May 1 2015

Undertow, by Michael Buckley

Michael Buckley's Sisters Grimm is one of my all-time favorite kids' series. The books have their problems—actually, some really big problems—but they are so funny, romantic, and action-packed that it's easy to overlook their flaws. Buckley's new YA novel Undertow is much darker than his previous books, but...

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Apr 30 2015

No need

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Netflix has announced an upcoming miniseries adaptation of Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham, which will somehow transform from a 72-page-long book of nonsense poetry about weirdly-colored food into a 13-episode-long show about two characters and the journey that tests "the limits of their friendship"...

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Apr 29 2015

Have they read it?

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Well, this is just... unfortunate. In an effort to purge Russia of swastikas in observance of Victory Day, the holiday commemorating the Soviet Union's defeat of Nazi Germany, Moscow bookstores have removed all copies of Maus, Art Spiegelman's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1980 graphic novel about the Holocaust...

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Apr 28 2015

Free Comic Book Day

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Just a reminder: this Saturday, May 2nd, is Free Comic Book Day, and (as always) there's a ton of titles on offer. You can see all the possible options here, but...

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Apr 28 2015

Sorry, Bard fans.

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There was a recent post on io9 debunking the popular rumor that William Shakespeare was responsible for inventing 1,700 English words, including such necessary additions as "puking", "bump", and "eyeball"...

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Apr 27 2015

Fairest, by Marissa Meyer

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Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicles are a sci-fi blend of classic fairytales, Sailor Moon, and modern fantasy/adventure. Meyer has a gift for mashing all of her various inspirations into a seamless whole, but her constant borrowing makes it difficult to judge her books on their own merits...

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Apr 27 2015

Weekly Book Giveaway: Fairest, by Marissa Meyer

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This week's Book Giveaway is Marissa Meyer's Fairest: Levana's Story. Fairest was released in place of Winter, the next chronological installment in Meyer's Lunar Chronicles. I think this is a brilliant move. Back-story novels usually only come out after the original series has ended (and they generally only appeal to the most hardcore fans), but Meyer's decision to release this novel early means that...

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Apr 23 2015

No. Just... no.

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I thought the webseries The Lizzie Bennet Diaries was a cute, if far-fetched, idea that stretched on a little too long. I didn't actually finish it, but I definitely liked the first third or so, and I can see why it was such a success. But I am not sold on the visual appeal of these...

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Apr 22 2015

Well, good luck to them.

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E.L. James does not strike me as a woman who is big on self-reflection. I'm not judging her (clearly, her bank balance is proof that she's getting something right), but a lot of the people who worked with her on the first Fifty Shades of Grey movie have...

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Apr 21 2015

An ongoing and uphill battle

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According to the recent NPR article "See Priya Cook", gender bias is prevalent in textbooks worldwide. Women are generally portrayed in subservient or domestic roles, while men are depicted as figures of authority and action...

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Apr 21 2015

See Westeros by bus!

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The travel blog GoEuro.com has created a guide to the various real-world stand-ins for Game of Thrones locations, in case you'd like to make vacation plans based on your love of a fantasy series...

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Apr 20 2015

Dream a Little Dream, by Kerstin Gier

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Kerstin Gier's new book Dream a Little Dream is finally out (two years after being released in Germany; her translator remains super slow), and it has the exact same strengths and weaknesses as her first series. Once again, Gier has created a fanciful, romantic world that is...

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Apr 20 2015

Weekly Book Giveaway: Dream a Little Dream, by Kerstin Gier

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This week's Book Giveaway is Kerstin Gier's Dream a Little Dream, the first book in her new 'Silver Trilogy'. I can tell you that things start off well, but so did her last trilogy, and I am still not over the fact that that series ended with the hero and heroine becoming a pair of nearly-married immortals, despite A) still being teenagers, and B) only knowing one another for a couple of weeks...

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Apr 14 2015

I'm already sharpening my crayons.

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Last week I wrote a brief piece about the charm of Johanna Basford's coloring books for adults, and now the Internet has introduced me to her books' cooler, more urban cousin: artist Steve McDonald's upcoming book Fantastic Cities, which features...

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Apr 14 2015

They can't sell us a Black Widow movie, but they can sell Ant-Man?

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The first trailer is out for the upcoming Marvel movie Ant-Man, starring Paul Rudd. I really like Rudd, and Marvel has succeeded in transforming even dorkier characters (like, say, a talking, trigger-happy raccoon) into...

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Apr 13 2015

Skin Cleanse, by Adina Grigore

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The world wasn't exactly crying out for another book extolling the benefits of drinking less coffee, eating more dark leafy greens, and laying off the donuts, but Adina Grigore's Skin Cleanse condenses and simplifies about ten health blogs' worth of information into a fresh, cheerful, immensely readable guide to skin health...

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Apr 13 2015

Weekly Book Giveaway: Skin Cleanse, by Adina Grigore

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This week's Book Giveaway is Adina Grigore's Skin Cleanse, which meets my "of general interest" standard for reviewing nonfiction. (Plus, it appeals to the same part of me that enjoys reading fancy cookbooks while eating, like, toast. I'm a big fan of theoretical self-improvement.) I haven't quite finished Ms. Grigore's book, but thus far it seems like a chattier, more grown-up version of...

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Apr 7 2015

WANTED: Squeaky voiced actor

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According to Austen Blog, we here in America can now purchase a recording of a BBC "radio dramatization" of Jane Austen's Mansfield Park, starring the voices of Felicity Jones and Benedict Cumberbatch. Cumberbatch will apparently be playing Edmund Bertram, to which I say: oh, hell no...

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Apr 7 2015

The section about Dickens is great, too.

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I've finally seen the trailer for the movie Effie Gray, written by Emma Thompson and inspired by the life of Euphemia Chalmers Millais, the one-time wife of the famous critic John Ruskin...

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Apr 6 2015

Trade Me, by Courtney Milan

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I have complaints about Courtney Milan's novel Trade Me, but I want to give the author props for getting one thing totally right: unlike the vast majority of “New Adult” books (and in spite of her far-fetched premise), this book actually deals with real, compelling, and young adult-specific issues...

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Apr 6 2015

Weekly Book Giveaway: Trade Me, by Courtney Milan

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This week's Book Giveaway pick is Courtney Milan's New Adult title Trade Me. I'm not feeling the cover art—that is not a plausible college guy, in my opinion—but I'm really excited about this book. I've been reading Milan's blog posts about the ongoing Ellora's Cave/Dear Author legal battle, and she's really good at explaining legal minutiae in a clear, digestible fashion. I have no idea if...

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Apr 2 2015

So soothing...

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NPR recently interviewed Johanna Basford, the illustrator of two extremely successful coloring books for adults. (A note of clarification: I mean "for adults" as in "for grown-ups", by the way, not... y'know, adult coloring books. Although those might be big sellers, too.) Ms. Basford talks about...

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Apr 2 2015

Classics

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Okay, this is adorable: there's a website run by the SAG Foundation (the charitable arm of the Screen Actor’s Guild) called Storyline Online that features videos of stars and celebrities reading famous children's books out loud. The catalog of books isn't very big, but...

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Apr 1 2015

Dangerous Deceptions, by Sarah Zettel

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Dangerous Deceptions is the second book in Sarah Zettel's 'Palace of Spies' series. It continues the adventures of Peggy Fitzroy, lady-in-waiting (and part-time spy) at the Hanoverian court of King George I. Peggy has been tasked with nosing out the Jacobite rebels at court, but her work as a spy is increasingly hindered by events in her “normal” life...

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Mar 31 2015

I expect there will still be plenty of violence, though.

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The Game of Thrones fan site Winter Is Coming informs me that India is planning its own TV adaptation of George R.R. Martin's wildly popular series. It won't be an exact remake...

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Mar 31 2015

The new V.C. Andrews?

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Huh. Apparently, Stieg Larsson’s death was not enough to stop the creation of his Lisbeth Salander books. According to the Guardian, the next installment in the series will be written by David Lagercrantz, published in 38 different languages this August, and titled The Girl in the Spider’s Web...

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Mar 30 2015

The Truth Commission, by Susan Juby

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Susan Juby's The Truth Commission is 60% snappy young adult novel; 40% unexpectedly effective horror story. I really enjoyed the teen stuff, but I'm a little sorry Ms. Juby didn't go full-out on the horror, because this book is proof positive that she can create characters that would leave Stephen King weeping with envy...

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Mar 30 2015

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Truth Commission, by Susan Juby

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This week's Book Giveaway pick is Susan Juby's upcoming novel The Truth Commission. (Please note: we don't ship unreleased books until their official publication date, which in this case is April 14th.) Juby doesn't write a ton of books, but when she does they're awesome, so we're super excited about this release. A full review will follow later today...

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Mar 26 2015

90% amazing, 10% creepy

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io9 just posted several examples of the unbelievably detailed interior artwork from this upcoming 50th anniversary deluxe edition of Frank Herbert's Dune. The art—by Sam Weber—is incredible (and that image of Baron Harkonnen is going to haunt my dreams), but...

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Mar 26 2015

Fantasy v. Sexy Halloween Costume

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The blog Muddy Colors recently featured a fascinating column by Lauren Panepinto, the Creative Director for Orbit Books. In her post, Panepinto discusses the difficulty (and importance!) of achieving attractive, dynamic cover art for fantasy novels...

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