YA books sold $1.56 billion for the month, of which $222 million were ebooks.
And yet, teens appear to be “snapping back to print,” said Kristen McLean at the Tools of Change Bologna conference on Sunday morning, just prior to the opening of Bologna Children’s Book Fair. Sales for YA ebooks represent just 20% of the segment, versus 15% for children’s books in general and just 2% for picture and story books.
What about you? Have you noticed any trends in the hows and wheres of teen reading?
I wasn’t after historically accurate, non-fictional fare. Instead, I looked for books that embodied the emotional resonance of the library, work that conjured the same aesthetic of literary appreciation and devotional reverence to the classics that I had always hoped to garnish by reading about them in the first place.
Which, of course, made me think back to some of the books I've liked that have dealt with libraries. And while I'm a sucker for pretty much any book in which a library plays a significant role (see Being Henry David or The Madness Underneathor Hattie Ever After), it's the SECRET LIBRARIES that kill me every time. I know I wouldn't have enjoyed Beautiful Creaturesnearly as much without that secret library, and the discovery of the one in This Dark Endeavour was so fabulously creepy that it still gives me shivers.
My FAVORITE one, though, is Ursula K. Le Guin's Voices, which is the middle book in the Annals of the Western Shore sequence, which begins with Gifts and ends with Powers:
Ansul is a city once known for its great university, for its scholars, and for its books. You caught that, right? A city once known for its books. Because, you see, seventeen years ago, the Alds invaded and conquered Ansul, and the Alds believe that reading and writing are evil -- that they lead the way to demons.
I find it interesting, looking back at that old review, that I was so conflicted about the book: looking back on it now, I only feel affection. I'll have to re-read the series and see how it stands up!
What about you? What's your favorite library book, secret or not?
Amigurumi pattern: The Very Hungry Catepillar. This was posted at Instructables last year, but who cares, because it's awesome! I saw it... somewhere. Damn, I lost the original link. Sorry to the original linker!
OMG, AGREED! (With a few more !!! for good measure!)
The Beowulf manuscript is now online at the British Library.
Portland's Longfellow Books got NAILED by Nemo, but without the heroic actions of the local fireman, it would have been MUCH worse: ""When I got there, they had already broken in a side door," said co-owner Chris Bowe. "There were maybe 20 of them, and they were amazing. Instead of standing around and letting the water fall, they were carrying books to safety. ... I couldn't believe how fast they worked to save the books. They saved an enormous amount of stock.""
Children's writers relish using language well; of course they do, that is an essential tool of their work. Spelling, punctuation, regular and irregular verbs and everything else about grammar underpin all that they do. (It is odd that anyone thinks it doesn't.)
None of my elementary schooling involved diagramming sentences or anything of the like. That I remember, anyway. I do remember, though, very clearly, that in second grade, our classroom teacher made little grammar books* for each of us, and every time we did something NEW and DIFFERENT (and CORRECT) in an assignment, she would chronicle it in that book. (She was VERY LIBERAL with the foil stars, bless her.)
I also very clearly remember her astonishment when I used a serial comma without any sort of prompting—she asked me how I knew to use it, and all I could tell her was that "it looked right". But now, of course, I assume it must have come from reading.
Just a few, as Josh and I spent a chunk of the afternoon watching Moonrise Kingdom for the first time. The lightning strike made me concerned that the whole adventure was in his head, a la Brazil. Because of the threat of electroshock, I mean. But probably I'm being crazy. Anyway. Links!
On Charlotte Lucas's choice: "It’s certainly true that she isn’t young, pretty, or rich, and that those facts set the stage for her marriage. But it’s also true that Charlotte marries Collins because she is sensible and intelligent. It’s actually her sensibleness that gives her no choice but to do it. What really compels her to marry him is her thoughtfulness."
Laura Lam's Pantomime at Scalzi's The Big Idea: "I started with Micah Grey as a 27-year-old, and I have about 80,000 words of a manuscript with a more mature, world-weary person that I will re-visit one day."
Bookshelvers Anonymous on Paper Lantern Lit: "I must admit, when I first read the article, my response was not positive. It felt squicky (an icky thing that makes you squirm). To me, if felt like a cold, calculating idea factory, rather than the organic, love-based process that writing a book should be." It's basically a packaging company like Alloy, no? Or the Stratemeyer Syndicate? Also, PLL did Venom? I... couldn't even finish it, and that's a rarity for me.
Lauren DeStefano has a new upcoming series: USA Today says it will be "...utopian, not dystopian. The series, called (perhaps ironically) The Internment Chronicles, kicks off on Feb. 11, 2014, with Perfect Ruin."
Due to interest from @SarahRettger and @chasingray, I hereby declare that here at Bookshelves of Doom, the first week of March (3-9), will be PETERSWEEK, in which I celebrate my love for Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Michaels. Anyone and everyone is welcome to join in. (Ideas, suggestions, etc., are also welcome, obvs.)
At Buzzfeed: 13 Teen Death Novels From The '90s That Actually Exist. In going through boxes of mass market paperbacks (yes, many of our books are packed away by size, why do you ask?) I discovered that I have a LOT of Lurlene McDaniel books. I have no idea why. Or where they came from.
At the Guardian: Chick lit 'harms body image', study finds. I live for that Elizabeth Peters book (or was she writing as Barbara Michaels?) where the heroine describes herself as being a bit overweight, but then she loses a bunch of weight over the course of the book as she runs around investigating whatever she's investigating (and, yes, gets the guy and all that jazz), BUT THEN, in the epilogue, it's months later and she's gained all of the weight back AND THEY'RE STILL DELIRIOUSLY IN LOVE AND INSANELY HAPPY, AND, LIKE, EATING BRIE AND BUTTER OR SOMETHING. Love that.
Those bastards at Hasbro have retired Monopoly's iron. At least it wasn't my beloved thimble, I guess. *grumble* (The new token will be the cat. But, as far as I'm concerned, it doesn't exist. Just like blue M&Ms. Man, I am so bad at dealing with change.)