Snowy Day Round-Up

January 27, 2009 | No Comments

So much overdue work is piling up on my desk there is only one thing to do. Open the blinds to see the snow and procrastinate by blogging a news round-up. The American Library Association have awarded the Newbery Medal for the best book for young readers to The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. Already a best-seller, The Graveyard Book tells of an abandoned child called Nobody, who is raised by ghosts.  On Gaiman’s blog, he writes of his somewhat befumbled and sleepy reception of the good news. While on the subject of prizes, the National Book Critic Circle Award nominees have been announced and the fiction list includes both the well-known such as 2666 by Robert Bolano and Home by Marilynne Robinson, and the up-and-coming such M. Glenn Taylor’s The Ballad of Trenchmouth Taggart and The Lazarus Project by Alexsander Hemon. My money is on the wonderful Olive Kitteredge by Elizabeth Strout, though it is dumb of me to say so considering I haven’t actually read all the nominees!

I’m happy to see Drew Gilpin Faust’s morbidly fascinating This Republic of Suffering made it onto the non-fiction short list, but shocked at the omission of James Wood’s indispensable How Fiction Works from criticism nominees. A full list can be found on the NBCC’s website, and the winners will be announced on March 12th.
And finally, on this snowy January day, if you are looking something to read, The Guardian has 1000 suggestions for you. Over seven days, the Guardian compiled a list of the novels (only novels note, no peddling tat from some of the lesser genres), the novels one MUST read before one’s dies (sounds like work to me…), split under different headings such as “Crime,” “Comedy,” “Love,” etc.  Check out the different groupings here, and, take a breath, see the definitive list here. Tussling has already begun on their blog about inclusions and omissions. Warning the Guardian’s book site is addictive, once you’re on, you may never leave….

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