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Women's National Book Association awards Second Century Prize to the Little Free Library #books #news

Thu, 07/20/2017 - 15:23
As a part of the celebration of its centennial this year, the Women's National Book Association has awarded the WNBA Second Century Prize to the Little Free Library. The award, which carries a $5,000 grant, honors "an organization that supports the power of reading, past, present, and into the future,"

The Little Free Library, a nonprofit organization that promotes reading for all ages, but especially children, by building free book exchanges.

Founded in 2009 in Hudson, Wis., by Todd Bol to honor his mother, a schoolteacher, the Little Free Library promotes the building of free book exchanges. There are now more than 50,000 registered Little Free Libraries worldwide, in all 50 states and 70 countries.

after eight years there are more than 50,000 libraries in more than 70 countries, where millions of books are exchanged every year.

British Library will publish two new Harry Potter books in October

Thu, 07/20/2017 - 05:00
The Hogwarts universe is set to expand by an additional two new Harry Potter books, published by Bloomsbury in the UK (and presumably Scholastic in the USA) in conjunction with a British Library event, in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the series.

The library exhibition titled, "A History of Magic," featuring the two books will be open from October 2017 to February 2018.

The books, both by the British Library, include unseen sketches and manuscript pages from author J.K. Rowling, magical illustrations from Jim Kay and artifacts from the archives at the library.

J.K. Rowling, in a statement on the Pottermore website, called A History of Magic an "adult edition" and Harry Potter – A Journey Through A History of Magic "a family edition for younger readers."

A ray of optimism from Washington for library budgets

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 10:11
The budget battle is kicking up again in Washington, but this time with a note of optimism for libraries and library supporters. Last week, a House Appropriations subcommittee voted to recommend level funding for libraries in FY2018, which would mean roughly $231 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), $183 million for the Library Services and Technology Act, and $27 million for the Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) program.

The vote comes after President Trump in May doubled down on his call to eliminate IMLS and virtually all federal funding for libraries, as well as a host of other vital agencies.

Novelist Junot Díaz to publish a picture book

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 05:00
By his own admission, the novelist Junot Díaz is an agonizingly slow writer and a chronic procrastinator. Over the past two-plus decades, he has published just three books: two short-story collections and his 2007 novel, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, which won the Pulitzer Prize.

But even by Mr. Díaz's glacial standards, his latest book, Islandborn (March 2018, Dial Books), will be long overdue — about 20 years past deadline. And it's a mere 48 pages long.

According to the New York Times, Islandborn "engages with many of the same themes that Mr. Díaz has wrestled with in his fiction: immigration and identity, the weight of collective memory, and feelings of displacement and belonging." ...

The Drifter wins International Thriller Writer's First Novel Award

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 05:00
This year's International Thriller Writers' annual awards have been presented to:
Hardcover: Before the Fall, Noah Hawley
First Novel: The Drifter, Nicholas Petrie
Paperback Original: The Body Reader, Anne Frasier
eBook Original: Romeo's Way, James Scott Bell

Liu Xiaobo, Chinese dissident who won Nobel Peace Prize while in jail dies aged 61

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 12:09
Liu Xiaobo, the renegade Chinese intellectual who kept vigil at Tiananmen Square in 1989 to protect protesters from encroaching soldiers, promoted a pro-democracy charter that brought him a lengthy prison sentence and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize while locked away, died under guard in a hospital on Thursday. He was 61.

Beatles Mark 'Yellow Submarine' 50th Anniversary With Comic Book

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 04:13
For the 50th anniversary of the Beatles' Yellow Submarine, the Apple Corporation is authorizing a comic book adaptation of the classic film with Titan Comics. The book is slated for release in 2018.

Bertelsmann ups PRH stake to 75%

Tue, 07/11/2017 - 05:00
In a move that had been expected, Bertelsmann has increased its stake in Penguin Random House. After the deal is completed in September, Bertelsmann will have a 75% share of PRH with Pearson controlling the remaining 25%.

Spencer Johnson, author of <i>Who Moved My Cheese</i> and <i>The One-Minute Manager</i>, dies aged 78

Mon, 07/10/2017 - 05:00
Spencer Johnson, a onetime physician and children's book author, whose best-selling books on business management, including "The One-Minute Manager" and "Who Moved My Cheese?," sold millions of copies and inspired a cultlike following, died July 3 at a hospital in Encinitas, Calif. He was 78.

Lost Maurice Sendak picture book to be published next year

Fri, 07/07/2017 - 13:53
An unpublished picture book by Maurice Sendak has been found hidden deep in his archives, five years after his death. The typewritten manuscript and illustrations, co-authored by Sendak's longtime collaborator Arthur Yorinks, were discovered in Connecticut by Lynn Caponera, president of the Maurice Sendak Foundation. Caponera was Sendak's housekeeper, assistant and friend for many years.

Titled Presto and Zesto in Limboland, the illustrations were created in 1990 to accompany a London Symphony Orchestra performance of Leoš Janácek's Ríkadla, a 1927 composition that set Czech nursery rhymes to music.

Paddington Bear creator Michael Bond dies aged 91

Wed, 06/28/2017 - 11:29
Michael Bond, the genial British author who created Paddington Bear, the polite, good-natured but disaster-prone little hero of children's novels, picture and activity books, television series, and films, died at his home in London on Tuesday. He was 91.

In a 2014 interview with the London newspaper The Guardian, Mr. Bond said that the character had partly been inspired by his memories of child evacuees passing through Reading from London. "They all had a label round their neck with their name and address on and a little case or package containing all their treasured possessions."

Mr. Bond also wrote books about Olga da Polga, a guinea pig, and a mouse called Thursday, and for adult readers about Monsieur Pamplemousse, a culinary detective with a dog named Pommes Frites.

Oprah picks Behold the Dreamers for book club

Mon, 06/26/2017 - 05:00
Imbolo Mbue's debut novel Behold the Dreamers is the latest "summer" pick for Oprah's Book Club. In a statement first available at Amazon, Winfrey says, "It's about race and class, the economy, culture, immigration and the danger of the us versus them mentality. And underneath it all pumps the heart and soul of family love, the pursuit of happiness and what home really means."

Heaviest users of public libraries are Millennials

Mon, 06/26/2017 - 05:00
Millennials in the U.S. are more likely to have visited a public library in the past year than any other adult generation. In a Pew Research Center survey from fall 2016, 53% of 18 to 35 year-olds said they had used a library or bookmobile in the previous 12 months, compared to 45% of Gen Xers, 43% of Baby Boomers and 36% of those in the Silent Generation. Millennials are also more likely to have used a library website (41%) than other adult age groups.

Stories about disability don't have to be sad

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 05:00
The term "thought provoking" is over-used but that does describe eighth grader Melissa Shang's opinion piece in the New York Times in which she asks why "there are very few stories about kids in wheelchairs, and there are even fewer with a disabled person who is cheerful and happy." Her powerful article questions why "disability is always seen as a misfortune, and disabled characters are simply opportunities to demonstrate the kindness of the able-bodied protagonists."

Tracy K. Smith named poet laureate of the United States

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 05:00
Tracy K. Smith has been named the 22nd poet laureate of the United States. Smith's poetry has won her such top awards in her field as the James Laughlin Award, an Academy of American Poets Fellowship, and, for her 2011 collection Life on Mars, the Pulitzer Prize.

Finding the Right Balance Between BookExpo and BookCon

Mon, 06/12/2017 - 10:48
For many years, the publishing industry's major annual event, BookExpo, was aimed at publishing insiders only. A few years ago, organizers ReedPOP, started experimenting with allowing in more readers, which morphed into a separate one-day event in 2014 called BookCon which immediately followed BookExpo. In 2015, BookCon moved to two days; then in 2016 back to one day.

This year, BookExpo's show floor was reduced from three days to two and BookCon's expanded back to two days. While engaging with fans is seen as positive by many in the publishing industry, the shows' continuing evolution is causing headaches for some, particularly the smaller, specialized publishers who wished to exhibit at BookExpo but not BookCon and thus found themselves relegated to a separate exhibit area at the Javits Center in New York.

Dr. Seuss museum opens in Springfield, MA.

Tue, 06/06/2017 - 17:00
An Amazing World of Dr. Seuss museum opened in Springfield, MA last weekend. Springfield is the home town of Theodor Geisel – better known by his pen name Dr. Seuss - who wrote and illustrated dozens of rhyming children's books including The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham. The museum features interactive exhibits, artwork never before displayed publicly and explains how his childhood experiences in the city about 90 miles west of Boston shaped his work.

Helen Dunmore dies aged 64

Tue, 06/06/2017 - 05:00
Helen Dunmore has died aged 64 of cancer. She authored 12 novels, three books of short stories, numerous books for young adults and children and 11 collections of poetry.

She was also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and Chair of the Society of Authors until shortly before her death. She lived in Cliftonwood, Bristol – the setting for her poignant last novel, Birdcage Walk (2017). Although she knew she was dying only at the editing stage she suggests, in an afterword, that she must have known subliminally because the novel was "full of a sharper light, rather as a landscape becomes brilliantly distinct in the last sunlight before a storm".

Bob Dylan's Nobel speech: Can song lyrics be literature?

Mon, 06/05/2017 - 18:12
On Monday, the Nobel Foundation released Bob Dylan's lecture (which he gave just shy of the 6 month deadline in order to receive the award and cash prize of US$900,000. In his 27 minute speech, Dylan opined on the topic that was on many people's minds when he was announced as the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, can song lyrics be literature?

"The speech is extraordinary and, as one might expect, eloquent," Sara Danius, the Swedish Academy's permanent secretary, wrote in a blog post. "Now that the Lecture has been delivered, the Dylan adventure is coming to a close."

Forever Stamp to celebrate Henry David Thoreau bicentennial

Sun, 05/28/2017 - 15:03
The U.S. Postal Service is honoring Henry David Thoreau (b. July 12, 1817) during the bicentennial year of his birth with a Forever Stamp. A first-day-issue stamp dedication ceremony took place last week at the the Walden Pond State Reservation Visitors Center in Concord, Mass.

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