Tuesday’s Links

  • Publisher NYRB Classics joins the blogosphere with their blog A Different Stripe. I like their use of color. Their responsible for one of my favorite books of the year, Love in a Fallen City by Eileen Chang.
  • Other bloggers have already commented on Genevieve Tucker’s article on litblogs in The Australian. While I’m glad they recognize the genius of Metaxucafe, I found some sloppy reporting and broad generalizations and that’s all I have to say about it.
  • Freelance journalist and critic Steve Weinberg says he will be commenting on various book review pages starting sometime this week. I’m curious what his reaction will be: as a critic will he be satisfied with what he finds or will the lack of variety in books and space devoted to books disappoint?
  • Boldtype’s December issue is available. Surprisingly, it’s the Year End issue.
  • Also, the winter edition of the Quarterly Conversation is online. I’m particularly interested in reading the article about being John Updike’s neighbor.
  • This article in The Independent on the best World Fiction of the year starts off with a rather odd introduction:

    Any honest observer of the book business in Britain will spend much of any year sunk in head-shaking gloom about its condescension to readers, its timid addiction to every passing fad, and its urge to throw good money after feather-light ephemera. Come Christmas, and the chain-store displays wear these marks of shame as badges of pride. Yet plenty of exciting and enduring books do break through the barrier of hype.

    . It’s true what they’re saying though. Publishers, at least the larger houses, tend to grab onto the latest trend as if they were at lost at sea on a dinky raft. Look at the unfortunate trend of ‘He’s Just Not That Into You’ books. I’ve seen at least 4 more either in response or mocking or just trying to catch the coattails of the bestseller. Celebrity memoirs and celebrities writing books for kids are other trends that pop into mind. You know what? I don’t really care what Toni Spelling ‘recollects’. But with the current throw-a-million-books-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks approach to publishing, I doubt things will change.