A weekly selection of reading and book news, sometimes with completely inappropriate commentary.
VIDA has published its annual study of how well women are represented in literature.
Here's how diversity in publishing might actually work. Disclaimer: I didn't actually read this one yet (ran short of time this week), and I know "diversity" can set off some, ahem, discussions. But I do still want to read it, so I thought I'd include it here.
I had no idea The Guardian has a romance books blog. Did you?
"Little Rock says 'no' to Amazon. Other cities should follow suit." (Related: God love the Australians. They're not falling all over themselves to welcome Amazon.)
Rolling Stone magazine pioneer Jann Wenner has fallen out with his biographer.
John Green on his new YA novel and on his own struggles with OCD.
Dan Brown has a new novel out. Are people still reading Dan Brown?
Sam Shepard's last work of fiction to be published posthumously.
People were very excited about Philip Pullman's first new work in 17 years. (Wow, it's been 17 years since Pullman wrote a book? The His Dark Materials series was first published in the 1990s? Time is getting on.)
How did SF writers of the 1960s pave the way for today's SF authors?
Irish author Roddy Doyle has a new novel out.
Becky at RA for All reminds you about Electric Literature.
Look out! All the Magic Tree Houses have been renumbered!
Booklist is publishing a "starred reviews" edition.
New York City libraries are offering fines amnesty for those under 17.
How's the Librarian of Congress doing, one year in to her job?
A new program from public librarians, called "Take back your digital footprint." (Although the part of this article that talk about Google also "tackling digital citizenship," with a program called "Be Internet Awesome," makes me throw up in my mouth a little bit. Like Google cares at all about your digital citizenship other than stealing and monetizing every last piece of your personal information online. Don't Be Evil my ass.)
Related: The Library Freedom project aims to teach librarians the basics of digital surveillance.
Poet Richard Wilbur: Obituary.
George Saunders has won the 2017 Man Booker Prize.
A Nancy Drew television reboot is planned.
EarlyWord provides an update on planned literary adaptations.
(TV headline, not books, but still interesting.) This is how we watch TV now: "binge racing."
NONFICTION BOOK NEWS
I absolutely must read this history of surgery titled The Butchering Art.
A review of Walter Isaacson's new book about Leonardo da Vinci.
John McCain will publish a new memoir next April.
Have you heard of this? Smog and poisonous gases combined over London in 1952 (and caused more than 12,000 deaths)?
I must see this book about modern one-room schoolhouses across Montana.
The father of microfinance has a plan to "fix capitalism."
New York Times: A review of Anne Applebaum's new book about Russia; a graphic novelist's "majestic portrait" of New York City (I must have it); a prison memoir by one of the members of the Russian band Pussy Riot; on the second volume of a massive Stalin biography; and here's a biography of Lenin; the military father who spoke against Trump at the 2016 Democratic convention has written a memoir.
IndieBound: Bestselling books the week of Oct. 19.
USA Today: 5 books you won't want to miss this week.
Paste magazine: 10 Best New Young Adult Books for October.
What are some of the best books about the Beatles?
MY READING NOTES
For some reason, I thought it would be funny to re-read Judy Blume's Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret, and see if I hated it as much as I did when I read it first as a kid. Begging God for her period? Yeah, I hated it."Please help me grow God. You know where." HA HA HA HA.
I read some of Jeanne Marie Laskas's Growing Girls: The Mother of All Adventures, because I love Jeanne Marie Laskas, and I'm always interested in what it's like to raise girls (since the CRjrs are both boys). I'm not in the mood right now, but I'm going to get it back.
It's that time of year! "So there they go, Jim running slower to stay with Will, Will running faster to stay with Jim, Jim breaking two windows in a haunted house because Will's along, Will breaking one window instead of none, because Jim's watching. God, how we get our fingers in each other's clay. That's friendship, each playing the potter to see what shapes we can make of the other." Something Wicked This Way Comes time!
AND NOW, YOUR OBLIGATORY NEIL GAIMAN LINK
Gaiman appears in his second Simpsons Treehouse of Horror.