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Book News for Tuesday, May 29, 2007

  • Fountain of Fonts: Want to know which font your favorite author uses? Suuuuuuuure you do!

    Jonathan Lethem and Andrew Vachss use Courier, Maile Meloy likes Times, Nicholson Baker prefers Courier New... whoops, I'm giving it away!

    And for the record, Yours Truly uses whatever default font Word Press gives us.

  • Clown Girl Makes Good: ASAP Book Pusher (and Powell's small-press maven) Kevin Sampsell follows the timeline of Monica Drake's acclaimed debut novel, Clown Girl.

    This one is pretty fascinating, if only because Drake actually suffers the slings and arrows of struggling to get published, rather than walking out of her MFA program with a handful of blurbs from her teachers (who are all successful writers) and raking in a huge advance. By the end, it feels like a literary Rocky story.

  • Golden Poison: Even as the film version of his novel The Golden Compass inches its way toward a December release, Philip Pullman rails against television, calling it "social poison" to children.

    (As opposed to the antisocial kind that just sits in the corner, drinking in brooding silence and never mingling with the other poisons.)

    Pullman castigated broadcasters for sacrificing high-quality programmes in favour of those that yield more marketing opportunities. 'Children are regarded by broadcasters as a marketing opportunity at best, a dangerous and feral threat at worst, and an expensive nuisance otherwise,' Pullman said. 'This social poison goes much deeper than broadcasting, of course, but it's particularly visible there.'

    Um... yeah, that's one of those loose threads dangling off the angora sweater than you just tug at a little, and before you know it you're topless in the streets.

  • Stupid Idea of the Century (So Far): A bookstore owner in Kansas City is starting a book bonfire to protest "society's diminishing support for the printed word."

    Store owner Tom Wayne said, ""This is the funeral pyre for thought in America today." I'll say... and maybe he's been sniffing too many of those fumes.

    He said he envisions monthly bonfires until his supply — estimated at 20,000 books — is exhausted.

    Quick, somebody toss Wayne a copy of Fahrenheit 451 before it's too late!

    And maybe An Inconvenient Truth, while you're at it; the fumes from 20,000 books can't possibly help our global warming crisis.

÷ ÷ ÷

Brockman is the head writer for the daily Book News posts on the blog. In his free time he's hard at work on his fictional memoir, which changes titles daily.

The views and commentary posted by Brockman are entirely his own, and are not representative of the whole of Powell's Books, its employees, or any sane human being.

Books mentioned in this post

  1. Clown Girl: A Novel
    Used Trade Paper $7.95
  2. The Golden Compass: His Dark...
    Used Trade Paper $3.95
  3. Fahrenheit 451
    Used Trade Paper $7.50

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