesse James, American Adventurers details the lives and legends of monumental characters remembered for their rugged individualism and undeniable impact on history.

Other figures covered in this set include Lewis and Clark; Andrew Jackson; Daniel Boone; Wild Bill Hickok; Calamity Jane; Annie Oakley; and Charles Lindbergh.

History Classics - Famous Figures of the Civil War
It was the war that divided a nation. Experience America's bloodiest era beside some of its most famous figures as History recounts in this comprehensive collection four years of civil war through the eyes of the people who lived – and died – during it.

From John Brown, a radical abolitionist whose fanatical desire to free Southern slaves through armed insurrection helped trigger America's descent into war, to the champion of civil rights, Frederick Douglass, and his lifelong struggle for justice, to General William Tecumseh Sherman's ferocious march to the sea, a controversial campaign spurred by the concept of total war, Famous Figures of the Civil War exposes the courage, brutality, brilliance and madness of the people at the heart of the “War Between the States.”

Other figures covered in this set include the honest and eloquent Abraham Lincoln, who risked everything to save a young America from self-destruction; John Wilkes Booth, the man who killed President Lincoln; Robert E. Lee, one of the greatest military commanders of all time; Ulysses S. Grant; Stonewall Jackson; and Jefferson Davis."

Salt
As a CIA officer, Evelyn Salt swore an oath to duty, honor and country. Her loyalty will be tested when a defector accuses her of being a Russian spy. Salt goes on the run, using all her skills and years of experience as a covert operative to elude capture. Her efforts to prove her innocence only serve to cast doubt on her motives, as the hunt to uncover the truth behind her identity continues.

Step Up 3
When a tight-knit group of New York City street dancers are pitted against the best hip hop dancers in the world, it's a high stakes dance battle that'll change their lives forever. Bonus features include dance moves and alternate angles, the making of music videos, as well as music videos from the soundtrack.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps
Following a lengthy prison term, Gordon Gekko finds himself on the outside looking in at a world he once commanded. Hoping to repair his relationship with his daughter, Winnie, Gekko forges an alliance with her fiance, Jake. But Winnie and Jake learn the hard way that Gekko is still a master manipulator who will stop at nothing to reclaim his rightful place at the top of Wall Street.

Which of these will have the most requests next week?

This week’s release with the most requests is Despicable Me with 994 requests.

The A-Team had 638 requests,

The Other Guys had 579 requests,

The Town had 565 requests,

Nanny McPhee Returns had 416 requests,

Legend of the Guardians - Owls of Ga'Hoole had 357 requests,

Cyrus had 194 requests,

Joan Rivers - A Piece of Work had 83 requests,

Mother and Child had 64 requests,

Micmacs had 42 requests,

WWE - The Top 50 Superstars of All Time had 42 requests,

Gasland had 39 requests,

Kama Sutra had 19 requests,

Ice Road Truckers - Complete Season Four had 17 requests,

The Vikings had 17 requests,

Robert Downey Jr. had 15 requests,

The Lost City of Aphrodite had 10 requests,

Cults had 9 requests,

Day After Disaster had 9 requests,

Tattoos had 8 requests,

Titanic's Achilles Heel had 8 requests,

MLB 2010 World Series Collector's Edition had 7 requests,

Secret U.S. Bunkers had 6 requests,

Robert De Niro had 5 requests,

Women Combat Pilots had 5 requests,

Bobby Flay had 4 requests,

Robots had 4 requests,

Taj Mahal had 4 requests,

Brat Pack had 3 requests,

FDR's Secret War had 3 requests,

Ringling Brothers had 3 requests,

Shirley Temple had 3 requests,

Steel had 3 requests,

David Letterman had 2 requests,

Kaigun: The Imperial Japanese Navy had 2 requests,

Sneakers had 2 requests,

Child Warriors had 1 request,

Lindsay Lohan had 1 request, and

Return of the Pirates had 1 request.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Book Review: Because I am Furniture

Because I am Furniture
Thalia Chaltas
Young Adult Realistic Fiction

Anke, the youngest of three siblings, tells the story of her abusive father through verse. Anke's father abuses both her sister and brother, but he does not lay a hand on her. It seems as though she is as unnoticed by her father as an old piece of furniture. She quietly blends into the background of a chaotic home life. As Anke begins to play volleyball for her school's team, she develops something she's never had before: a voice. Using that voice to speak out against her father's horrendous actions will be one of the most challenging things Anke will ever face.

Not usually a fan of novels in verse, I actually felt like the poetry helped enhance Anke's story. The poetic language helps illustrate some difficult situations in Anke's life. For example, when she sees her brother's bruises, Anke states, "I felt my upholstery rip and bits of fluff escape to float away." Anke's seemingly normal life at school makes her very relatable and will have readers questioning how well they really know the people they see every day.

I recommend this book to high school students. Reluctant readers will appreciate that this is a quick read and will be drawn in by the difficult subject matter. Fans of Ellen Hopkins will really enjoy this. Looking for more novels in verse for teens? Try Identical by Ellen Hopkins and I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroeder.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Book Review: What Technology Wants

What Technology Wants
by Kevin Kelly

Here is one technology book that will not be out-of-date in three years. Few writers can muster the depth or the objectivity when analyzing technology as Kevin Kelly. To be honest, I never expected his perspective. I knew his name and thought he had some connection to Wired magazine, but that was all.

Kelly presents technology as a force, as a technium, with an innate power to change us. He describes the technium as the eighth kingdom of the animal world. The technium's impact has been increasing as the feedback loops inherent in the system accelerate change.

Kelly takes a broad view, the broadest view of what technology is. For him, technology is all of the information, procedures, not to mention artifacts created by humanity, and other animals, to interact with and manipulate our environment. He finds the origin of the technium in life itself, in the information embodied in DNA, and its artifacts.

It is this tremendously broad view, so original, that generates the perspective to make technology seem manageable on a personal level. The pace of change, exciting to some, can seem overwhelming to many others.

While being a strong advocate for the collective benefits of technology in improving human life, Kelly is much more selective in what he brings into his personal life. Here is the founder of Wired magazine confessing that he admires the Amish. He is able to see the advantages and disadvantages of technology better than anyone else I've read.

Kevin Kelly doesn't have a smartphone or a laptop or broadcast or cable television at home; he will watch movies. He writes, "I continue to keep the cornucopia of technology at arm's length so that I can more easily remember who I am"(5). But he is definitely not a Luddhite.

Destined to be a classic, I think this is one of the most important books written about technology and its impact on human life and society. This is one of the most profound books I've read in the last few years.

I highly recommend this book!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tuesday's New DVD Releases

Here are the DVD releases for next Tuesday, 14 December 2010:

The A-Team

Convicted by a military court for a crime they didn't commit, a daring team of former Special Forces soldiers must utilize their unique talents to break out of prison and tackle their toughest mission yet. It's going to take guts, split-second timing, and an arsenal of explosive weapons; this is a job for the A-Team!

Bobby Flay

He is a spirited restaurateur, a best-selling author, and a celebrity chef whose brand is known around the world. As a young child, Bobby Flay was enchanted by the dishes he could concoct with his Easy-Bake Oven. Little did anyone know that this early love affair with food would eventually lead the native New Yorker to widespread culinary fame.

Brat Pack

During the mid-1980s in Hollywood, no one was hotter than THE BRAT PACK. Made up of actors Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe, Molly Ringwald, Anthony Michael Hall, Andrew McCarthy, Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson, and Demi Moore, members of The Brat Pack were characterized as being young, precocious, successful, and rich, not to mention having great looks and sex appeal to spare. In this definitive profile, get an inside look into the personal and professional trials and triumphs of these eight.

Child Warriors

Right now, hundreds of thousands of children are being used as active combatants in conflicts across the globe, some are as young as seven years old. This deeply moving program brings the tragic issue of child soldiers to light through the lens of a comprehensive investigation. Discover the surprisingly long history of children used in combat, and how the current widespread practice has made innocence one of the most devastating casualties of modern warfare.

Cults

Whether inspired by the visions of leaders who believe they have a pipeline to God, or invented as schemes by charlatans and frauds, CULTS have long occupied a unique place in society. In this thought-provoking documentary, explore the beliefs and practices of some of the most famed cults in history. Learn how throughout the ages, spiritual organizations have served as havens for people searching for meaning in their lives, and how nearly every religion, no matter how mainstream.

Cyrus

A quirky, hilarious story about love, family, and cutting the cord. Not-so-recently divorced John thinks he's finally found the perfect woman when he meets the sweet and sexy Molly. There's just one problem; Molly's son Cyrus clings to his mom like lint on a T-shirt, and he's not about to let another man come between them. It's one hysterically awkward moment after another as John and Cyrus fight for the right to be Molly's #1 man.

David Letterman

A former TV weatherman who once predicted hail stones 'the size of canned hams', David Letterman was a struggling stand-up comic and TV writer when guest shots on shows such as The Gong Show caught the attention of Johnny Carson. As a result, he eventually became the permanent substitute host for The Tonight Show. When Carson retired, however, Letterman lost a mano-a-mano battle for the coveted seat to Jay Leno and he left NBC, landing at CBS and his own late night show.

Day After Disaster

Against a morning sky, a mushroom cloud spirals heavenward. A nuclear bomb was detonated in the heart of Washington D.C., incinerating 15,000 residents in just 15 seconds. More than 50% of the population living within a 1/2 mile radius of the explosion is either dead or severely injured. The next 24 hours will determine whether the rest of the city lives or dies. To survive this horrific ordeal they will need a plan. And lucky for us there is one. But will it work?

Despicable Me

Gru delights in all things wicked. Surrounded by an army of tireless, little yellow minions, and armed with his arsenal of shrink rays, freeze rays, and battle-ready vehicles for land and air, he vanquishes all who stand in his way. Until the day he encounters the immense will of three little orphaned girls who look at him and see something that no one else has ever seen: a potential dad.

FDR's Secret War

Beyond the cheerful voice and handsome face that inspired millions during WWII was a dark, coercive, and surreptitious Franklin D. Roosevelt. For years, FDR operated in an unseen world of intrigue and espionage. According to some, no American president was ever more suited for covert dealings. His performance was always precarious, often brilliant, though sometimes disastrous.

Gasland

In 2009, filmmaker Josh Fox learned his land was on top of the Marcellus Shale, a giant reservoir of natural gas, and that he would be paid to lease his land for natural gas extraction. Fox documented his cross-country trek to find out if the controversial process of hydraulic fracking is actually safe. What he unearthed was a shocking discovery about a practice that is understudied and inadequately regulated, and raced to find answers about fracking before it was too late.

Ice Road Truckers - Complete Season Four

Just when you thought trucking couldn't get more dangerous, the new season of Ice Road Truckers is back! The Ice Road Truckers return to Alaska, hauling their biggest loads ever across the most dangerous terrain they've faced. But this year, trucking critically needed cargo north to the oil fields of Prudhoe Bay is just the beginning. The drivers will tackle frozen rivers and swamps out beyond the Dalton Highway, and more.

Joan Rivers - A Piece of Work

The cameras follow trailblazing comic Joan Rivers for a year and cover her entire career, from her break on the Carson show to her heartbreak over the suicide of her husband and her role on Celebrity Apprentice. Rivers reveals her relentless desire to keep working with humor and empathy. Wickedly funny and surprisingly moving, Rivers is once again returned to the spotlight she so richly deserves and cements her reputation as one of stand-up's towering figures.

Kaigun: The Imperial Japanese Navy

Climb aboard the impressive vessels of Japan's modern naval fleet during this fascinating journey to uncover the history of KAIGUN: THE IMPERIAL JAPANESE NAVY. For over half a century, the Japanese navy has stood shoulder to shoulder with its U.S. counterpart, defending the waters of Far East Asia and the vital sea lanes surrounding the Japanese islands. Yet, during WWII, these two forces were locked in one of the largest and most destructive naval battles of all time.

Kama Sutra

One thousand years ago in the northern region of central India, the Hindu Kings built their capital city, Khajuraho. Eighty-five stunning temples were built, twenty of which remain today. Famed above all for the delicate sensuality and eroticism of their sculptures, these frank representations of sexuality are considered an expression of India's world renowned Kama Sutra.

Lindsay Lohan

She began as one of the most memorable child stars of her generation, but in recent years, she has become better known for her wild child image and frequent run-ins with the law. This is a candid profile of the real story behind Lindsay Lohan's rollercoaster ride to fame. At age 11, after appearing in several commercials and acting in the daytime soap, Another World, Lohan landed a life-changing role in a remake of the 1961 classic film, The Parent Trap.

The Lost City of Aphrodite

Widely recognized as one of the greatest and best-preserved sites in the Classical world, Aphrodisias is a magnificent city of marble dedicated to Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of beauty, love, and sex. Although largely forgotten until the mid-twentieth century, Aphrodisias's remarkable state of preservation has led to comparisons with another well-preserved ancient city, Pompeii. In the seventh century BC, a devastating earthquake destroyed Aphrodisias.

Micmacs

First it was a mine that exploded in the Moroccan desert. Years later, it was a stray bullet that lodged in his brain. Bazil doesn't have much luck with weapons. Released from the hospital after his accident, Bazil is homeless. Luckily, he is taken in by a motley crew of junkyard dealers living in a veritable Ali Baba's cave. One day, while out walking, Bazil recognizes the logos of the weapons manufacturers that caused his misfortune, and sets out with his wacky friends to take revenge.

MLB 2010 World Series Collector's Edition

Every complete game from the 2010 World Series! Each definitive 2010 World Series game is presented uncut in this action-packed 8-DVD set, preserving the complete, unedited footage of every must-have 2010 World Series game and key playoff game-plus exclusive celebratory footage and interviews.

Mother and Child

Three women's lives share a common core. They have all been profoundly affected by adoption. At age fourteen, Karen placed a baby for adoption, and has been haunted ever since by the daughter she never knew. Elizabeth grew up as an adopted child. Even though she is a bright and ambitious lawyer, she is a flinty loner in her personal life. Lucy and her husband are just embarking on the adoption odyssey, hoping for the opportunity to become parents.

Nanny McPhee Returns

When Nanny McPhee appears at the farmhouse door of busy young mother Isabel Green, she discovers that Mrs. Green's children are in an all-out household war with their two spoiled city cousins. Relying on everything from a flying motorcycle and a statue that comes to life to a tree-climbing piglet and an elephant that turns up in the oddest places, Nanny McPhee uses her magic to show the children five valuable lessons, the most important of which is how to get along.

The Other Guys

When two mismatched NYPD detectives stumble into a seemingly dull case that no other detective wants to bother with, it turns out to be New York City's biggest crime. The two seize the opportunity to step up like the city's top cops, whom they idolize. But do these two guys have the right stuff?

Return of the Pirates

Just off coastlines around the world, a new war is being raged. Seafarers are witnessing the return of a threat many believed to have vanished long ago, piracy. Today's pirate is organized, political, and agile. To make matters worse, intelligence indicates that pirates and terrorists are now sharing tactics. In this fast-paced look at piracy in the 21st century, learn how more than 90% of international trade travels by water, and how countries and corporations are racing to protect them.

Ringling Brothers

Their name is synonymous with the American circus. But long before there were dramatic acrobatics, exotic animals, and special effects, the Ringling Brothers circus consisted of an all-Ringling cast of two dancers, two musicians, and one singer. The Wisconsin-born Ringling brothers grew up in an era when the circus's arrival in town triggered an unofficial holiday. Five of the seven brothers, Albert, Otto, Alfred, Charles, and John, were drawn to the majestic spectacle of the circus.

Robert De Niro

From Travis Bickle to Jake LaMotta to Vito Corleone, Robert De Niro has brought to life some of Hollywood's most iconic characters. In this comprehensive profile, discover how De Niro went from being a low-key, quiet kid from a bohemian family in Greenwich Village to one of the greatest silver screen actors of all time. A passionate Method actor, he has been known to push himself to dangerous extremes to inhabit some of his most recognizable roles.

Robert Downey Jr.

He's an Oscar nominee and an ex-con. He's the greatest actor of his generation and one of Hollywood's most famous drug casualties. He's a family man and poster boy for bad behavior. He's Robert Downey Jr., and at 43-years-old, the star of Chaplin, Less Than Zero, Zodiac and Iron Man is proving all his doubters wrongs. Acting in films since he was five, Robert Downey Jr. has had one of the wildest careers in modern Hollywood.

Robots

They can crawl up walls, swim underwater and investigate bomb threats. Robots are making the coffee in your kitchen and keeping your office parking lot secure at night. Join host Daniel H. Wilson as he reveals artificial intelligence which can create smart houses that anticipate our desires and automate the functions of our-day to-day life.

Secret U.S. Bunkers

The Cold War, with its ever-present threat of nuclear annihilation, left the United States with a legacy of paranoia, excess weaponry, and an impressive, recently revealed network of Secret U.S. Bunkers. This fascinating program takes a unique, behind-the-scenes journey into these newly opened facilities and retraces the most fearsome moments of the Cold War.

Shirley Temple

During the dismal era of the Great Depression, she became America's princess, an adorable little girl who, in film after film, captured the hearts of millions with her charm, talent, and optimism. This in-depth profile tracks the fascinating life of Shirley Temple. During the height of her film career, kings and presidents sought to meet the young actress, who single-handedly saved a film studio from bankruptcy with her wildly popular films, including Bright Eyes and Curly Top.

Sneakers

Sneakers are everywhere, transcending religion, culture, and ideology, they have become an integral part of modern life across the globe. In this lively look at the world's most comfortable shoe, host Daniel H. Wilson uncovers the surprising story of a multibillion-dollar global industry that has inspired music, movies, and even has its own subculture.

Steel

Host Daniel H. Wilson takes us on a transformative journey that reveals the extraordinary in everyday things. Wilson delves into steel, the lightest, toughest, most flexible inexpensive material on earth. It is in our buildings, our weapons, our roads, even in our bodies. What is the secret that makes more than 3,500 types of steel possible? Explore its cutting edge as a weapon in law enforcement; its application to music; and its role in monumental art.

Taj Mahal

From tragedy and loss came one of the most spectacular monuments ever erected, India's Taj Mahal. Built four hundred years ago as a tribute to Emperor Shah Jahani's beloved third wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died in childbirth, the Taj Mahal was an undertaking of unprecedented extravagance and beauty. Upwards of 20,000 workers toiled to create the astounding feat of engineering, which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983.

Tattoos

From punk kids to soccer moms, grandmas to frat boys, all kinds of people have tattoos for all kinds of reasons. In this wildly colorful program, host Daniel H. Wilson takes a behind-the-scenes look at how tattoos are designed, applied, and how the science behind tattooing actually works. Find out how the oldest tattoos ever discovered were found on a 5,000-year-old stone age man pulled from a glacier in the Alps, and learn how important tattoos are to appreciating history and human biology.

Titanic's Achilles Heel

For years, the focus of the Titanic disaster has been on the notorious iceberg that gouged the ship as it cruised through the North Atlantic in April 1912. But was the iceberg the only thing that contributed to the sinking of this legendary vessel? This eye-opening program explores the explosive theory that the doomed liner may have had a fatal design flaw, one which could have caused it to sink even if it had not struck the iceberg.

The Vikings

Pillage, rape, and plunder, these are the acts we most readily associate with the Vikings. But now, new evidence suggests that some lesser-known endeavors, including building, navigating, and colonizing, may have been what really helped them to thrive. At the end of the eighth century AD, the Vikings, fearsome warriors from Denmark and Norway, powered their way through Western Europe, ransacking whatever and whoever stood in their way.

Women Combat Pilots

Did you know that Orville and Wilbur Wright had a sister, Katherine, who contributed as much to Kitty Hawk as her famous brothers? Ever since the first manned flight, women possessed a passion for flying and a deep desire to use their skills to serve as combat pilots in times of war. It wasn't until 1993 that American women were officially allowed to fly combat aircraft.

WWE - The Top 50 Superstars of All Time

Fans can enjoy the first-ever countdown of the biggest superstars in history, complete with highlights of the top 50, commentary from today's WWE Superstars explaining their choices, and more.

Legend of the Guardians - Owls of Ga'Hoole (12/17/2010)

Young owl Soren marvels at his father's epic stories of the Guardians of Ga'Hoole, mythic winged warriors who fought a great battle to save all owl kind from the evil Pure Ones. When he and brother Kludd fall from their treetop home and into the talons of the Pure Ones, it's up to Soren to make a daring escape with the help of other brave owls.

The Town (12/17/2010)

Doug MacRay is leader of a Boston bank robber gang but not cut from the same cloth as his fellow thieves. When Doug falls into a passionate romance with the bank manager briefly taken hostage in their last heist, he wants out of this life and out of the town. As the Feds close in and the crew questions his loyalty, he has one of two choices: betray his friends or lose the woman he loves.

Which of these will have the most requests next week?

This week’s release with the most requests is Inception with 1037 requests.

Shrek Forever After had 637 requests and
Restrepo had 67 requests.