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Yay, it's Banned Books Week. But not for ugly books. Only pretty, popular books get celebrated this week.
The ALA BBW press kit says, "Banned Books Week 2008 will kick off in Chicago, with a Read-Out! The event will feature popular banned or challenged authors and local Chicago celebrities..."
See? No one cares if unpopular books are banned or challenged or reconsidered or whatever you want to call it.
I would love to see the list of books that people have asked libraries to remove that were discarded without argument or protest. The librarian just looked at it and said, "you're right, that's crap and doesn't belong in our library; I don't know what I was thinking when I ordered it. Thanks for pointing it out."
A couple of weeks ago on the TV show House, the eponymous doctor was reading what looked like some bad porn novel with a title like Bondage Women in Prison; you know the ones with no cover art and filled with typos like vajina and oreola... like the ones I have on my bookcase over here. What if someone saw that episode and came in to get that book? And it was a real book. And no other library in the country owned it, but it was available from your book vendor? Would you buy a copy to fill the request?
No, you'd make some excuse about books requiring recommendations from a prominent review source even though half the books you buy are prepubs or mass-markets or popular titles with no reviews except on Amazon. You probably wouldn't buy a copy and no one would care. -- Read More
So what secrets did "anonymous" expose by hacking into Sarah Palin's email? From what I saw, nothing damning. Only some questionable messages and this recipe:
Sarah's Polar Bear Fondue
One polar bear, cleaned
10 pounds flour
4 dozen eggs
50 pounds Gruyere
50 pounds Emmental
6 bottles dry white wine
1 pound garlic, peeled, crushed
serve with Triscuits, yummers!
or with optional baby seal paté (recipe to be sent in follow-up email)
So, no smoking gun there. Odd, you say? Why? What Alaska fishwife doesn't have at least one polar bear recipe up her sleeve?
What do you get when you take an incredibly successful series of thrillers, cross them with a really successful series of books for children, and then make a movie out of it?
You get The Waldo Ultimatum.
This summer... Waldo finds... HIMSELF.
Roald Dahl never won a children's book prize in his lifetime, but today he has gone one better, as the shortlists for a literary prize bearing his name are announced.
Founded by the children's laureate Michael Rosen, the Roald Dahl Funny prize celebrates honours the most hilarious children's authors. The inaugural winners will receive £2,500 - a slightly more serious prize than the Gloucester Old Spot pig handed over to winners of the Wodehouse prize for adult comic fiction.
Rosen founded the prize to boost the profile of humorous books as part of his campaign to put the fun back into children's reading. More from Guardian UK.
Since July 2007, the obnoxious librarian from hades (olfh.blogspot.com) is cheering up librarians around the world with satirical tales about life as a librarian in a large bureacracy.
Now the blog has started as a podcast, so you can listen to the obnoxious librarian tackling management, reorganisations, l-users (library users) and other things that keep him from doing his job.
Well, at least you can say someone is having a good time at the library...
After all, just because you're amongst all those books, doesn't mean it has to be boring. So next time you feel the onset of yawning and fatigue, remember the patron in the video. You too, can get on down @ your library.
It's been reported that bestselling diet manual French Women Don't Get Fat is to get the big screen treatment. Hilary Swank's production company has picked up the finger-wagging weight-loss manifesto that instructs the Brits on how to be as slim as their éclair-scoffing sisters across the Channel.
Here are The Guardian's favourite non-fiction tomes: can you think up likely plot-lines for any of them? And which titles have they left out?
1) The Joy of Sex
2) Eats, Shoots & Leaves
3) Who's Who
4) The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
5) What to Expect When You're Expecting
When franchises go too far.
I read the discussion about the latest Mummy movie where most critics agreed that it was time to retire that franchise, that the ideas were gone and they were just milking a dead goat.
But another franchise comes to mind in the book publishing world: Gallop!
Now, Gallop! is a pretty cool idea; it uses "scanimation" to animate still images by having stripes pass over an image thereby revealing one part or another and creating the illusion of movement. It's a simple, but extremely cool effect.
And based on the popularity of that first book, the scanimation people are releasing a second book, Swing!
And again, this is fine. But I just read that a third book is already in the works with the unpleasant title of, Poop!
Now, I don't know when an author or publisher should just call it quits, but I think a book called Poop! might be that point. I could imagine books with animals doing many other things before I would imagine them pooping. You have Gallop!, Swing!, maybe Hop! or Leap!, or, well, that's basically it, isn't it? What else do animals do? Sleep! Yeah, that'll stretch the use of scanimation to the cutting edge as animals lie completely still. -- Read More