It is strange to realize that your favorite book by an author is sometimes overlooked by other readers. Young adult author Francesca Lia Block is probably best known for her Weetzie Bat series (otherwise known as Dangerous Angels). The books follow the adventures of a young woman named Weetzie who lives in a magical version of Los… Continue reading When Other People Don’t Remember Your Favorite Book
It’s no secret that bookstores have had a tough decade. Independent shops have struggled. Behemoths like Borders shuttered. And every other day someone publishes a think piece about the imminent demise of the book industry. In response, bookstores have tried to become increasingly creative about the ways they make money. Their shelf space has shrunk,… Continue reading Barnes & Noble to Save Itself through…More Books?
I recently took quite the hiatus from this blog, but I found just the thing to get me back into the swing of things. Capitalism! I’m kidding. Mostly. The season between October 1 and January 1 fills me with an absurd joy. It begins with “Give me pumpkin decorations or give me death” and culminates… Continue reading Personalized Book Recommendations and the Penguin Hotline
When I worked in a college library, I had to periodically go around and wake people from where they had fallen asleep in the book stacks, on tables, or in quiet corners. I didn’t wake them to be cruel but because the library had to close sometime, and they couldn’t spend the night even… Continue reading Sleeping in the Stacks
I’m tempted to say that librarians read everything, but of course that isn’t true. Like everyone else, librarians have their own book preferences, and there simply isn’t time to read everything. Discovering the differences in how people read makes The New York Times’s recent interview with Carla Hayden, the current Librarian of Congress, especially interesting. In… Continue reading What Does the Librarian of Congress Read Anyway?
“Earlier this year President Trump threatened to defund public libraries. First the library community responded with horror. Then people rallied by protesting, contacting legislators, and highlighting the ways that libraries serve places across the United States. It looks like all of that hard work has paid off. Despite the threat, libraries may receive funding after all. While determining the U.S.… Continue reading Libraries May Not Be Defunded After All, But They Are Still in Danger
You may have noticed that Jane Austen’s name has cropped up frequently this past week, and that is for a very good reason; July 18, 2017 is the 200th anniversary of her death. To commemorate the rather morbid occasion, the internet has come out in full force with articles all about Austen. My cyber home… Continue reading Adaptations, Retellings, and Book Paraphernalia for Jane Austen’s 200th Anniversary
For many of us, the scent of a book represents windows into innumerable worlds. Chemists have tried to translate this experience and have described books as smelling grassy and acidic with hints of vanilla and mustiness. However, that combination of scents does not simply arise through happenstance. Traditionally printed books produce those smells as a result of… Continue reading Stoking a Hunger: The Scent of a Book
I found a unicorn once. It was in a library of all places. Strange. I’ve always imagined that unicorns live in archaic forests covered in mist and moss. But, no. This unicorn spent its days in a small town in Ohio. I didn’t even recognize it as a unicorn at first. It was simply another… Continue reading Finding the Elusive Book
Book covers are bizarre little monsters. Maybe they have to be because they straddle so many different roles. A cover has to reflect a book’s unique facets, but it also has to fit into the standards for a genre. It has to have aesthetically interesting qualities, but it also has to make readers want to… Continue reading When Book Covers Fail Characters