BOOK RIOT
Critical Linking: October 20, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

29 Alternative Harry Potter Halloween Costume Ideas. For when The Boy Who Lived is just too mainstream.

Fred and George, Luna Lovegood, Moaning Myrtle, and Mad-Eye are clearly the best on this list.

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On Saturday, author Kathleen Hale was given a platform on the Guardian, one of the most venerable book outlets in the English speaking world. Using that platform, she chronicles a months long stalking campaign to a Goodreads reviewer who Hale charactered as her number one critic.

This is a crazy story.

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Princeton University will be the permanent home to the papers of Toni Morrison, one of America’s most celebrated living authors. Princeton’s president, Christopher L. Eisgruber, made the announcement last week at a conference for black alumni which featured Ms. Morrison, a Nobel Laureate and university faculty member from 1989 to 2006.

No surprise, given Morrison’s longtime affiliation with Princeton. But….the buried lede is that she has a new novel due out THIS SPRING.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

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Critical Linking: October 17, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

We wanted to come up with a list that was more than just a general reflection of a place, but rather paid attention to the specifics, even at the risk of the exclusion of the whole. No one book, after all, can completely capture the spirit of something so unwieldy as a state. Few—if any—books can even completely capture the spirit of an individual. And yet there are those stories that so beautifully evoke a time and a place and a way of life that it becomes close to impossible to separate the literary perception of a place from its reality—one winds up informing the other.

A very thoughtful list of the best book from every state.

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A Texan Got Locked In A London Waterstones And Twitter Refused To Sleep Until He Was Freed

The harrowing saga of being locked in a bookstore for two hours.

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The new season of Twin Peaks will pick up 25 years after the show left off, but what happened to the denizens of Washington’s weirdest town in the interim? An upcoming book by Twin Peaks co-creator Mark Frost will reveal all—or at least as much as Twin Peaks ever reveals.

The last couple of weeks have been a veritable bonanza for Twin Peaks fans.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

Critical Linking: October 16, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the spin-off trilogy set in the Harry Potter universe, will be released individually in 2016, 2018, and 2020, according to a tweet from Wall Street Journal reporter Ben Fritz. Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara is quoted as saying the project will be “at least a trilogy,” leaving room for further films in the franchise after 2020.

Get ready for a Harry Potter universe of movies not unlike Marvel’s universe of movies. For better or worse.

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The National Book Awards shortlists — for fiction, nonfiction, poetry and young people’s literature — were announced Wednesday on Morning Edition by Mitchell Kaplan, co-founder of Miami Book Fair International and former president of the American Booksellers Association. Read more about each of the finalists below.

Seems like a pretty good set of shortlists.

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Now, McSweeney’s is officially becoming what it has unofficially been for years: a nonprofit in the mold of small, independent nonprofit publishers like Graywolf Press, Heyday Books and Copper Canyon, Mr. Eggers said on Thursday.

Probably a smart move for McSweeney’s. Probably not a great sign for publishing.

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According to the survey, ebook sales made up 23% of unit sales for the first six months of this year, while hardcover’s accounted for 25% and paperbacks 42% of sales. So not only did overall print book sales outsell ebooks, both hardcovers and paperbacks outsold e-books as well.

This data, like much similar data we’ve seen recently, suggest that ebooks will be a major part of the future, just maybe not THE future.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

Critical Linking: October 14, 2014, Evening Edition
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

Whether the inspiration behind these fictional destinations is based on a real town, on the creator’s life experiences, or just their vivid imagination, the idea of actually visiting locations like Frank Miller’s brooding Basin City or Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park appeals to many. Thanks to our infographic below, your wish is now our command!

These 50 real locations that inspired fictional settings would make a heck of a travel itinerary, no?

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A new book, The Lyrics: Since 1962, will collect every lyric Bob Dylan has ever recorded – on his albums and official bootlegs – to make what the president and publisher of Simon & Schuster, Jonathan Karp, has called “the biggest, most expensive book we’ve ever published.” The tome, due out in November, will be slightly larger than an LP, contain more than 960 pages and weigh approximately 13 and a half pounds, according to The New York Times. The limited-edition book will sell for $200 and an extremely limited version, signed by Dylan, will go for $5,000.

I am buying this (the cheaper one). Aside: would make a good endcap to a career, say in prelude to a 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature?

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After a long and engaged summary treatment of Abbott’s subject, Yardley notes that Abbott “obviously has a strong interest in women who decline the roles society tries to force them into. At its best her prose is vivid, especially when she writes about battles and the terrible costs they exact, while at its less-than-best seems (dare I say it?) to have been borrowed from the pages of a woman’s magazine.”

Battle-descriptions are good. Describing clothing is bad. Got it, ladies? Unreal.

Critical Linking: October 14, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

A Definitive Ranking Of The “Harry Potter” Books. If you think we’re a bunch of Squibs, you get to re-rank them!

I differ from this ranking of the HP books (surprise surprise): My personal order, best to worst: Goblet, Half-Blood, Hallows, Sorcerer’s, Azkabahn, Chamber, Phoenix. What’s yours?

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Women were substantially underrepresented among characters with at least one appearance. Among the characters for which we have gender data,12 females made up only 29.3 percent of the DC character list and 24.7 percent of the Marvel roster.

Numbers bear out what we already knew.

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When you ask people about the school attended by their oldest child, so now you’re only asking public school parents, then the numbers go even higher in terms of satisfaction. It goes up to about 70 percent A or B. You ask about the nation’s schools, and 70 to 75 percent say the nation’s schools get a C or a D.

Really fascinating phenomenon.

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Nobel Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai’s story sounds like a non-magical parallel version of the Harry Potter story. She was a persecuted child who found refuge in education. She survived a death sentence to become the most famous kid in the world. She uses that fame to fight evil and protect schools. And now that she has a Nobel Peace Prize under her belt and political aspirations in her future, Malala is poised to become the first world leader from Generation Potter.

I guess there are parallels, but let’s just take a moment to recognize what an extraordinary young woman this is.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

Critical Linking: October 8, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

After the jump, find out which books your favorite cultural icons, from Bill Murray to Joan Didion to Nas, love best — and get to padding that reading list.

Since reading is largely a private act, it’s hard to remember that there are way more book-lovers out there than it seems. This list of super-famous people and their favorite books is just a reminder of that.

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The “Avengers” and “Lucy” actress will star in a limited series for Sony Pictures TV based on the 1913 Edith Wharton novel “The Custom of the Country,” sources confirm. Johansson will also executive produce the eight-episode series, which is about to hit the market, from Charles Finch’s Pink Sands.

Whenever I see a big time actor/actress take on a  project like this, I think of that scene in Notting Hill where Hugh Grant convinces Julia Roberts to do a Henry James adaptation.

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Two novels have sold to U.S. editors, for a rumored seven figures each, just before the Frankfurt Book Fair, which kicks off on Wednesday. The first novel, The Girls, seems primed to become one of the most talked-about projects at the fair; it was nabbed in a 12-publisher auction, and has already been acquired for film. The second book, The Longings of Jende Jonga, is by a 33-year-old Cameroon-born newcomer.

Well, not sure if big dollar book deals are a great indication, but there is money being thrown around in the publishing world still.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

Critical Linking: October 7, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

What New Book Should You Read This Fall?

Pick a latte, a gourd, a random number and a couple of other things in this book-selector quiz and see what you come up with.

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Three days before the winner is announced, [Murakami] shares odds of 4/1 with Kenyan writer Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, while Belarusian journalist Svetlana Alexievich is third favourite at 7/1.

It’s natural to favor writers you’ve read, so I am biased toward Murakami winning. (I’m surprised, though, that Salman Rushdie isn’t routinely among the frontrunners.)

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According to a new report from BusinessWeek, the a group of folks at the Post are working on a sort of curated Washington Post app that’ll be preloaded on the forthcoming Kindle Fire HD tablet. The kicker? It’s expected to be totally free to those Fire owners, and the app will eventually roll out to other Kindles, as well as iPads and Android tablets.

It was only a matter of time before Bezos pulled The Post and Amazon closer together. Question is, which one is going to benefit more?

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One of the most monumental photographs ever made, and still apparently the largest single indoor image (by information density) ever created, is in fact the interior of a library.

A 40-gigapixel panorama of an 18th-century library in Prague. You can almost read the spines on the books.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

Critical Linking: October 5, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

Dunham was inspired by Judy Blume, the well-known author whose books like “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret” and “Forever” have been must-reads for girls experiencing all the baffling things that come with growing up.

It turns out that the two writers have a lot in common. They both have been called on to be the “voice of a generation,” they both get a lot of fan mail, they don’t belong to book clubs, and neither has read “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

This conversation took place at Blume’s New York apartment and covers questions about growing up, grappling with childhood, how to write about sexuality, and what it means to really be a writer.

Interviews usually don’t grab my interest, but this conversation about books and reading between Lena Dunham and Judy Blume is excellent.

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Here’s a look at the best comic book covers for October (slideshow warning, but worth it).

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The Highland Park Independent School District, and all the other American institutions that still censor books, grapple with a set of very old and perhaps unanswerable questions: What is art, anyway? Must it be good for us? Do we accept a character’s moral flaws if we read about them? Must we experience everything an author puts into a book, or can we skip the things that disturb us or with which we disagree?

An excellent essay about the town in Texas that banned — then reinstated — 7 books in the high school. What could be the driving forces behind those actions?

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Much-loved animated sitcom Daria screened on MTV in the United States for five seasons, beginning in March 1997. A spin-off from Mike Judge’s hugely successful Beavis and Butt-head, the series centred on Daria Morgendorffer, a smart, disaffected teenager with a caustic wit.

While Daria’s favourite TV show, Sick Sad World, featured heavily throughout the series, the show was also filled with literary references. Here are 57 books that Daria read or that were mentioned during the episodes, with links to free eBook editions where available in parentheses. As DariaWiki puts it, “If it’s old, morbid, or esoteric, Daria will read the hell out of it.”

Daria from the show Daria had quite a great reading list.

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Japanese bookstore chain Junkudo will keep its doors open throughout the night on Nov. 1 to provide an all-you-can-read experience for six lucky bookworms at its store in Tokyo’s Chiyoda ward. The main proviso is that each overnighter buys a book before leaving.

If you’re in Tokyo — hell, if you’re on that side of the world — maybe you want to know about this chance to spend the night in a bookstore.

Critical Linking: October 3, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

If you fear driving away your friends and loved ones with your single-minded passion for The Hunger Games, or if your devotion to The Goldfinch has become a distraction at work, it may be time to cool things down. If you’re unsure whether things have gone too far, never fear: We’ve compiled a list of telltale signs that you’ve developed an unhealthy fixation on one book.

At least one of the things on this list about being obsessed with a book got me: I may or may not have ever skipped a social engagement to keep reading.

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“I think [book rating]‘s commonly written about as the ‘helicopter parenting’ phenomenon and that’s fairly well recognized,” NCAC Executive Director Joan E. Bertin told us. “I think the piece that people have missed is the way in which it’s playing itself out in kids’ educational experiences, with parents second-guessing teachers and taking the position that kids should be sheltered from everything, including the content of books that might be disturbing.”

The question I always asked is this: have you ever met anyone that read something in school that permanently damaged them in some way? No, right? Then what the hell are we talking about?

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In 2013, reports BSL, US consumers spent an average of $29.20 on physical books. The amount they spent in the same time period on e-books? $30.18. Of course, these averages vary among different age groups. For example, 55-64 year-olds spent about 3 times more ($40.28) on physical books than those under 25 years-old ($12.56). On the other hand, 35-44 year-olds spent twice as much on e-books as those over 65.

Very interesting data. The younger you are, the more you spend on digital books. Draw what conclusions about future data from that you like.

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Seidenberg launched the book shop after rising rents forced him to close the first Brazenhead Books in Brooklyn in the late 1990s. He had tried selling his second-hand books at fairs and on the street, but he missed having a dedicated space. So Seidenberg set up shop in an Upper East Side apartment in 2008 and took customers by appointment only. “It’s not open to the public as such. It’s not legal so that’s why it has to be hidden,” he explained to filmmaker Andrew David Watson in the 2011 documentary.

A secret bookstore, eh? Pretty cool.

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Did you know that Book Riot has a YouTube channel? We do. It’s new and we are having fun with it. Check it out here.

Critical Linking: October 1, 2014 
Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.

Can You Guess The Famous Book From The First Line? Can you get an “A” in Book Nerdery?

I CRUSHED this quiz about the first lines from famous books. You?

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According to Pobst, who worked on the Xbox version of 2002′s The Fellowship of the Ring adventure game, initially there were going to be pumpkin patches in the Shire and “the Tolkien Enterprises people went nuts about it,” to the point where production had to be shut down while the pumpkins were removed. The reason? Because Middle-Earth is meant to be inspired by an ancient version of Europe, and pumpkins are native to North America. 

Right, because it will be the presence of the wrong gourds that will break the verisimilitude of Middle Earth.

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The project would create a Library Map application which would allow users to tap into the library landscape around them. This app would not only enable users to find the closest library but also reveal hidden and specialized libraries that they may not realize are open to them. 

Ooooooo, I want this app to exist.