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Authors, readers, critics, media — and booksellers.


Book News for Tuesday, October 10, 2006

  • A follow-up to last week's story about the attempt to ban the graphic novels Blankets and Fun Home from a public library:

    The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has joined the National Coalition Against Censorship in a statement of support in letter form to the Board of Trustees at the Marshall Public Library in Marshall, Missouri regarding a comics matter currently on their agenda.

    Click here to read the CBLDF's letter. While Fun Home author Alison Bechdel has declined to comment, Blankets author Craig Thompson responded:

    "I felt sad for all those librarians out there that have to put up with endless puritanical demands for censorship and risk their jobs by introducing a graphic novel or two to the book shelves. Then I wondered if the USA will outlaw homosexuality, and if so, maybe I'll have a chance to date Alison Bechdel, because I'm pretty in love with her book..."

    We know you are, Craig. All I can think is, their children would be the best cartoonists ever!

  • Party like it's 1999! Google buys YouTube for $2 billion, signalling either the revival of the dot-com boom, or the corporate conquest of yet another free service of the people, by the people, and for the people. We'll know it's the former when more offices start using bean-bag chairs and desks with doors on them again.
  • The Guardian offers the U.K. alternative to the New York Times' poll of the greatest work of American fiction in the past quarter-century:

    Accordingly, a few weeks ago we sent a letter to about 150 writers and 'literary sages' inviting them confidentially to nominate 'the best novel (in English, excluding America) for the years 1980–2005.' Helpfully, we added, 'how you define "best" is up to you'.

    The winner? J. M. Coetzee's Disgrace, followed by Money by Martin Amis.

    Third place was a five-way tie between Earthly Powers by Anthony Burgess, Atonement by Ian McEwan, The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald, The Unconsoled by Kazuo Ishiguro, and Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie.

    The Guardian notes that one author voted for himself. I'll leave each reader to make up his/her own mind who did it, but I know who I think it was. And I ain't tellin'.

  • Warner Bros. has released the teaser trailer for the film adaptation of Frank Miller's acclaimed graphic novel 300. The sword-and-sandal drama, which depicts the legendary Battle of Thermopylae, opens in theaters in March 2008.

÷ ÷ ÷

Brockman is the head writer for the daily Book News posts on the Powells.com 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. Blankets: An Illustrated Novel
    Used Trade Paper $21.00
  2. Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic
    Used Hardcover $14.95
  3. Disgrace
    Used Trade Paper $7.95
  4. Money
    Used Trade Paper $8.50

  5. Atonement
    Used Trade Paper $5.95
  6. The Blue Flower
    Used Trade Paper $4.95
  7. The Unconsoled
    Used Trade Paper $5.50
  8. Midnight's Children
    Used Trade Paper $8.95
  9. 300
    Used Hardcover $9.50

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