Broadway Bookshelf- Experts from the NY Public Library Pick Your Next Great Read for 2019!
Love Broadway? In need of a good book? Well you're in luck, because BroadwayWorld has teamed up with the New York Public Library to bring you Broadway Bookshelf- an expert opinion on what theatre fans can and should add to their personal libraries.
TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD opened on Broadway just last month, bringing Harper Lee's iconic story to the stage (by way of wordsmith extraordinaire, Aaron Sorkin). You don't necessarily need to break out the classics, however, to find a great read this season. Read on as Gwen Glazer (Librarian, Readers Services), Doug Reside (Curator for the Billy Rose Theatre Division), John Calhoun (Librarian III, Billy Rose Theatre Collection), Charlie Morrow (Librarian II, Special Formats Processing Department) and Steve Massa (Library Technical Assistant III, Billy Rose Theatre Collection) share their selections to help you build your very own Broadway bookshelf!
If you like Be More Chill, check out...
Off To Be The Wizard by Scott Meyer
"Be More Chill features a geeky high school kid who uses advanced and little-known technology to remake himself as powerful and cool. Scott Meyer's fantasy series, Off To See The Wizard explores some of the same themes. A young man realizes the world can be controlled by a shell script he discovers on a computer server. He uses the script to transport himself back to the middle ages where he finds others who have made the same discovery." -Doug Reside, Lewis and Dorothy Cullman Curator for the Billy Rose Theatre Division
If you like The Waverly Gallery, check out...
Animal Dreams by Barbara Kingsolver
"Like Kenneth Lonergan's play, Kingsolver's novel portrays a once-vital character's struggle with Alzheimer's disease partially through the lens of the caregiver. The protagonist returns to her small Arizona hometown to look after her father, a doctor who is succumbing to dementia. In the narrative's alternating perspectives, memory is a stubborn presence, even as it shifts and diminishes." -John Calhoun, Librarian III, Billy Rose Theatre Collection
"The power of speech is a central idea in both the classic musical and Madeline Miller's retelling of the myth of the powerful Greek sorceress. Circe's lilting prose reads almost like a play itself. (Miller also wrote a short story called Galatea-a retelling of the Pygmalion myth, which My Fair Lady is based on-available as an ebook from NYPL!)" -Gwen Glazer, Librarian, Reader Services
If you like To Kill A Mockingbird, check out...
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
"To Kill A Mockingbird is, of course, based on Harper Lee's novel about life and racism in the American South in the 1930s. Robinson's 2005 book, Gilead, is set in Iowa during the same period as an elderly clergyman nearing his own death writes a series of letters to his young son to tell him of his own life and the life of his father and grandfather. Robinson's book, a favorite of President Barack Obama's according to his Facebook profile, deals with some of the same issues of depression-era small-town America still struggling with the legacy of the Civil War." - Doug Reside, Lewis and Dorothy Cullman Curator for the Billy Rose Theatre Division
"In order to compile this oral biography, Jones spoke to dozens of friends, colleagues, and intimates of the rock superstar and fashion icon, everyone from Paul McCartney to Bowie's widow Iman. You won't find a richer, more nuanced account of his life and career." -Charlie Morrow, Librarian II, Special Formats Processing Department
If you like Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, check out...
Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho
"Let's be real: There's nothing in the world quite like Harry Potter. But there really are some fantastical new worlds out there, waiting to be discovered by legions of magic-loving readers. Try Sorcerer to the Crown, a historical adventure set in 19th-century England, when a new Sorcerer Royale-himself a freed slave-needs help from a newly powerful woman to refresh the country's dwindling magic. (And check out more of our favorite Potter readalikes for suggestions for readers of all ages.)" -Gwen Glazer, Librarian, Reader Services
"It would be too easy to connect Lee's novel to the play on which it was based. I was struck, however, that the mixture of nostalgia and the pain of communal guilt that pervades the recent revival of Oklahoma! feels not unlike Lee's novel which ends, like Oscar Hammerstein's original libretto, with the killing of an unsympathetic character and the decision of community leaders to tell the story that he 'fell on his own knife.'" - Doug Reside, Lewis and Dorothy Cullman Curator for the Billy Rose Theatre Division
If you like Dear Evan Hansen, check out...
We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
"This emotional, sincere, heart-wrenching musical digs into what it's really like to be a teenager in America-the social media pressure, the parental dynamics, the very real stakes of daily life. This quiet reflection on death, tragedy, and first love would speak to Evan's fans in a similar voice." -Gwen Glazer, Librarian, Reader Services
If you like The Phantom of the Opera, check out...
Universal Horrors by Michael Brunas, John Brunas, and Tom Weaver
"The long-running mega-hit musical Phantom of the Opera is based on the French novel by Gaston Leroux, as well as the legendary 1925 silent film starring Lon Chaney. Famous for its opulent settings and the scene unmasking Chaney as the disfigured Erik, this film was the first in the series of classic horror movies to come from Universal Studios. This book is an excellent film-by-film analysis of the series, which continued on with well-remembered versions of Dracula (1931), Frankenstein (1931), The Wolf Man (1941), and many more. Wittily written in loving detail, in addition to information on the films themselves the authors examine the still popular film's effect on other aspects of popular culture, such as modern films, graphic novels, hobby-kit models, and Broadway musicals." -Steve Massa, Library Technical Assistant III, Billy Rose Theatre Collection
"If Mike Birbiglia's fans already know his 2010 book, Sleepwalk with Me: And Other Painfully True Stories, it's time to check out more essays from another great comedian: Phoebe Robinson, half of the amazing 2 Dope Queens. Funny and smart, this truth-telling collection mixes the most serious issues of our day-race, gender, power, money-with Robinson's trademark wit, directness, and intelligence." -Gwen Glazer, Librarian, Reader Services