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Author: Mariah Brule

Unpacking Kendrick Lamar’s Album “DAMN”

Posted in Uncategorized on 27 Jun by Mariah Brule


Kendrick Lamar has without a doubt been one of the best storytellers in the rap industry. His newly released album “DAMN.”, tells emotional stories about character, honor, society, politics, culture and religion. With fourteen tracks and a 55 minute run-time, this is one to listen to a few times to wrap your mind around Lamar’s lyrics. The majority of the album is simple but gets real heavy at times. Let’s be honest, we can’t really expect anything less from Kendrick. With that being said, here are some of my favorites as I continue to unpack this album. Trust me this wasn’t easy!

Kendrick Lamar

6. LOYALTY.
This track features the one and only Rihanna, I’m sure this one will be a part of the summer hype soundtrack of 2017. It’s definitely a lot more relaxed than his other tracks and it’s dope to hear Rihanna and Lamar work together from bar to bar.

11. XXX.
Kendrick goes in speaking his mind on politics and social issues. This might be the most important track on the album. I was a little unsure of what to expect with a collaboration with U2. I have to say it was far from disappointing! Kendrick easily coasts through many different sounds.

12. FEAR.
This is the longest track on the album and probably one I would say I personally relate to the most. This track deals with anxiety. insecurities, and how it all ties in with life. He talks about how his struggles and most of all his fears that changed from childhood to teen years and up through his 20’s. He says that some kind of fear always continues to follow us, sharing his struggle of getting rid of  fear or whatever it was that was causing it. Getting towards the end of the track he says, “I wonder if I’m living through fear or living through rap.” Strong statement Kendrick.

For Kendricks’s older albums, we suggest coming by Bookmans today. His older work is just as monumental and is the basis for the love that we have for new releases. For more on his current work and a sneak peak into his new musical release visit his website here.

5 Forever Favorite 90’s TV Shows

Posted in Job Postings, Uncategorized on 19 Jun by Mariah Brule


Where are all my 90’s kids at? It was a decade that gave us some of the raddest video games in history(in my opinion). It was a decade that brought us the struggle of renting a VHS tape that the person before you didn’t rewind. If you remember that then chances are there are probably pictures of you in a bright neon wardrobe inside an old photo album, hopefully buried away at your parent’s house. Don’t worry, we don’t have to get into all that. Let’s focus on the good and dig into some of the great 90’s TV shows that you still remember watching today. There was the pop culture Bel-Air family, the daily adventures of being a rugrat, and the yellow cartoon family who is perhaps the most popular family in the world. The best way to re-cap these great shows is to watch them again. So with a little help, here are a few of my favorites from our 90’s childhood!

Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

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Listen Up | Bryson Tiller’s New Album ‘True to Self’

Posted in Uncategorized on 08 Jun by Mariah Brule


Surprise! If you haven’t heard, Bryson Tiller had an early release of his new album True to Self. Time to drop in with a review. I’ve been exploring this album since its unexpected release last week, and there is still a lot to drive in to with 19 tracks and a 58 minute runtime.

Bryson Tiller

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Geeking Out | Freddy Krueger Films

Posted in Uncategorized on 30 May by Mariah Brule


Many people know and love Freddy Krueger. It’s true! No, you’re not dreaming. How many horror villains seem to have as much fun as Freddy? Most slash kingpins show so much hatred or a sense of other worldly compulsion. Yes, Freddy is as evil as Jason, but Freddy has FUN! He uses his imagination to dream up some very twisted, yet original ways to kill helpless sleepers. Who can forget the poor girl who was turned into a bug and squashed in a bug trap? Or the teen who wanted to be a star on TV so Freddy welcomed her to primetime by shoving her head in a TV? Classic.

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Geeking Out | Logic “Everybody”

Posted in Uncategorized on 19 May by Mariah Brule


Some might say this is debatable, but in my book, Logic has been one of the most under-rated rappers in the industry. Haven’t heard of him? Believe me when I say that he shouldn’t be ignored. I’ve continued to follow Logic as he progressively made his way into the hip-hop scene. He recently released his third official album, Everybody, which touches on current issues in the world from race to mental health, and everything in-between. If you have yet to unpack this album, let me offer some suggestions with a breakdown of my top songs.

logic

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Geeking Out | Throwback to Childhood Video Games

Posted in Uncategorized on 12 May by Mariah Brule


When it comes to video games, my all-time favorites are still the ones that I grew up playing. Now don’t get me wrong, I can definitely get down on the newest ps4 games too. I’m totally a sucker for annihilating zombies in Black Ops and always down to hijack the baddest looking car in the latest GTA. I have to be honest though, I catch myself a lot of times throwing it back to the games I grew up on. Here are just a few of my favorite video games, all the way from childhood.

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Sony PlayStation Does Virtual Reality

Posted in Play: A Gamer's Blog, Uncategorized on 06 May by Mariah Brule


It was the year of 2016 and virtual reality was becoming the next big thing. Once Sony PlayStation stepped into the VR (Virtual Reality) world, I became a pushover for it. I mean let’s be real, if you have a PS4, then you are pretty much halfway there.  The PSVR operates off of the PS4 console itself, then all you need is the VR component/headset and a PlayStation 4 Camera. The PSVR easily plugs right into the back of the PS4, while you slip on the lightweight headset. Now that I’ve been explained a little bit on how it gear up let’s expand more on the actual VR experience. 

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Spring Cleaning With Bookmans

Posted in Uncategorized on 25 Apr by Mariah Brule


Spring never fails to bring all the things we love to the forefront like pastel and earth tone colors, a fresh breeze, flowers growing and birds chirping. Life is good. Then you realize you have a accumulated a lot of new stuff in the recent season. It’s due time for some spring cleaning, and for some this task might be a major mood killer. Fear not for Bookmans is here to help!

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Children’s Storytime Tips

Posted in Uncategorized on 13 Apr by Mariah Brule


When looking back to my childhood, I have more memories of being read to than I can count, from snuggling up for bedtime stories to feeling the magic of my favorite books come alive during storytime. Now let’s be honest, sometimes it isn’t always the easiest to read aloud to a child. As the children’s storyteller at Bookmans Northwest, I have parents ask me, “how do you get them to sit and listen. At home, they wriggle and seem uninterested.” Whenever I get that question I always tell them to not feel discouraged, and offer them the my top tips for story telling.

Storytime Read More…

Syd Goes Solo | Bookmans Review

Posted in Uncategorized on 06 Apr by Mariah Brule


One of the many perks of working for such a company like Bookmans is the ability to digest music, movies, games and books effortlessly. As new material makes it’s way in our stores we eat it up and spit it out – in the form of reviews so that you, our avid reader and listener, can decide just what goes on your shopping list for your next trip to Bookmans. Here we review Sydney Bennett.

Sydney Bennett known as “Syd”, who you may know from going back to the days of being a Odd Future member or from being a huge leading part of a group named The Internet. Syd currently has been prepping to release her first solo album; “Fin.” Syd’s lead single “All About Me” was the first single released on the album, which is produced by member of the Internet; Steve Lacy.
syd

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Why Art Is Important To Us | Bookmans

Posted in Core Values, Uncategorized on 28 Mar by Mariah Brule


Art in some way has existed just about as long as the world itself. It has become to be a huge part of our lives; appearing in cultures all across the world. It is such an important element because it delivers a wider perception of: self, each other, emotions, awareness, history and more. It is created and appreciated by many different people for countless reasons. Here is why art is important to us…

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Robert talks Thrash Metal: Liege Lords Review | Bookmans

Posted in Uncategorized on 15 Mar by Mariah Brule


What does one think of when asked about Stamford, Connecticut? Did you answer “Thrash Metal?” Of course you did! That was a hot bed of metal in the mid 80’s…oh, wait. That was Los Angeles. Well, regardless, out of this lovely, coast-side town, a metal band that has been forgotten in the annals of Metal history, was born. That band is none other than Liege Lords.

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Zombi Review

Posted in Uncategorized on 22 Feb by Mariah Brule


You know, I’ve talked about punk rock for most of my blog posts. I can’t help it. It’s my passion. It’s something that drives me to wake up in the morning. It’s strange to think a genre of music could completely engulf someone’s entire essence in a single drum fill or angular guitar chord. Sometimes I do get a little burnt out on my passion. I’ve had to switch it up occasionally just so I don’t become pigeon holed into one of those mindless drones that plague any sort of musical subculture. So I’m going to talk about one of my passions, my love for synth-driven music.

There are a few groups that come to mind when it comes to synth music. A few groups come to mind instantly, but I’m not going to talk about Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, or New Order. About a year ago, I was delving into the depths of the internet. Something I do from time to time, especially when it comes to finding something new and riveting in the musical realm. I stumbled onto this group, Zombi, which is promptly named after the Italian release of George A. Romero’s Dawn of the Dead.

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R.L. Stine meets Marvel, with Man Thing | Bookmans

Posted in Uncategorized on 16 Jan by Mariah Brule


R.L. Stine is back again and as per usual, doing the thing just as good as he ever has. Bookmans is a die-hard R.L. Stine fan, and rightfully so. Goosebumps was too cool for school and his other works makes us fall into dreamy states of book obsession, and you’d be hard pressed to resist those feels with this new addition.

Do you remember the comic book character the Man Thing? The Man-Thing is/was a large, slow, swamp monster that arose in Marvel Comics in the early 70’s. With the help of the R.L. Stine, The Man-Thing will now be getting his own comic book mini series! R.L. Stine is the famous author of the 90’s children series Goosebumps and a few other horror series. Prior to then, Stine was already a fruitful creator of joke books, making me think he will do a trilling job at comic writing. Stine may have written stories that haunted us, but now they might be making our dreams come true.

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Long live XO, Welcome “Starboy” (The Weeknd) | Bookmans

Posted in Musical Notes, Uncategorized on 28 Dec by Mariah Brule


Abel Makkonen Tesfaye (known as The Weeknd) returns to deliver his third album. Prior to the release he knew that the legends of electronic dance and Daft Punk he would be featuring had minds spinning. Luckily The Weeknd didn’t disappoint and left us shook up and unable to get enough. Cue binge listening. This is The Weeknd that I have been anticipating and it’s more interesting that with each record his music keeps evolving. An album packed with drippy gooey disco-ish vibes and mysterious vocals made way to the ears of many and right straight into our reviews (obviously).

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Holiday Movie Marathon | Bookmans

Posted in Uncategorized on 08 Dec by Mariah Brule


Are you in the holiday spirit? Holidays are a time full of for family, friends, parties, cookies and eggnog, while spending time watching your favorite holiday movie classics. Even though everyone has their everlasting favorites, I’ve put together a list of holiday classics that everyone can enjoy this season. So bring on the cookies and eggnog and let the holiday movie marathon start now.

Making our holiday movie marathon list is:

Home Alone (1990)
Doesn’t every kid dream of having the house to themselves? 8-year-old Kevin accidentally left behind at home when his family goes on a holiday vacation. It’s all fun and games at first. Until his excitement ends when reality hits that two men have been planning to rob them, and it’s up to him to protect the family home.

.holiday movie Read More…

Watchmen Comic Review – Bookmans

Posted in Uncategorized on 14 Nov by Mariah Brule


It’s interesting to see how comic book culture has become such a commodity in this day and age. If you look back into the past, it was merely “geek” culture. A medium of expression for individuals trying to find an escape in a world that continuously bombards them with monotony and banality. I remember when society deemed comic books to merely be a “childish” pleasure and that it had no literary merit.

I’ve read many comics that I would consider to have “literary merit” and should be considered classics. One comic book series comes to mind when it comes to a literary classic, it’s called Watchmen by Alan Moore and David Gibbons.

watchmen

You probably remember the film that came out circa 2009. It wasn’t bad, to say the least, but it doesn’t truly grasp the sheer philosophical intensity that the comic book series has within its pages. In my honest opinion, I believe that Watchmen is one of the greatest comic books ever to be written. Completely destroying the concept of the obligatory superhero story. Read More…

Harry Potter: Fight Censorship with my Favorite Youth Series!

Posted in Bookie Blog on 28 Sep by Mariah Brule


Bookmans fights censorship every day but especially in the month of September, we spends time promoting the right to read. In celebration of continuing our freedom to read, view, and listen to what we want, I was looking over a list of past banned books to help prepare an in-store display. Many of the titles jumped out at me as favorites from my grade school self; from scary stories to the entire Harry Potter series and even to Captain Underpants. These were all shockingly on a previous list of banned books.

harry potter

For me and a lot of others in my generation, these books produced a lot of emotion and laughter, taught valuable lessons all while triggering a mind of imagination. In a sense, so much that it helped discover an adventure for reading. Growing up the Harry Potter series was monumental to me! I remember the excitement of each book being released, and then begging my grandfather to go with me to be one of the Potter fans waiting in line at the nearby Barnes & Noble. (It wasn’t ever really that hard cause deep down I know he was a Potter fan too.) Read More…

Punk Rock Review: The Coneheads, by Flavio. Bookmans Entertainment

Posted in Musical Notes on 26 Sep by Mariah Brule


Hey, guys. Flavio’s back…and guess what? He’s written another album review! Want to take another guess? It’s about a punk rock band! So predictable!

Take it away Flav…
I was scouring through the depths of the internet and came across a band that I never thought would exist in this year (and this universe).

punk
They call themselves The Coneheads and their album LP 1 aka 14-Year-Old High School Hype Lords Rip Off Devo for the Sake of Extorting $$$ from Helpless Impressionable Midwestern Internet Peoplepunks L.P. Yeah, it’s quite a mouthful, but it’s probably one of the best punk rock albums I’ve heard of in quite some time. It’s strange to think this band exists in this modern era. Their sound is something irreplaceable. It’s almost hard to describe in many ways. Read More…

Finally, a Frank Ocean Review – Bookmans Entertainment

Posted in Musical Notes on 15 Sep by Mariah Brule


With brand new music from Frank Ocean flooding our radios and ears, it was only appropriate to delve into the newly released albums and give an honest review while he’s still hot. Frank Ocean has been making music and infecting the R&B world for years, before a four year hiatus when R&B artist Frank Ocean hadn’t released any of his own new music. With everyone creating enough rumble about his new releases I found myself diving myself into Endless, enjoying the ripe glory of it, when not even a day later; a second album was released.

Blonde or Blond, no matter the spelling, people will continue to wonder. The artwork of the album features a title different than the title seen on Apple Music, and people are curious – is it preference or an intentional artistic way to reference sexuality from Frank Ocean himself? In his song “Nikes” Ocean sings “there are two versions of me” which may allude to his semantic choice. As for me, it be clever or a preference but still doesn’t change the album.

Frank Ocean Read More…

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