Tag Archives: reading

10 Book & Tea Combos To Curl Up With

9 Book And Tea Combos To Curl Up With

There are few things in life better than curling up with a good book and a cup of hot tea.  Now that temperatures are dropping and snow is coming, it’s prime time to get your reading and sipping on, so we’ve put together a list of some books we loved this year and recommended teas to try while you’re flipping pages. Hand-selected by the ladies from The Frisky, check out our suggested book and tea combos after the jump! And share yours in the comments… Keep reading »

Amazon Released A List Of Its Most Popular Kindle Highlights

Kindle’s popular highlights are pretty much the only reason I would have to read anything on a Kindle anymore. I have successfully boycotted Amazon for books and most other things for the last several months, but I still find myself amazed at the popular highlights, mostly because of their extraordinary mediocrity. I’m pretty sure that most people just highlight something popular because they see that other people have highlighted it, and they think that necessarily means it’s important — and I’m pretty sure that there has to be a cadre of people who are trolling the popular highlights. Some of the highlights in the Song of Ice and Fire books just made no damn sense. There were whole passages of “Hodor Hodor Hodor” that got highlighted by at least tens of readers.

In any event, Amazon released a list of the most popular highlights of all Kindle books, and while most of them are insightful or at least novel on their own (which IMO is the point of highlighting? I could be wrong), others, isolated from their context, don’t make much sense. For example, from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban:

“THEN YOU SHOULD HAVE DIED!”roared Black. “DIED RATHER THAN BETRAY YOUR FRIENDS, AS WE WOULD HAVE DONE FOR YOU!”

Also — nitpicky, but whatever — the passage of The Hunger Games in which the rules of the Hunger Games are explained isn’t particularly useful. Like, would you quote that in a paper? (I say no, you could paraphrase and cut down your quoted word count.) Would you come back to it as guidance later on? The book hammers the rules home throughout the narrative, so it’s not like you’re needing a reminder. It doesn’t give you any insight about Katniss, it’s just exposition. And yet it’s one of the most popular highlights on Kindle.

Of course, all of this is coming from a woman who does this to books she loves…

…So take from that what you will. I’m just looking at this list and going, all right, these are the most popular highlights on Kindle, but what does it tell us about our reading habits or what makes great literature? I’m just going to hazard a guess: I think that highlighting on Kindle is more a way for the reader to feel like they’re interacting with a real book than it is a method people use for critical reading or even, necessarily, to mark ideas they think are profound or want to come back to. I also think that it’s a way of feeling like you’re part of a reading community (ergo highlighting merely because other people highlighted — I’m not going to pretend I haven’t done it). But I don’t really see that these are identifications of great writing, nor do I think they’re representative of what makes the novels included on the list as popular as they are.

To me this raises the question of how we read, especially how we read popular fiction. What’s your reading and highlighting strategy? I’m very curious.

[The Atlantic]

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What Are Your Favorite Audiobooks?

The only real downside to my new obsession with weaving is that I haven’t yet figured out how to read a book and weave at the same time, so I haven’t been as voracious a reader as usual. I love books and was really missing reading, though not so much that I was willing to drop the loom, so I finally signed up for an Audiobooks.com account. Good news is the meditative impact from weaving actually puts me in the perfect mindset to absorb what I’m hearing. My Audiobooks account also came in handy this weekend while I was unpacking in my new Brooklyn apartment (!!!) and wanted something a little more stimulating than music to listen to. I’ve already “read” Lena Dunham’s Not That Kind of Girl (side note: her vocal delivery of THAT passage is just as blase as it appears on the page) and Amy Poehler’s fantastic new book Yes Please. The latter I found to be especially enjoyable as an audiobook because Poehler had a whole list of friends stop by the studio to help her read, plus there were also audio clips from “Parks & Rec” — hell, the whole experience of listening to this book may actually be better than reading it (though regardless of how you “read” it, just DO). I suspect that this may be true of a lot of comedic memoirs, as most of them have the actual comics reading their work, giving them the opportunity to actually perform it.

I’ve listened to a few others audiobooks in the past, including a couple of the Harry Potter books (so good on tape, y’all), but I’m hoping you might have some other recommendations, as I suspect that some books are way better on tape than others. So, hook a girl up. What are some audiobooks you’ve listened to that you loved, or what are some books you’ve read recently that you think would be great as audiobooks? Let’s share!

5 Things To Know About Cartoonist Alison Bechdel, Winner Of A MacArthur “Genius” Grant

Alison Bechdel

There are plenty of people in the world who get nice things that they don’t (IMHO) deserve. So it’s especially nice when someone completely and utterly deserving is recognized for their greatness. I felt all the warm and fuzzies this morning when I heard on the news that the cartoonist and graphic novelist Alison Bechdel is a 2014 recipient of a MacArthur “Genius Grant,” one of the world’s most prestigious prizes. Bechdel draws the popular LGBTQ comic strip Dykes To Watch Out For and is the author/illustrator of the memoirs Are You My Mother? and Fun Home, the latter of which is one of the most esteemed books in the graphic novel genre (and a favorite of mine).

As a winner of the “Genius Grant,” which is awarded to between 20 and 40 individuals who “show exceptional merit and promise for continued and enhanced creative work,” Bechdel will receive upwards of $625,000 paid out over five years. The intention is for winners to use the prize money to continue doing their good work. Past winners have included people like “The Wire” creator David Simon, authors Chimamanda Ngozi Adihie, Junot Diaz and Edwidge Dandicat, and critic Susan Sontag.

After the jump, here are five things to know about Alison Bechdel, her cartoons and her important mark on pop culture! Keep reading »

Anne Rice’s BDSM Erotica Trilogy Sleeping Beauty Heads To TV!

anne rice sleeping beauty

Your TiVo queue just got unbelievably hotter: a BDSM erotica trilogy by Anne Rice, under the pen name A.N. Roquelaur, is headed to TV. The popular books, The Claiming Of Sleeping Beauty, Beauty’s Punishment and Beauty’s Release, will be adapted into a TV series for the channel Televisa USA. Your mom bought these compulsively readable books back in the ’80s when Rice first penned them, but they are still on the fiction shelves in bookstores today, especially after the renewed interest in BDSM due to the popularity of Fifty Shades Of Grey. But unlike the writing in Fifty Shades, which was terrible, the Sleeping Beauty books are gripping and the spanking scenes — oh, so many spanking scenes — are hotter. Should be fun for TV.  Rice is executive producing the show alongside Rachel Winter, who was nominated for an Oscar for “Dallas Buyers Club.” Yay ladies! [The Hollywood Reporter]

Margaret Atwood Is Coming Out With A New Book — But There’s A Catch

margaret atwood 090514

A new book from the genius Margaret Atwood is always news. The author of The Handmaid’s Tale and The Blind Assassin has legions of readers around the world. But when her next book is published, most of them will be dead. That’s because Atwood has written a novel but won’t be publishing it until 2114 — 100 years from now.

It’s not some bizarre posthumous publishing wish, a la J.D. Salinger. Atwood is the first author to contribute a novel to “Future Library,” an art project that collects the texts of 100 books which will not be published until 100 years in the future. Keep reading »

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