2022 was a milestone year for Overdue Finds. Our podcast celebrated 100 episodes in January and held its fourth March Madness tournament. We talked with an EPL staff member who has worked at EPL for over fifty years and discussed what might have been put in the 1987 Pop Culture Time Capsule. We re-visited classic movies such as The Godfather, Stand By Me and The Lion King. Hocus Pocus, The Kids in the Hall and A League of Their Own had new releases that brought them back to pop culture conversations including our podcast. We named the Best and Worst TV Endings, the Best Cover Songs and the Best Best Friends. From #BookTok to K-Pop, Marilyn Monroe and Winnie-the-Pooh, this year had a little bit of everything!
To celebrate this year in pop culture, we reached out to past guests to share their own top "Overdue Finds" from the last year (or recent years—there’s still a lot to catch up on). So sit back, settle in and enjoy!
1. Beatrice and Croc Harry by Lawrence Hill
“Beatrice wakes, all alone, in the fantastical forest of Argilia. While trying to understand why she’s in this amazing treehouse stocked with oatmeal and books, Beatrice forms unlikely alliances with Croc Harry and Horace Harrison Junior the Third (a rabbit). This is a quirky read with lots of fun language, featuring a strong and smart Beatrice who has to navigate this strange world and find her path home. The audiobook read by the author is also a winner.” — Ilona Storie, Collections Librarian and guest on Episode 102: Banned Books
2. Blind Date Party by Bill Callahan and Bonnie “Prince” Billy
“Two indie/folk pals collaborated throughout the pandemic by sending each other cover versions they wanted the other person to sing vocals on! They also enlisted a cool who’s who of talented guest musicians. It was a really original project, and every week they posted a new song for free. Eventually a CD was released to compile their work.” — Elton Raynor, Library Assistant, Overdue Finds Team Member and editor of Episode 120: Hocus Pocus.
Blind Date Party is available on CD.
3. Blood on the Tracks, Volume 9 by Shuzo Oshimi
“By recommending Blood on the Tracks, Volume 9 I am actually hoping to recommend the whole series to people. Shuzo Oshimi is one of my absolute favourite comic/manga creators. His ability to build complex atmospheres filled with psychological tension, poetic details of everyday life and magical inner worlds is unparalleled. This particular series is a dark, psychological family drama about a quiet boy discovering the horrific truths about how his identity and reality have been shaped by his consuming, manipulative relationship with his mother.” — Courtney Loberg, Library Assistant and guest on Episode 124: The Muppet Christmas Carol
4. Care Of: Letters, Connections, and Cures by Ivan Coyote
“Ivan Coyote is a Canadian author, born in Whitehorse and currently living in Vancouver. Ivan has spent decades on the road collecting, living and telling stories. For years, they kept letters written to them by folks touched by their work and held onto them to be responded to 'later'. Later never seemed to come, until spring of 2020, when live performers worldwide ceased performing and travelers stopped travelling. Written at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Care Of compiles some of the hundreds of letters that storyteller Ivan Coyote has received, as well as the responses finally written. Care Of includes tales that will touch the heart of every reader, and words that will find you exactly when you need them. Whether you find yourself in need of advice, reassurance or laughter, you will find them in the pages of this book.” — Jones Harvey, Page and guest on Episode 113: Favourite Queer Characters
5. City on Fire by Don Winslow
“My first reaction when I read this was: I must have been sleeping on Don Winslow for years! This book is the first in a planned trilogy focusing on New England crime family wars between Irish and Italian mobsters, and is a rough take on Homer’s The Iliad. I can’t help but sneak in a second pick for Winslow’s The Force—about a crooked NYPD detective who’s torn between team, family, community and government. These two are without a doubt among the best crime novels I’ve ever read.” — Kyle Marshall, Branch Manager and guest on Episode 116: Back to School
6. Crybaby by Tegan and Sara
“My choice is the album Crybaby by Tegan and Sara. This album is filled in equal parts with propulsive pop anthems and the deep introspection we’ve come to expect from the duo. While it may seem strange to think of them as overlooked given their legions of adoring fans and richly-deserved fame, this album was released on the exact same day as Taylor Swift’s Midnights and Carly Rae Jepsen’s The Loneliest Time, which made it a great day for contemplative pop music, but easy to be lost in the shuffle.” — Matt Schneider, Web Content Administrator and guest on Episode 123: Best Cover Songs
7. Ducks: Two Years in the Oil Sands by Kate Beaton
“I was already a fan of Kate Beaton for her hilarious webcomic, Hark! A Vagrant but was completely unprepared for her new graphic novel Ducks, a stark memoir of her time working in the oil sands. Unflinchingly frank, Ducks is occasionally a dark and uncomfortable read, but Beaton’s humour and empathy keep it from tipping over into total bleakness. A major achievement and one of the best Canadian books of the year.” — Kyle Burley, Library Assistant and guest on Episode 109: The Kids in the Hall
8. Haven by Emma Donoghue
“Emma Donoghue is one of my favorite authors, and I always look forward to a new book from her. Haven is set in 7th century Ireland and is the story of a priest and two monks who row down the river Shannon in search of an isolated spot in which to found a monastery. The men find an impossibly steep, bare island inhabited by tens of thousands of birds, and claim it for God. It is a period of deep religious conviction and the three men find their faith and their bond tested as they attempt to settle the harsh and barren island. I will admit that when I first started the book, I wasn’t initially drawn to the subject or the characters. But the spare writing and the sense of place drew me to it.” — Mary Bennett, Collections Librarian and guest on Episode 101: #BookTok
9. Hellbender directed by John Adams, Zelda Adams and Toby Poser
“Hellbender is a terrific independent horror movie that explores the murky and complicated relationship we have with our mothers and our ancestry. Clean cinematography paired with psychedelic elements and a killer soundtrack—Hellbender is a real fun ride.” — Anna Wallace, Library Assistant and guest on Episode 121: TV Theme Songs
10. An Immense World by Ed Yong
“I love learning things that inspire a grand sense of wonder at the universe around us, while underscoring the extreme limitations of our species and the absurdity of human arrogance. From a bird’s innate sense of the electromagnetic field to a dolphin’s ability to detect its prey’s internal organs via echolocation, An Immense World explores the fascinating ways in which animals perceive their environment. By understanding how animals experience the world, we can learn how to better protect them and minimize the human impact on nature.” — Andrew Halberstadt, Branch Manager and guest on Episode 102: Banned Books
11. A Lady for A Duke by Alexis Hall
“I’m a sucker for a historical romance novel and when I saw this one features a trans heroine, I was even more excited to read it. It does not disappoint. This book has everything—the main characters grapple with identity, family legacy, choosing the right outfit to wear, precocious sisters and all the swoons. Reading it made me beyond happy.” — Nancy Sheng, Associate Branch Manager and guest on Episode 112: Connecting with Kids in Ukraine
12. Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
“For me, this was unarguably the best book of 2022. It’s laugh-out-loud funny, heartwarming and incredibly clever. I l loved it from beginning to end. This is a witty and wonderful novel with quirky characters, socially relevant topics and packed with emotion. Please read it! ❤” — Marina Afonso, Communications Specialist and guest on Episode 124: The Muppet Christmas Carol
13. A Marvellous Light by Freya Marske
“A Marvellous Light is a gaslamp fantasy—a magical romp through an alternate Edwardian world. It’s a great blend of murder mystery, world-building and steamy queer romance. I’m looking forward to the next book!” — Amanda Derksen, Digital Initiatives Librarian and guest on Episode 111: Stand By Me.
14. The Night She Went Missing by Kristen Bird
“A high school senior disappears after a party—where did she go? Three mothers are determined to discover the truth, which is not so easy when everyone seems to have something to hide. The Night She Went Missing is screaming to be turned into a mini-series, perfect for fans of Big Little Lies or Little Fires Everywhere.” — Caroline Land, Branch Manager, Overdue Finds Team Member and co-host of Episode 119: Marilyn Monroe
15. Paying the Land by Joe Sacco
“I've enjoyed reading Joe Sacco's comic journalism for years—he's covered the war in the former Yugoslavia, the conflict in Palestine and even a history of punk rock. In Paying the Land, he turns his lens on my own country. The book is an investigation into resource development in the Northwest Territories, specifically the dynamics of engagement (or lack thereof) of Indigenous communities. Sacco has a real knack for letting people speak their truth, and it's illuminating to hear Elders, of varying opinions, speak about the complexities of economic and cultural dynamics, all through the accessible medium of comics.” — David van Belle, Library Assistant and guest on Bonus Episode: Adapting A Christmas Carol with David van Belle
16. Queen of the Tiles by Hanna Alkaf
“I'm not a big reader of mysteries, but when I heard of a Young Adult mystery about a Scrabble tournament, I knew I was on board. This is such a well-written tale of mystery and intrigue over a single weekend. Najwa is a fantastically flawed protagonist and I love all the action that takes place. I felt completely sucked into this world, and felt like I was there at the tournament. I'd recommend bringing this on a trip with you so you can read it in the hotel to get fully immersed in the action. I also loved how each chapter started with a word, the Scrabble score and the definition. What a fantastic touch.” — Joshua Carr, Library Assistant and guest on Episode 123: Best Cover Songs.
17. Raised by Wolves: The Complete First Season
“My 2022 Overdue Find is Raised by Wolves, an intensely allegorical science fantasy TV series that throws a laundry list of creation myths into a blender and pours out a smooth cocktail of gradually escalating insanity. HBO sadly canceled the series following the release of the second season in 2022, but this is the kind of show where the journey is perhaps more important than the destination.” — Benjamin Ehlers, Community Librarian and guest on Episode 110: Best and Worst TV Endings
18. Ruby Fever by Ilona Andrews
“I’m not generally the kind of person who has favourites. I don’t have a favourite band, book or TV show. However, Ilona Andrews is probably the closest thing that I have to a favourite author. Their books are highly addictive and I find myself regularly going back and rereading everything that they’ve written. Although they write primarily urban fantasy, they have multiple series with different tones and distinctive worlds that expand organically with each new book. Ruby Fever is the highly anticipated and highly satisfying final book of their Hidden Legacy series which combines themes of magic, politics, romance and family. It was everything I hoped for drama, humour and thoroughly entertaining, and I was sad that the series was over, at least for now.” — Ashley Dotto, Library Services Coordinator and guest on Episode 121: TV Theme Music
19. Run Towards the Danger by Sarah Polley
“I checked this eBook out just in case I needed something to read on a trip. Little did I know I would spend the next couple of days glued to my phone, marathoning the entire eBook, while the physical books I had optimistically brought with me sat untouched. This book of essays is incredibly well written, insightful and vulnerable, with each piece intending to confront a difficult moment of Polley’s life. She opens up about her experiences as a child in the Canadian film industry, neglect at the hands of family and directors alike, her mother’s death, illness, Jian Ghomeshi and more, all in an attempt to suck the venom from these encounters and move on.” — Maria Milanowski, Library Assistant, Overdue Finds Team Member and guest on Episode 106: K-Pop
20. Steamed by Rachel Levin and Tara Duggan
“Cooking is way to express your love towards the people you are cooking for but I am intrigued by the idea of cooking to express other emotional states too. Steamed is organized into three main sections: Anger Management (do you need to pound something?), It's All Right to Cry (surrender to your tears—this section has a lot of recipes that involve onions, horseradish and wasabi) and Chilling the F*** Out (lots of stirring, kneading and meditative cooking). I really enjoyed reading this cookbook and I love having a new way to approach the question 'What do I feel like cooking for dinner tonight?'” — Katherine Batemen, Library Assistant, Overdue Finds Team Member and creator of the item list for Episode 115: The Best Best Friends
21. The Subtweet by Vivek Shraya
“I borrowed this title because Vivek Shraya is an Edmonton artist/musician/author, and I wanted to read more local authors. I was absolutely awestruck. The writing was so beautiful and vivid, the emotions so raw and real. I finished it feeling like I had so much to learn and unpack, and I needed to sit with it for a long time to really take everything in. I loved it so much.” — Bethany Arsenault, Digital Discovery Librarian and guest on Episode 110: Best and Worst TV Endings
22. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge
"If you were a child in the 80's and 90's like me, there's a good chance that you were a fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. This side-scrolling beat 'em up game brought me back to my days as a kid with its retro arcade pixel graphics and callbacks to the '87 cartoon series. Not only can you play as any of your favourite ninja turtles (Leonardo FTW) but you can also play as Splinter, April O'Neal and best of all Casey Jones! One of the best features of this game though is the online co-op mode which allows you to play with up to five different players. Cowabunga!" — Bryce Crittenden, Senior Marketing Consultant, Overdue Finds Team Member and co-host of Episode 108: The 50th Anniversary of The Godfather
23. Top 150 Unusual Things to See in Alberta by Debbie Olsen
“Top 150 Unusual Things to See in Alberta is perfect for anyone looking to explore our province in great detail and for discovering some of the 'hidden gems' that Alberta has to offer. While some of the more popular sightseeing attractions are listed (West Edmonton Mall, Royal Tyrrell Museum), there are lots of other sights on paths less traveled that are worth checking out. What I really like is that the author organizes the sights by region (South of Calgary, North of Edmonton, etc.) so it makes it really easy to plan a fun road trip!” — Christy Travis, Community Librarian and guest on Episode 103: Best of the 90s March Madness
24. Vicious Fun directed by Cody Calahan
“Vicious Fun is a horror/comedy spoof on the serial killer (and arguably slasher) genre, with a narrative bite reminiscent of zombie spoof Mayhem. Protagonist Joel (himself a horror buff) accidentally ends up in a self-help group of killers and has to find a way out of the building alive. It's not what I would call a 'deep' film, but I liked it for the same reasons I liked Mayhem—it fully embraces the stereotypes of the genre (the killers are pretty much embodiments of the clichés and tropes), and doesn't take itself seriously. It's definitely more comedy than horror. The title is a bit nail-on-the-head in that regard, but I have to agree the film is both vicious and fun.” — Levi Hayes, Page and guest on Episode 113: Favourite Queer Characters
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