Archive for November, 2010

Tuesday Quote of the Night

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

“Happy is the novelist who manages to preserve an actual love letter that he received when he was young within a work of fiction, embedded in it like a clean bullet in flabby flesh and quite secure there, among spurious lives.”

-Vladimir Nabokov

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Tuesday Evening Book Reviews

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

Prepare to break you brain on ONCE BEFORE TIME: A WHOLE STORY OF THE UNIVERSE, by Martin Bojowald.  If you persevere, though, you’ll be much smarter by the end.

The Scotsman weighs in on Graham Joyce’s twisty novel, THE SILENT LAND.

Somewhere (probably close to where I’m sitting) somebody (or lots of somebodies) needs this – N.C. STATE BASKETBALL: 100 YEARS OF INNOVATION, by Tim Peeler and Roger Winstead.

And a Basil & Spice reviewer was drawn in by Carmine Gallo’s THE INNOVATION SECRETS OF STEVE JOBS: INSANELY DIFFERENT PRINCIPLES FOR BREAKTHROUGH SUCCESS.

Afternoon Viewing: Hilary Wagner

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

Deep beneath a modern metropolis lies the Catacombs, a kingdom of remarkable rats of superior intellect. Following the Bloody Coup, the once peaceful democracy has become a dictatorship, ruled by decadent High Minister Killdeer and his vicious henchman Billycan, a former lab rat with a fondness for butchery…

5 Minutes Alone… With Hilary Wagner

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

Debut author, Hilary Wagner, arrives on the scene with a wonderful new fantasy for mid-grade readers. NIGHTSHADE CITY has been praised by critics and peers alike, and opened to accolades from Kirkus Reviews and author Rick Riordan of ‘Percy Jackson’ and ‘The Red Pyramid’ fame.  The launch has pulled Hilary this way and that, so we’re fortunate to snag her sleeve for a look behind the curtain at how it all came to be.

We’d like to thank her for taking the time to be part of our “5 Minutes Alone” interview series.

AuthorScoop: What was your very first publication credit?

Hilary: NIGHTSHADE CITY, Holiday House Books, October 2010

AuthorScoop: Tell us about your latest release.

Hilary: Well, my latest release is my first release, NIGHTSHADE CITY. It’s about an underground colony of super-intelligent rats, you could call it a classic good versus evil tale, but mostly the book is about never letting a few decide the fate of many. Sometimes, in life, you have to stand up for what’s right and this book is about one of those times.

AuthorScoop: Aside from your own hard work, who (or what) else do you feel has contributed to your success?

Hilary: My husband for sure. He read several early drafts of the manuscript and was wonderful to bounce ideas off of. When he read the first draft, he said his biggest fear was needing to tell me he didn’t’ like the story or he didn’t like my writing, luckily that didn’t happen!

AuthorScoop: At what time of day or night do you do your best writing?

Hilary: I have my best breakthroughs very early in the morning. I think that’s when my brain is at its peak, although the pot of coffee I’m inhaling at that time doesn’t hurt either. I also write well late at night. At that time, I don’t have to think about anything but my manuscript and things just seem to flow. Believe it or not, I sometimes think being overtired is helpful too. When I’m lacking in the sleep department, my brain comes up with the best, if not the craziest ideas!

AuthorScoop: Finally, what advice would you give to new or unpublished writers?

Hilary: Gosh, that’s always a tough one. I would have to say, don’t ever put yourself in the mindset that you’re not good enough. Finding an agent and/or getting published is incredibly hard. Don’t let even a hundred rejections take away your end goal. Many of today’s bestselling authors received scores of rejections from both agents and editors. Now, they sit back and laugh about it! You have to remind yourself, it only takes one YES!

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NIGHTSHADE CITY is available now in bookstores and for delivery from Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com – and just in time for the holiday gift season.  I’ve got mine!

Tuesday Morning LitLinks

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

Gabrielle Calvocoressi chats it up with poet Michael Klein. (The Rumpus)

Here’s a happy way to start your day: Jess Walter surveys five novels about losing your job. (The Daily Beast)

Irish author Rowan Somerville takes the Bad Sex in Fiction Award for 2010. (Telegraph)

Robert McCrum responds to author Amanda Craig’s contention that the “s-Barnes-McEwan-Rushdie boys’ club” has stifled the success of a generation of writers. (Guardian Books Blog)

South African author Annelie Botes doesn’t like black people. (Monsters and Critics)

M.A. Orthofer wonders why no book was deemed worthy enough for this year’s Jalal Al-e Ahmad Literary Awards. (The Literary Saloon)

April Rose Schneider reminds us of the genius of Richard Farina. (LitKicks)

Penguin launches ‘Red Classics’ line for charity. (Publishers Weekly)

Jason Boog reports on how NaNoWriMo authors can share their final sentence with others. (GalleyCat)

Nick Fagge reports on the war over fake Amazon reviews. (Mail Online)

R.I.P. Bella Akhmadulina, Russian poet. (NYTimes)

R.I.P. John William Steakley, Jr., author. (Dallas Morning News)

On this day in 1667 Jonathan Swift was born in Dublin, the exact location seemingly pregnant with significance: a few blocks from St. Patrick’s Cathedral, where Swift would be Dean; almost in the backyard of Dublin Castle, representing the Englishness he would both covet and skewer; the specific address, 7 Hoey’s Court, almost perfect for perhaps the most famous scoffer in literature. (Today in Literature)

Monday Quote of the Night

Monday, November 29th, 2010

“After the writer’s death, reading his journal is like receiving a long letter.”

-Jean Cocteau

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Monday Evening Book Reviews

Monday, November 29th, 2010

Anne Rice is back with her second in the ‘Songs of the Seraphm’ series, OF LOVE AND EVIL, and she’s in fine form according to ABC News.

If you’re looking for a tale of excess and usury, Jordan Belfort recounts the life of, THE WOLF OF WALL STREET: HOW MONEY DESTROYED A WALL STREET SUPERMAN.

The New York Times weighs in on SHOCK OF GRAY: THE AGING OF THE WORLD’S POPULATION AND HOW IT PITS YOUNG AGAINST OLD, CHILD AGAINST PARENT, WORKER AGAINST BOSS, COMPANY AGAINST RIVAL, AND NATION AGAINST NATION, by Ted C. Fishman.

And Dr. Scarpetta, we meet again.  Patricia Cornwell resurfaces with the eighteenth book in her pet medical examiner’s series: PORT MORTUARY, and this Examiner reviewer thinks it’s terrific.

Afternoon Viewing: Judah Friedlander

Monday, November 29th, 2010

From the YouTube description:

World Champion Of The World Judah Friedlander (30 Rock) sat down with Reelblack TV for this video portrait following a recent book signing at the University of Pennsylvania. In this exclusive clip, he talks about creating his new book HOW TO BEAT UP ANYBODY, his love of independent film, stand-up comedy, Mad Magazine and National Lampoon. Judah’s book is available everywhere through It Books/ HarperCollins. www.howtobeatupanybody.com www.judahfriedlander.com

Monday Morning LitLinks

Monday, November 29th, 2010

Germaine Greer, on behalf of herself and other notable writers, bids farewell to “poetry’s pal,” Simon Powell. (The Guardian)

Ian Burrell looks at the resurgence of the short story in the digital world. (The Independent)

Sally Lodge surveys the landscape for Young Adult fiction. (Publishers Weekly)

Comedians Tom Basden and Tim Key looks for the funny in Kafka. (The Guardian)

Paul Collins digs for the roots of the ongoing MFA debate. (The Rumpus)

Eoin Burke-Kennedy recaps the  winners of Ireland’s most prestigious book awards. (The Irish Times)

Colin McCann examines the place of the national writer in the era of globalization. (The Daily Beast)

Pulitzer-Prize winning biographer Edmund Morris gets all edgy on “Face the Nation.” (Fox Nation)

R.I.P. Barry Zwick, editor and journalist. (LATimes)

“On this day in 1811, a notice appeared in the Richmond, Virginia Inquirer asking for donations in aid of Eliza Poe, a young actress now “lingering on the bed of disease and surrounded by her children.” Though two-year-old Edgar would be rescued by the Allan family, the life of poverty, abandonment and hand-outs so familiar to his mother would eventually return to stay.” (Today in Literature)

Sunday Quote of the Night

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

“The final purpose of art is to intensify, even, if necessary, to exacerbate, the moral consciousness of people.”

-Norman Mailer

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Sunday Evening Book Reviews

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

The Horn Book Magazine talks to one Kirkus reviewer about the special challenges (if, indeed, there are any) of reviewing religious books.

In Pittsburgh, the Post-Gazette is impressed with Stephen Breyer’s, MAKING OUR DEMOCRACY WORK: A JUDGE’S VIEW.

Fangoria Magazine loves that author, David Grove, loves JAMIE LEE CURTIS: SCREAM QUEEN.

And in Dallas, LIGHTHEAD, by Terrance Hayes, is found to be a volume of poetry worth a look and then again.

Afternoon Viewing: William Gibson

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

WatchMojo talks to William Gibson about the evolution of his literary career:

Sunday Morning LitLinks

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

Carolyn Kellogg previews Tom Waits’ upcoming poetry collection, Hard Ground. (Jacket Copy)

Robert McCrum presents an entertaining interview with Margaret Atwood. (The Guardian)

M.A. Orthofer glosses a couple of translation pieces from The Observer. (The Literary Saloon)

Shaun Walker goes between the covers of Nabakov’s love letters. (The Independent)

Barry Humpries kicks off part 1 of his ‘books of the year’ list. (Telegraph)

Meredith Goad chats it up with best-selling author Steve Berry. (The Portland Press Herald)

R.I.P. Alfred Balk, author and journalist. (Chicago Tribune)

“On this day in 1582 William Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway married, or perhaps just paid for a bond giving them the right to do so. The facts are scanty, but we know that the groom was eighteen years old, the bride was twenty-six, and their first child, Susanna, was baptized six months later. There seems no way of knowing, but more than one biographer thinks that all this adds up to Shakespeare in Trouble rather than Shakespeare in Love.” (Today in Literature)

Saturday Quote of the Night

Saturday, November 27th, 2010

“Loneliness is the human condition. Cultivate it. The way it tunnels into you allows your soul room to grow. Never expect to outgrow loneliness. Never hope to find people who will understand you, someone to fill that space.”

-Janet Fitch

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Saturday Evening Book Reviews

Saturday, November 27th, 2010

Kirkus bumps up its starred review of THEY CALLED THEMSELVES THE KKK: THE BIRTH OF AN AMERICAN TERRORIST GROUP, by Susan Campbell Bartoletti.

DANIEL, by Henning Mankel, gets a write up in Los Angeles.

Monsters & Critics kinda likes IN THE DARK OF DREAMS, by Marjorie M. Liu.

And The New York Times can’t quite agree with author, David L. Ulin, in his latest, THE LOST ART OF READING: WHY BOOKS MATTER IN A DISTRACTED TIME.

Afternoon Viewing: Verdecchia Reads Imlah

Saturday, November 27th, 2010

From the griffinpoetryprize YouTube description:

Actor/playwright Guillermo Verdecchia reads the poem “Drink v. Drugs” from The Lost Leader, by Mick Imlah, shortlisted for the 2009 Griffin Poetry Prize.

Saturday Morning LitLinks

Saturday, November 27th, 2010

Alan Hollinghurst explores the short life and impressive work of poet Mick Imlah. (The Guardian)

Remembering the poet that Belfast forgot. (Belfast Telegraph)

Spanish novelist Ana Maria Matute becomes only the third woman to win Cervantes Prize. (AFP)

Douglas Copeland offers a peek into his ‘secret life.’ (The Independent)

The judges for the 2011 Man Booker Prize have been announced. (Official)

Elspeth Reeve rounds up the various “hate-reads” of Sarah Palin’s new book. (The Atlantic Wire)

Boyd Tonkin rolls out another list of the best books for Christmas. (The Independent)

Twain’s autobiography continues to impress 21st century readers. (The Reno Gazette-Journal)

“On this day in 1909 James Agee was born in Knoxville, Tennessee. In his forty-five years he was film critic, social documentarist, poet and screenwriter (The African Queen), but he is best known for his autobiographical novel, A Death in the Family — and for the passionate, full-out living that killed him.” (Today in Literature)

A Wish and A Respite

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

AuthorScoop is on hiatus until the weekend so that we may count our blessings and likely eat too much.  We’ll be back on Saturday with more news, reviews, quotes, and videos, and possibly larger pants.

As we sign off for the holiday, the obvious thing is to remind you that we’re very thankful of you, our readers.

Happy Thanksgiving from AuthorScoop and we hope you have a wonderful holiday.

Wednesday Quote of the Night

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

“I wonder if we are all wrong about each other, if we are just composing unwritten novels about the people we meet?”

-Rebecca West

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Wednesday Evening Book Reviews

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

The Chicago Tribune reviews EVERY RISEN THING: POEMS, by Christian Wiman.

Author Richard Conniff illuminates THE SPECIES SEEKERS: HEROES, FOOLS AND THE MAD PURSUIT OF LIFE ON EARTH.

THE CHOCOLATE WARS, by Deborah Cadbury, is about exactly what it sounds like it’s about, and sweets are a mean business.

And photographer Albert Watson, unveils STRIP SEARCH, his two-volume vision of Las Vegas.