Spring is technically here, so if you’re lucky enough to spend sometime outside in the sun, Rolling Stone has some suggestions for what you should read, listen to and watch if you’re inclined to take a walk to the nearest theater. From two novels worth picking up to Scarlett Johansson starring in the adaptation of an iconic Japanese comic book, this week offers up plenty of stuff to check out.
“Country Music’s Party of the Year,” as the Academy of Country Music calls its annual awards, is the Golden Globes to the CMA Awards’ Oscars – looser and drunker, with a carefree vibe that you can only get in Las Vegas. And that’s reflected in the performances, which always include a few surprises. This year, A-listers Miranda Lambert, Maren Morris, Jason Aldean and Little Big Town are all set to sing, while genial bros Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley return to ham it up as hosts. The 52nd ACMs also boast some tweet-worthy collaborations between married people Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, singing their duet “Speak to a Girl,” young people Thomas Rhett and Maren Morris on Rhett’s new song “Craving You,” and irrationally hated people Florida Georgia Line and the Backstreet Boys, who add a dose of Nineties nostalgia to all the glitz.
52nd ACM Awards, Sunday, April 2nd, 8:00 p.m/ET, CBS
Looking for a little literary suspense this week? Hannah Tinti, whose book The Good Thief was a critical darling and bestseller, returns with the story of Samuel Hawley and his daughter, Loo. It’s about the things we don’t know about the people closest to us, and if in the long run it’s better to ever find out about those myths and secrets. Tinti has established herself as one of our great storytellers. She draws you in with this book, and it’s really difficult to get away.
Adapting this famous Japanese comic to the screen is no easy task. And while Ghost in the Shell arrives with a heaping side of controversy to go along with it, the film is visually stunning, and Scarlett Johansson pulls off playing Major. It was a risky project, but the payoff is worth the ticket price.
Read our review of why ScarJo is great in the live-action flick.
After the team behind public radio and podcast titans This American Life and Serial unveiled plans for a new show called S-Town last November, fans were eager to find out what it was all about. The producers kept things pretty tight until recently when all seven episodes of the show Vox calls “a real-life Southern Gothic” were released.
But for those of you thinking this is the latest true crime podcast everybody will be talking about, rest assured, the story of a small Alabama community is a deep and haunting look at small town life, human nature and, yes, murder.
Who wouldn’t want to be Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman? Obviously that’s a tall order, but if you’re interested, the star of the next few films based off famous DC Comics superheroes debuted a new Facebook filter that lets fans try on the Amazon princess’ tiara.
You might not be familiar with the work of 80-year-old author Rudy Wurlitzer, but the screenwriter of cult films like Two-Lane Blacktop and Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid has been hailed as one of the great writers of his time by no less than Thomas Pynchon, who said of Wurlitzer’s 1969 novel Nog, “hopefully another sign that the Novel of Bullshit is dead and some kind of re-enlightenment is beginning to arrive.”
Originally published in 2008, The Drop Edge of Yonder somehow fell out of print in the last few years. Originally a screenplay idea that had the likes of Hal Ashby, Sam Peckinpah and Jim Jarmusch considering it, Two Dollar Radio, the indie press responsible for getting the writer’s work into print over the last few years, had the good sense to get it back on bookshelves. Now, with this weird, psychedelic Western reentering the world, readers have another chance to discover one of the most interesting voices in American fiction.