Recent Articles

January 23, 2007

Book vs. Movie 1

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Hollywood has always poached stories from the republic of letters (not to mention Broadway and, increasingly, Nick at Nite), and some of the greatest movies of all time have started out as novels. Still, this year seems notable for the number of literary adaptations coming to the screen (see our earlier post). It strikes me […]

January 22, 2007

Inflated Adjectives 0

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I myself prefer only to read books that have been described as “unputdownable,” but Joe Queenan has his own preferred adjective which appears to be serving him well: Several years ago, overwhelmed by the flood of material unleashed annually by the publishing industry, I decided to establish a screening program by purchasing only books that […]

January 22, 2007

Indelible Doubt – Class Trip & The Mustache by Emmanuel Carrere 4

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A man shaves off his mustache and, consequently, his life. A boy gets lost within his dilemmas and insecurities, echoing downfalls of a mature man. Where does Emmanuel Carrere want the reader to end up? I’m unsure, but you can read Class Trip & The Mustache for yourself and try to figure it out. Both […]

January 22, 2007

Book Critics’ Nominees Unveiled 0

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The National Book Critics Circle announced the nominees for its annual best of the year awards over the weekend. Ed has stepped up to call the fiction selections in particular “safer than a dinner for four at the Olive Garden.” The relative safety of the books aside, my understanding was that this award was meant […]

January 21, 2007

Allow Me to Bore You with This Fake Novel about Myself 2

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It’s either a sign of the impending apocalypse or an easy out for all those aspiring writers trying get their first book written. A business called “Book by You” lets you… Enjoy the adventure of starring in your very own personalized novel! You co-author our books by providing the names, features and places to include […]

January 21, 2007

“That’s Totally Book!” 1

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If you hear kids throwing the word “book” around a lot more than you’re used to, don’t assume that a new literary craze is sweeping the land. According to some cultural observers, “book” is becoming a substitute for “cool” thanks to the pervasive influence of text messaging. As some of you are no doubt aware, […]

January 21, 2007

Ask a Book Question: The 48th in a Series (Earth’s Children Finale) 0

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Pam writes in asking when the final book in a long running series will be published: Do you have any information as to when the sixth (and I believe final) volume in Jean Auel’s Earth’s Children series is due for publication? Auel’s series about a group of prehistoric people was launched in 1980 with the […]

January 19, 2007

The Myth of the “R-Rated” Book 1

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Want to sound out of touch? Start describing things by using movie ratings. That’s what school board member Wendy Day does in an opinion piece in the Detroit News as she tries to convince readers to back her in her effort to pull a book from school curriculum that she and some parents deem “inappropriate.” […]

January 17, 2007

McEwan’s Long Lost Brother 0

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It’s the stuff of fiction. Ian McEwan’s mother had an affair with an army officer and became pregnant while her husband was away fighting in World War II. She ended up giving away the baby via a newspaper ad saying “Wanted, home for baby boy aged one month: complete surrender.” After her husband was killed […]

January 17, 2007

A Cookbook with Staying Power 0

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Nearly three years ago, I mentioned the El Bulli cookbook, which contains the mad scientist recipes of the famous Catalan chef Ferran Adria. At his restaurant, El Bulli, Adria popularized techniques like creating foams and gelatins using unexpected ingredients and layering flavors and temperatures in his dishes in disconcerting ways. In keeping with what some […]