Totally Random Lists: Shakespeare in Name Only

EDITOR’S NOTE: This year at HPB, we’re celebrating the random. Actually, we’ve been doing that every year since our founding in 1972. And we mean random in a totally good way, as in the random treasures you come across when you’re browsing our stores or website—and the wonderfully random stuff we buy from the public every day. In this series of posts, you’ll find books, movies and music collected in some very random ways. So here’s our list for May 2017!

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Stuck on what to call your freshly-minted novel, song or screenplay? Want to give it instant gravitas? Do what countless creators have done: use a phrase from Shakespeare. Think about it — even Shakespeare’s titles came from Shakespeare.

Shakespeare_IllustrationBOOKS
The Fault in Our Stars, John Green
Into Thin Air, John Krakauer
On Such a Full Sea, Chang-Rae Lee
The Winter of Our Discontent, John Steinbeck

MOVIES & TV
North By Northwest
The Quick and the Dead
The Sound and the Fury

MUSIC
…Nothing Like the Sun, Sting
Salad Days, Mac DeMarco
Sea Change, Beck
Sigh No More, Mumford and Sons

But that’s just the first act. Get thee to HPB.com/shakespeare for a much longer list.

Administrative Professionals’ Day: Our Favorites from the Big and Small Screen

This Wednesday, April 26, is Administrative Professionals’ Day. Dating all the way back to the 1950s, the last week of April is a time to acknowledge the significant contributions of executive assistants, secretaries and other administrative roles. Anyone who has worked in an office, school or large organization knows that someone has to be the glue that holds all the moving parts together! So here are some of our favorite administrative professionals:

The Fearless Trailblazers

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Doralee Rhodes (9 to 5)—In this classic comedy from 1980, Doralee isn’t afraid to stand up to her “sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot” boss. Attagirl, Doralee!

JoanHolloway_Half Price BooksJoan Holloway (Mad Men)—Don’t mess with Joan. She runs a tight ship, managing her team of secretaries while advancing her career in a climate that’s less than conducive to women in power.
TessMcGill_Half Price BooksTess McGill (Working Girl)—Tess proves that, sometimes in life, you have to visualize what you want and then take it. She’s never afraid to step up and make the most of an opportunity. Continue reading

Totally Random Lists: Guys Named Bob

EDITOR’S NOTE: This year at HPB, we’re celebrating the random. Actually, we’ve been doing that every year since our founding in 1972. And we mean random in a totally good way, as in the random treasures you come across when you’re browsing our stores or website—and the wonderfully random stuff we buy from the public every day. In this series of posts, you’ll find books, movies and music collected in some very random ways. So here’s our list for March 2017!

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Why Bob? Because it’s the best nickname ever invented, that’s why. It’s short. It’s punchy. It’s a palindrome. You can even play it in Scrabble.™ This month we celebrate some of the famous Bobs & Roberts who you can find at Half Price Books. Continue reading

Totally Random Lists: Body Language

EDITOR’S NOTE: This year at HPB, we’re celebrating the random. Actually, we’ve been doing that every year since our founding in 1972. And we mean random in a totally good way, as in the random treasures you come across when you’re browsing our stores or website—and the wonderfully random stuff we buy from the public every day. In this series of posts, you’ll find books, movies and music collected in some very random ways. So here’s our list for February 2017!body-language-type

Face it. Everybody has a body. So it’s no wonder anatomical words can be eyeballed on the spines of so many hip books, movies & records. HPB is a great place to get your hands on them without spending an arm and a leg. (We should have quit while we were a head.)anatomy-chart

BOOKS
Cat’s Eye, Margaret Atwood
A Farewell to Arms, Ernest Hemingway
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Carson McCullers
The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold

MOVIES & TV
Adam’s Rib
Cool Hand Luke
Jaws

MUSIC
Cheek to Cheek, Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga
Every Open Eye, CHVRCHES
Hair: Original Broadway Cast Recording
Speaking in Tongues, Talking Heads

But everyone nose that’s only part of the list. Thumb through dozens of other body-related titles at HPB.com/body.

Take a look at the rest of our Totally Random Lists series.

The 2017 Half Price Books Calendar of Totally Random Lists…and Coupons!

Each year during the holiday season, Half Price Books offers loyal customers a year’s worth of book-loving excitement in the form of the Half Price Books Calendar. For 2017, we’ve stepped up the fun factor with…The Calendar of Totally Random Lists!

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Available in stores now for FREE! with a $30 purchase while supplies last, The Calendar of Totally Random Lists is full of quirky inspiration to help you find your next great read, movie, music…whatever! Because, let’s be honest, half the fun of shopping at HPB is the randomness. You never know what you’ll find! My favorite list in the calendar? Well, Rabbits!, of course, a list of rabbit-themed books, movies and music. Let’s get it hoppin’! Continue reading

Book Can Take You Places: St. Petersburg

Already this year, we’ve taken trips to 12 different cities and we’ve got a few more stops in our journey around the world.  This month let’s explore all that St. Petersburg, Russia has to offer.

stpetersburgSt. Petersburg is known as the cultural capital of Russia. With a heady mix of striking beauty and turbulent politics, the city looms large in the lives and works of the country’s greatest writers, including Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy and Nabokov. Russia’s first music conservatories were founded here, and The Mariinsky Theatre and Hermitage Museum are both internationally renowned. Known as “the Venice of the North,” St. Petersburg bears much more in common with western European cities than most other major urban areas in Russia.

In addition to the world-class museums and theaters, visitors to St. Petersburg will not want to miss the magnificent Peterhof Palace, the Peter and Paul Fortress (burial site of many Russian tsars, including Peter I himself), or the incredibly colorful Church of the Savior on the Spilled Blood. Continue reading

National Grandparents Day

This Sunday is National Grandparents Day. For some, this is a day to visit with family and friends and celebrate the lives of those loving grandfathers and grandmothers who guide us, spoil us and, sometimes, even raise us. For others, this day allows us time to reflect on loved ones who have passed—while their bodies are no longer present, their spirit and wisdom lives on. Let’s take a look at some of the grandparents who have made an impact on all of us over the years through books, movies and television.

GRANDPARENTS IN BOOKS

Abraham Portman (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs)—The grandparent-grandchild bond is one of a kind, and, in this case, deeper than what first appears. Continue reading

Book Can Take You Places: Rio de Janeiro

Already this year, we’ve taken a trip 9 different cities and our journey around the world is far from over!  This month let’s explore all that Rio de Janeiro has to offer.

RioRio de Janeiro is the back drop for the 2016 Olympic Games. I’ve always been kind of fascinated by the grandeur of it all when it comes to The Olympics. The ceremonies, the stories behind the competing athletes and the unique locations. Rio is an exciting city with no shortage of culture and flair.

Spectacular beaches and mountain peaks aren’t the only reasons this tropical metropolis is called Cidade Maravilhosa (The Marvelous City). Rio is Brazil’s vibrant cultural center, known for Carnival and bossa nova, the fusion of samba and jazz that swept the world in the 60s. There’s a long moviemaking tradition and an evolving body of literature reflective of Brazil’s multicultural makeup.

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Books Can Take You Places: Berlin

Already this year, we’ve taken a trip 8 different cities and our journey around the world is far from over!  This month let’s explore all that Berlin, Germany has to offer.

Known for its cultural institutions and trendsetting old-meets-new atmosphere, Berlin has been a destination for writers and other artists for hundreds of years. The list of creative types with a “Berlin era” in their biography includes writers Franz Kafka and Vladimir Nabokov as well as rock musician David Bowie, who famously described 1970s-era Berlin as “the greatest cultural extravaganza that one could imagine.”

BerlinVisitors raised on decades of spy films and John le Carré novels may envision Berlin as a cold, uninviting labyrinth of concrete and razor wire with sinister Stasi operatives and KGB agents lurking around every corner. But even though elements of the city’s Cold War past remain (and can be viewed in places like the East Side Gallery and Checkpoint Charlie), Berlin bears much more in common with other European cities than you might expect.

Upon arrival, my companions and I instantly made a beeline for the nearest café, where we sat drinking beer alongside cobblestone streets and soaking in the simple pleasure of people watching on a warm summer day. Later that afternoon we toured a Baroque palace at Schloss Charlottenburg, discovered the marvels of döner kebab (a popular form of Turkish rotisserie sold by street vendors and small shops all across Western Europe), and staggered a few kilometers back to the hotel after a rowdy night out at a biergarten in the Tiergarten. You may begin to detect a theme here. Continue reading

A Dog’s-Eye View: HPB Celebrates Take Your Dog to Work Day

Hi there, I’m Sophie. I’m an 8-year old black and tan miniature dachshund who loves books! You might remember me from occasional appearances on the HPB Instagram and HPB Blog. I’m here to talk about the best day of the year, Take Your Dog to Work Day, which is happening today, Friday, June 24th.

Since my dad works at Half Price Books, every day is Take Your Dog to Work Day! Okay, so he doesn’t bring me every day, but I do get to explore all the books from time to time. So many smells!

Luckily, Dad brought me to work today, so I get to wander around the big bookstore. I think they call it…Flagship? Seems like a weird name to me, but they have dog treats, so I’m not complaining.

Alrighty, let’s get the day started! What can I do to help? Greet customers, take books back to their shelves…I’m ready to work!

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Wait, what’s this? A desk! No, Dad, I’m bored!

Continue reading