Archive: March 15, 2009 - March 21, 2009

The Dartmouth Letter Sweater Case

Sixty years ago this week, the criminal behavior of some college fraternity boys -- and why they did it, and how they got away with it -- transfixed the nation. Whatever you may think of the 2006 Duke lacrosse rape case, it pales in comparison with the Dartmouth football letter...

By Alan Cooperman | March 20, 2009; 12:33 PM ET | Comments (1)

Book TV

It has been noted before that The Daily Show and The Colbert Report are among the top venues for authors touting books. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that Neil Gaiman appeared on Colbert the other day to talk about his Newbery Award-winning "Graveyard Book." What was surprising was...

By Rachel Hartigan Shea | March 19, 2009; 3:58 PM ET | Comments (3)

Five Books (Make That 24 plus 14 Authors) Who May (or May Not) Win Awards

Lots of short lists, long lists and in-between literary award lists announced over the last few days. Let's build up our stamina with the 20-book long list for the Orange Prize for Fiction, slow our pace a little with the 14-author long list for the Man Booker International Prize, and...

By Rachel Hartigan Shea | March 19, 2009; 11:25 AM ET | Comments (0)

Bush Memoir Due in 2010

You've seen the Oliver Stone movie, "W." But if you want a really sympathetic portrayal of the former president, you'll have to wait until 2010, when Crown (a division of Random House) will publish his memoir. The deal was announced today. The book is tentatively titled "Decision Points" and will...

By Alan Cooperman | March 18, 2009; 6:23 PM ET | Comments (9)

A Priceless Anniversary

Today marks the 19th anniversary of the largest art theft in history. What gift does one send for that occasion? An empty frame? In 1990 two men disguised as police officers broke into Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, tied up the guards and made off with 13 pieces worth half...

By Ron Charles | March 18, 2009; 5:35 AM ET | Comments (2)

Luck o' the Irish

Just in time for St. Patrick's Day, used bookseller Abe Books has released a list of the 10 most expensive books by Irish writers. Number 1 is that I-can't-live-without-it masterpiece: "The Sceptical Chymist: or Chymico-Physical Doubts" (1690) by Robert Boyle, which some collector picked up for the bagain basement sum...

By Ron Charles | March 17, 2009; 1:48 PM ET | Comments (0)

We'll Miss You, Mr. Magoo

I just heard the news that Millard Kaufman died this weekend at the age of 92. I grew up on his "Mr. Magoo," and I loved his first novel, "Bowl of Cherries," written just two years ago when he was 90. He's the poster child for the truism that you're...

By Ron Charles | March 17, 2009; 12:46 PM ET | Comments (0)

Foreign Matter

Ever get tired of reading in English? There's something limiting -- imprisoning almost -- in being stuck with your native tongue all the time. For one thing, especially with mediocre writers, you find yourself mentally finishing sentences before you reach their ends (this makes you appreciate all the more those...

By Denny Drabelle | March 17, 2009; 6:00 AM ET | Comments (2)

How to Review Books in a New Age

Ron Charles, in reporting on the NBCC awards last week, modestly forgot to mention that he received the group's citation for excellence in reviewing. In his speech exhorting fellow critics to cultivate their delight in books, Ron brought down the house -- no surprise to anyone who knows him....

By Rachel Hartigan Shea | March 16, 2009; 12:33 PM ET | Comments (1)

Orwell's Last Stand

There's a colorful story in today's Travel section about visiting Barnhill, the old farmhouse on the isle of Jura off the coast of Scotland where George Orwell lived from 1946 till the end of his life. Nowadays, you can rent the farmhouse for about $830 a week, and -- don't...

By Ron Charles | March 15, 2009; 2:38 PM ET | Comments (0)

 

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