The Bibliophile's Adventurers Club

Exemplars of bookish delight

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Life through the lens

“For her life, any life, she had to believe, was nothing but the continuity of its love.”

Eurdora Welty, The Optimist’s Daughter

Eudora Welty was born April 13, 1909 in Jackson Mississippi. Most of us know her by her stories of the American South–stories that garnered several O. Henry Awards, a Pulitzer Prize, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (to name a few).

But she was also a photographer. As you might imagine, her photos tell stories all their own–and they are altogether lovely.

If you’ve not had a chance to see life through Welty’s eyes, you simply must do so. You’ll find them in the following books: One time, One Place or Eudora Welty: Photographs. In the meantime, here’s an introduction, courtesy of Smithsonian Magazine . . .

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I love this cover from Simon & Schuster (Children’s Publishing, Summer 2008, obviously). The colors, the banner–the sweet, handsome fellow. The sweet, handsome fellow being Kenny the rabbit, in case you’re unfamiliar–from Tony DiTerlizzi’s Kenny and the Dragon. The book cover includes the equally-handsome dragon. One look at their faces was all it took to purchase the book for my nephew. Thankfully, the story matches the illustrations in delight. Anyway, speaking of bunnies and such, we’re heading into the Easter holiday. Wherever you may roam, whatever you may do, I hope your days are bright and colorful, with more than a little time to kick back and read a good book.

In the meantime, a few bookish bits from the week . . .

The Paris Review announces The Paris Review for Young Readers. I love how they open the announcement with E.B. White’s quote: “Anyone who writes down to children is simply wasting his time.” So true.

Speaking of E.B. White, Charlotte’s Web is voted best children’s book of all time (The Telegraph).

David Newby gives us his top 10 quests in children’s books (The Guardian).

And there’s a new Choose Your Own Adventure book on the scene—although, it was originally written over a decade ago. All the same, word on the street is it’s the scariest of them all.

Sara Cooper gives us 9 tricks for looking smart in a book club (The Washington Post). Now I feel as though I should include a disclaimer for you serious bibliophiles. Mainly, while this post was written in jest, you may want to forgo the reading. At the very least, skim over #4 which could produce ticks and other nervous conditions.

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Isn’t it lovely? It simply must be preserved.

I’ll admit, in recent years I’ve been a bit leery of checking books out of the library—germs and questionable stains and all that. Of course, if I had children it would be a whole other matter entirely; we’d march right back through those doors at least once a week. Why, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you: because the doors to our public library hold some of my fondest memories; I don’t want my children missing out. Which reminds me, Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Russo is set to help the struggling library of Gloversville, New York—the library he visited as a child; the library he credits with helping decide to become a writer. “I do think I have a debt to pay, and I’m happy to engage now in paying it back,” he says. If you have time to read one article, why don’t you go ahead and read this one. It’s a good reminder of what makes our libraries great—and why we shouldn’t let them down now.

And here are a few other bookish bits from the week. . .

Poet Jane Hirshfield talks poetry—specifically, How To Read Poetry And Restore ‘Amazement’ (via The Huffington Post).

Neil Gaiman reminisces about Terry Pratchett (The Guardian).

 Erik Larson explains how he wants people to be able to sink into the past (The Guardian). So that’s why his novels tend to be so intriguing.

The cover for Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman makes its debut (this links to the U.S. version, naturally).

The Berkeley Side gives us a glimpse at the first annual Bay Area Book Festival’s public art installation, to be made up of some 50,000 books. It looks and sounds pretty awesome . . .

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Books to dry (01528757xA270B)

Teachers at Central School in Vanuatu, lay out books to dry.

After the devastation of Tropical Cyclone Pam, the people of the island nation of Vanuata  are left with the arduous task of cleaning up and rebuilding.  This includes rebuilding the library of the main school in Vanuatu’s capital, Port Vila. After the roof was torn off, many of the books were damaged beyond repair. Teachers and administrators put salvageable books out to dry–now they’re asking for our help.

In other bookish news . . .

Ayaan Hirsi talks books (The New York Times, By the Book).

A Bookkeeper’s tale (Central Florida Future, A Gannett Company).

There are rumblings of another Harper Lee book? The story sounds intriguing. But I don’t know; it seems as though maybe we should just let her alone.

I guess we should also leave George R.R. Martin alone as well. Word on the street is he’s skipping Comic-Con to finish his next book.

Traditional book stores in the Bronx have dropped like flies, but comic book stores seem to flourish (NY City Lens).

An aside: The Paris Review is looking for their next Writer-in-Residence. If you currently have a book under contract, it’s worth the look . . .

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Yesterday was World Book Day, you know. Hopefully you caught a bit of the fun on Twitter—people of all ages and backgrounds were tweeting books. For those unfamiliar with the concept, Waterstones Oxford Street kindly posted the ‘handy spotters guide.’ Needless to say, I do believe the celebration should continue the whole weekend through.

To get us on our way, here are some bookish news items from the week:

India’s new comic book heroine fights rape.

Paul Beatty, Author of ‘The Sellout,’ on Finding Humor in Issues of Race (The New York Times).

Kazuo Ishiguro on Memory, Censorship and Why Proust is Overrated (Maddie Crum, The Huffington Post).

The Game of Thrones on Business, and other lessons from literature (The Guardian Books).  Disclaimer: I’ve not read the book. But my initial reaction: business is cutthroat enough without throwing The Game of Thrones in the mix. Egads!

Guidelines for Handling William Faulkner’s Drinking During Foreign Trips From the US State Department (1955) (Open Culture). Awesome.

The Book Thieves of London. Also awesome.

Astrid Tuttle Winegar gives us a Narnia-inspired recipe: mainly, A Faun’s Favorite Sugar Topped Cake.

There have been quite a few studies as of late that prove print books are better than eBooksThe Huffington Post kindly compiled a list.

Here’s a 1906 novel that imagined present day New York (The New Yorker).

Here’s the 2015 Scottish Children’s book award winners. Winners of the 2015 Scottish Children’s book awards have been announced.

And here’s a bargain: Ten Years in the Tub by Nick Hornby is half off, this week only (McSweeney’s).



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