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Archive | July, 2011

What is your dirtiest book?

My dirtiest book is, of course, a cookbook – 100 Best Balti Curries by Diane Lowe and Mike Davidson. I would describe it as dirty rather than filthy. The interiors of the front and rear covers are stained with some sort of brown watery liquid. The front cover has a small sticky brown mark. Stuck […]

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Ann Patchett opens bookstore

Over the weekend, author Ann Patchett has been talking about opening a new bookshop in Nashville. Nice to be mentioning a bookstore opening rather than dwelling on the hundreds that closed last week. It would be safe to say Patchett is a traditionalist.

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Video review of Red Channels

Here’s something from America’s not too distant past. Red Channels was published in 1950 by an anti-Communist group called Counterattack. The book is a blacklist of people who worked in the American media and entertainment industries. Red Channels ‘exposes’ 151 people, including Larry Adler, Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland, John Garfield, Dashiell Hammett, Lena Horne, Burl […]

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Posh & Becks boost Mockingbird sales with daughter Harper

We should applaud anything that puts books into people’s hands and encourages reading. So this morning we are giving a round of applause to Becks and Posh Spice (that’s David Beckham, the well known association football player, and his wife Victoria, formerly of the popular music group, The Spice Girls). Apparently this most showbiz of […]

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Do worms that eat books actually exist?

Last night one of my daughters asked: “Daddy, are there really worms that eat books?” I hesitated for a few seconds while I gathered my thoughts and replied: “Yes, I think so, I think you might sometimes find them in really old books.” My daughter’s interest was piqued by Inkheart by Cornelia Funke – a […]

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Most Famous Novel < Best Novel

I really liked this article by John Self over at The Guardian about authors who are famous for the wrong work, in his opinion – that is, authors whose most famous book is clearly not their best. It’s interesting, and I wonder whether it says more about the tastes of the general public, or more […]

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Summer Reading: The Hottest of the Hot

If you can’t beat the heat, join it with our list of 26 Red-Hot Reads for Summer.

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Top 10 animal adventures

The Guardian has the top 10 animal adventures and these books will have you crying buckets. 1. My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell 2. Ring of Bright Water by Gavin Maxwell 3. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell 4. National Velvet by Enid Bagnold 5. The Black Stallion by Walter Farley 6. Charlotte’s Web […]

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Author reveals how to undress a Victorian lady (slowly)

More on petticoats following the Railway Children post earlier this week. There’s a lovely story in the Daily Mail where novelist Deeanne Gist reveals that bodice-ripping isn’t so easy when it comes to derobing from traditional Victorian attire. First of all, the bolero jacket has to be removed, followed by the vest, the blouse or […]

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ABC of Typography Books

The book world revolves around typefaces. You might not even notice them but they are right under your nose. Typographers like Claude Garamond, John Baskerville, Eric Gill, Giambattista Bodoni, Adrian Frutiger and Hermann Zapf define the style of the words we read. This selection of books celebrates typophiles, those people who are fans of fonts […]

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