Michael Levitin of the Jewish Daily Forward reports that Jonathan Safran Foer is creating an English-language haggadah, the user’s guide to the Passover seder. “Why is Foer—a fiction writer who is not observant, who does not go to synagogue and who describes himself ‘as skeptical as most New York Jews of organized religion’—the man for the job?” Levitin asks rhetorically. Because, Foer (left) says, his haggadah is actually going to inspire you to get up from the seder table and change the world. Plus it’s “experimental and richly designed, and hopefully more fun to read… [a ]beautiful book with awesome artwork, not little kitschy scribbles.” No word on whether it’ll be printed to read from right to left, like the version my in-laws have been using for the last 40 years—and given how well the last effort of the younger generation to switch to a more modern version went, our odds of getting on the Foer bandwagon are rather slim…which is an issue the book is likely to face over and over, unless Foer really just wants to reach out to the youth market.
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These days, writers aren’t just writers: They’re social-media mavens, seasoned public speakers, and one-person publicity machines. And they still have to find time to write their books! Find out what life is like once you've landed that dream book contract in a free web chat with young-adult authors Elizabeth Norris (Unraveling and Unbreakable) and Brodi Ashton (Everneath and Everbound) — plus special guest Kristin Rens, editor at HarperCollins imprint Balzer + Bray. Thursday, May 23 at 7:00 p.m. ET. on Figment.com.