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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 March, 2009

Tue, March 31st, 2009
A Dark and Stormy Afternoon: Round 10
Posted by: Keir Graff

(Previously on Guiding Nerds.) “This is exciting,” said someone who I will not humiliate by naming publicly. “It’s a photo finish.” As I mentioned, we’re nerds. Category: Shakespeare’s Plays Scene I Britain. The garden of Cymbeline’s palace. [Enter two Gentlemen] FIRST GENTLEMAN. You do not meet a man but frowns: our bloods / No more obey […]


Tue, March 31st, 2009
The Orwell Shortlist is Here
Posted by: Courtney Jones

The 2009 Orwell Prize nominees are: Fishing in Utopia, by Andrew Brown (Granta) Reappraisals, by Tony Judt (William Heinemann) Stalin’s Children, by Owen Matthews  (Bloomsbury) Chinese Whispers, by Hsiao-Hung Pai   (Penguin) Descent Into Chaos, by Ahmed Rashid (Allen Lane) The White War, by Mark Thompson  (Faber and Faber) Read more about the Orwell Prize and the shortlist in […]


Tue, March 31st, 2009
The R-Word
Posted by: Laura Tillotson

Today the Special Olympics launched its Spread the Word to End the Word campaign. The word in question is “retard,” and as the Web site says, supporting “the elimination of the derogatory use of the r-word from everyday speech . . . promote[s] the acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities.” Hear hear! In case […]


Fri, March 27th, 2009
Book written by Computer Wins Odd Title Competition
Posted by: Courtney Jones

The 2009-2014 World Outlook for 60-milligram containers of Fromage Frais won Philip M. Parker the dubious honor of oddest book title of the year, given by Bookseller magazine. But wait, it gets odder. Parker is the author of 200,000 books! Don’t get too excited. He didn’t actually write them. Instead, he invented and patented a […]


Fri, March 27th, 2009
A Dark and Stormy Afternoon: Round 9
Posted by: Keir Graff

(Previously on Nerd Hospital.) Category: Novels, 1900-1950 It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks– “1984, by George Orwell!” I shouted, modestly. –were striking thirteen. Winston Smith, his chin nuzzled into his breast in an effort to escape the vile wind, slipped quickly through the glass doors of Victory Mansions, though not […]


Fri, March 27th, 2009
Green Alert: And the winner is. . .
Posted by: Donna Seaman

Early this week, we posted the short list for the Orion Book Award. It is now my true pleasure to announce the winner: Trespass: Living at the Edge of the Promised Land by Amy Irvine. As you can see from the starred Booklist review, Irvine’s passionate book does what the best of green books must do, weave […]


Thu, March 26th, 2009
A Dark and Stormy Afternoon: Round 8
Posted by: Keir Graff

(Previously on All My Nerds.) Category: Nonfiction Under the shadow of Boston State House, turning its back on the house of John Hancock, the little passage called Hancock Avenue runs, or ran, from Beacon Street, skirting the State House grounds, to Mount Vernon Street, on the summit of Beacon Hill; and there, in the third […]


Thu, March 26th, 2009
REaD ALERT!
Posted by: Keir Graff

By the way, the April 1 issue of Booklist has gone live on Booklist Online–if you haven’t received a REaD ALERT letting you know about this, sign up now!


Thu, March 26th, 2009
Raymond Chandler Would Have Been 120 Years Old Today
Posted by: Keir Graff

Fifty years ago today, Raymond Chandler died at the age of 70. On Legacy.com, Isaac Adamson (Kinki Lullaby, 2004), an author “owing no small debt to Mr. Chandler,” has written an essay called “The Slumming Angel“–worth reading as a way to remember the crime-fiction giant. Also, take a moment to read Bill Ott’s review of […]


Wed, March 25th, 2009
A Dark and Stormy Afternoon: Round 7
Posted by: Keir Graff

(Previously on the Young and the Nerdy.) Given another choice of category, I suggested we try Movies, but my Brave New Partner shamed me by saying, “I feel like ‘movies’ is cheating.” Category: Novels, 1950-Present In later years, holding forth to an interviewer or to an audience of aging fans at a comic book convention, […]





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