Overworked plot devices can destroy readers’ enthusiasm, so it’s such a thrill to discover fresh out-of-the-ordinary action in this month’s selections.
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My background evaluating young adult books has me always noting a novel’s first sentence. A teenage audience has to be hooked early and fast. Most readers are familiar with famous first lines such as these three that grab readers’ attention: You don’t know about me without you have read a book by the name of […]
Thirty years have passed since the Notable Government Documents selection process was first introduced. An initiative of the Government Documents Roundtable (GODORT) of the American Library Association (ALA), it was designed to recognize excellence and raise awareness of information resources produced by all levels of government and promote their use. Responsibility for compilation of the annual list falls to the Notable Documents Panel, a part of ALA/GODORT’s Publications Committee. The Notable Documents process has stood the test of time and, like government publishing itself, has adapted to the 21st century. This year’s list includes titles on cultural heritage, globalism, diversity and gender equality, lifelong learning, and the environment. Nearly all are available online, most with no-cost print counterparts.
Evidence suggests that the downturn in the market for magazines caused by rising popularity of online media and the great recession has bottomed out and may soon begin to turn around. Growth in subscriptions is slow and newsstand sales continue to suffer, but nevertheless there are signs of stability in the market. As of March 1, Mediafinder.com had identified 198 launches for 2013. This compares to 227 magazines launched in 2012 and 239 launched in 2011. The shrinking rate of growth, however, is somewhat offset by the number of cessations. Mediafinder identified 87 magazines that ceased publication in 2013. That compares to 82 closures in 2012 and 152 in 2011. So the 2013 statistics are better on balance than 2011’s and only slightly worse than the figures for 2012.
By Barbara Hoffert & Annalisa Pesek Brock-Broido, Lucie. Stay, Illusion: Poems. Knopf. ISBN 9780307962027. $26. Emotionally charged, baroquely sensuous, serenely gorgeous: Brock-Broido’s extraordinary language asks us to enter a world both strange and strangely familiar. The gorgeousness is edged by darkness, yet even as she reminds us of our frailty in a wayward world (“Your […]
By Therese Purcell Nielsen & Erin Shea Brosh, Allie. Hyperbole and a Half. Touchstone. ISBN 9781451666175. $17.99; ebk. ISBN 9781451666182. This illustrated memoir features 50 percent never-before-seen stories from Brosch’s popular blog of the same name. She writes about dogs, hot sauce, cake, and more in quirky, self-deprecating fashion. Her two-part blog post “Adventures in […]
Bittman, Mark. VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 To Lose Weight and Restore Your Health…for Good. Clarkson Potter: Crown. ISBN 9780385344746. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780385344753. Upon being diagnosed as prediabetic and with pre–heart disease symptoms, New York Times food writer Bittman custom-made his own diet plan, becoming a part-time vegan. His regimen, which includes exercise, consists […]