Hope everyone had a great, summery week! Today's weekly links celebrate classic favorite reads (and suggest new ones), recognize some great songwriters' books and enjoy some book-to-film if-onlys. Enjoy!
Socially important or academically fascinating books might get all the attention, but that doesn't make them great reading material. The Guardian points readers to some overlooked masterpieces.
Some examples include Evelyn Waugh's A Handful of Dust over Brideshead Revisited and Kurt Vonnegut's Cat's Cradle over Slaughter-House Five.
What are your this-over-that reading suggestions?
The New Dork Review of Books celebrates medium-crossover books -- particularly those from musicians (and disregarding "idiot celebrities"). There's something very similar between telling a story through song and through prose, as often a creative mind can tell a tale through either medium.
This week, Ron Howard's epic adaptation of Stephen King's The Dark Tower was scrapped. Flavorwire added it to "the long list of proposed book-to-film adaptations by famed directors that never saw the light of day." They listed the 10 book-to-films they'd love to see, including Orson Welles' adaptation of Heart of Darkness, Terry Gilliam's Don Quixote and Terrence Malick's Blood Meridian.
Maria Popova over at Brain Pickings has compiled a list of 7 Obscure Children's Books by Authors of Grown-Up Literature, including one of my favorites, T.S. Eliot's Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, as well as 6 others I did not expect. Mark Twain's Advice to Little Girls might be my new favorite thing - ever:
Have a wonderful weekend! What will you be reading?
Happy weekend, readers! I am yawning at my desk right now after a very late night of applauding, crying and gasping in front of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (more on that later). Did anyone else go see it?
Before I went to the movie, I very much enjoyed playing the "Paperback Game," thanks to New York Times reviewer Dwight Garner. His explanation of the game came out a couple weeks ago, but I'm sharing the link now because it's so darn fun.
All you need for the game is a stack of books, a group of friends and pen and paper. One person reads the back copy from the book, then everybody writes down what they think is a plausible first line of the story. Then, everyone guesses what they think is the correct first line (the reader writes down the real first line). Find the full description of the game here, and try it this weekend! If you like playing Balderdash and you like books, you'll love this game.
In other Harry Potter-related news, Laura Hibbard of the Huffington Post has written about why Hermione is "The Heroine Women Have Been Waiting For." She writes: "Essentially, without Hermione, Harry wouldn't have been 'the boy who lived.'" Do you agree?
Finally, Jennifer Weiner is on a roll. Her new novel, Then Came You, came out on Tuesday, and her TV show The Great State of Georgia debuted a couple of weeks ago. Some readers may scoff at this link, but I thought TV Guide did a good interview about the show, if Weiner's book fans are interested. Best quote of all: "While Weiner, whose book In Her Shoes was adapted into the 2005 Cameron Diaz-Toni Collette film, loves her new role as a television writer and executive producer, she doesn't plan to give up novel-writing anytime soon."
Have any links to share? Let us know!
Also: What are you reading this weekend?
Hope everyone had a wonderful week! A little rainy around here, so I've had plenty of time for reading! I'm currently switching between 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Just Kids by Patti Smith. What will you be reading this weekend?
Here are a few things we're loving Internet-wise this week:
Design*Sponge, one of the biggest design and DIY sites in the world (and perhaps the biggest) has a book coming out in September! We love their post Design*Sponge at Home: The Evolution of a Book Cover and seeing how the cover went from this:
to the final:
To stay up-to-date on the book, click here, and stay tuned for a Q&A with Grace Bonney in September!
Readers of the Bard might not be able to make the trip to Washington to visit the “Fame, Fortune & Theft: The Shakespeare First Folio” exhibit at the Folger Shakespeare Library, but a close second is this NYT article which details the history and maintenance process of the Shakespeare First Folio, including the process of recreating the ashes of one burned copy. A fascinating account on how veneration has grown to near-worship:
The YA discussion rages on, and this week NPR published an article on YA author Lauren Myracle's apology to WSJ. Myracle's Shine was specifically mentioned in Gurdon's critique of the genre. In so many words, Myracle called Gurdon's article "idiocy" and then quickly apologized. Read more, plus an excerpt from Shine.
Check out this photo gallery of literary homes from the Expat section of The Telegraph website. It is a collection of homes of 15 famous British authors, such as Beatrix Potter, Jane Austen and Henry James. It ranges from the expected (Stratford-upon-Avon) to the surprising (Robert Burns' clay home, where a cast of his skull now resides, of course).
What are your favorite author homes? Mine have been the two I accidentally happened upon: J.R.R. Tolkien's dorm room at Exeter and the home of Chaucer's brother (close enough) in Woodstock!
Enjoy the sunshine!
BOOM goes the long weekend! Will you be taking some time away from cooking out and playing with sparklers (or in my case, trying to calm down my dogs) for some good reading?
Check out some of our favorite links this week:
According to CNN, Conan O'Brien will be a comic book character! Bluewater Productions specializes in transforming famous figures into superheroes, and Coco's set for August.
Author Elinor Lipman (@ElinorLipman) might be a Twitter newbie but she's already making us giggle. She has pledged to tweet one politically-themed poem every day until the 2012 election ("Warning: 'twill be in couplets & 'twill rhyme."). Here's her first:
Valerie Gribben, who published her first novel, Fairytale, when she was seventeen and finished up the rest of The Fairytale Trilogy during college and medical school, suggests doctors make room for Grimm's Fairy Tales beside their medical journals. Read her article in NYT: "Practicing Medicine Can Be Grimm Work."
We were surprised once with Meowmorphosis, the Quirk mash-up of Kafka's masterpiece -- and we are surprised again with the film adaptation of Metamorphosis, a "modern horror version" starring Nick Searcy and Matt Angel. Sounds very . . . goopey. Take a look at the movie website and check out the following video:
Do you have any cool links from this week to share? Reading any good books?
Have a great weekend!
On Plotters & Manipulators United (a blog co-written by romance authors Sherry Thomas and Meredith Duran), Meredith explains why her e-reader is her "personal Xanax for travel." She explains: "If I know I never will be without a book, I have no doubts about my journey."
Yeah, yeah—we're all book-lovers, but you read magazines, too, right? Kevin Kelly, founding executive editor of Wired magazine (and author of New Rules for the New Economy) has put together a must-see, crowdsourced list of the best articles from magazines—most available to read online. The articles are divided by decade (starting with the '60s), and he's also put together a list of the top 25 "of all time."
Happy weekend! What are you reading this weekend? I am (finally) tearing my way through Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.
Psst: Going to ALA this weekend? Don't forget to come say hello at booth #1546!
I posted earlier this week about the #YAsaves online controversy, and I figured at that point I'd be finished with sharing links from authors who chose to respond to Meghan Cox Gurdon's article in the Wall Street Journal.
That was until I read Sherman Alexie's response, also in the WSJ, titled "Why the Best Kids Books Are Written in Blood." Read it now, then go read The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian if you haven't already.
I don't know what it is about the WSJ lately, but I also enjoyed this piece from last Friday about "The Insane World of Book Trailers."
While I agree that many book trailers fall flat, many are also really, really funny—like this one from Carolyn Parkhurst I blogged about this morning. What's your take on book trailers? For recent examples, follow our Trailer Tuesday feature here on the blog.
In other news, the British Library has launched a classic book reading app. From the BBC:
Unlike e-books, the app uses scanned copies of original editions. Its creators say this gives readers the best way to experience old books the way the classic authors intended—including additions like pull-out maps and original illustrations.
I've really tried to enjoy everything very much, and it's been very easy to enjoy, because it's just been incredible, but again, I have this feeling that something's going to get me, that this isn't right. It's not real. I don't feel I've earned it karmically. I haven't been good enough!
Links this week cover ghostwriters, misogyny, books in art and e-reader apps. What are the most interesting book-related links you came across this week? Share in the comments.
Here on The Book Case, we've covered books by Snooki and Lauren Conrad, but that doesn't mean we haven't wondered if the celebs actually wrote their own books. In the Fashion & Style section, The New York Times confirms what we already suspected: That starlets and reality TV stars use ghostwriters, and that they don't want to give them credit. Does this news make you less likely to buy Hilary Duff's next novel?
V.S. Naipaul recently provoked anger and eyerolls when he claimed that women writers are "different, they are quite different" from male writers. He criticized their "sentimentality" and says he does not consider a single woman writer his equal. Truthfully, it's hard for me to get too bent out of shape over this kind of baloney, although you'd think a Nobel Prize winner would know better. (And yes, I'd love to see Lionel Shriver duke it out with Naipaul.)
Still, I enjoyed that The Guardian published a "Naipaul test." They posit: "Can you tell an author's sex?" Read 10 paragraphs and see if you can guess if the author is a man or a woman. Naipaul claims he can tell the different from only a paragraph or two because a woman's writing is inferior. Jennifer Weiner reports on Twitter that she got 6/10 answers correct.
On the LA Times' book blog Jacket Copy, Carolyn Kellogg shares photos and info from a series by German artist Daniela Comani:
In the series, Comani retitles books by inverting gender-focused words in the titles: "La Petite Princesss" for "The Little Prince," "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman" in place of James Joyce's "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man." She uses images of vintage book covers and very closely recreates them.
If you have an iOs device (iPod Touch, iPhone or iPad) and you're in the market for an e-reader app, you ought to check out The Book Designer's reviews of the Kindle App, Stanza and Google Books. Blogger Joel Friedlander will also take a look at Apple’s iBooks, Barnes & Noble Nook and Kobo . . . so stay tuned! What's your favorite e-reader app?
I don't know about you all, but I am pretty darn excited about the long weekend. What are you planning to read? I already mentioned that I'm diving into The Foreigners . . .
Here are some favorite links of the week:
Have you come across any click-worthy links this week? Our Google reader is always overflowing, and here are a few links we were especially excited about.
Happy Friday! What are you reading this weekend?
Over the weekend, publishing veteran Pat Holt wrote an impassioned post about Mahvish Rukhsana Khan's memoir, My Guantanamo Diary. She writes that this is one of her favorite nonfiction titles of the last three years:
As you can see, thanks to Khan’s ability to insert a sense of humanity into the controversy over torture and the effects of war, I was engrossed in even the most painful parts of My Guantanamo Diary, and still am today. Following the death of Osama bin Laden, It’s important to be informed in every detail of the way America deals with political suspects.
Last week, Elizabeth Gilbert gave a reading at the New York Public Library that served as her farewell to Eat, Pray, Love. Here's more from The Atlantic:
About a year and a half ago, she says she'd had enough, and felt like peeling off from the Eat, Pray, Love movement. "I didn't want to do it too soon because I thought it would be rude," Gilbert said. "People love this book and they want to meet the person who wrote it. I've been the ambassador." Determined "to see the phenomenon through," she waited until the release of the film and her most recent book Committed to come out in paperback.
What click-worthy links have you come across this week?
Also: What are you reading this weekend? Happy Friday!