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Tuesday News: Argentina is a writer’s heaven (also a haven); NPRs...

Image via Big Stock Photo. The Lakes in Patagonia, Argentina

“It is not enough for this city to boast cavernous bookstores that stay open past midnight, broad avenues once roamed by literary giants like Jorge Luis Borges, cafes serving copious amounts of beef and red wine, or even a bizarre neo-Gothic skyscraper, the Palacio Barolo, inspired by Dante’s “Divine Comedy.”… Now, writers have yet another reason to live here: pensions.”

“Clearly, audience-selected “Best Ever” lists are dangerous and problematic, but the absence of any indication of NPR’s awareness of the glaring neglect on their list is also troubling. A list of “Best-Ever” books that declares only two books about teens of color worthy keeps all of these amazing stories in the margins, and arguably marginalizes them even further. When the world of reading remains so predominantly white, children and teens of color receive the clear message that they don’t belong. It sends a message directly from readers as well as NPR that writing about people of color is not valuable or valued, that their stories aren’t as important as the trials and tribulations of Edward and Bella; the Twilight series ranks #27. “Shakesville

“And perhaps, therein lies the true appeal of young adult literature: The stories and the genre itself represent a world of limitless potential. As a young reader, I didnt comprehend that the opportunity to disappear into the lives and adventures of strong-willed young women represented a kind of feminist victory. I was blissfully unconcerned with the gender of my favorite authors, or what reviewers might think of my beloved fictional worlds.” Atlantic

“More compelling than a static photo and more immediate than Web video, the animated GIF (correctly pronounced with a soft g) is a uniquely digital mode of conveying ideas and emotion. Like the Twitter hashtag, which has transitioned from a functional way of sorting content to its own part of speech, the animated GIF has gone from a simple file type to its own mode of expression. GIFs have grown up, and they are everywhere right now.” Poynter

“As an example of how that might work, Cannon showed me a small device he and Sarver created called the Bottlenose. It’s a rectangle of black metal about half the size of a pack of cigarettes that slips over your finger. Named after the echolocation used by dolphins, it sends out an electromagnetic pulse and measures the time it take to bounce back. Cannon slips it over his finger and closes his eyes. “I can kind of sweep the room and get this picture of where things are.” He twirls around the half empty basement, eyes closed, then stops, pointing directly at my chest. “The magnet in my finger is extremely sensitive to these waves. So the Bottlenose can tell me the shape of things around me and how far away they are.””The Verge

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Jess
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 08:09:35

    I stopped trusting NPR’s “Best…Book” lists after their sci-fi/fantasy list. I’m not sure how the YA list worked, but for the sci-fi/fantasy version, they took the “best” suggestions first from a long list of commenters ideas and then had people vote on the most answered titles. That may be a great way to see what people are reading, but not so great for a “best of” list.

    Also, people shouldn’t feel uncomfortable about what they read. It’s nobody’s business to begin with. Also, if a person was judged solely on what they read, there’d be a lot of misconceptions.

  2. Annemarie
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 08:16:45

    I take this list with the same grain of salt I take the lists on Good Reads. It’s whatever is popular and really has very little to do with “best”. Looking at the list, there seems to be an abundance of pure escapism fiction there – magic, princesses, dystopia, supernatural beings – reflective of the type of book that jumps out at you when you browse the YA section of any big box bookstore or library.

    “It is so obviously wrong because Anne of Green Gables is not in the top 10. ”

    Yes! Vampires versus Rilla Blythe bringing a baby home in a soup tureen? Pffth.

  3. Carin
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 08:30:20

    GIF is pronounced with a soft g? No way! In my head it will always be a hard g.

  4. Jess
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 08:58:07


    Yes! You totally nailed the exact problem with the NPR list.

  5. sao
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 09:38:31

    I hate animated gifs. They slow down my computer and I usually click away from the page, rather than waiting to get to the content.

  6. Shiloh Walker
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 10:22:30

    Um…I think I could go for the Argentina thing…it’s gorgeous. Wow.

  7. Anne V
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 10:30:58

    Argentina also has: Penguins, Tango, and Dulce De Leche. And Argentinians. It is really excellent.

  8. Lada
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 12:22:10

    @Carin: I always have, too because otherwise I’m thinking peanut butter that choosy moms like.

    @Shiloh Walker: And speaking of gorgeous Argentinian scenery…Nacho Figueras!

  9. Shel
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 17:50:53

    @Carin @Lada
    Me three on the hard g.

  10. Ridley
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 20:56:29

    I think most of us who dislike gif reviews on Goodreads dislike them because they break our feeds or make book pages load slower than even GR slow, not because we dislike gifs (and hard G sound, please.) I just want them to be click to load, rather than full size all the time. Not everyone uses that power for good.

    And my favorite gif blog has to be What Should We Call Me. So funny.

  11. Expy
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 22:39:10

    @Argentina Offers Its Aging Writers a Little Security

    But while such an endeavor might hold value in Argentina, he said, he was aware that other societies saw things in a different light, referring to a study he read about teenagers in another country who said they were proud of not having read a single book.

    “What an assault on the imagination,” he said.

    Oh dear Sweet Jesus Honey Dews, I hope that country wasn’t America.

  12. Capricancerous
    Aug 17, 2012 @ 14:12:08

    I thought it was such a cop out that the author didn’t reveal which country he had read that study about.

    I’m willing to bet a shiny new penny that it was a study of the U.S. I have a friend who has never read a book cover to cover on his own. He seemed slightly ashamed, but then again he’s not a teenager.

    Anyone who can find the article/study online and re-post it here, feel free.

  13. Curan Grant
    Jan 22, 2013 @ 16:59:37

    I was just wondering when the next new species series by laurann dohner was coming out? I love this series and can’t wait for the next one

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