Welcome to another weekend, bookworms. Slowly, but surely, it’s starting to feel like fall here in Boston. I even wore long sleeves to work a couple days this week! (Try to contain your enthusiasm for my mundane stories, please.) September also means the return of most television shows. I’m really looking forward to Once Upon a Time – you may have noticed I have a thing for revisionist fairy tales. And, quite unexpectedly, Sons of Anarchy, which is – believe it or not – based on Hamlet. What bookish shows do you like? Here’s the book news:
- Hilary Mantel and the Tudors, taking over the world one book at a time. The shortlist for the Man Booker prize was announced this week and Hilary Mantel – who won the Booker Prize in 2009 for her novel, Wolf Hall – has made the list again. Mantel is once again a contender for the same prize, this time for the sequel to her winning 2009 book, Bring Up the Bodies. Both books are part of a planned trilogy about the rise of Thomas Cromwell’s power in Tudor England.
- This is your brain. This is your brain on Jane Austen. Standford researchers are observing the brain patterns of people while they read a Jane Austen novel to explore the relationship between reading, attention and distraction. The initial results reveal that those who read Austen experience a “dramatic and unexpected increase in blood flow to regions of the brain beyond those responsible for “executive function,” areas which would normally be associated with paying close attention to a task, such as reading.” So what does that mean, exactly? For starters, blood flows to different areas of the brain when we read closely and analytically than when we read for pleasure. The more you know!
- In the “duh, obviously” category: last week, MTV aired the first full-length trailer for the upcoming Breaking Dawn Part 2 movie. The trailer finally gives viewers a glimpse at vampire Bella, along with the climatic confrontation with the Volturi (which looks so much more badass than in the book, which is one change I’ll probably be happy about). Though not as sad as the final Harry Potter movie, there is something quite final about the last Twilight movie. Thankfully, there’s always another series waiting in the wings…
- … and that would be The Hunger Games! Amid reports that filming has begun in Georgia on Catching Fire, casting news is still coming. Actor Jeffrey Wright has been cast as Beetee, a tribute from District 3 who proves to be a very valuable ally to Katniss and company. With the majority of the major roles in Catching Fire cast, all that’s left to do is scour the Internets for every available scrap of information about the film, since it will be a long year before the movie ever hits theaters. (Note to producers: how about making Mockingjay sooner rather than later?)
- Rowling and Stewart, together at last. In preparation for the publication of her forthcoming adult novel, The Casual Vacancy, J.K. Rowling is planning a number of promotional television appearances, including a stop at Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show. (Excuse me while I do my happy dance over here.) Rowling has had strong opinions about the marketing plans for her first adult novel, with sources pointing to her desire to be taken seriously as an adult fiction writer separate from her previous success. I’m pretty sure Jo Rowling will be a success at whatever she chooses to do.
- One of my favorite authors is following me on Twitter! This bit of information isn’t really Book News-worthy, but since it totally made my Monday earlier this week (and, really, we all need things to make our Mondays), I’m telling you all today. Meg Cabot now follows me on Twitter and now I feel as if I must come up with smart things to say on Twitter. It was pretty exciting for me. And besides, it’s my blog and I’ll brag if I want to.
As always, happy reading.