News & Notes is a weekly Saturday post featuring book- and publishing-related news, links to interesting articles and opinion pieces, and other cool stuff
- New Maurice Sendak Picture Book Discovered (Publishers Weekly) The book, Presto and Zesto in Limboland, uses pictures that Sendak created for a symphonic performance of Janáček’s Rikadla, and a story that he and collaborator Arthur Yorinks wrote together. It will be published by HarperCollins in fall 2018.
- Jane Austen sensation: author’s parody of trashy novel goes to auction. The parody was written as a letter, part of a correspondence between Austen and niece Anna Lefroy, and dated shortly after the author submitted Pride and Prejudice to her editor. (The Guardian)
- Philip Pullman will honor Grenfell Tower victim with character name in his next book ; the author raised £32,400 (about $41870) in a charity auction for survivors of the disaster. (via The Portalist)
- Scholar claims Voynich manuscript written by Jewish-Italian physician, based on clues in the mysterious, so-far-untranslatable manuscript’s illustrations. (The Guardian)
- ‘Conservative provocateur’ Milo Yiannopoulis suing Simon & Schuster for $10 million after S&S cancelled a deal to publish his book. Yiannopoulis self-published the book, called Dangerous, and says he has sold 100,000 copies already. The book is available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble. (Publishers Weekly)
Michael Bond, author of the beloved Paddington Bear children’s books, died June 27 at the age of 91. While Bond did write for adults (notably his Monsieur Pamplemousse mysteries), it was his series about a loveable Peruvian bear that most captured his readers’ hearts and imaginations. The first in the series, A Bear Called Paddington, was published in 1958, with illustrations by Peggy Fortnum. The books’ popularity soared after a 1970s BBC television series, and again following the successful 2014 film, Paddington. (A second film is in the works; it finished filming on the day of Bond’s death.) Bond never stopped writing: his latest Paddington book, Paddington’s Finest Hour, was released in April 2017. After his death was announced, tributes poured in from fans, including Hugh Bonneville (who plays Mr. Brown in the Paddington films), Stephen Fry, and Ann-Janine Murtagh, executive publisher of HarperCollins Children’s Books, which publishes the Paddington books.
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Elie Wiesel, the Holocaust survivor, author, teacher, and humanitarian whose work won him a Nobel Peace Prize, died yesterday, July 2, 2017, at the age of 87. Wiesel’s autobiographical Night, an account of his teenage years in Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps, is both a powerful written testimony to the horrors of the Holocaust and a philosophical response to the questions it raises.
- Working Out the Bugs: Adventures in Translating Carson Ellis’s Du Iz Tak? Turns out it’s harder than you’d think to “translate” a book written in a made-up language. (Publishers Weekly)
- Found in translation: How women are making the classics their own (Emily Wilson, in The Guardian)
- As A Teacher, I Don’t Play Favorites, Except When Kids Love Harry Potter (Book Riot)
- The Life-Changing Magic of Bookstagram (Book Riot)
- Also worth reading are the pieces on diversity and cultural appropriation below, even though they are addressed primarily to writers.
For Writers & Bloggers
- Cultural Appropriation Is, In Fact, Indefensible (K. Tempest Bradford, for NPR’s Code Switch.) This article contains a useful definition of cultural appropriation and explores what it is and isn’t, both generally and for writers.
- Fantasy author Nisi Shawl has an excellent essay on transcultural and transracial writing and how to approach it without cultural appropriation. (This essay is referenced in Bradford’s op-ed, above.)
- Why We Need Diverse Characters in YA Books, According to Angie Thomas (Buzzfeed) The post, which makes a number of good points, is poorly headlined; this is actually aimed more at writers than readers.
Book & Movie Announcements
- Tamora Pierce’s first Numair book finally has a date! It’s called Tempests and Slaughter, and will be released on Feb. 6, 2018. Huzzah! I’ve been waiting for this book for about 4 years now.
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is getting a Scots edition. Scots is either a separate-but-related language or a dialect of English, with linguists leaning toward the former. (The Guardian)
That’s it for this week!