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Have You Read Every Book on Lisa Simpson’s Reading List?

275px-Lisa2Lisa Simpson is pretty well read for an 8 year-old cartoon character.

According to the Lisa Simpson Book Club on Goodreads, the animated character has read 63 books including: Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis; The Bonfire of the Vanities
by Tom Wolfe and Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon.

BuzzFeed has taken this data to create a quiz to help you see how many books on Lisa’s list you have read yourself.

eReaders Are Bad For Sleep

books and ereader_webDo you read eBooks before bed? It could be having a negative effect on your sleep, according to a new study from Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Researchers looked at the sleep quality of people who had read on a light-emitting eReaders before bed and compared the results with the quality of sleep achieved by people who read print books. The report revealed that using devices before bedtime delays the circadian clock and suppresses the sleep-promoting hormone melatonin in the body.

Check it out:

Participants reading an LE-eBook took longer to fall asleep and had reduced evening sleepiness, reduced melatonin secretion, later timing of their circadian clock, and reduced next-morning alertness than when reading a printed book. These results demonstrate that evening exposure to an LE-eBook phase-delays the circadian clock, acutely suppresses melatonin, and has important implications for understanding the impact of such technologies on sleep, performance, health, and safety.

13 Year-Old Invents Braille Printer Out of Lego

Thirteen year-old Shubham Banerjee has built a braille printer out of a robotic Lego kit to help blind readers print out texts to read.

The project has gotten a lot of attention and even earned investment from Intel. PBS News Hour tells the story in the above video.

(Via PBS).

Blaire Briody Wins 2014 Richard J. Margolis Award

Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 12.12.20 PMWriter Blaire Briody has won the 2014 Richard J. Margolis Award, an honor bestowed on a promising nonfiction writer “whose work combines warmth, humor, wisdom, and concern with social justice.”

As a freelance journalist, Briody has written for The New York Times, Popular Science and Fast Company.Her first book The New Wild West will tell the story of how a quiet town in North Dakota was transformed by an oil boom. The book is due out from Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press in 2016.

“I enjoy exploring broader social issues through the stories of individuals and immersing myself in their environment,” Briody stated. “With The New Wild West, I hope to give a voice to the people living in North Dakota’s oil boom region and provide the reader with a deep understanding of what fracking, oil and our relationship to the land means for all of us. The Richard J. Margolis Award will be paramount in helping me complete my book, and I’m incredibly humbled and grateful to receive such a prestigious honor.”

Batman Stars in a TED-Ed Lesson About Bats

The TED-Ed team has created a science lesson starring The Dark Knight. It explores the role that bats play in the world’s ecosystem and how these creatures are both “widely misunderstood and vilified.” The animated video embedded above features both Batman and cameos from several of Gotham City’s most infamous villains such as the Joker, Two-Face, and Poison Ivy. What do you think?

Hugh Howey’s Publishing Predictions For 2015

img-hughIndie author Hugh Howey is no stranger to the evolution of publishing. With his bestselling sci-fi series, he proved that self-publishing is a viable way to make a living as an author and that it can even lead to film partnerships with 20th Century Fox and print deals with Simon & Schuster.

Howey shared his book publishing predictions for 2015 with GalleyCat, revealing that he thinks that 2015 will be a quiet year compared to 2014.

“I predict eBook penetration will continue to grow,” said Howey. “Publishers seem to have embraced what digital does for their bottom line.”

The indie author thinks that the fate of Barnes & Noble will shake out this year and at the same time he expects that Apple and Google will win market share from Amazon.

“I’d like to think 2015 will be the year that major publishers budge on their digital royalty rates, but I’m not holding my breath,” he concluded.

Fan-Made ‘Marvel vs DC Epic Trailer’ Goes Viral

Have you ever wondered what would happen if the superheroes of Marvel and DC comics met one another? The person behind the Alex Luthor YouTube channel has created the “Marvel vs DC Epic Trailer.”

The fan-made video embedded above features appearances from Superman, The Hulk, Batman, The Flash, Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Wolverine, and Spider-Man. Thus far, it has drawn more than 1.3 million views. (via ComicBook.com)

Trailer Unleashed For True Story

A trailer has been unleashed for True Story. This film adaptation is based on Michael Finkel’s memoir which shares the same title. The video embedded above features James Franco as Christian Longo and Jonah Hill as Finkel. A limited release date has been scheduled for April 10, 2015. (via The Hollywood Reporter)

PEN American Center Posts Letter Advocating For Free Speech to Sony Pictures CEO

PENThe hackers behind The Interview incident have elicited both anger and fear throughout the country. The PEN American Center has sent a letter addressed to the CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment, Michael Lynton, to protest against this act of censorship. The organization has posted the full piece on its website.

Besides various PEN executives and trustees, several high profile writers have also signed this note. Some of the participants include PEN president emeritus Salman Rushdie, novelist Neil Gaiman, children’s books illustrator Jules Feiffer, poet John Ashbery, and playwright Tony Kushner. Here’s an excerpt:

“PEN is appalled at the intrusive, criminal and profoundly menacing reprisals and threats that Sony Pictures has endured as a result of producing and planning to distribute The Interview. PEN has long stood with writers and creators who have suffered assaults aimed to suppress the dissemination of their ideas. We believe firmly that violence is never justified as a reaction to speech, no matter how offensive that speech may be to some.”

J.K. Rowling Shares New Draco Malfoy Story On Pottermore

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Harry Potter enthusiasts will be counting down the 12 days of Christmas with new stories on Pottermore. Over at the Pottmore Insider blog, fans were tasked with cracking a riddle (embedded above) about a student who was on a mission in service to He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named to unlock this new piece. For the past few days, J.K. Rowling has revealed new information about Professor Snape, Diagon Alley, and vampires in the wizarding world.

SPOILER ALERT: If you don’t want to know more, you should stop reading now!

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