Links + Things: John Hamm & Elmo on Sculpture, Rachel Robinson on '42', More on the New Adult Thing, Cheapo Books + More
I have had the hardest time getting my act together with reviewing this week--I have so many half-written reviews at this point, but nothing's coming together the way I want. Do you ever get in writing funks like that? This one has been brutal.
With that said, I am looking forward to return of our annual Novel in Verse Week next week and while I haven't written my review yet, I am going to be shoving Liza Palmer's Nowhere But Home in the hands of everyone for the foreseeable future. That book wrecked me in the best of ways this week.
You ready for some links? Because I've got links galore!
This Week's Video of Awesome
This week, the one and only Jon Hamm and the one and only Elmo teach us all we ever needed to know about sculture. There is absolutely nothing to not love about this video. Oh, Jon Hamm. *sigh*
"I was getting older, and I really wanted kids to know who Jack was and to think about what they can do with their own lives," said Robinson, who met her husband when the two were studying at UCLA.
And while she might not put it that way, the film also offered a more personal opportunity for Robinson: the chance to relive a relationship that ended way too soon.
"After Rachel saw the movie for the first time I said, 'What did you think?,'" recalled "42" writer-director Helgeland. "And she said, 'I loved how much we kissed.' And then she got emotional. It was the only thing she ever said to me about the finished film. And it hit me: Her take-away from the whole thing was that she got to see her husband one more time."
I saw '42' this week and thought it was extremely well-done and highly recommend it. Before seeing the movie, I read this profile of Jackie Robinson's widow, Rachel, which really affected me. It's impossible to read without tearing up at the very least.
Navigating the exhilarating, sometimes dangerous chasm between adolescence and adulthood, these novels — aimed at readers out of high school — are roaring up the best-seller list. The setting often is a college campus and the vibe is intense as only young love can be. It's sex, bad boys, too much drama and, if you consulted the characters' parents, not nearly enough library time!
I continue to feel so very conflicted about the evolution of the "new adult" thing. (Laura and I discussed it recently on the podcast, if you haven't checked that out yet.) USA Today recently tackled the subject and it is more of the same, focusing on the popularity of the highly dramatic contemporary romance-type books. I know these novels are incredibly popular, but I'd sure love to see new adult grow to encompass more books like Holier Than Thou, Raw Blue, Come See About Me and even the last few Jessica Darling books.
People are starting Facebook pages that copy photos and recipes from food blogs and repost them on their pages, either without attribution or improper attribution. Some even go as far as to claim the photos and recipes are theirs. And some are actually threatening the food bloggers who contact them.
From the Department of WTF, comes a story from food blogger Rawmazing about the disturbing trend of Facebook users starting pages and plagiarizing recipes and photos from food blogs. I've actually scene a number of my Facebook friends "liking" these types of recipe pages, and since I'm not a super-involved Facebooker, if I've noticed, it's probably becoming fairly widespread, sadly. I do wonder how long it will be (or if it's already happening) until we see this happen with book reviews?
As messed up as this is, the larger takeaway for me is that much of the general public really doesn't understand that just because something is on the Internet, doesn't make it free for the taking.
- This is another piece I discovered via BlogHer, an unflinching look at a common obsession among teen girls: the thigh gap. (I had a friend in college who was unhealthily fixated on this "accomplishment" to the point she had cosmetic surgery in her early-twenties.)
- Our friend Reynje shares what books she wishes her teen self had read.
- The Pulitzers were announced earlier this week; for the record, Laura hated the fiction winner.
- I'm obsessed with Evernote (it's actually how I compile these links posts), and I thought this was a great idea for cataloging what books are on your shelves by using this simple productivity tool. (I was thinking this could be great for my DVD collection too.)
- I don't have a cover art roundup this week, but I was super-intrigued by That Cover Girl's interview with Adrienne Kress, which revealed that the author, an amateur Photoshopper, designed the cover for her new book herself (not to be snarky, but most author DIY covers aren't super appealing and this one is).
- My friend Mookie shared this super-cool library slide (literally, a slide) with me and now I want one in my house.
- Want to check out a preview of the music from The Great Gatsby movie?
- Author Melissa Walker tweeted this fabulous collection of covers of The Great Gatsby and I keep looking at it, because it's just that cool.
- In celebration of Poetry Month, The Horn Book has a great roundup of poetry/verse book recommendations for kids.
- Digital Book World takes a look at the ebook pricing "sweet spot."
- These are some very cute photos of dogs.
- Unless you work in a brothel or similar, this is totally NSFW, but I found this incredibly filthy typeface designed by a French illustrator quite amusing.
- I'm pretty sure it was Sharon, one-half of the always-fabulous Book Barbies, who tweeted me about this highly scientific quiz to determine your 90s Dreamboat Soulmate. (I do question its methodology, because no matter how I change my answers, I keep getting Leo Di Caprio and we all know that my 90s soulmate is Pacey Witter. Duh.)
Books That Are Cheap
I am a huge fan of Barbara (aka Caridad) Ferrer's novels for teens (and think she's woefully underrated and under-read) and recently discovered that she's published an adult historical novel, Between Here and Gone, on Wattpad. This one's free, but I believe you have to read Wattpad books online or with one of their mobile apps (which will be what I do to read this--I can't read on a computer).
I haven't read Jodi Lynn Anderson's Tiger Lily, but I know Sandra is itching to check out this Peter Pan-inspired novel. (Plus, it comes highly recommended by Angie, which is always a good sign.) Right now the ebook is just $2 on Kindle and Nook.
While I didn't love Jennifer E. Smith's The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, so many other people have absolutely adored it, she I'd be remiss in pointing out the the ebook is on sale for under $4 at both Amazon and BN. (If you prefer print, the paperback is pretty cheap at $5.50.)
If you haven't had a chance to read Stephanie Perkins' wonderful 2011 novel Lola and the Boy Next Door, or are wanting to snag a hardback for your collection, it's bargain-priced on Amazon for less than $7. While I loved Anna and the French Kiss more, I think Lola is a better book--Lola's a very prickly character with wonderfully well-developed parents.
I know a lot of y'all are big fans of Tina Fey and 30 Rock, so I wanted to make sure I pointed out that her memoir, Bossypants, is only $4 for Kindle and Nook at the moment (if I recall, if was a pretty pricey ebook originally, so this is probably a good chance to snag this one for cheap).
Looking for a good Middle Grade read? The One & Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate won all the awards last year and the ebook is discounted to $5.50 for Kindle and Nook right now. I'd only snag this ebook deal if you have access to a tablet, because the illustrations are fabulous.