Netflix and Your Library

The House of CardsA house of cards, noted for its instability, is an appropriate symbol for political intrigue. And as the Netflix series “House of Cards” showed us, a fictional representation of politics can trigger almost as much attention as real events. Not as much as shutting down the U.S. government, mind you, but enough to win three Emmy Awards.

Now, as we await the release of the second season of this series starring and co-produced by Kevin Spacey, let me tell you what the library has to offer to ease your wait. The first thing I would recommend to every “House of Cards” fan is the excellent Masterpiece Theater production called “The House of Cards.” Yes, you read that correctly. Wonder if these “houses” are related? Sure they are. In fact, the American “House of Cards” is based on the British TV mini-series, which, in its turn, is based on the book by British writer Michael Dobbs. (Kevin Spacey living in London may have something to do with this connection.) Of course, the events that take place in London are somewhat different from those happening in Washington D.C., but the motivations and the tactics of the characters are the same. And, if you watch the British version, you’ll have a glimpse into what will happen to Kevin Spacey’s character in the second season :).

Want to stay closer to home? Watch “Recount: The Story of the 2000 Presidential Election,” dedicated to one of the most controversial events in recent U.S. election history. Not only will it make you rethink the American election model, it will also give you another chance to enjoy an excellent performance by Kevin Spacey.

Those who want to learn more about British politics should not miss another BBC political drama, “The Rise and Fall of Margaret Thatcher,” which provides insight into the life of one of the most formidable political figures in British history. Also, whether you’re interested in politics or not, don’t forget that the library has many Masterpiece Theater productions, as well as the books on which they are based.

Book cover for Orange Is the New BlackSpeaking of the books, fans of another Netflix series, “Orange Is the New Black,” may not know that this popular show is also based on a book whose author, Piper Kerman, was sentenced to 15 months for drug smuggling and money laundering. The book is titled – no surprise here – “Orange Is the New Black,” and it is available in your library in a variety of formats. Season one of its Netflix counterpart is likely to make a splash at the next Emmy Awards, so if you postpone reading Kerman’s book for too long, we may have a substantial waiting list for it!

Other Netflix original series based on books include “Hemlock Grove,” a takeoff on Brian McGreevy’s horror novel named – by now you know that Netflix likes to keep original titles, right? – “Hemlock Grove.” This book (as well as the show) examines the strange happenings in a fictional town in Pennsylvania.

“John Hodgman: Ragnarok” features material from Hodgman’s last book “That Is All.” And “Arrested Development,” the fourth season of which was aired by Netflix last May, has direct connections to your library, too, for we own the first three seasons of this show :).

All in all, whatever your favorite shows are, don’t forget to check with your library. Chances are we’ll be able to increase your enjoyment of them.

Happy watching and reading!

About Svetlana Grobman

Svetlana is a librarian and a freelance writer. Find more about Svetlana at
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