Book Links 8-3-12

Over at Publishing Perspectives, they have a short article up about crowdfunding for used book stores. I like the idea. In a way, I see it as a voluntary tax. Right now, the DIA (Detroit Institute of Art) is pushing for at tri-county millage to be passed on August 7th, so that they can actually have enough funding to maintain their collection, building etc., and the case for it is being built as a preservation for one of the city’s foundational institutions. It’s something you want to fund and protect because of what it gives back to the community and to the culture. I think used bookstores can be modestly comparable in that they become places for a community to gather and foster conversation about something other than a TV show about women married to the mob.

Meanwhile, Jacob Silverman has an article up on Slate about how willing we are to criticism something (in this case books) when we “know” and like the person who created it.  I don ‘t live in New York. I’m not delusional in thinking I am the blogging equivalent of the NYT Book Review. Still, I know I am careful in what I review. For me it’s not so much about liking the person who wrote whatever I’m reading (despite someone’s presence on the web, or if someone made a nice comment about me for some reason on Twitter, I’m not also delusional enough to think we know each other). It is more about whether I am doing more harm than good. This has changed a bit over time. If you dig, you can probably find a few titles that I took to like a body bag and beat up on a bit, but it was something I’ve never felt truly at ease with.  I now take my stance on reviews from Roger Ebert and what he has professed to do with independent or small studio/budget films. I look at first books as those small budget movies that people had to fight and claw to get made.  It’s a miracle that it made it to the market and into my hands, and I shouldn’t slam miracles. If I like it, I’ll put it up on the site. If I thought it was horrible…well, I just set it aside and give the author a try with their second book. If their second book is awful, though, all bets are off. Now, all of that is a bit off from where Silverberg went with his article, but it’s what connected for me.


And here’s an article about the importance of indy bookstores from the Huffington Post. I’ll admit it, I’m not a huge indy book store fan, I’m a cheap book store fan, but I still value the places.  We have one around the corner from us, and while I couldn’t find anything to read there, I still like it being there.
The last post today isn’t entirely lit based, but teachery based. The South Carolina College put a post up yesterday suggesting some books for English teachers. The one I might check out first is Guy Deutscher’s The Unfolding of Language. I hated linguistics when I had to take it in grad school, so maybe this will connect in a way the class didn’t.  The only downside to the link is that I believe they link all of their books to Amazon, while I’d suggest taking the titles and looking for them at a place like Abe‘s or Barnes & Noble.


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