Book Bits: Günter Grass, ‘All Who Go Do Not Return,’ Literary Hub
Far be it from me to criticize another author, but Jo Rowling, my unsolicited advice is to call the Harry Potter series complete as it is just as Bill Watterson said his Calvin and Hobbes comic strip was ending in 1995 because it was complete. There was nothing left to say. It’s too late to go back and capture the magic now. (Item 3)
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- News: Günter Grass, German Novelist and Social Critic, Dies at 87, by Stephen Kinzer – “Günter Grass, the German novelist, social critic and Nobel Prize winner whom many called his country’s moral conscience but who stunned Europe when he revealed in 2006 that he had been a member of the Waffen-SS during World War II, died on Monday. He was 87.” The New York Times
- Review: ‘All Who Go Do Not Return,’ by Shulem Deen, reviewed by Pamela Miller – “In this painful and elegiac memoir, Shulem Deen, a former Skverer Hasidic Jew from New York City, eloquently describes his agonizing fall from faith and ascendant longing to live in a less insular world than the subculture he grew up in and in which he became a husband and father of five. ” Minneapolis Star-Tribune
- News: Harry Potter and the Eighth Novel? by David Harding – “J. K. Rowling has told BBC she has not ruled out writing another book in the phenomenally successful series about the boy wizard.” New York Daily News
- News: London Book Fair 2015: In Pre-Fair Deals, Debut Sells to Knopf for Rumored 7 Figures, by Rachel Deahl – “Earlier this week there was concern among industry insiders about the dearth of major projects circulating in the run-up to the London Book Fair. The question people were asking: ‘Where are all the big books?’ Now, with the fair just days away—it begins on Tuesday—the chatter has turned to silence as a number of major sales have closed in the U.S., among them the acquisition of a debut novel, by a 25-year-old, for a rumored seven figures.” Publishers Weekly
- Review: Into the Empty Regions: Clive James’ valedictory book of poetry criticism wrestles with how art is long, but life is short, by Katy Waldman – “With ‘Notebook,’ James, the Australian literary critic and poet (and TV reviewer and broadcaster and, to hear the Daily Mail sing it, unfaithful wag), has assembled a series of short essays, many originally penned for Poetry magazine. They’re brief and fluent—you rocket through, or stroll pensively—but they represent the distillation of years of thought and study, with all the shine of stones smoothed by the rush of river water over time.” Slate
- News: Literary Hub Makes its Debut, by Sydney Jarrard – “Literary Hub made its official debut on April 8. Positioned as a daily source for literary content, the website’s initial showcase includes a lead profile on author Lydia Davis, a feature titled “How to Draw a Novel” by Martín Solares, a list of suggestions for surviving the Association of Writers & Writing Programs conference, and excerpts from titles by James Wood, James Hannaham, and Saul Bellow.” ABA
- Viewpoint: What Should a Book Cover Do? by Dale Megan Healey – “The cover of a book is at work long after it catches a reader’s eye from a shelf. It’s at work when she puts it down on her bedside table, or stands holding it on a crowded subway car. It extends the story after she turns the last page: I can’t count how many times I’ve come to the end of a book I wished ” Literary Hub
- Interview: Amy Butcher (“Visiting Hours”), with Alex Layman – “In April 2009, one month before graduating from Gettysburg College, Amy Butcher walked back to her apartment with her close friend Kevin. They spoke about the future, post-graduation anxieties, and Kevin’s plan for a cross-country road trip, a freer way of living. Then he left. Two hours later, he stabbed his girlfriend, Emily Silverstein, 27 times. ‘Visiting Hours: A Memoir of Friendship and Murder’ chronicles the build-up and aftermath of that event: how a mind can be haunted, then break. ” Kirkus
- News: Penguin Random House to Feature Books on Amtrak Trains, by Dianna Dilworth – “Penguin Random House is introducing a new feature for Amtrak riders: free eBook excerpts from select titles on the Acela Express. The publisher is the exclusive book content partner for the launch of AmtrakConnect’s newly designed on-board Wi-Fi page.” Galley Cat
- Quotation: Art is so wonderfully irrational, exuberantly pointless, but necessary all the same. Pointless and yet necessary, that’s hard for a puritan to understand. – Günter Grass, in Günter Grass in quotes: 12 of the best The Guardian
Just two more days to enter the GoodReads giveaway for Conjure Woman’s Cat. Three copies of the paperback edition will be handed out, hex-free, toe the lucky winners.