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Posts Tagged ‘Mark Twain’

Free eBooks Every Day

Feeling strapped for cash after buying a $130 eReader? No problem–try eBookNewser’s Free eBook of the Day column. Today’s free eBook is Hello Kitty Must Die by Angela S. Choi.

The free selection includes everything from new eBooks that are only available for free for a limited promotional time period; public domain classics by authors like Jane Austen and Mark Twain; self-published works from authors looking to find readers from sites like Smashwords and Lulu.com to Kindle eBooks.

We try to vary the devices, so there is a little something for everybody. For more free eBook exploration, check out our list of 10 Websites To Download Free eBooks.

Writers and Kitties on Tumblr

Some GalleyCat posts just write themselves. For instance, you should check out the Writers and Kitties Tumblr blog.

The concept is pretty simple–the blog posts pictures of writers with kitties. Above, we’ve embedded a cute photo of Mark Twain and kitten from the site.

Here’s more from the site: “Where literature has whiskers and pointy ears.
Send your writers & kitties to info@bustrofedon.net” Don’t forget to check out our annual Pet Parade for more furry friends. (Via ireadiwrite)

The Importance of Marginalia

Did you know that President Thomas Jefferson, novelist Mark Twain, and evolutionary biologist Charles Darwin all wrote in the margins? According to the New York Times, marginalia was denounced in the 20th century as a form of graffiti. These days, scholars love marked up books.

The article offers these observations from University of Toronto professor Heather Jackson: “Books with markings are increasingly seen these days as more valuable, not just for a celebrity connection but also for what they reveal about the community of people associated with a work…examining marginalia reveals a pattern of emotional reactions among everyday readers that might otherwise be missed, even by literary professionals.”

The Caxton Club and the Newberry Library will host a symposium in March to debate this subject; Jackson will be speaking there as well. The event will spotlight on a new essay collection entitled Other People’s Books: Association Copies and the Stories They Tell. This title contains 52 essays and 112 illustrations.

Authors Who Doodled

Flavorpill has collected the doodles of famous authors, including Sylvia Plath, David Foster Wallace, Vladimir Nabokov, Franz Kafka, Samuel Beckett, Allen Ginsberg, Mark Twain, Henry Miller, Kurt Vonnegut, and Jorge Luis Borges.

The drawings ranged from insect portraits to nightmare images. Wallace drew one of the funnier pieces, doodling glasses and fangs on a photo of Cormac McCarthy.

Vonnegut (pictured with his artwork, via) incorporated many of his drawings into his books. He even had his own art gallery exhibitions. What author should illustrate their next book?

George W. Bush Memoir Tops College Bestseller List

According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, eight out of the top ten titles on college campuses are nonfiction books. Decision Points by George W. Bush topped the list.

Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk by David Sedaris and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson were the only fiction books on the list. Life by Keith Richards and The Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume 1 by Mark Twain joined Bush’s memoir on the list. Humor titles by Jon Stewart and Tucker Max also made the cut.

What titles did you read while you were in college? The magazine surveyed university bookstores across the country for the list. Follow this link for the complete list of participating bookstores.

Alan Gribben Defends His Edited Mark Twain Volume

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Professor Alan Gribben defended his politically-corrected volume of Mark Twain‘s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer in different news outlets. He explained that his version of Twain’s works with two racial slurs removed will provide “a more palatable reading experience,” reaching classrooms and personal libraries where the work had been banned.

Here’s more from an article in The Birmingham News: “The Mark Twain guild has brought pretty universal condemnation, but I hope they might soften their views once the book comes out and they read my introduction and my reasons … I’m not going to apologize for this. I want readers to have this as an option.”

The New York Times rounded up commentary from nine different writers about the controversy. In addition, Stephen Colbert shared his thoughts on the new edition–the video is embedded above.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn & Tom Sawyer Republished With Two Racial Slurs Removed

In February, NewSouth Books and Mark Twain scholar Alan Gribben will publish Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in a single volume, removing the  “n” word and the word “injun” from the text. The word “slave” will replace the “n” word.

Gribben told Publisher’s Weekly: “This is not an effort to render Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn colorblind … Race matters in these books. It’s a matter of how you express that in the 21st century.’” Gribben explained that this politically-correct volume can reach classrooms that previously objected to the racial slurs.

What do you think? The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal have already published essays objecting to the sanitized version.  (Via CNN)

Thomas Jefferson & Mark Twain Top Library of America’s Bestseller List

The Library of America gave readers a peek at sales figures this morning, revealing the publisher’s bestselling titles–a list lead by classic Thomas Jefferson and Mark Twain volumes.

More recent volumes like Philip K. Dick‘s Four Novels of the 1960s or  H. P. Lovecraft‘s Tales still haven’t cracked the top twenty list. We’ve linked to the top five bestsellers below, follow this link to see the complete list. (Image via LOA; link via Michael Orthofer)

  1. Thomas Jefferson: Writings [1984]                                   217,518
  2. Mark Twain: Mississippi Writings [1982]                         150,973
  3. Abraham Lincoln: Speeches 1859–1865 [1989]                120,589
  4. Abraham Lincoln: Speeches 1832–1858 [1989]                118,284
  5. Walt Whitman: Poetry & Prose [1982]                             114,790

Molly Ivins Can’t Say that, Can She?

Reviewed by Louise Leetch
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Molly Ivins was larger than life and people of that ilk do everything big. If you’re from Texas, you do things double big. In the Molly Ivins: A Rebel Life biography by Bill Minutaglia and W. Michael Smith (out in paperback today), we meet the legendary writer.

Molly grew up in privileged Houston, spoke fluent French, and attended all the right Eastern schools–but you’d never know it to listen to her. She was the prototypical 1960’s radicalized rich kid. She started out working for the Texas Observer and moved on to the holy of holies, The New York Times.

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Raghuram G. Rajan Wins Business Book of the Year Award

Raghuram G. Rajan won the Financial Times/Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award for his book, Fault Lines. A £30,000 prize (approximately $47,300) accompanied the award.

The ceremony and dinner took place at New York’s famous Pierre hotel. During his acceptance speech he praised his publisher, Princeton University Press. Rajan said his wife had advised him on making the book easy-to-read. He thanked his two children, joking that had it not been for them, the book would have been written much faster.

The president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, Vartan Gregorian delivered the evening’s keynote address. He mentioned the Harry Potter series, the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Mark Twain, and T.S. Eliot.

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