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Niagara on the Lake, Ontario, Canada
My virtue is that I say what I think, my vice that what I think doesn't amount to much.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

A Great Adventure

Slightly Foxed Editions is championing the brave and intrepid bibliophile Katy Macmillan-Scott as she embarks on a great literary adventure in memory of her spirited and adventurous friend Harriet. SF will be mapping her route and sharing news of her progress. 10% of sales for a selection of books by Patrick Leigh Fermor and other inspirational travellers will be donated to Bowel Cancer UK in Harriet's honour.

More here 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

How Many Books Will You Read Before You Die?

There are millions of books in the world (and almost definitely hundreds of millions—last they checked, Google had the count at 129,864,880, and that was seven years ago). The rabid and/or competitive readers among you will now be asking yourselves: yes, yes, now how will I read them all?More here

Jane Austen Has Alt-Right Fans? Heavens to Darcy!

No, bonnet-wearing Janeites have not been spotted at white nationalist gatherings. But in an article published March 12 in The Chronicle of Higher Education titled “Alt-Right Jane Austen” (and illustrated with a drawing of the beloved British novelist in a Make America Great Again hat), Nicole M. Wright, an assistant professor of English at the University of Colorado, describes finding a surprising Austen fan base.

More here

Monday, March 20, 2017

Read: "Communist Party": the first chapter of Walkaway

Read chapter one of Walkaway, Cory Doctorow's new novel.
Pre-order here

Shakespeare’s Drafts Were Pretty Damn Rough

To be, or not to be; that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And, by opposing, end them. To die, to sleep—No more.

Hamlet’s soliloquy is among the finest ever crafted by the great Bard. Or was it? There is another version of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the earliest printed version, that is somewhat less refined in the philosophizing of the crown prince. “To be, or not to be, Aye there’s the point, / To Die, to sleepe, is that all? Aye all.”

More here

Franz Kafka's Last Novel ends Mid-sentence Because Of The Writer's Death

“She held out her trembling hand to K. and had him sit down beside her, she spoke with great difficulty, it is hard to understand her, but what she said…”
This is the final sentence of The Castle Franz Kafka’s last known work. Kafka started writing it in 1922 when he arrived at a mountain resort. He was already suffering from severe tuberculosis but intended to finish the novel over the course of the next several years but died of tuberculosis on June 3rd, 1924, aged 40. He got close to finishing The Castle, but the novel ends mid-sentence due to his untimely death.

More Here 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

R.I.P. Jimmy Breslin

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jimmy Breslin has died at the age of 88. When author Norman Mailer ran for mayor of NYC Breslin was his running mate on the ticket.

Nobel Prize-winning poet Derek Walcott has died

This 2010 poem shows Walcott's dazzling musicality  “In the Village” is about Walcott’s time in New York’s Greenwich Village:

Who has removed the typewriter from my desk,

so that I am a musician without his piano

with emptiness ahead as clear and grotesque

as another spring? My veins bud, and I am so

full of poems, a wastebasket of black wire.

The notes outside are visible; sparrows will

line antennae like staves, the way springs were,

but the roofs are cold and the great grey river

where a liner glides, huge as a winter hill,

moves imperceptibly like the accumulating

years. I have no reason to forgive her

for what I brought on myself. I am past hating,

past the longing for Italy where blowing snow

absolves and whitens a kneeling mountain range

outside Milan. Through glass, I am waiting

for the sound of a bird to unhinge the beginning

of spring, but my hands, my work, feel strange

without the rusty music of my machine. No words

for the Arctic liner moving down the Hudson, for the mange

of old snow moulting from the roofs. No poems. No birds.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Georgia O'Keeffe's Recipes Are As Beautiful As Her Art

Best known for her paintings of sensuous flowers, New York City’s skyscrapers and desert landscapes, modernist Georgia O’Keeffe remains a celebrated artist in the American tradition. Dinner With Georgia O’Keeffe, is a beautiful spiral-bound tome that gives you a whole new perspective on how O’Keeffe’s home life influenced her artistry.

More here

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

360-Degree Panoramas of Grand American Libraries

360-Degree Panoramas of Grand American Libraries Thomas R. Schiff’s photographs capture the American library as it transformed from a members-only space into a public institution.

The Living Authors with the Most Film Adaptations

There are plenty of writers whose works have been made into many, many films—William Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and Arthur Conan Doyle being the high rollers that immediately spring to mind. But with contemporary—read, living—authors, the field is a little slimmer.

More here

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Sideways Dictionary is a pop-up dictionary of security jargon

Jigsaw, Google's online safety division, and the Washington Post are creating a collaborative, visual pop-up dictionary that explains difficult security concepts with analogies, metaphors and images.

Via Boing Boing

Friday, March 10, 2017

The Best We Could Do

This beautifully illustrated graphic novel by Thi Bui portrays one family’s journey from war-torn Vietnam,.
"It is an evocative memoir about the search for a better future and a longing for the past. Exploring the anguish of immigration and the lasting effects that displacement has on a child and her family, Bui documents the story of her family’s daring escape after the fall of South Vietnam in the 1970s, and the difficulties they faced building new lives for themselves."
Buy on Amazon Via Boing Boing