News & Notes is a weekly Saturday post featuring book- and publishing-related news, links to interesting articles and opinion pieces, and other cool stuff
- National Library Week begins today. (ALA)
- The Hugo Awards nominees have been announced. Book Riot has the full list, plus links to buy or read online. (And in case you missed it, the Nebula nominees are listed here, courtesy of Verge.)
- Amazon customers are freaking out after their accounts were closed — and they say it reveals the dark side of the company’s ‘totalitarian power’ (Business Insider) The company recently closed hundreds, perhaps thousands of customer accounts, usually for violation of “Amazon policy” or “review policy” — which can be as minor as reviewing a product which you received free. (As far as I know, the exception is books, because of the longstanding publisher tradition of giving review copies. However, there have been cases when all of a reviewer’s reviews have been deleted after they review a book by someone they appear to be “friends” with on social media.) An earlier article goes into the closures in more depth, along with Amazon’s response.
- Amazon Study Reveals Explosive Growth of Third-Party Sales, Sales Tax Avoidance leading to job losses and tax revenue loss for states and localities. (American Booksellers Association, based on their recent study report.)
- While we’re on the subject of Amazon, it seems Pres. Trump is not happy with the company. (Business Insider)
- Our Bodies, Ourselves will transition to a volunteer-led nonprofit. The organization, dedicated to making women’s health information available, has been the publisher of the Our Bodies, Ourselves books. (Our Bodies, Ourselves)
- Libros en Español, a new online Spanish-language bookstore, set to launch in the U.S. on April 15. (Publishers Weekly)
- France’s Beloved Short-Story Dispensers Are Coming To America. In English, of course. (Literary Hub)
- Why The Number Of Independent Bookstores Increased During The ‘Retail Apocalypse’ (NPR)
- Teenage Vandals Were Sentenced to Read Books. Here’s What One Learned. (New York Times; the vandalism of a “colored” schoolhouse took place in Northern Virginia in 2016.)
- Lessons in Fantasy Languages from Harry Potter and The Hobbit (Michael Livingston, Tor.com)
- Are We Headed for a Pay-for-Privacy World? (Andrew Albanese and Annie Coreno, Publishers Weekly)
- What We Mean When We Call Something “Shakespearean” (Emily Asher-Perrin, Tor.com)
- The Secret Codes Hidden in the Books of a Scottish Library (Atlas Obscura) And possibly your library, too.
- We Saw A Wrinkle In Time and We Have Some Thoughts (Book Riot)
Free Fiction Online
- “And Then There Were (N-One)” (Sarah Pinsker, published in Uncanny) A multiple-universes murder mystery with an open ending, and one of this year’s Hugo nominees. (Don’t worry; you will find out whodunnit.)
Upcoming Books, Movies, & TV
- (Almost) Every Sci-Fi/Fantasy and Comic Book Adaptation in the Works (Tor.com) is a looong list of SF/F adaptations coming to big or small screens in the next several years. It starts with confirmed projects, and goes on to list projects in development, followed by rumored projects.
- 24 Ambassadors Recommend the One Book to Read Before Visiting Their Country (Conde Nast Traveler) Or just if you’re trying to read more broadly or diversely. All are available in English translations (to the best of my knowledge); the only one not given an English-language title, La Casa de Los Espíritus, is known to English-language readers as The House of the Spirits.
- The 10 Most Famous Bookstores in the World (Literary Hub)
- 20 Kid-Approved Books for Advanced Second and Third Grade Readers (Brightly)
- 12 Kid-Approved Books for Advanced Fourth and Fifth Grade Readers (Brightly)
That’s a lot of links! I particularly enjoyed the one about languages in the Potter novels. (I fell somewhere in-between, and was both amused and annoyed by the pseudo-Latin used for the spells.)
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