March 9, 2015

The Reading Book Post, March 9th

Another week has gone by so quickly, we are now heading towards the middle of March! Here are the most interesting literary news to be found the past week.

  • Author Elizabeth McCracken has won the Annual Award of Chisholm Foundation Story Prize for short fiction for her book Thunderstruck and Other Stories, a collection of nine stories. Also, the Australian Council announced that the author Thomas Keneally will be awarded for his lifetime achievement in literature. Keneally will receive his award in a ceremony in Sydney on 19 March.

  • George R.R. Martin, author of the series A Song of Fire and Ice, has donated a rare copy of the first edition of The Hobbit to the University of Texas. It's worth mentioning that in the same library there is a vast collection of fantasy and science fiction archives, which includes the manuscripts of George R.R. Martin.

  • World Book Day was this week. But a little boy in Manchester was banned from the photos of the event of his school due to his costume. He was dressed as the protagonist of The Fifty Shades of Grey, Christian Grey and he was carrying bondage cable ties and an eye mask as props. Do you believe he should be banned from the photos? 

  • David Nicholls, author of One Day and Us, has said that romantic comedies are changing, a sign of "huge cultural change". He has even nicknamed his own novel a divorce comedy, having to deal with a middle-aged man fighting to save his relationship. He also claims that the trend will be novels with older couples. I have to admit that I am really curious to find out if he's indeed right.

  • An investigative reported in Alabama was trying for some time now to reach Harper Lee in order to ask her about her forthcoming novel Go Set a Watchman, but he received a note from the novelist saying "Go Away!". I know we all wait to read the long lost sequel to To Kill a Mokingbird, but do you agree with Harper Lee's behaviour? 
  • Crime novelists in Britain aren't as free as you'd expect. Sophie Hannah, author of numerous crime novels, has said that she created a fantasy country because people in Britain were loyal to stereotypes concerning certain regions. But this has also been proven liberating for the characters and the novelist herself because she doesn't have to think about accuracy in the descriptions. Well, isn't that cool? 

  • This week Neil Gaiman gave (yet another) amazing speech at the Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture 2015. The speech was called Immortality and Douglas Adams and Neil Gaiman explained why the work of Douglas Adams is timeless and how it affected storytelling as a whole. 

  • This week was also published the new and very anticipated novel by Kazuo Ishiguro The Buried Giant. Enjoy an audio extract of the novel, which is set in the distant past of post-Arthurian Britain. 


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