Sunday, October 25, 2009

Bookish Bits this week

I just have a few interesting bookish tidbits to share this weekend. I was planning on writing up another review, but have been busy with work, plus jumping around to catch up with all you Read-a-thoners! Also, my brain is fatigued due to a 4 hour train ride Friday that stretched into 10 hours thanks to delays. Argh. The worst part was, I ran out of books to read! Nooooo!!! >:0

Anyhow - at least I have a few interesting links to share:

Books & Authors - this Gale database was highlighted at the workshop I went to, and it seems really handy to discover connections between books. If your library subscribes to it you'll get more functionality but it's fun to explore as it is.

Ok, this one is really neat, especially for someone my age who was a HUGE Duran Duran fan back in their heyday (remember, I was only in junior high at the time)! On their website, Simon LeBon has a feature called Simon's Reader, in which he talks about books and the experience of reading and of writing reviews. It's quite fantastic! And there's an archive of entries all the way back to 2002, though there are only a few books a year. You have to take a look at this. Actually, the whole website has a lot of fun content on it. (to get to Simon's Reader, click on "writing" on the menu for that option)

Here's an Australian site called My Favourite Book - it is a set of booklists, celebrity recommendations and personal book-related stories sent in by readers. There's even a section specifically for Young Readers.

If you want to listen to some authors reading from their own works, Vanity Fair has a feature called "Writers Reading". They are mostly popular books, like the recent book by Paul Schaeffer, or Tracey Morgan's "I am the new Black", although there are a few memoirs of more serious tone like that by a woman whose parents were arrested as enemies of the Soviet Hungarian state. Fascinating to hear ten minutes or so of each author. And while you're over at Vanity Fair, try out the Proust Questionnaire, a survey Proust himself filled out twice during his life -- there's a new book filled with celebrity answers to this survey, and your answers are compared to theirs; it's kind of fun to try!

And for some random bookish love, try these British sites:
Reading for Life

The Reader Organisation

And for any other librarians out there, check out Opening the Book - I love their approach!


  1. A four hour train ride that turned into 10! That must have been torture, especially since you ran out of reading material. I'm so sorry you had to suffer through that.

    My husband was a huge Duran Duran fan. I'll have to share the link to Simon's Reader with him. He'll get a kick out of that.

    Thank you for all the interesting links! Have a great week!

  2. Simon reads?! And reviews! I am pleasantly surprised :)

  3. That was a motherlode of good, good links. And Duran Duran! So exciting. I love them.

  4. Literary Feline - yes, it was an awful train experience. Ugh. I only had 2 ya novels and a book of work reading. Didn't think I'd have 10 hrs to kill. :(
    Hope your husband enjoys Simon's Reader!

    StephanieD - I was surprised to see that! It's really fun to look at what the Duran Duran guys are up to - very artistic fellows.

  5. Kerry - thanks! And I was quite delighted to find the Duran Duran link - had lots of fun with it.

  6. Sorry about your train ride from "hell". It sounds like a few plane trips I've taken....awful, and nothing to read makes it that much worse.

  7. Cool! I can't wait to read Simon's Reader! I love when celebs talk books (and it's so rare).

  8. Diane - oh yeah, it was horrid. But I'm trying to put it behind me... ;)

    Andi - I was so surprised to find this! And you can tell he's actually a reader from the musings he posts about the actual reading/discussing books experience.

  9. Thanks for the Proust Questionnaire link, exactly what i was looking for! thanks


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