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Malcolm R. Campbell's World

Book Bits: ‘The Lost King,’ Thornton Wilder, Second-hand bookshops, ‘The Raven Boys’

BookBitsWelcome to ” Book Bits” for December 10, 2012.  Everyone and their brother is publishing their best books of the year features and holiday shopping lists for book lovers. I gave in and suggested three books for the holidays on Malcolm’s Round Table. Needless to say, lists and best of articles become tedious after a while, so only a few are being included in book bits. If you want more, they’re easy to find.

  1. News: “The Black Box” debuts at top of U.S. bestseller list, by Christine Kearney – “The top ten books in hard cover fiction.” Reuters
  2. News: University Presses Feeling the Pinch, by Kevin Nance – “As financial woes have continued to plague higher education in recent years, university presses are becoming increasingly vulnerable to the budget ax.”  Poets & Writers
  3. LostKingReview: “The Lost King,” by Ursula Jones, Fantasy, Age range 11-14 – “A violent, madcap, frequently entertaining scramble,” Kirkus Reviews
  4. Feature: The 10 Best Books of 2012 – “The year’s best books, selected by the editors of The New York Times Book Review.” The New York Times
  5. Essay: A Solidity That Invites Neglect, by Leo Robson – “Wildly popular with both critics and readers during his lifetime, Thornton Wilder has been undeservedly overlooked since.”  The Wall Street Journal
  6. Feature: Why second-hand bookshops are just my type, by Theodore Dalrymple – “As bookshops are displaced by the internet, the author of a new work on serendipity describes the joys of delving in dusty shelves.”  The Telegraph
  7. Quick Tip: “Speaking gets better the more you do it, shy or not. Make speakinga strong part of your marketing plan. And consider books like TalkUp Your Book to teach yourself the basics and tricks from the outset.It’s amazing how empowered you become when you waltz in prepared.”  – C. Hope Clark
  8. bradburyInterview: Peter Bradbury (“Stonebridge Manor”) with Morgen Bailey – “After I moved to the USA in 1994 I kept being asked what life was like as a Butler and I began Stonebridge Manor. Although it’s fiction, some of the characters are based on people I’ve know, and the character Phillip is basically me.”  Morgen Bailey’s Writing Blog
  9. Contest: Rose Post Creative Nonfiction Competition, The North Carolina Writers’ Network – “The North Carolina Writers’ Network is now accepting submissions for its annual Rose Post Creative Nonfiction Competition, administered by the creative writing program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.” Southern Literary Review
  10. Lists: More Reference Books for Writers & Editors, by Beth Hill – “I keep links to a few of my favorite reference books in the left sidebar here at The Editor’s Blog (and you can read why I recommend these particular books in this article ). But I’d like to recommend a couple more, especially as we celebrate a time of gift giving. This short list includes a couple of oldies, but they’re also definitely goodies.” The Editor’s Blog
  11. lastlionReview: “The Last Lion,” by William Manchester and Paul Reid, reviwed by FRoger Bishop – “The first two volumes of William Manchester’s biography of Churchill were widely acclaimed. Manchester died in 2004, but not before tapping award-winning journalist Paul Reid to finish the third volume in the trilogy. The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965 covers Churchill’s first days as Britain’s prime minister (and his return to the office in 1950), the Second World War, the beginnings of the Cold War, the writing of his memoirs and his death.”  BookPage
  12. Viewpoint: Creator’s Right to Compensation for Misappropriated Concept – “If there is no statutory copyright protection for “thought creations” the creator’s right to compensation must come from contract. ”  Legal Corner for Authors
  13. Commentary: E-Books via Kindle FreeTime Unlimited: Game-Changer or Non-Starter? by Karen Raugust  – “Amazon’s launch of Kindle FreeTime Unlimited, announced earlier this week, could change the way e-books are distributed to consumers. But the new subscription service, which is targeted at kids between ages three and eight and offers access to books, games, movies, TV shows and educational apps, raises questions and red flags for the publishing industry.”  Publishers Weekly
  14. Feature: Young adult fiction roundup, by Laura Billings Coleman – “The latest crop of young-adult books by Minnesota writers features smart and resourceful protagonists – and adventure.”  Star-Tribune
  15. RavenBoysReview: “The Raven Boys” by Maggie Stiefvater, reviewed by Malcolm R. Campbell – ““The Raven Boys” has a compelling premise” and a very interesting set of characters in a contemporary fantasy playing off “locals” (including a family of psychics) against the ultra rich male studens at a local upscale school.” Malcolm’s Round Table
  16. How To: Tuxedo Verbs by Constance Hale – “The bright side of a rich vocabulary is variety. The dark side is redundancy.” Grammar Girl
  17. Essay: In Praise of Small Presses, by Michael Dirda – “The books they publish would enliven any library—but you likely won’t find them at your average big box”  The American Scholar

MoonLightandGhosts“Book Bits” is compiled by Malcolm R. Campbell, author of contemporary fantasy novels and the recent 99-cent paranormal Kindle short story, “Moonlight and Ghosts.”

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