March 3, 2018
Gimme an S! Gimme an A! Gimme a T! Gimme an Urday!
by Melville House
Well well well! Here we are, together again. It’s a classic sunless Saturday here in New York, but we’re receiving ample warmth and nutrients from our glorious memories of the past week. It’s been a good one:
- Ryan Harrington checked in with former Border Patrol agent Francisco Cantú, whose events to promote his new book, The Line Becomes a River, have been met with passionate protests.
- Alex Primiani rang a mighty bell for Michelle Obama, a classy genius we’re lucky to have in public life, and sophomore-author-to-be: her second book, Becoming, is due out this fall. (Also, she’s an excellent sport.)
- Susan Rella offered some grammar advice to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. She also had grammar advice for other folks offering him grammar advice, because her grammar is better.
- Simon Reichley directed our attention to an open letter from thirty-eight Nobel Prize-winners to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, urging him to end his severe curtailment of free speech.
- Taylor Sperry took a glimpse at the will of To Kill a Mockingbird author Harper Lee.
Michael Barron gazed in awe upon the wonders of Wole Soyinka’s recent reception in Haiti.
- Peter Clark suggested some new, Amazon-based ways to launder your money. Hey, what’s the worst that could happen?
- Stephanie DeLuca loves Dolly Parton.
- Ian Dreiblatt observed that Amazon not only paid no federal taxes last year, they actually won money. Government money. Your money. Cool.
- Nikki Griffiths checked in with bestselling author Terry Goodkind, who’s been making headlines with a new marketing strategy: insulting the shit out of the people who work hard to make his books a reality.
We were also delighted to publish:
- Images of a sequence of artworks that Ross Simonini made by strategically altering galleys of his debut novel, The Book of Formation, which positively oozes personality.
- The latest installment in our continuing series, The Week in Impeachment, in which Barbara Radnofsky, author of A Citizen’s Guide to Impeachment, offers a straightforward list of actions taken by the president over the past seven days for which he can be impeached. This week’s was a special installment, with Barbara writing in from England — the land that inspired US impeachment law.
Being only human, we didn’t quite get to a couple of good stories this week:
- The aforementioned Terry Goodkind has finally fleshed out the complaints he felt compelled to lodge publicly about his book’s cover. “I write stories centered around strong female characters. I objected to the sexist cover my publisher commissioned for this book,” Goodkind told io9’s Beth Elderkin. “Is it too much to ask that my female characters not be portrayed as hiking for miles in thigh-high, heeled boots?” This sure sounds like bullshit, and cover artist Bastien Lecouffe-Deharme says he was specifically told to avoid sexist fantasy tropes in preparing the illustration.
- Beloved Boston indie Trident Booksellers has suffered a fire, and is temporarily closed — a massive setback for a small business in a competitive industry. How can you help? Buy a couple books from them, won’t ya? No room for more books at home? Buy someone a gift card.
- Unfortunate news from Japan, where a recent study has found that most college students do not read books for pleasure. At all.
- This year’s PEN World Voices Festival will feature one very extra super-special guests: Hillary Rodham Clinton.
- Ta-Nehisi Coates has announced that he’ll try his hand at writing some Captain America comics. “I’m not convinced I can tell a great Captain America story,” Coates writes, “which is precisely why I want so bad to try.”
Finally, it’s Saturday, and you deserve a cartoon. And you couldn’t do much better than Sally Cruikshank’s utter classic, 1975’s Quasi at the Quackadero. Grab something for ballast:
And there it is! Rest up, rock hard, and we’ll see you right back here Monday morning.