The Bibliophile's Adventurers Club

Exemplars of bookish delight

Friday Field Notes 101813


{Short list for the National Book Awards have been accounced}

We have an obligation to imagine . . . let’s just take a moment for that to soak in. Those words were uttered by Neil Gaiman, speaking on behalf of The Reading Agency. He also quoted Albert Einstein: If you want your children to be intelligent read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve lobbed that quote at some poor, misinformed oaf who made the mistake of uttering, in my presence, the belief that fiction is only for lazy sots.

Needless to say, whatever you do, don’t miss Neil Gaiman’s lecture on the importance of books and imagination. Fine. We’re biased. But we think it’s lovely and so very true.

Some good news for books.

Harper’s (November 2013) is publishing a story by Joyce Carol Oates, Lovely, Dark, Deep.

NPR remembers Pulitzer Prize winner Oscar Hijuelos.

Congratulations to Eleanor Catton–at twenty-eight, she’s the youngest person to be awarded the Man Booker Prize in its 45-year history. At 832 pages, her novel (The Luminaries) is also the longest winning novel.

And the short list for the National Book Awards  . . .

Speaking of which, check out The National Book Foundation’s free, downloadable ebook: The Contenders: Excerpts from the 2013 National Book Award Finalists.


  1. I’ve got The Luminaries on my list for sure!

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