September 20, 2009

Bookish Discoveries

1. From Shen's Books: The Multicultural Minute: Biracial Picture Books - I love this!

2. The Informant with Matt Damon opened in theaters this week, but do you know the story behind it?

3. The Hispanic Society of America, the lonely gem of a museum in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan, boasts one of the world’s best libraries of material relating to Spain, Portugal and the Americas. The collection itself — letters, novels, books of hours, maps, sailing charts, marriage contracts (including one from 1476 for Ferdinand and Isabella’s eldest daughter), land grants, catechisms, scientific treatises and other documents dating back as far as the 12th century — fills the cavernous floor below, in a procession of dimly lighted shelves that can be peered at through small windows, giving the space the feeling of an aquarium or the nocturnal rooms of a zoo.

4. In the latest challenge to Google’s plan to establish the world’s largest digital library and bookstore, the Justice Department said late Friday that a proposed legal settlement between Google and book authors and publishers should not be approved by the court without modifications.

5. Some people feel that nobody should read the book, and some feel that everybody should read it. The truth is, nobody really knows. Most of what has been said about the book — what it is, what it means — is the product of guesswork, because from the time it was begun in 1914 in a smallish town in Switzerland, it seems that only about two dozen people have managed to read or even have much of a look at it...

6. Actress Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway, will be producing a film adaptation of A Moveable Feast, a memoir of Hemingway’s early years as a writer in Paris. The essays feature a colorful cast of literary characters, including F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ford Madox Ford, Gertrude Stein, and Alice B. Toklas.

7. To help acclimate newcomers to the odd and essential author of Bolaño; to continue mapping the Bolañoverse, as Malcolm Cowley mapped Yoknapatawpha; and to impose some order on the flood of Bolaño releases, The Millions offers a syllabus.

8. Oprah announced Friday that her new book club pick is Say You’re One of Them by Uwem Akpan. So, as the Millions said, last chance to get one before the Oprah logo goes on the front. :)

9. I found this at the blog Literary License: At the Globe and Mail, Brian Davis takes a shot at editing the first two chapters of Dan Brown’s just released novel, The Lost Symbol. Davis’s comments, embedded in Brown’s manuscript in track changes format, are hilarious (if a bit snarky).

Do you have any opinions on any of the stories above? Do you have a favorite story? Please share in the comments!


  1. I love that site for Shen's Books! Thank you so much for the pointer! And I've got to see what all the talk is about with 2666 one of these days! Great post; thanks!

  2. There are a lot of cool links in this post. I'm going to have to bookmark this page :)

  3. rhapsody- I am with you on 2666. A big book like that seems like a good winter-time, snuggle-in-bed-read. And I was so happy to find Shen's Books site too! Muy fresco, no?

    Staci- Yay, I am glad you found them as interesting as I did! That's why I share. :D

  4. Thanks for sharing. I can't decide which story is my favorite because I've only read a few of them... now I'm off to look at the rest. :)Great links (so far)!

  5. I had no idea what The Informant was about, but it looked completely boring to me. However, after listening to NPR...I am not intrigued about the story. Thanks for sharing.

  6. That article about the Carl Jung book is super-interesting! I want to take a look at that book now. :)

  7. I would love to see that book of Carl Jung's. I've never ever heard of it before.

  8. Thanks for posting a link to my video! I'm really glad you liked it. Getting feedback gives me the incentive to keep making them. Thanks!

  9. What an awesome and hugely informative post!! Very cool!


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