“Divergent,” which opens today, has been hailed as either the next “Hunger Games” or as a massive “Hunger Games” ripoff. It is both, but where it leaves its source material (“Harry Potter” included) is in the religious proselytizing throughout. Teenagers are born again in all YA fiction, in a sense. But in the Divergent books it is a specifically Christian moral imposition and major reason the series fails. Keep reading »
The British newspaper The Independent announced yesterday that it would no longer be reviewing any book that was specifically marketed at one gender. While their announcement certainly did its job – garnering a wave of free publicity for the newspaper and allowing them to slap their own backs quite forcefully – it’s not helping the young men and women they claim to be looking out for or the authors whose books will be measured by these new standards.
Most authors have little to no say in how the books they write are marketed. Those decisions are made by highers-up at publishing companies, with the actual writer just hoping that their book will manage to somehow stand out from the pack of new releases. Choosing to boycott a book based on to whom it’s being marketed is kind of like boycotting a band based on who goes to their concerts – there is not much that the actual creator of the work can do. Keep reading »
I’ve been in such a hibernating, antisocial bookworm mode lately that I barely leave my bed except when it’s absolutely necessary. These days (at least until the weather warms up), a stack of books and a hot cup of tea is my idea of a perfect Saturday night. If you share that sentiment, then you’ll definitely appreciate the gorgeous images of Canadian photographer Joel Robison, which are fairytale-esque visual odes to two of his favorite things: books and tea. I just want to climb into that photo above, don’t you? Check out his beautiful Flickr photo set, Chapters, for more of his amazing work! [Design Taxi]
I am getting a Kindle Paperwhite for my upcoming birthday (!!!), so it’s time to step up my e-book game. I’ve been noodling the idea of joining Scribd or Amazon Prime, two of the biggest services for borrowing e-books. I’ve been poking through their respective offerings somewhat obsessively to figure out which plan is right for me, so I found this listicle on Parade‘s web site about the most widely read ebooks available on Scribes from each state pretty interesting. They are reading about ice cream up in Alaska, while The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee by Sarah Silverman is giving us New Yorkers an Empire State Of Mind about pee. Just Kids by Patti Smith is their most widely read book in California and I give that two enthusiastic thumbs up. Anyway, I’m leaning towards Prime, but anyone wants to weigh in on the matter, I’m all ears! [Parade]
“Cleanliness” is such relative concept that hardly anyone thinks of herself as a dirty person. We all believe we’re neat and clean enough, because, well, it’s our B.O., sandwich crumbs, and long strands of hair we’re living with. (At least you think it’s hair!) But an honest assessment may tell a different story. If your mom/mother-in-law/Martha Stewart were popping by for a visit, would you really just swipe the top of the stove with a Clorox Disinfecting Wipe and call it a day? Thought not. That, my dirty friends, is why we have Jolie Kerr. Keep reading »