Feb 4 2016

To Lure a Proper Lady, by Ashlyn MacNamara

When I reviewed a previous Ashlyn MacNamara book, I gave her writing a lukewarm but honest endorsement. Unfortunately, her upcoming novel To Lure A Proper Lady is the kind of hot mess that undoes a lot of preexisting goodwill...

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Feb 4 2016

What about that car, though?

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Additional, far more exciting TV news: according to Variety, NBC has given a formal pilot order for a TV update of Cruel Intentions. The potential series "picks up 15 years after the movie left off and...

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Feb 3 2016

It's cute, I guess.

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Dramafever informs me that Warner Bros. has recently given Animate (Japan's largest retailer of anime, games, and manga) the exclusive rights to produce a wide range of anime-style Harry Potter merchandise...

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Feb 2 2016

Riverdale is... TWIN PEAKS

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According to Variety, the CW has picked up the Riverdale pilot, based on the long-running (read: why won't it die?!?) Archie comic book series. The producer is apparently promising a "surprising and subversive take" on the material...

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Feb 2 2016

70s food images!

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Brain Pickings recently featured a look at The Museum of Modern Art Artists' Cookbook, a 1977 gem co-written by Madeleine Conway and Nancy Kirk. The cookbook is a collection of thirty famous artists' "favorite recipes and reflections on food", and features contributions from celebrities ranging from Salvador Dalí to Andy Warhol...

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Feb 1 2016

A Darker Shade of Magic, by V.E. Schwab

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V.E. Schwab's A Darker Shade of Magic is plastered with encomiums that make it sound like the second coming of Dune—it's described as “compulsively readable”, “ingeniously clever”, and “an exhilarating adventure”. This breathless enthusiasm struck me as a hair overblown, but Schwab's story is undeniably thoughtful, imaginative, and action-packed...

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Feb 1 2016

Weekly Book Giveaway: A Darker Shade of Magic, by V.E. Schwab

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This week's Book Giveaway is V.E. Schwab's A Darker Shade of Magic. It's giving off a distinctly UnLunDun vibe, but I'm hoping I will like it better (or at least that it will be less pretentious). A full review will follow later today...

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Jan 29 2016

At least it's creative.

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And speaking of webtoons, this weekend I started reading Witch Workshop, the latest effort from Goong author So-Hee Park. (English-translated chapters are available here.) So far it's not as instantly charming as Goong, but it's worth reading for the magical curse besetting one of the main characters...

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Jan 28 2016

Yay...?

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According to the Guardian, "Researchers at Poland’s Institute of Nuclear Physics found complex ‘fractal’ patterning of sentences in literature, particularly in James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake, which resemble ‘ideal’ maths seen in nature." This...

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Jan 27 2016

The Deal, The Mistake, and The Score, by Elle Kennedy

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I recently read Elle Kennedy's The Deal, The Mistake, and The Score, a collection of fun, loosely-connected New Adult romances set in the college hockey world. In The Deal, aspiring singer Hannah Wells sets out to overcome a past trauma with some no-strings-attached sex with her new pal Garrett Graham, the captain of her school's championship-winning hockey team. In The Mistake, Garrett's teammate Logan...

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Jan 26 2016

Scandalous!

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I recently picked up a copy of Jane Mayer's nonfiction book Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right. I love books about financial scandals, and this one is even juicier when you take into account the contents of this New York Times article, which...

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Jan 26 2016

Little House on the Prairie: the movie

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THR recently posted an update on the upcoming Little House on the Prairie movie reboot: apparently, the project has moved from Sony to Paramount and they've hired Martha Marcy May Marlene filmmaker Sean Durkin to direct...

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Jan 25 2016

By Possession, by Madeline Hunter

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On a recent trip to the beach, I picked up a battered copy of Madeline Hunter's 2000 novel By Possession from a Little Free Library. As longtime readers of the site know, I rarely read pre-Regency romance novels (I can't get fully invested in any sex scene when I'm wondering when the participants last bathed), but hey: I'd already finished the books I brought with me, and the price was right...

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Jan 25 2016

Weekly Book Giveaway: By Possession, by Madeline Hunter

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This week's Book Giveaway is Madeline Hunter's historical romance novel By Possession. Please note: I picked this particular edition out of a Little Free Library, and it is trashed. Totally readable, though, and at least we're recycling...

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Jan 21 2016

Cheese in the Trap, by Soonkki

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Today we're going to review something a little different: an ongoing Korean webtoon by Soonkki called Cheese in the Trap. Normally I would wait to cover this kind of thing until it was finished and fully translated, but A) I'm not that patient, and B) this story is so good, you guys—it's totally worth the inconvenience of reading it online...

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Jan 21 2016

Same issue, different book

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Literally only a few months after the flap over the depiction of slavery in the children's book A Fine Dessert, there is another, virtually identical controversy...

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Jan 20 2016

Maybe?

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Variety informs me that CBS has ordered a drama pilot featuring a contemporary take on the Nancy Drew series. According to the article...

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Jan 19 2016

Emma, by Alexander McCall Smith

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Emma Woodhouse is not my favorite Jane Austen heroine, but she deserves better treatment than she receives in Alexander McCall Smith's Emma, one of the six titles in The Austen Project, an attempt to re-imagine Austen's novels with a modern setting. Austen's Emma is a flawed but endearing character who eventually begins to correct her many faults; Smith's Emma, in contrast, is...

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Jan 19 2016

Weekly Book Giveaway: Emma, by Alexander McCall Smith

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This week's Book Giveaway is Alexander McCall Smith's Emma, a modern re-telling of Jane Austen's novel of the same name. I have my doubts about the wisdom of this project, frankly. Not only is Smith inviting comparisons with the original novel, he's also inviting comparisons with Clueless, and that seems like a really stacked deck. Our review will follow shortly...

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Jan 14 2016

Books on demand

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There's a cool article in The Orange County Register about a book-dispensing vending machine located inside the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center and run by the Anaheim Public Library System...

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Jan 13 2016

Cheese plays more of a supporting role

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Okay, I'm not 100% sold on the idea that Heidi is primarily about cheese, but I totally believe that great children's literature is nearly always improved by a memorable food description, from The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe's tea party with Mr. Tumnus to...

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Jan 12 2016

This seems... risky.

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Canada's CBC just announced that Emmy-winning producer and writer Moira Walley-Beckett (best known for Breaking Bad) is working on a new TV adaptation of Lucy Maud Montgomery's classic children's novel Anne of Green Gables...

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Jan 12 2016

Revived!

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According to io9, BBC America has announced an upcoming TV adaptation of Douglas Adams's Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency. Of course, BBC Four tried and failed to...

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Jan 11 2016

The Rook, by Daniel O'Malley

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For a book that pretty much goes like this: infodump, infodump, action sequence, Daniel O'Malley's debut novel The Rook is astonishingly entertaining. It strongly reminds me of Seanan McGuire's InCryptid books, although I'm happy to report that I like it even better...

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Jan 11 2016

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Rook, by Daniel O'Malley

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This week's Book Giveaway is Daniel O'Malley's 2012 novel The Rook, which we recently learned is being developed as a TV series by Twilight author Stephenie Meyer. Meyer clearly knows what she's doing, because it's evident from the first chapter that this book is going to make for some great TV...

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Jan 7 2016

Be there AND be square

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According to NPR, the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., is sending out William Shakespeare's "First Folio" (the first printed collection of all of Shakespeare's plays, published seven years after his death) on a tour of all 50 states to mark the 400th anniversary of the bard's death...

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Jan 7 2016

Maybe by 2020?

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I don't actually care about this (not a Game of Thrones fan), but George R.R. Martin nerds everywhere were chagrined to learn that he has zero chance of finishing the next installment of his best-selling series on schedule...

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Jan 6 2016

Autumn's Kiss, by Bella Thorne (and Elise Allen)

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Once again, I am staggered to find myself endorsing a novel “written” by teen actress Bella Thorne (along with co-author Elise Allen, whose name only appears in teeny-tiny font on the title page). This is totally damning with faint praise, but Autumn's Kiss, the sequel to...

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Jan 5 2016

Joy, sparked

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There's been a lot of discussion about Spark Joy, the companion book to Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. We reviewed Kondo's first book last year, and while we enjoyed reading it, the best organizational/tidying-up advice I've ever encountered...

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Jan 5 2016

Geek love

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The Conversation recently asked a group of scientists to share some of their favorite science fiction novels. The recommendations (which range from Robert Heinlein to Douglas Adams) are...

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