Changes at the NYT | Book Pulse

A New Daily Critic

Reviewer Jennifer Senior spends her last day at the NYT looking at acknowledgments. Jennifer Szalai will take over as the nonfiction daily book critic, starting in January. She is currently on the staff of the NYT Book Review.

Briefly Noted

The NYT features The Annotated African American Folktales by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Maria Tatar, (Liveright) and offers an obituary for Anthony Scaduto, who, the paper reports, “wrote the first serious biography of Bob Dylan and an investigative book contending that Bruno Richard Hauptmann was wrongly executed in the kidnapping of Charles Lindbergh’s baby.” He was 85.

The Washington Post looks at Mary Beard’s Women & Power: A Manifesto (Liveright), writing it is “short but punchy … crisp and authoritative [and] explores the way images and ideas from ancient Greece and Rome have burrowed the way into the Western collective consciousness — and how many of them are about keeping women in their place.”

USA Today picks Christmas novels “to put you in the holiday spirit.”

J.K. Rowling has been made a royal Companion of Honor, in a ceremony led by Prince William.

BuzzFeed asks writers “to consider the forces that have shaped our lives in 2017.” Lisa Ko answers with a consideration of “immigration and the question of who belongs in America.” They also continue to pick their best of the year in fiction and photography books. For more (many more) lists, follow the exhaustive Largehearted Boy post compiling every list the site can find. To see more favorites from librarians, keep up with EarlyWord‘s #libfaves17.

Compiling information culled from the data Amazon gets from Kindle users, the online bookseller released a graphic chart of bookish big data, including the top-selling book of 2017, what passages readers highlighted most, and the books buyers read most quickly.

NPR’s Fresh Air looks at works that got too little attention this year.

LitHub runs an essay by Annie Spence, Dear Fahrenheit 451: Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks, about being a part-time librarian.

World Literature Today lists its “75 Notable Translations of 2017.”

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Neal Wyatt About Neal Wyatt

Neal Wyatt is LJ's reader's advisory columnist. She writes The Reader's Shelf, RA Crossroads, Book Pulse, and Wyatt's World columns. She is currently revising The Readers' Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction, 3d ed. (ALA Editions, 2018). Contact her at

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