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Tell my wife I love her very much

Illustrator Andrew Kolb asks Have you ever listened to a song and your mind's eye is immediately filled with visuals? David Bowie's Space oddity as a childrens book. [more inside]
posted by Sailormom on Aug 27, 2011 - 61 comments

We are all a bunch of Winnie the Poohs

Jed Perl reviews "Thomas Kinkade: The Artist in the Mall"
posted by vidur on Jul 18, 2011 - 67 comments

"By setting up on a canal boat, we hope to promote a less hurried and harried lifestyle of idle pleasures, cups of tea, conversation, culture..."

In the U.K., sometimes the bookstore comes to you— on a barge. The Book Barge: a floating bookshop on a canal boat (57' Cruiser Stern) in Lichfield, Staffordshire. [The Guardian]
posted by Fizz on Jul 18, 2011 - 23 comments

Whodunit with the paperknife in the library?

Someone has been leaving mysterious miniature paper sculptures in various locations in Scotland. They seem to all be tied to Scottish author Ian Rankin, twitter, and the magic of the written word. [more inside]
posted by sarahnade on Jul 17, 2011 - 21 comments

Mark Twain's Advice To Little Girls

[Mark Twain] did not squat down to be heard and understood by children, but asked them to stand on their tiptoes—to absorb the kind of language and humor suitable for adults.
posted by Fiasco da Gama on Jul 15, 2011 - 21 comments

Every metaphor starts out as a wild beast

"Writing about metaphor is dancing with your conceptual clothes off, the innards of your language exposed by equipment more powerful than anything operated by the TSA. Still, one would be a rabbit not to do it in a world where metaphor is now top dog, at least among revived rhetorical devices with philosophical appeal." [What's a Metaphor For?]
posted by vidur on Jul 12, 2011 - 20 comments

Dripread

Most of us know and love Dailylit. But, if you want to have more current book snippets emailed to you every day, you can upload your own ebooks to Dripread. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Jul 3, 2011 - 8 comments

I'm Gonna Make a Thing

Hobo Lobo of Hamelin is a thing by a dude, who’s all like, “I’m Gonna Make a Thing.” And then he did. Or is doing. Or, you know, whatever. This dude can be found on the internet. He websites to put food on his family. A wonderfully crafted and designed illustrated book for the digital age.
posted by netbros on Jul 2, 2011 - 26 comments

You all need to have your heads examined

The epidemic of mental illness plaguing the Americans and the overmedication of psychiatric patients are in part artifacts of the diagnostic method. [more inside]
posted by hat_eater on Jun 22, 2011 - 50 comments

The End of the Story

Before Robert Jordan passed away, he dictated the ending of his Wheel of Time" series. This was just another bump in the rocky saga of the series. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Jun 20, 2011 - 83 comments

F***ing UFOs! How do they work?

"The conventional wisdom, promoted by government and echoed by the subservient media, is that UFOs are mysterious objects which by definition are unknowable. Anyone attempting to explain them is a charlatan perpetrating a hoax and using 'junk physics' . That may not be so." [more inside]
posted by Obscure Reference on Jun 19, 2011 - 50 comments

New 'Solaris' translation locked in Limbo

Solaris, Stanislaw Lem's 1961 masterpiece, has finally been translated directly into English. The current print version, in circulation for over 4 decades, was the result of a double-translation. Firstly from Polish to French, in 1966, by Jean-Michel Jasiensko. This version was then taken up by Joanna Kilmartin and Steve Cox who hacked together an English version in 1970. Lem, himself a fluent English speaker, was always scathing of the double translation. Something he believed added to the universal misunderstanding of his greatest work. After the relsease of two film versions of the story, and decades of speculation, a new direct English translation has been released. Translated by American Professor Bill Johnston 'The Definitive Solaris' is only available as an audiobook for the time being. Copyright issues, hampered by several, widely available, editions of the poor English translation may mean it is some time yet before a definitive print edition makes it onto our bookshelves.
posted by 0bvious on Jun 19, 2011 - 64 comments

The Cartoon Guide to Life, the Universe, and Everything

Larry Gonick is a veteran American cartoonist best known for his delightful comic-book guides to science and history, many of which have previews online. Chief among them is his long-running Cartoon History of the Universe (later The Cartoon History of the Modern World), a sprawling multi-volume opus documenting everything from the Big Bang to the Bush administration. Published over the course of three decades, it takes a truly global view -- its time-traveling Professor thoroughly explores not only familiar topics like Rome and World War II but the oft-neglected stories of Asia and Africa, blending caricature and myth with careful scholarship (cited by fun illustrated bibliographies) and tackling even the most obscure events with intelligence and wit. This savvy satire carried over to Gonick's Zinn-by-way-of-Pogo chronicle The Cartoon History of the United States, along with a bevy of Cartoon Guides to other topics, including Genetics, Computer Science, Chemistry, Physics, Statistics, The Environment, and (yes!) Sex. Gonick has also maintained a few sideprojects, such as a webcomic look at Chinese invention, assorted math comics (previously), the Muse magazine mainstay Kokopelli & Co. (featuring the shenanigans of his "New Muses"), and more. See also these lengthy interview snippets, linked previously. Want more? Amazon links to the complete oeuvre inside! [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Jun 6, 2011 - 29 comments

"It was a good thing to have a couple of thousand people all rigid and frozen together, in the palm of one's hand." - Charles Dickens

An E-Reader for Dickens: Designing a 19th-Century Kindle.
posted by Fizz on May 17, 2011 - 28 comments

Exile Nation: Drugs, Prisons, Politics, and Spirituality

"I realized that I was one of those extremely rare individuals who was a former POW of the drug war, and who got out and had the opportunity to share his story with the world." "It kind of makes an activist out of you when 3 helicopters land in your backyard and guys jump out with guns and destroy your place before your very eyes." Exile Nation is a documentary [complete film] [trailer] and an ongoing memoir, a work of “spiritual journalism”, and eventually "a documentary archive of interviews and testimonies […] revealing the far-ranging consequences of the War on Drugs to the American Criminal Justice System." [more inside]
posted by nTeleKy on May 13, 2011 - 11 comments

Over 2.7 million nations served.

NationStates is a free political simulation game founded by author Max Barry back in 2002 (previously). Loosely based on his dystopian corporate thriller Jennifer Government, the game starts by asking players to provide some national trappings and answer a few civics questions, then generates a virtual country with a matching political outlook. Periodic policy decisions like mining rights and compulsory voting allow players to further modify their country along axes of social, political, and economic freedom, arriving at one of twenty-seven colorful government types like Tyranny By Majority or Scandinavian Liberal Paradise. There's also a healthy roleplaying community -- players can discuss current events in the General forum, practice wargaming in International Incidents, form cooperative Regions to debate internal affairs (many of which form their own communities), and elect Delegates to send to the World Assembly (so renamed after an amusing cease-and-desist from the real-world U.N.). Their collective history is thoroughly recorded in the 35,000-article NSWiki, which provides a detailed legislative record, gameplay guide, and profiles on many of the 90,000 active nations, 8,000 player regions, and countless characters that currently make up the game world.
posted by Rhaomi on May 9, 2011 - 62 comments

Just Keep Screwing That Chicken

The ten strangest sentences in David Brooks' latest book "The Social Animal"
posted by The Whelk on May 4, 2011 - 64 comments

World Peas and more

Book Xylophone, World peas, the Revolving Internet and a Hotdog Hero.
posted by Waslijn on May 2, 2011 - 10 comments

Kindle Library Lending

Amazon has announced that library lending will be available on the Kindle later this year. Teaming with Overdrive, the program will start with 11,000 libraries in the United States. One of the key features touted by the company will be that users "can highlight and add margin notes to Kindle books you check out from your local library. Your notes will not show up when the next patron checks out the book. But if you check out the book again, or subsequently buy it, your notes will be there just as you left them." Could this be a possible death blow to the Nook?
posted by NotMyselfRightNow on Apr 20, 2011 - 94 comments

Management Lessons from The Prince of Pranks

"In the sweet leisure of his retirement — if you don’t count the chemotherapy — former Poynter president Jim Naughton" (and the only member of the White House Press Corps to ever question a US President while wearing a chicken head,) has written a memoir: "46 Frogs: Tales of a Serial Prankster." Poynter Online has posted four excerpts as part of their ongoing Best Practices: Leadership & Management series:
* Turning the boss’s office into a fun & inviting place
* How bringing 46 live frogs into the newsroom fosters a philosophy of fun
* How newsroom humor can create a sense of togetherness
* Interviewing the U.S. president while wearing a chicken head

posted by zarq on Apr 15, 2011 - 4 comments

Just Write It!

Fans of George RR Martin's "The Song of Ice and Fire" series are eagerly awaiting "A Dance With Dragons", the next book. This anticipation has led to hostility from some fans as to Martin's work ethic and the manner in which he spends his personal time.
posted by reenum on Apr 14, 2011 - 206 comments

"Art is an invention of aesthetics, which in turn is an invention of philosophers.... What we call art is a game."

What If Your Favorite Album Was a Book? Rock classics from from Arcade Fire to Zeppelin, reimagined as book covers. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Apr 10, 2011 - 33 comments

Brit creates 'Quakebook' to help disaster victims

Last Friday the blogger “Our Man in Abiko” launched an effort to produce a crowd-sourced collection prose, photos and illustrations that would be compiled into a self-published book to benefit the victims of the Japan earthquake | The title of the book is 2:46: Aftershocks: Stories from the Japan Earthquake. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Mar 29, 2011 - 7 comments

Aloha, mahalo

The history of Hawaii, as told in plate lunches, by Sarah Vowell.
posted by Artw on Mar 26, 2011 - 33 comments

SLRP (R=reddit). PDF Paradise!

"Have any of you ever found a great PDF online?" [more inside]
posted by grumblebee on Mar 26, 2011 - 52 comments

Opting out rejected, Opting in suggested

Only weeks after Judge Denny Chin extended the filing deadline, and presumably a final decision, and reflecting the Department of Justice’s own opinion, the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected the landmark class-action lawsuit settlement between the Authors Guild, the Association of American Publishers, and Google. And offers some advice for a revised resubmission.
posted by Toekneesan on Mar 22, 2011 - 22 comments

A First Time for Everything

Recreating Mills & Boon romance covers, one passionate moment at a time. [more inside]
posted by whimsicalnymph on Mar 15, 2011 - 7 comments

Tiger, Tiger

Margaux Fragoso met Peter Curran when she was 7 and he was 51. For the next 15 years until his suicide, they had a hidden, violent and sexually abusive relationship. Her new memoir, Tiger, Tiger is being likened to a "reverse, true-life Lolita," told from the perspective of Delores Haze's character, which in some ways humanizes the pedophile who preyed upon her without excusing him. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 7, 2011 - 56 comments

He Thinks Many People Will Like To Read It

The process of publishing a book in 1947 was different than it is today.
posted by gman on Mar 4, 2011 - 27 comments

Weird Al kid's author

Since Weird Al seems to be a MeFi favourite, I thought I'd share this interview... [more inside]
posted by sardonyx on Feb 21, 2011 - 8 comments

"I use simple arithmetic and an exacto knife as my supplies along with lots of time."

"I am someone who has never taken an art class in my life...I didn't think I had an artistic bone in my body and never thought of myself as creative." Neat book art made with folds and an exacto knife from Isaac Salazar, who, according to his Flickr bio, is an accountant in New Mexico. [Via boingboing and Core77] [more inside]
posted by mediareport on Feb 13, 2011 - 17 comments

She has bid farewell to a thousand heroes with only a twinge of sadness

Should you date an illiterate girl or should you date a girl who reads?
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn on Feb 11, 2011 - 160 comments

iStockPhoto + Photoshop + Books

Cover clones are examples of books using the same cover art or stock photos. See also: Copycat Covers, Reusable Cover Art, and The Dangers of Stock Photography. (via)
posted by blue_beetle on Feb 5, 2011 - 13 comments

Modernist Cuisine in 6 Volumes

Modernist Cuisine, a 2400-page, 6-volume lavishly-illustrated and highly-anticipated $625 list price set (available for pre-order) by authors Nathan Myhrvold, Chris Young, and Maxime Bilet, expounds a deeply scientific and avant-garde take on cooking techniques and been praised as the most important cookbook of the last 10 years. Its burger recipe. Its kitchen.
posted by shivohum on Feb 4, 2011 - 156 comments

The Soul Niche

Swimming around in a mixture of language and matter, humans occupy a particular evolutionary niche mediated by something we call 'consciousness'. To Professor Nicholas Humphrey we're made up of "soul dust": "a kind of theatre... an entertainment which we put on for ourselves inside our own heads." But just as that theatre is directed by the relationship between language and matter, it is also undermined by it. It all depends how you think it.
posted by 0bvious on Feb 4, 2011 - 17 comments

magic

"I always had the dream of creating a theatre performance that opened up like a pop-up book..."
posted by grumblebee on Feb 2, 2011 - 15 comments

Judge not

You can't judge a book by its cover. But people do. if the 41st version of the cover of The Madonnas of Echo Park is this awful...how bad were the first 40?
posted by ecourbanist on Jan 31, 2011 - 61 comments

You'll Put Someone's Eye Out

Badass Lego Guns, a short YouTube video (1.55) showing five working guns built from instructions from the book of the same name by Martin Hudepohl. [more inside]
posted by bwg on Jan 27, 2011 - 18 comments

John Finley, 19th century tornado researcher

John Park Finley, American meteorologist, wrote the first known book on tornadoes (Tornadoes, 1887). Though some of his "safety" guidelines for surviving a tornado have since been refuted as dangerous (seek shelter on the side of a house facing an oncoming tornado!), the book remains a seminal work in tornado research. [more inside]
posted by Wossname on Jan 25, 2011 - 9 comments

I know it's why I always like to have a book on me.

Can a book stop a bullet? A soldier in 1916 reported a bullet stopped by a book case and a metal shaving mirror. Short story collective Electric Literature tested six of the biggest books of 2010. The Box O' Truth shot $1.50 of discarded library books. Mythbusters armoured a car with phone books. Sports Nation challenged a guest's basketball book. Internet pranksters ZUG shot different religious books as well as the Twilight Saga. One of Oklahoma's nominees for state superintendent for education even demonstrated how textbooks could protect against school shootings. Would you trust your life to such an educational encasement?
posted by Mike1024 on Jan 10, 2011 - 56 comments

"Bent and juxtaposed in ways that present the tension and dynamics of staged drama."

3D art made from book covers, by Thomas Allen.
posted by crossoverman on Jan 2, 2011 - 15 comments

Dream Thread

The book “Traumgedanken” (“Thoughts about dreams”) contains a collection of literary, philosophical, psychological and scientifical texts which provide an insight into different dream theories. To ease the access to the elusive topic, the book is designed as a model of a dream about dreaming. Analogue to a dream, where pieces of reality are assembled to build a story, it brings different text excerpts together. They are connected by threads which tie in with certain key words.
posted by chavenet on Dec 29, 2010 - 8 comments

Sad as Hell, a book review

"Sometimes I can almost visualize parts of myself, the ones I’m most proud of, atrophying. I wish I had an app to monitor it! I notice that my thoughts are homeopathic, that they mirror content I wish I weren’t reading." Sad as Hell: n+1 on the internet's effect on the self and the book Super Sad True Love Story (which has an damn good book trailer). The novel is set in a dystopian future where constant access to the internet results in a world “dense with panic and media.” [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla on Dec 10, 2010 - 7 comments

In praise of reading and fiction

Fiction is more than an entertainment, more than an intellectual exercise that sharpens one’s sensibility and awakens a critical spirit. It is an absolute necessity so that civilization continues to exist, renewing and preserving in us the best of what is human. [PDF] [more inside]
posted by Omon Ra on Dec 7, 2010 - 9 comments

Scary Sketches to Glimpse in the Dark

Nearly three decades ago, folklorist Alvin Schwartz published Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, the first of three horror anthologies that would go on to become the single most challenged book series of the 1990s. But most of the backlash was against not the stories themselves (which were fairly tame), but rather the illustrations of artist Stephen Gammell. His bizarre, grotesque, nightmarish black-and-white inkscapes suffused every page with an eerie, unsettling menace. Sadly, the series has since been re-issued with new illustrations by Brett Helquist, of A Series of Unfortunate Events fame. Luckily for fans of Gammell's dark vision, copies of the old artwork abound online, including in these three image galleries: Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, Scary Stories 3: More Tales to Chill Your Bones. Interested in revisiting the stories themselves? Then don't miss the virtual re-enactments of YouTube user MoonRaven09, or the dramatic readings of fellow YouTuber daMeatHook.
posted by Rhaomi on Oct 29, 2010 - 48 comments

(define this 'awesome)

Probably one of the 5 best amateur animated music videos about Lisp you'll see today. [more inside]
posted by DU on Oct 29, 2010 - 27 comments

El ingenioso hidalgo don Quixote de la Mancha

El Quijote Interactivo is a site from the Biblioteca Nacional de España displaying the 1605 edition of Miguel Cervantes' Don Quixote.
You can of course turn pages and zoom in and out. But, you can also search text, get a map of Don Quixote's travels, read associated books and expert commentaries, forward through 50 editions of the book, listen to music referenced by Don Quixote and, yes, share pages with your Facebook friends.
This Youtube video walks you through it.
posted by vacapinta on Oct 28, 2010 - 9 comments

A MONSTER'S LIFE IS NEVER BORING

From the venerable MONSTER BRAINS (previously, previously, previously) comes the lost children's classic GODZILLA LIKES TO ROAR
posted by The Whelk on Oct 26, 2010 - 19 comments

Book Sculpture

Jacqueline Rush Lee is an artist drawn to objects that record physical processes or bear the imperfections and scars of life. She transforms used books into sculptures that explore and redefine the book as familiar object, medium, and archetypal form. Also, inspired by gesture drawing and painting, her Paintures are figurative sculptures created from paint skins and paint scrapings affixed to scrap metal armatures. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Oct 16, 2010 - 8 comments

Dig Senalonga

Twenty-four vintage book covers from Portugal
posted by kenko on Oct 16, 2010 - 11 comments

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