Literature

Literature

The recipients of this year's MacArthur Foundation "genius grants" will each receive $625,000 over five years, no strings attached. That made some of us wonder what past MacArthur fellows have done with their money, a question that led us to 1992 winner Amy Clampitt.

Clampitt, a poet, was on vacation when she heard from her friend, writer Karen Chase, that she had been named a MacArthur genius.

"She was furious with me because she thought I was teasing her," Chase recalls. "And by the end of the conversation she said, 'I'm gonna buy a house in Lenox!' "

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin is back on the case with a classic detective in Benjamin Black’s The Black-Eyed Blonde.

Title: The Black-Eyed Blonde

Author: Benjamin Black

CDs: 7 (8 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

ISBN: 978-1427233363

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin teams up with a troubled teen in Barry Lyga’s I Hunt Killers.

Title: I Hunt Killers

Author: Barry Lyga

Pages: 257

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 978-0316125833

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

Book News: Unfinished Tennessee Williams Play Found

Sep 4, 2014

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin catches up with Dixie Hemingway in her ninth adventure, Blaize and John Clement’s The Cat Sitter’s Nine Lives

Title: The Cat Sitter’s Nine Lives

Author: Blaize and John Clement

Pages: 305

Publisher: Minotaur Books

ISBN: 978-1250009333

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin tries to unravel the secrets and lies of Olen Steinhauer’s The Cairo Affair.

Title: The Cairo Affair

Author: Olen Steinhauer

CDs: 10 (12 1/2 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

ISBN: 978-1427236098

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

This week we've been exploring the question of diversity in the publishing industry.

From the classrooms of M.F.A. writing programs to the corporate offices of the big Manhattan publishers, NPR's Lynn Neary has reported on why there is an absence of people of color across the industry. Publishers agree that as the country's readers become more diverse, reflecting a diverse readership is increasingly becoming smart business for those who make and sell books.

Book News: David Gregory To Write Book About Judaism

Aug 22, 2014

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin steps in front of the camera with Kate White’s latest mystery, Eyes on You.

Title: Eyes on You

Author: Kate White

Pages: 306

Publisher: HarperCollins

ISBN: 978-0061576638

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

Beyond Braille: 3-D Printed Books For The Blind

Aug 14, 2014

This post is part of our Weekly Innovation series, in which we explore an interesting idea, design or product that you may not have heard of yet. Do you have an innovation to share? Use this quick form.

There's a running joke in Los Angeles that everybody — from your dog walker to your dry cleaner — is writing a screenplay. Curt Neill is one of those aspiring screenwriters — a sketch comedian who has tried to write screenplays, but never finished one. "I've never even gotten close," he admits in Caffe Vita, an LA coffee shop where he writes.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin looks back on That Night with author Chevy Stevens.

Title: That Night

Author: Chevy Stevens

Pages: 370

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

ISBN: 978-1250034601

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

A Beautiful Book, Whether Or Not It Makes You 'Happy'

Aug 11, 2014

Lies! Deceit and rank mendacity! Eleanor Davis promises what current pop music insists is perfectly possible — that you can be happy — and then she doesn't deliver. Instead she draws comics full of hilarious surrealism, gut-tugging tropes and eloquent despair. How dare she?

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin settles in for suspense in Sweden with Tom Rob Smith’s The Farm.

Title: The Farm

Author: Tom Rob Smith

Pages: 316

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

ISBN: 978-0446550734

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

For months now the Ebola virus has been wreaking havoc in the West African countries of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. More than 700 people have died, and it seems that doctors are near-powerless to help. With the threat of the disease tearing communities apart, it's hard not to think of a legendary novel from almost 70 years ago.

Nearly two dozen diaries and notebooks of Siegfried Sassoon — among a handful of prominent soldier-poets whose artistic sensibilities were forged in the trenches of World War I — are being published online for the first time by the Cambridge University Library.

Sassoon, who served in the British Army, was a "gifted diarist [who] ... kept a journal for most of his life," the library says.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin hits the high seas with Oliver and the Seawigs by author Philip Reeve and illustrator Sarah McIntyre.

Title: Oliver and the Seawigs

Author: Philip Reeve, Sarah McIntyre

Pages: 193

Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 978-0385387880

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Five years ago, printing your own book was stigmatized and was seen as a mark of failure.

"But now," says Dana Beth Weinberg, a sociologist at Queens College who is studying the industry, "the self-published authors walk into the room, and they say, oh, well, 'I made a quarter million dollars last year, or $100,000, or made $10,000.' And it is still more than what some of these authors are making with their very prestigious contracts."

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin journeys back in time to learn about the life and death of a president with Bill O’Reilly’s Kennedy’s Last Days.

Title: Kennedy’s Last Days

Author: Bill O’Reilly

CDs: 4 (4 1/2 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Young Listeners

ISBN: 978-1427235169

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

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