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Horrifying Reads to Get You Ready for American Horror Story Season 6

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It’s no secret around the office that I’m a huge fan of FX’s American Horror Story (AHS). I even had the once-in-a-lifetime experience of walking around the set of “Coven: Season 3”, meeting the writers and watching the actors film for six hours. Anyways, enough about me. As we all know, fall means Halloween time fun, which correlates to loving everything that is scary, especially a new season of AHS. From a depressing group of ghosts to an insane clown and most recently a group of hungry vampire children, writer Ryan Murphy is certainly not afraid to push the boundaries of television. But this year the AHS marketing team seems to be taking a different route. First of all, season 6 is starting a month earlier…

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Who Run the World?! 7 Books for Women’s Equality Day

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First thing’s first – here’s the soundtrack for this article:   On this glorious day, August 26, in the glorious year of 1920, the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution was certified as law. For anyone not up on their Constitutional Amendments (YOU SHOULD BE), that’s the one that gave women the right to vote. So, to commemorate the date, we have Women’s Equality Day, a holiday that celebrates ladies getting a right we should have had from the very beginning. Women’s Equality Day is a well-intentioned holiday that’s still a bit touchy, mainly because the subject of women’s equality is still about as frustrating and divisive as it was in 1920. The gender wage gap is still a…

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Summer Celebrations: The 6 Wildest Parties in Literary History

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From music festivals to beach bashes, summer gives us the freedom to frolic outside and enjoy a margarita…or six. Summer really is all about the evenings of partying until the early morning with friends, or afternoons in the park, reading in the sun. We decided to combine these two fantastic summer activities by giving our take on the six wildest parties in literary history for you to fantasize about and maybe be inspired to throw your own summer bash. Matt’s Picks: The Acid Tests from Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe (Picador Reprint, 2008) “Everything in everybody’s life is…significant. And everybody is alert, watching for meanings.” Journalist Tom Wolfe following a group of degenerate hippies searching for ‘truth’ through the…

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Curb Procrastination: Tim Urban’s TED Talk Inspires a Motivational Book List

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Procrastination plagues the best of us. In this TED talk from TED 2016 in February, Wait But Why blogger and sorta-kinda professional procrastinator Tim Urban takes us inside the minds of serial procrastinators. He breaks down three distinct voices in our brains related to procrastination: the “rational decision-maker,” the “instant gratification monkey,” and the all-powerful “panic monster” that leaps into action as soon as a catastrophic deadline creeps up on us. However, what starts out as a comical breakdown of what’s perceived as a goofy, bad habit becomes an examination of what happens when we procrastinate the big-picture life stuff that doesn’t have deadlines, like reconnecting with family, working on relationships or getting fit. Urban pushes viewers to tackle those challenges without…

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The Original Fan Fiction Prequel Marks its 50th Anniversary

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It may not be entirely fair to refer to Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys (WW Norton & Co.; reissuing January 25, 2016) as the first great work of fan fiction—it stands entirely on its own as a classic. But the “prequel” to Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, which celebrated its 50th anniversary of publication this week, is the grandmamma of an entire genre that has spun some classic novels. In case you missed it in English class, Wide Sargasso Sea answers one of the biggest questions from the pages of Jane Eyre—who was the woman in the attic and what drove her mad? Author Rhys wasn’t satisfied with Bronte’s explanation that all Creole women are crazy and instead spent nearly…

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Apocalypse Now: 3 Tales for the End of the World as We Know It

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From The Road to Armageddon, we’re riveted by apocalyptic tales. It goes well beyond the despair and explosions; we’re always intrigued when humans must face insurmountable odds. This is why our friends at McLean & Eakin booksellers have given us their favorite apocalyptic tales. One of the best independent bookstores in all of Michigan, they’ve got book clubs, numerous store events, and one heckuva staff. Previously, they delivered several fantastic summer lovin’ books and now, owner Matthew Norcross has given us three more must-reads. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel (Vintage, 2015) “A Shakespearean troupe wanders the northern shores of lake Michigan after a pandemic has ravaged the world. Short listed for the National Book Award, this novel is…

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How to dress like Zooey Deschanel

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We’ve all seen 500 Days of Summer, that 2009 hipster-love anthem where Joseph Gordon-Levitt is whiny and romantic, and Zooey Deschanel is the manic pixie dream girl who gets away. It’s a solid story, sure, but what I remember most about the film isn’t the lovesick moping or The Smiths-heavy soundtrack—it’s the fashion. Watching this movie was the moment where I sat up and said, “Who is that girl and where can I get all of her clothes?” Because it wasn’t just the character of Summer who dressed well. In everyday life, Zooey seemed to be cultivating this unique blend of twee, vintage, and overt girliness.  Then came Jess on Fox’s “New Girl,” and the look was solidified. I desperately wanted to…

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