May 3 2017

Just one!

The trailer is out for the upcoming movie adaptation of Stephen King's The Dark Tower. The trailer looks cool (well... Idris Elba looks cool, anyway), but would it kill them to put a couple of girl characters in it? There are a few women hanging around in the background in poses that suggest...

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May 2 2017

Behind the scenes

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There's a great article over on Buzzfeed by Anne Helen Petersen: "The Company Behind "The National Enquirer" Just Bought "Us Weekly" — Here's Why That Matters". The article goes into all kinds of details (everything from solid financial facts to...

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May 2 2017

I'd go

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There's an article on Catapult called "Looking for Anne of Green Gables", about a trip two lifelong Anne of Green Gables fans took to L. M. Montgomery's (and her most famous character's) home. The essayist comes across as a rather unpleasant traveling companion...

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May 1 2017

Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman

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I am not a fan of re-editing published books. (This is mostly due to being traumatized by T.H. White's The Sword and the Stone, which has gone through several remodels. My childhood edition of White's book featured a bizarre scene involving singing minstrels in an evil ice cream parlor, but I've never found that sequence in any edition since. I'm 99% certain I didn't make this scene up, but... what if I did?) However...

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May 1 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman

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This week's Book Giveaway is this amazing new edition of Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, which looks like the kind of gloriously trashy 70s paperback you find on the spinner racks in libraries, reeking of ancient cigarettes. A full review will follow shortly, but just look at it: no matter what I say, that's a book you're going to want to read...

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Apr 27 2017

Not quite satire, but...

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There's a loving tribute up on Bon Appétit to Peg Bracken's The I Hate to Cook Book, the best-selling 1960s cookbook that features step-by-step instructions like "let cook five minutes while you light a cigarette and stare sullenly at the sink"...

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Apr 27 2017

Ink has been spilled

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There are approximately one million solid think pieces being written right now about the Hulu adaptation of Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, but these two particularly caught my attention...

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Apr 26 2017

More Mindy

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According to Deadline, Mindy Kaling has optioned the TV rights to Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? And Other Questions You Should Have Answers to When You Work in the White House, the memoir by Alyssa Mastromonaco, Barack Obama's former White House deputy chief of staff for operations...

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Apr 25 2017

Cute but questionable

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Heeeyyy... Out of Print clothing has added a new bunch of shirts based on Pelican Books' latest editions of Shakespeare, featuring gorgeous artwork by graphic designer Manuja Waldia. I still totally love these designs, although...

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Apr 25 2017

Tabloid-lite

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Everyone pokes fun at Lifetime dramas, but this upcoming 8-episode miniseries adaptation of Petra Hammesfahr's novel The Sinner actually sounds like a story People magazine would love...

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Apr 24 2017

Alice and Red Queen, by Christina Henry

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I've read more than a dozen retellings of Alice in Wonderland, and they all too frequently rely on the same ideas: Alice as an amnesiac; Alice as a traumatized young adult; Alice in a madhouse; Alice and the Mad Hatter in a romantic relationship. Christina Henry's duology—Alice and Red Queen—checks off every cliché on this list, but Henry at least delivers her recycled material with style and energy...

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Apr 24 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Alice and Red Queen, by Christina Henry

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This week's Book Giveaway is actually a two-for-one deal: we're giving away Christina Henry's Alice and Red Queen. I have been burned by many an Alice in Wonderland-themed re-write, but I just keep reading 'em. Clearly, hope springs eternal: maybe this one will be the update of my dreams...

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Apr 20 2017

Are we leaving any classic dystopian novels out?

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Man, what a good day for an announcement regarding a story in which everything goes up in smoke. According to Slate, HBO is making a new film adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. The movie is set to star Michael B. Jordan and Michael Shannon (two of my favorite acting Michaels!), and Ramin Bahrani will direct...

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Apr 20 2017

That poster's pretty great, tho.

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So, there's a movie coming out called The Little Hours, based loosely on a story from Giovanni Boccaccio's The Decameron, a 14th century collection of novellas. The movie (which stars about a million relatively big-name comic actors) is about a young man who gets a job as a gardener in a convent...

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Apr 19 2017

Good for the soul

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According to The Hollywood Reporter, the "Midnight Confessions" segment from CBS' The Late Show with Stephen Colbert is going to be made into a book, coming this fall from Simon & Schuster...

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Apr 18 2017

Fascinating (but also grim)

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I'm finally reading up on the new movie The Lost City of Z. I had a vague (and 100% incorrect) idea that it had something to do with zombies, but it turns out it is based on David Grann's 2009 nonfiction book of the same name. Grann's book focuses on the story of British explorer Percy Fawcett, who made numerous attempts to find a lost indigenous city in Brazil's Mato Grosso region...

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Apr 18 2017

Stone age melancholy

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There's a glowing review over on Slate of DC’s "brilliant new Flintstones comic". If this essay is to be believed, DC has taken the formerly cheery Saturday morning cartoon and turned it into a social satire about...

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Apr 17 2017

Silence Fallen, by Patricia Briggs

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Silence Fallen is the tenth novel in Patricia Briggs's best-selling Mercy Thompson series. In this fast-paced, action-heavy installment, shape-shifting VW mechanic Mercy is abducted from her home territory in the Pacific Northwest and spirited away to Italy, where she finds herself a pawn in a chess game being played by an ancient and powerful vampire...

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Apr 17 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Silence Fallen, by Patricia Briggs

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This week's Book Giveaway title is Silence Fallen, the 10th book in Patricia Briggs's Mercy Thompson series. We rarely review such advanced series installments, but I have a soft spot for these books: they are set in my beloved Washington, they feature a Native heroine, and—judging on a scale of long-running urban fantasy series—Briggs's stories are approximately one bajillion times better than this...

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Apr 13 2017

Visual appeal

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There's a great article over on Buzzfeed by Anne Helen Petersen called "The Radical Feminist Aesthetic Of The Handmaid’s Tale". (The article claims to be spoiler-free, but it does share quite a bit about the novel, so bear that in mind if you want to watch the TV series completely unspoiled.) Petersen talks about the visual way the filmmakers illustrate the characters' world...

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Apr 13 2017

Those hairstyles, though...

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I just saw the trailer for Terrence Davies's 2016 movie about the life of poet Emily Dickinson, A Quiet Passion. It looks very elegant and tasteful, but maybe a little low on actual plot...

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Apr 12 2017

Festive

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Someone decided to make an extremely detailed statue of Disney's Belle out of the world's second-grossest (after Circus Peanuts, obviously) candy: Peeps...

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Apr 11 2017

Angry fog

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The trailer is out for SpikeTV's upcoming TV series adaptation of Stephen King's 1980 novella The Mist. I didn't learn much from this trailer, apart from the suggestion that the mist might be the result of an angry Mother Nature(?)...

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Apr 11 2017

Grim AND expensive!

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A British woman who recently bought a £14 box of books ended up with ridiculously valuable find: an English-language, first edition print of Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment. (I love that subtitle: "A Russian Realistic Novel".) The lucky woman chose...

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Apr 10 2017

The Dark Days Pact, by Alison Goodman

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When I read the first book in Alison Goodman's Lady Helen series, I found it solidly written but over-engineered. The second installment, The Dark Days Pact, has similar strengths and weaknesses, but the deepening emotional stakes make the overall story far more satisfying...

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Apr 10 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Dark Days Pact, by Alison Goodman

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Today's Book Giveaway is Alison Goodman's The Dark Days Pact, the sequel to last year's The Dark Days Club. I'll be posting my review shortly, but first I need to re-read the first book—Goodman's writing is best appreciated when one pays attention to the details...

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Apr 7 2017

That's a dizzying image

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There's an article on Flavorwire about a possible sequel to Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. This is by no means confirmed, but people are basing their hopes on a recent audiobook edition of the novel...

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Apr 6 2017

Reworking the story

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There's a glowing review up on NPR of the animated Japanese movie Your Name, which is apparently based on a classic Japanese poem by author Ono no Komachi. I'm not sure which poem, but you can read a selection of Komachi's work...

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Apr 5 2017

High hopes

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The trailer is out for Netflix's adaptation of Anne of Green Gables! I'm excited about this: I loved the Megan Follows versions when I was a kid, but it always struck me as hard to believe that anyone could find Follows anything other than classically lovely...

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Apr 4 2017

Ouch

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Vox has written a helpful guide to the recent comics-world kerfluffle over Marvel executive David Gabriel, who (maybe inadvertently?) suggested that Marvel's low sales numbers are a reflection of readers’ disinterest in comic books featuring diverse protagonists. The article makes a solid argument Gabriel's comments are far less gross in context, but...

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