News & Notes is a weekly Saturday post featuring book- and publishing-related news, links to interesting articles and opinion pieces, giveaways on this and other blogs, and other cool stuff.
Books & Ebooks in the News:
- Elizabeth Catton’s The Luminaries wins the 2013 Man Booker Prize (Liz Thomson, Publishers Weekly)
- The National Book Awards shortlist is out, and The Millions has links to excerpts and reviews. (The Millions)
- “Offensive e-book controversy highlights issues with self-publishing” (Jamie Rigg, Engadget)
- Oxford Reference is offering free access for two weeks during U.S. government shutdown, so if you’re a heavy user of the Library of Congress website, you might want to give it a try.
- “Iceland: Where 1 in 10 People Will Publish a Book” (Rosie Goldsmith, BBC News Magazine)
- “Neil Gaiman novel banned by New Mexico school after mother objects” (David Barnett, The Guardian)
Worth Reading (or watching):
|A small portion of the stacks in Lawrence Thomas’s basement. (Photo © Mary Winchester)|
- “The Man With 59,000 Books — In His House“ Avid reader and collector Lawrence L Thomas took “There’s no such thing as too many books” to the limit. And I thought I had a lot of books! (Keith Thomson, Huffington Post)
- “Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading, and daydreaming” This lecture by Neil Gaiman is long but believe me, it’s well worth reading. (The Guardian)
- “Fake Writer Girls!” A satirical rant by Jim C. Hines, well known in the SF/fantasy world for speaking out against sexism in that field and generally. Worth reading not only because it’s funny and pointed, but for the huge number of amazing women writers cited in the comments. If you’re looking for good SF or fantasy by authors you haven’t tried yet, this a good place to start no matter what your gender.
- “Books Don’t Want To Be Free: How publishing escaped the cruel fate of other publishing industries” (Evan Hughes, New Republic)
- “7 Unconventional Reasons Why You Should Be Reading Books” (Laura Schocker, Huffington Post)
- “Teaching kids to read from the back of a [biblio]burro”. Luis Soriano runs a burro bookmobile, providing books to children in the impoverished Colombian state of Magdalena. Article & video. (Ebonne Ruffins, CNN)
|The Biblioburro in action. Photo from the Biblioburro blog|
|Oscar Hijuelos, Miami Book Fair International, 1993. CC BY-SA 3.0|
- Oscar Hijuelos, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and author of The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, died last Saturday, Oct. 12, in Manhattan. His works focused on the Cuban immigrant experience and assimilation. His best known work, Mambo Kings, became a 1992 movie starring Antonio Banderas and Armand Assante; the screenplay was later adapted as a stage musical. He wrote a number of other novels, as well as a memoir. Mr. Hijuelos was 62. (New York Times obituary)
Book & Movie Announcements:
- Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall will be filmed for BBC/PBS “Masterpiece”. Mark Rylance will star as the influential Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII’s minister. (Dave Itzkoff, New York Times)
Freebies, bargains, and giveaways:
- Check out the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop: 300+ blogs giving away everything from books to gift certificates. The link takes you to I Am a Reader, Not a Writer, the originator of the hop.
- This Map Shows The Most Famous Book Set In Every State. And there’s a handy list by state, in case you can’t quite make out the covers. (Business Insider)
- Library Reads – November 2013 book list — Librarians’ top 10 books published in November.
- 25 Rare Photos of Famous Authors (Qwiklit)
- What 20 of the World’s Most Famous Authors Were Doing in Their Twenties (Daniel Lefferts, PolicyMic)
- The Most Bookish Teens in Fiction (Natalie Zucker, Bookish)
- The Wittiest Things Oscar Wilde Ever Said (Buzzfeed)
|‘The Return of the King’, digital art © Jian Guo, breathing2004.deviantart.com|
- 17 Passages from “Lord of the Rings”, Beautifully Crafted in [Digital] Stained Glass. These works by artist Jian Guo are stunning and intricate.
- Check out these gorgeous photos from The Library: A World History by James W. P. Campbell. Will Pryce is the photographer. (Daily Mail)
|Mafra Palace Library, in Mafra, Portugal. Photo © Will Pryce, from The Library: A World History|
That’s it for this week!
I’m always on the lookout for interesting articles, lists, and links for News & Notes, so please let me know if you see (or write!) anything that might be good for this feature. You can leave me a comment or send me an email — my address is on the About/Review Policy/Contact page.