Book News, Jan. 21st

Greetings, bookworms and welcome to another weekend. Boston finally saw some snow this week and that’s quite enough for me, thankyouverymuch. (Is it spring yet?). In other news, my commute to work now involves the T (Boston’s answer to the subway) and I usually bring a book to read. Only I’ve discovered that I can only read when I get a seat; otherwise, I start to feel some motion sickness. And getting a seat on the T? Well, that’s like Survivor mixed with American Gladiators. Here’s this week’s book news:

  • Maybe you’ve heard of this SOPA / PIPA thing? Well, during Wikipedia’s protest earlier this week, the hashtag “Facts Without Wikipedia” popped up on Twitter. After all, without Wikipedia, how on earth are we supposed to know stuff?! Most were deliberately funny and tongue-in-cheek. Some of my favorites include the revelation that the Oxford English Dictionary is, in fact a murder mystery story (the zebra did it!) and that Astrid Lindgren is suing the authors of the PIPA bill for ripping off her signature character’s name.
  • It’s a serious lack of women. Novelist Jennifer Weiner recently wrote a blog that analyzed the coverage the New York Times gave authors of both genders and, no surprise, women came up short. Of the fiction reviews she looked at, nearly 60% – more than half – were for books written by men. And when it came to authors who were reviewed more than once, ten were men and a lonely one was a women. It almost makes you think that the New York Times doesn’t like fiction written by women. Hmmm…
  • Let’s get ready to rumble! The 2012 Tournament of Books brackets were released this week and Book Riot has already starting speculating on which book will claim the top prize. The bracket includes some of the best-loved books of 2011, including Eugenides’ The Marriage Plot and Ann Patchett’s State of Wonder. Much like the March Madness college basketball tournament – only much cooler – the Tournament of Books pits novels against each other in a fight to the finish.
  • Why read the book when you can see the movie? Publisher’s Weekly has a top ten list of the most anticipated book-to-film adaptations coming in 2012. Of course, The Hunger Games is on the list (but only at number 3!), along side a Keira Knightley-starring version of Anna Karenina, the first film of The Hobbit adaptation (!!!!), and the much-hyped film version of The Great Gatsby, starring Leonard DiCaprio (remember when he used to be cute?). All the films have varying release dates over the next 11 months. (And I was kidding about not reading the books. OF COURSE you should read the books first. Obviously.)
  • Since we’re on the subject of movie adaptations, here is this week’s obligatory photo from the highly anticipated upcoming Hunger Games movie. It gives a great sneak peek at the outfit that will propel Katniss to “Girl Who was on Fire” status and, of course, it has Cinna, who is pure awesome. (There’s also that guy playing Peeta. Whatever.)
  • I’m not sure I imagined it being so….swirly. Bookshelves of Doom re-posted a fan-made imagined map of The Hunger Games’ Panem, the country that replaces the United States in Suzanne Collins’ creation. Collins gives few clues as to where each district is located, though Katniss and Peeta’s District 12 is clearly in the modern-day mid-Atlantic, East Coast, Appalachian region. If the map were real, I would apparently live in the wilderness. So, yay for not being under President Snow’s thumb?
  • Alike and equal are not the same. 2012 marks the 50th anniversary of the publication of Madeleine L’Engle’s amazingly fantastic childhood classic, A Wrinkle in Time. The publishers are planning a bunch of blog-based celebrations and the ladies of Forever Young Adult reminisced about the first time they read the book. If you were ever a fan of Meg Murray and Charles Wallace, if you ever wanted to really know what a tesseract was, and if you know that love conquers all, you’ll read their ode to one of the greatest books ever (and no, that’s not hyperbole).

As always, happy reading!


  1. Love the map of Panem — folks are so creative! I would be in District 12, too, so I guess Katniss and Peeta could count on me joining the resistance movement. I could see it.

    • Meredith

      January 23, 2012 at 8:46 PM

      Meg – I think I’d be scared to join the resistance, even though I obviously dislike the Capitol. I think I’m glad I would live in the wilderness. I guess I’m hoping it means I’d stay out of danger!

  2. Now I would live in District 12 (so I guess I’m toast), but since I would never have had the chance to move across the country if I really lived under Capitol rule, I’d be on the border of 5 and 6 (where I grew up). I couldn’t remember what they were, so I looked them up. Yeah, no one knows what they are. I live in the great unknown!

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