<i>One Fish Two Fish</i> graces the highest court in the land

In other political/literary news, Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan recently cited Dr. Seuss's One Fist Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish in her dissenting response to Yates v. United States ....more

Jail time for assigning <i>Beloved</i>?

Oh, this is great news: not content with good old-fashioned censorship, the Kansas Senate has passed a bill "making it easier to prosecute teachers and school administrators for distributing materials deemed harmful to minors". Apparently, supporters say the bill is necessary to ensure that kids are protected from teachers distributing pornography at school. Because.. ....more

<i>The Girl Who Never Was</i> and <i>The Boy With The Hidden Name</i>, by Skylar Dorset

Skylar Dorset's novels The Girl Who Never Was and The Boy With the Hidden Name are quick, pleasant reads, graced with an unusual setting and a solid romantic storyline. The books slide right down, but, sadly, there's very little in the way of memorable plot development to keep them from sliding straight back out again. Dorset's heroine is 17-year-old Selkie Stewart, a quiet, strong-willed girl who is appalled to discover that the “flighty” mother who abandoned her as an infant is actually an evil faerie queen ....more

Anais Nin is rolling in her grave

Much to my horror, THR recently posted an article about several romantic/erotic novels that (thanks to the unexpected success of the Fifty Shades movie) may now be adapted into films. Their list includes Anna Todd's After, a self-published story that started off as a long-running One Direction fanfic. I am truly torn ....more

The Seattle Library is... different.

Boston Magazine recently posted an article about the newly redesigned Boston Public Library-Central Library’s Johnson Building. The remodel focused on youth-oriented spaces, and it looks incredibly cool: The reopened second floor contains the children’s library, which now boasts an early literacy area with a sensory learning wall, a story time space, and a special space for tweens. The nearby “Teen Central,” designed with an urban feel in mind, contains diner-style booths for doing homework or hanging out, as well as a digital lab with graphic design software and a 3D printer." There's also a video game lounge, which seems like it's taking "teen-friendly" a little too far, but whatever ....more

<i>Karen Memory</i>, by Elizabeth Bear

Elizabeth Bear's novel Karen Memory has all the hallmarks of a great YA novel: the plot is unabashedly romantic and imaginative, and the author is clearly determined to deliver plenty of value for your entertainment dollar. In fact, I suspect the only reason this wasn't packaged as a teen book is because the sixteen-year-old heroine is A) gay and B) a prostitute... and seeing as I am routinely sent teen-focused novels about heterosexual assassins, murderers, and/or psychopaths, I'm more than a little creeped out by this insight into the moral judgement of American publishers ....more

Weekly Book Giveaway: <i>Karen Memory</i>, by Elizabeth Bear

This week's Book Giveaway pick is Elizabeth Bear's Karen Memory, a steampunk Western set in an otherworldly version of the Seattle Underground. I'm not very far into it yet, but I'll read anything that plays up Seattle's innate weirdness, and I'm already a fan of the heroine's frank, no-nonsense narration. As always, this contest runs Monday through Friday ....more

Meh.

Okay, this makes me a little sad. It's the 150th anniversary of my beloved Alice in Wonderland, and Puffin Books is celebrating with a new edition illustrated by Rifle Paper Co. founder Anna Bond ....more

My favorite price!

If you hate-watched (or read) Fifty Shades of Grey recently, you might want to check out The Boss, the first installment in Jenny Trout/ Abigail Barnette's "BDSM-themed erotic romance series". The Boss is currently available as a free e-book, and—if Trout's lively, opinionated blog is anything to go by, anyway—should be about 1000 times more fun (and less creepy) than James's work ....more

<i>Seeker</i>, by Arwen Elys Dayton

Arwen Elys Dayton's Seeker feels less like an actual book and more like the novelization of a movie. Admittedly, I would totally watch said movie*, but my film standards are embarrassingly low. I expect more from books—consistent characterization, well-planned plot development, creative world-building—and Seeker falls short on all of these fronts ....more