Jun 18 2019

WhatEVER

A recent article on The Independent has arrived at the (apparently astonishing) conclusion that Jane Austen's life wasn't all sunshine and roses. I'm always quick to roll my eyes at this kind of thinkpiece, and my eye-rolling muscles got an extra workout today...

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Jun 17 2019

Edible Schoolyard: A Universal Idea, by Alice Waters

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In 1995, celebrated chef Alice Waters joined forces with the principal of a public middle school in Berkeley to found The Edible Schoolyard, an on-site organic garden that allowed students a chance to explore food as a scientific and social experience. This process was documented by Waters in Edible Schoolyard: A Universal Idea. Ignore that lofty subtitle...

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Jun 17 2019

Weekly Book Giveaway: Edible Schoolyard: A Universal Idea, by Alice Waters

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Our latest Book Giveway is Alice Waters's Edible Schoolyard, which, should you be in need of one, would make an awesome coffee table book. A full review will follow shortly, and this giveaway will run through 7/5/19...

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Jun 13 2019

I can wait. Forever, if need be.

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There's a good interview over on Collider about the recent Amazon adaptation of Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's classic novel Good Omens. The article sounds pretty gushy, and I watched the first few episodes of the show with mild interest, but...

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Jun 13 2019

BOOOO

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For the second year in a row, The Guardian and The Observer have conducted a research study on diversity in children's picture books, and the results are extremely disappointing. According to the newspapers' research, the 100 best-selling picture books published in 2018...

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Jun 12 2019

Unexpected opposition

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Huh: according to Curbed, the Strand Bookstore in New York has been designated as a New York City landmark. This sounded like a good thing to me (bear in mind, I know nothing about New York real estate laws), but apparently the 92-year-old bookstore's owner feels very strongly...

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Jun 11 2019

Soapy!

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I have watched the first four episodes of Netflix's new show The Society (billed as a modern YA take on The Lord of the Flies, but with a supernatural twist), and I am giving it a somewhat wobbly thumbs-up. It took me two full episodes to be able to tell most of the characters apart (the Elle and Allie actresses were particularly confusing), and...

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Jun 11 2019

I'm so proud

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I don't know how I missed this, but I was delighted to discover that Simon Armitage—author of my all-time favorite poem, "I am very bothered"—was announced last month as the UK's next Poet Laureate...

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Jun 10 2019

Yotsuba&!, Vol. 14, by Kiyohiko Azuma

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It's been years since I read a volume of Kiyohiko Azuma's Yotsuba&!, and even longer since I've reviewed one. Part of that is due to the author's extremely intermittent publishing schedule (there was a three-year gap between his last two books), but a lot of it was because it took me a long, loooong time to adjust to the editorial changes that took place between the fifth and sixth volumes...

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Jun 10 2019

Weekly Book Giveaway: Yotsuba&!, Vol. 14, by Kiyohiko Azuma

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This week's Book Giveway is the 14th volume of Kiyohiko Azuma's universally beloved Yotsuba&!. It's taken me years, but I've finally adjusted (mostly) to the new publisher and their translation style, so I think I can give this a fair shake. A full review will follow shortly, and this giveaway will run through 7/5/19...

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Jun 6 2019

Hadn't she already suffered enough?

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NPR just posted a fascinating article about Life With Picasso, a memoir written by French painter Françoise Gilot, who served as Pablo Picasso's "muse, manager, and support system" during a decade-long relationship. Apparently, while it was A-okay for Picasso to use Gilot in his work (he used her likeness in hundreds of paintings), many...

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Jun 6 2019

Backlash

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The Times just posted an article about the growing backlash to Linda Fairstein, the prosecutor-turned-successful mystery novelist who oversaw the Central Park Five case. Thanks largely to Ava DuVernay’s Netflix series about the attack and its aftermath, When They See Us, which...

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Jun 5 2019

Hmm

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I'm not sure how I feel about these angled bookshelves, which were recently featured in a home decor article on The Cut. They give off a vibe of fanciness for fanciness's sake, which I usually dislike, but...

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Jun 4 2019

Yes spoilers

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And in sharp contrast to our earlier post, the trailer for the upcoming movie adaptation of Vertigo Comics' miniseries The Kitchen gives away pretty much the entire plot. On the other hand, the presence of Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish, and Elisabeth Moss...

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Jun 4 2019

No spoilers

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Good job, trailer editors: I have literally no idea what this film adaptation of Donna Tartt's Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Goldfinch is about, other than an explosion in a museum, a rather depressing painting of a chained bird...

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Jun 3 2019

The Wind Off The Small Isles, by Mary Stewart

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If you, like me, consider yourself to be a Mary Stewart fan, you might be concerned that you have never heard of her book The Wind Off The Small Isles, which her publisher describes as a “beloved modern classic”. But take heart, dear readers, because it turns out this description is utter garbage—Stewart produced several beloved modern classics, but this isn't one of them...

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Jun 3 2019

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Wind Off the Small Isles, by Mary Stewart

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This week's Book Giveaway is The Wind Off the Small Isles, by Mary Stewart. I'm really happy that Hodder Books reprinted this little-known 1968 novella (along with a recently rediscovered short story, "The Lost One"), but I'm not sure I would describe it as a "beloved modern classic". Maybe "long-lost treasure", if they were looking for a superlative...

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May 30 2019

It's not all about lake monsters, though. (Alas.)

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According to Lithub, Hulu has ordered a series based on Nathan Ballingrud’s Shirley Jackson award-winning short story collection North American Lake Monsters. The book has great reviews and an even better cover...

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May 30 2019

BOOOO

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Tea and literature are two of my favorite subjects, so I opened this recent NPR article expecting nothing but joy... only to discover a horrifying announcement about a link between hot tea and esophageal cancer...

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May 29 2019

Damp

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There's a full-length trailer out for DC's upcoming Swamp Thing series, and it looks extremely dark, both literally and figuratively. I'm not sure if this is a purposeful attempt at building up suspense or an easy way for DC to save on their FX budget...

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May 28 2019

We Have Always Lived In the Castle, by Shirley Jackson

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A recent film adaptation has renewed interest in Shirley Jackson's 1962 novella We Have Always Lived in the Castle. As a scary-movie weenie, I stuck to reading the synopsis... which ended up irritating me in its own right, because Jackson's story didn't actually need a bunch of tacked-on action/horror sequences to be creepy as hell...

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May 28 2019

Weekly Book Giveaway: We Have Always Lived in the Castle, by Shirley Jackson

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Our current Book Giveaway is Shirley Jackson's 1962 gothic novel We Have Always Lived at the Castle, the inspiration for the recent film of the same name. A full review will follow shortly, and this giveaway will run through 6/8/19...

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May 23 2019

The Queen 2.0

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I'm so pleased to see this has been expanded (although the original article was not exactly a quick read): according to The New York Times, Josh Levin has fleshed out his article...

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May 23 2019

Grandparents take note

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Marie Kondo is writing a children's book that ties right in with her overall mission: according to LitHub, it will be called Kiki & Jax: The Life-Changing Magic of Friendship, and it will be...

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May 22 2019

Clear as mud

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George R.R. Martin addressed the controversial ending of Game of Thrones on his blog recently, answering his fans' most urgent question: will the books end the same way as the show?

"Well… yes. And no. And yes. And no. And yes. And no. And yes."

I hope that cleared everything up for you, GoT readers...

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May 21 2019

Art budget well spent

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According to The Mary Sue, there's going to be a one-shot Buffy the Vampire Slayer prequel comic coming out in August from BOOM! Studios, called The Chosen Ones. It will apparently tell the stories of three historical...

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May 21 2019

Salty!

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If you, like me, are amused by reading scorched-earth book reviews (they're also the most fun to write!), you should definitely check out NPR's review of Fox News host Mark Levin's Unfreedom of the Press, which includes the following paragraph...

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May 20 2019

Storm Cursed, by Patricia Briggs

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Patricia Briggs is one of the most reliable fantasy writers on my mental list of books to take on a plane. She's less pretentious than Seanan McGuire, way less gross than Laurell K. Hamilton, and better at romance than Charlaine Harris...

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May 20 2019

Weekly Book Giveaway: Storm Cursed, by Patricia Briggs

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Our latest Book Giveaway is Storm Cursed, the 11th book in Patricia Briggs's Mercy Thompson series. (Why are the titles in this series so generic-fantasy-lite? I've already read the book, and I still couldn't tell you what "storm cursed" refers to.) A full review will follow shortly, and this giveaway will run through 5/31/19...

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May 16 2019

This does not seem like a good use of funds.

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If you're a hardcore James Bond fan with £2.75 million to spare and space in your garage, Aston Martin has announced the details of their limited run of 1964 DB5s, inspired by the one Sean Connery drove in Goldfinger. The cars will include...

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