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Rowan Jones

TV Adaptation of The Secret Diaries of Anne Lister Coming to HBO

By | Adaptations, News | No Comments
Anne Lister’s de-coded diaries have been adapted to screen once more but this time by the combined forces of HBO and the BBC. Written by BAFTA award winning Sally Wainwright, and starring the inimitable Suranne Jones (Vanity Fair) as Miss Lister, it looks like it will be a veritable tour de force.

The eight episode mini series Gentleman Jack is set in 1832 West Yorkshire, when women were to be seen and not heard, and lesbianism was merely whispered about. Anne Lister’s endeavour to turn society on its head came about when she inherited her family home; in an attempt to breathe new life into the household, she undertook business and was in search of a wife.

The cast supporting Suranne Jones as Lister include Sophie Rundle (Peaky Blinders) as Lister’s prospective wife, Ann Walker; Gemma Whelan (Game of Thrones) as Lister’s sister, Marian; Timothy West (Bleak House) as their father Jeremy Lister, and playing their Aunt Anne will be Gemma Jones (Bridget Jones’s Diary).

The series premieres on the 22nd of April 2019. Check out the trailer below!

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If Lord of the Rings characters were Zodiac Signs…

By | Inspired by Literature, News | No Comments
The Zodiac consists of 12 signs, each with particular characteristics assigned for people born at specific times of the year. For centuries now, each month-long period has had its own constellation but for Jonah Malamud it just wasn’t enough.

The Instagram blogger decided to collate the main characters from his favourite fictional world and with an obviously astute and scientific mind (!) went about assigning each Middle-Earth resident with their star sign according to their characteristics.

Check out the twelve below and let us know in the comments or on FB if it is correct!

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Amy Adams to adapt ‘The Poisonwood Bible’ for HBO

By | Adaptations, News | No Comments
Amy Adams (Vice, Sharp Objects) teamed up with her manager Stacy O’Neil to form a production company ‘Bond Group Entertainment’ with a view to produce quality televisual content. One of their recent projects for HBO is an adaptation of Barbara Kingsolver’s The Poinsonwood Bible. 

The 1998 novel is narrated by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, “a fierce, evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959.” Along with Anya Epstein, Barbara Kingsolver will be adapting her own novel for the screen- a boon for literary purists who are wary of screen adaptations which lose their essence in translation.

The novel was a Pulitzer prize finalist, and has been called ‘breathtaking’, full of ‘humour and love’, with Kingsolver named as one of the finest writers of her generation.

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John Green Launched ‘Life’s Library’ International Bookclub

By | Discussion and Recommendations, News | No Comments
John Green, young adult author and avid reader, noticed how much more enjoyable reading became when he had someone to discuss the literature with. Along with his friend and colleague Rosianna Halse Rojas, he decided to start an online book club where fellow readers could read along and join in discussions wherever they were. The book club, Life’s Library, has proven to be incredibly popular and- unlike many online subscription bookclubs- is successfully raising money for charity thanks to the generosity of Green and Rojas.

The triple-levelled membership rates offer a choice for every budget- from $25 (includes the chosen book, gifts, and discussion materials), $10 (includes discussion materials), and $0 (which includes the ability to join in the discussion via an invite to their Discord chat). Each book is read and discussed for six weeks before moving on to the next. The book club’s first shared read was Jacqueline Woodson’s If You Come Softly.

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Eight Writers Encouraged to Keep Writing with $165,000 Award

By | Literary Awards, News | No Comments
An award such as the Windham-Campbell Prize is a highly sought after accolade and one of the richest literary prizes in the world.  Eight English language authors are selected every year to “call attention to literary achievement” and let writers “focus on their work independent of financial concerns”.

Basically every writer’s dream- to get paid to keep writing what you want to write.

The Windham-Campbell prizes were established in 2013, thanks to the writer Donald Windham leaving his estate to Yale University. Windham struggled financially during his first attempts at being a professional author, and along with his partner Sandy Campbell, had long wanted to create a literary award to support fellow writers. Authors are anonymously nominated and judged, and winners are notified by the prize director Michael Kelleher with no previous warning.

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Senior citizen accused of dangerously hoarding books

By | News | No Comments
A senior citizen book lover from Brooklyn, NY is being threatened with eviction for having an expansive library in his tiny apartment.

67 year old Ben Hammer has spent 46 years living in his now rent-controlled apartment but is now facing an uncertain future thanks to a landlord who believes his collection of books is a fire hazard. Ben moved into the one-bedroomed apartment in 1973 while working as a seaman on international freighters but received a notice of eviction just months after his rent was frozen at $700 a month. The eviction notice also coincided with the building being sold to a huge company for $17.3m, which Ben does not think is a coincidence.

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Man Vs Baby: ‘I’d rather my child watched horror than read fairytales’.

By | Children's Literature, News | One Comment
Man Vs Baby is a parenting blog run by Matt Coyne, a Sunday Times bestselling author and all-round snarky dad. What started as a hilariously honest Facebook post describing his experiences as a first-time father, his popularity quickly grew and so did his comedic observations.

Writing “from the front-line of parenting”, Matt covers topics such as supporting breastfeeding, whose turn is it to change a dirty nappy/diaper, and the absolute tosh that is In the Night Garden, with great humour.

In one of his latest posts Man Vs Baby explains his love for books at bedtime- especially The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson- but also his reticence at introducing his son to traditional fairytales that seem to be full of murder, mutilation, kidnap, and assault… We will let Matt explain in his own words below…

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Swedish artist repurposes old books for amazing art

By | Arty, News | No Comments
Cecilia Levy is a Swedish artist whose work is featured in the Swedish National Museum, and most recently at Stockholms New Karolinska University Hospital.

The former bookbinder uses old book pages, wheat starch paste, and a papier maché technique to create intricate, beautiful works of art. Her paper sculptures will always draw ire from book lovers who don’t want to see their favourite objects torn, cut, and glued, however it seems people just don’t buy old books to read anymore. With many secondhand stores/thrift shops not taking old books any more due to them being left unsold, we should be glad artists like Cecilia still have a use for abandoned tomes.

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Exciting fundraiser for new LGBT fairytale: Raven Wild

By | Children's Literature, News | No Comments
Raven Wild is the latest offering from the authors of Promised Land and Maiden Voyage.

The New Zealand based creative team Chaz Harris and Adam Reynolds have teamed up with trans author Caitlin Spice for this latest in inclusive and representative fairytales for all.

The creators of LGBTQ+ children’s books Promised Land and Maiden Voyage have today officially launched a new fundraising campaign on Kickstarter for a third book featuring a transgender lead character.

Beginning today, on the first day of Wellington Pride and International Women’s Day 2019, the authors hope to raise $40,000NZD on Kickstarter- enough to cover the cost of illustrations and printing. Once the first editions are hot off the press, they will be ready to fundraise enough to supply a major Canadian bookstore who have expressed serious interest in the new fairytale.

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‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ coming to Netflix!

By | Adaptations, News | No Comments
Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude was first published in 1967, and is often thought of as one of the most significant works of modern literature. The Nobel Prize winning writer was approached again and again for film rights to the story during his lifetime but refused all offers, worried that the expansive, multi-generational novel would lose its essence when constrained by visual storytelling.

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