Thursday, April 15, 2004

Looking for links 

James Grady found fame and fortune with his political novel SIX DAYS OF THE CONDOR in the early 1970s. The native Montanan speaks with the Shelby Promoter about his life, career and how family keeps him grounded.

Oh god, the New York Times gets so freaking wide-eyed about some new novel told in email and text-messages. That's so 2001. But of course, once the Times piggybacks onto a phenomenon, we know it was over six months ago. At least.

Gerhard Schroeder, the chancellor of Germany, is a bit pissed off right now. A new book whose plot focuses around a pharmacist that kills the Chancellor has had its print run cancelled--because the cover resembled the real head of state just a little too much. The book will be reprinted with a different cover, but I suspect he'll be upset for a little while longer....

Who Reads What? That's what the Gardiner, Maine library attempts to find out in its annual celebrity reading list. Those who selected favorite novels include James Lee Burke, Laura Lippman, and the First Lady, Laura Bush.

The Independent looks at the increasing number of creative writing programs in England, mirroring a trend of MFA classes that sprung up in North America in the 1970s and 1980s. It's not just about the University of East Anglia anymore.

Jason Pegler has just started Chipmunkapublshing, a new company that is devoted exclusively to publishing books about mental illness. The Guardian meets him and asks him about the impetus for this new and unique venture.

USA Today talks to Plum Sykes about well, that book. She's writing a new one that promises to be "more cynical" than BERGDORF was. Oh, yay. Color me impressed.

Touring England at the moment to promote his new book, THE ENEMY, Lee Child takes some time to speak with the Manchester Evening News about himself, his hero Jack Reacher, and how he misses his favorite football team, Aston Villa. (Though he's certainly taken up the cause of Yankee fandom rather nicely.)

Canadian publisher McLelland & Stewart, who are responsible for the Canadian editions of many great authors, have announced that Doug Pepper will replace longtime president Douglas Gibson, who will still stay on with the company overseeing his own imprint, Douglas Gibson Books.

I'm not exactly sure where AN Wilson is going with his essay on ersatz books. What, exactly, is an original work anyway? Perhaps life in general is ersatz, and we're just trying out derivatives of other derivative concepts. It's enough to give me a headache....

The John Murray Archive that is currently for sale is now residing--at least in part--at the National Library of Scotland. Manuscripts and letters on display include revelations about the very public spat between Lord Byron and Sir Walter Scott, who called the poet a "prostituted muse and hireling bard". Nope, things haven't changed much in 200 years....

Jonathan Yardley reviews Herman Wouk's new book A HOLE IN TEXAS. He admires some of it, but finds that as a work of fiction, "it leaves a lot to be desired."

The San Antonion Current looks at a trio of new mysteries from the University of Mexico Press, which is doing quite well with Manuel Ramos's new books and his backlist of Luis Montez novels.

Kevin Burton Smith's newest review at January is of Jonathon King's SHADOW MEN. He makes an interesting point, which is that the book is good, but King's writing seems to hint at something more. I must admit that I thought King's first book, the Edgar-winning THE BLUE EDGE OF MIDNIGHT, was very good, but I never finished his second. But the praise for this third effort is making me rethink things, so I might pick it up at some point.

And finally, it's good news and bad news for Joanne Rowling. She can have the CCTV cameras installed--but she can't film her neighbors. I guess that scuttles plans for the Merchiston Reality TV program that Film Four had been planning in secret...

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