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Book Blog - Likely Stories, by Keir Graff - Booklist Online

Likely Stories

A Booklist Blog
Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

Archive for November, 2007

Fri, November 30th, 2007
You can’t read without writers!
Posted by: Keir Graff

In the Guardian‘s books blog (or, as they’d have it, “theblogbooks“), National Book Critics Circle president John Freeman muses on “an increasing desire of our entertainment industry to deny its writerly roots” (“Everybody needs writers“). Talk about timely–he works in the Writers Guild of America strike and the film version of Cormac McCarthy’s No Country for Old […]


Tue, November 27th, 2007
Norman Mailer Wins the Bad Sex
Posted by: Keir Graff

Norman Mailer may be gone, but he’s still winning literary awards. Actually, the timing’s pretty unfortunate on this one: he’s won The Literary Review‘s Bad Sex in Fiction Award, for a particularly, um, juicy passage from The Castle in the Forest. From the Associated Press, via the International Herald Tribune (“Late American novelist Norman Mailer wins Bad […]


Mon, November 26th, 2007
That’s Funny, There Was a Mountain in My Backyard, Too
Posted by: Keir Graff

The Chicago Sun-Times profiles a small-town boy with big-city ideas (“Small-town boy, big-city ideas,” by Mark Eleveld): Uptown takes a lot of its character from its bars, buildings and the different crowds — the occasional transient looks like he popped out of a dime store novel, and the bouncers are straight out of Raymond Chandler […]


Mon, November 26th, 2007
Another Rowling Revelation!
Posted by: Keir Graff

In an extremely brief item in the Scotsman (“JK split fuelled Potter’s anger“), well, it’s too brief to summarize without a quote becoming redundant: HARRY Potter author JK Rowling has revealed the boy wizard’s anger stems from the break-up of her first marriage. She said her split from Jorge Arantes in 1993 was a dark period, […]


Mon, November 26th, 2007
Of Course, Winnie’s Last Name Is No Great Shakes, Either
Posted by: Keir Graff

The Atlanta Journal Constitution, much-lambasted for having eliminated its book editor (the position, not the person), offers the World’s Worst Book Title: Cooking with Pooh. Yep. If it’s any consolation to the runners-up, in my opinion, they were all bad enough to win, too. Well, folks, we had a squeaker in the vote for World’s […]


Wed, November 21st, 2007
Inspiration for Aspiring Novelists
Posted by: Keir Graff

From the Independent, a story of perseverance rewarded–and possibly awarded (“Novel shortlisted for top award was rejected by 15 publishers,” by Arifa Akbar). Sounds like an interesting book, too. The frustrated efforts of Catherine O’Flynn, a former postwoman who tried and failed 15 times to get her work published, were finally rewarded yesterday when her first book […]


Wed, November 21st, 2007
The Reviews You Never Get to Read
Posted by: Keir Graff

Almost out the door. But I did read a few good things today. Here’s one of them, a peek inside the little-known craft of writing reader’s reports. Think book reviews, but for a really small audience (and with a sometimes larger impact). From the Guardian (“Literature’s invisible arbiters,” by Esther Allen): Worse, the power of […]


Tue, November 20th, 2007
Bet We’ll Be Hearing More about This
Posted by: Keir Graff

A compelling excerpt from an unpublished book, What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and What’s Wrong with Washington, by Scott McClellan (PublicAffairs): The most powerful leader in the world had called upon me to speak on his behalf and help restore credibility he lost amid the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in […]


Tue, November 20th, 2007
Got Time for Another “Community”?
Posted by: Keir Graff

Halfway through an article about the tech-savvy new CEO of HarperCollins UK, (“Victoria Barnsley: Bringing books to your mobile phone,” by Ciar Byrne, The Independent) comes the news that they’re taking the slush pile public: With this in mind, HarperCollins is about to launch a new website, Authonomy.co.uk, which will allow unpublished authors to upload their […]


Mon, November 19th, 2007
Doesn’t Watching TV Count as Reading?
Posted by: Keir Graff

If politicians save bad news for Fridays (so we’ll ignore it), then I guess reading advocates wait for Mondays (so we can think about it all week). From the Washington Post (“A Troubling Case of Readers’ Block,” by Bob Thompson): Americans are reading less and their reading proficiency is declining at troubling rates, according to a report […]





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