What a couple of weeks! There's been a lot of good and not-so-good stuff floating around. Here's a roundup of the things worth spending a little time reading/thinking about:
- The Guys Lit Wire are back with their spring book fair to help Ballou High School stock its library shelves. This school's story is heartbreaking, and they deserve all of the help they can get. So if you can spare a few bucks, please purchase one of the books from their wish list and send it along to them. All of the pertinent details are right here. I've purchased a copy of Joshua Cohen's Leverage for the cause.
- Book covers seem to be on everyone's mind lately. There's a GREAT piece from Tor's blog about a certain shot of women that hits on a lot of the things I talked about in my post about the female body on covers. Then there's this piece from the Huffington Post, which is really a post about the self-pubbed author's book, rather than about covers. I don't want to link it, but I am because I want to use this as a jumping off point for a future post on how to successfully work with bloggers to promote your book. I'm bothered less by her discussion of her cover -- which looks cheap to me -- and more about how she's reduced the YA blogosphere into a publicity tool rather than a dynamic organism. You can gather some of that from reading her older blog posts.
- One of my best experiences in college was taking a class at the Newberry Library in Chicago. I had access to amazing and rare primary source materials and was able to write what I think was the best/most interesting paper ever because of that. So when I saw they're starting a blog highlighting their children's books, I added it to my list of must-read blogs. Check it out.
- Has Kindle killed the book cover? I love how whenever anyone talks about ereading, it's always about the Kindle. But alas. The Atlantic has an interesting piece about how book covers are shifting in the digital environment. I think the second we start seeing interactive covers, I'm going to put myself much more solidly on the print is better side. I don't need my books to be moving and entertaining me through gimmicks.
- I mostly ignore the list of "most banned" books that ALA releases every year, but there's an interesting piece on the Huffington Post from Lauren Myracle talking about what it's like to be the most banned.
- I've kept a paper notebook of all the books I've read since 2001 (and I know there's a book of books prior to that but it's forever lost). I really liked this essay out of the New York Times about someone else who keeps a "book of books." Anyone else? Sure, I love Goodreads, but a book is never a book I've finished until I have written it down in my notebook.
- One argument that never makes sense to me is the one about tense in books. All stories have their own way of being told. It's cool to have preferences (like Kimberly does), but I refuse to think one is the right tense and the rest aren't. This is all to preface a nice favorites list compiled by YA author Nicola Morgan with books written in present tense.
- Is there a difference between boys and girls when it comes to how one reads? Research here suggests boys read more if they have digital readers. I...don't buy this because it seems much less about the reading -- the contents -- and much more about the container. There's something pretty exciting about technology and I think the notion of technology is being a bit conflated with reading as an activity.
On a completely different note, join us this coming week as we celebrate our blog's 3 year anniversary. We have a couple of giveaways and we'll take you down memory lane. . . but probably not in the way you expect. We'll kick things off Tuesday.