Wednesday News: John Grisham, World Book Day, VLA award, and giving up on a book
John Grisham thinks his new book is so important he’s giving it away for free – Grisham, who was invited by his University of Virginian neurosurgeon friend, Neal Kassell, to join the board of Kassel’s Focused Ultrasound Foundation, believed so strongly in the potential for the technology to extend lives that he worked with Kassell to write a work of short fiction (under 50 pages) that could spread the word about the technology. Not surprisingly, his publisher (et al) was worried about the impact of the book on his “brand.” Also check out the passage where Grisham talks about writers as “thieves.” As for the book itself,
Against the wishes of his agent, editor and publisher, the author famous for (and rich from) legal thrillers, from “The Firm” to “The Rogue Lawyer,” just published a free book whose hero is a medical device called focused ultrasound. . . .
“I write escapist popular fiction that entertains,” Grisham said in an interview. “It’s entertainment. It doesn’t pretend to be literature or anything else. But ‘The Tumor’ has the potential to one day save or prolong millions of lives.”
Focused ultrasound is a non-invasive treatment in development for cancer and other diseases that uses energy beams to destroy diseased tissues. How it became Grisham’s 38th book is a question many of his devoted readers have been wondering since it came out late last month. – Washington Post
World Book Day: Heroines fight off heroes in poll – I guess it shouldn’t surprise us that the “top” villains named in the poll are female (are they “top” for their villainy or their popularity?), but the parity between top heroes and top villains isn’t too bad, I guess. Another question asked was which 21st century kit lit book would most likely be seen as a classic in the future, and the winner was John Boyne’s The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, which beat out the Harry Potter series.
Six of the top 10 heroes/heroines voted for were female, including Harry Potter’s Hermione Granger and Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games series.
Seven out of 10 villains were female, including Matilda’s Miss Trunchbull.
However, the top hero and villain were both male – Harry Potter and his nemesis Lord Voldemort.
More than 7,000 book lovers took part in the poll, organised by National Book Tokens ahead of World Book Day on 3 March. – BBC News
VLA Graphic Novel Diversity Award – The Virginia Library Association has announced its first Graphic Novel Diversity Award, which is open to any graphic novel published in 2015. The Award is open to fiction and non-fiction works, and the winner in each category (adult and youth) will receive $500.00. The submission deadline is March 31, 2016.
Purpose: To promote graphic novels dealing with subjects or characters of diversity as quality literature that fits with the purpose of libraries to educate and promote reading to all reading levels.
- Nomination should feature a diverse protagonist (casual or issue-based), a diverse character that impacts the story, or a diverse subject
- Published in English by a United States “publisher” in the year that will be honored. Self-published nominations are accepted.
- The nomination can be a stand-alone or a story arc. The last volume of a story arc must have been published in 2015.
- Nomination must fall into one of these age categories: Youth (ages 6-17) or Adult (ages 18 and up)
Definition of diversity: Differences both visible and invisible that may separate an individual from the mainstream. The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect.
Diversity groups eligible for consideration for award may be based on color/race, nationality, disability whether mental or physical, feminism, ageism, religion, forced minority and LGBT/sexual orientation. – VLA
Is Giving Up On A Book Ever OK? 7 Signs It’s Time – It always amazes me we still need to have these discussions about reading. Unless, of course, it’s your job to read. Otherwise, it’s, you know, a hobby.
Walking away from a book is never easy, especially for major readers. It feels as if you’ve let yourself down, and I can even make myself feel guilty for it. The fact is, we shouldn’t spend our valuable reading time choking down a book that just doesn’t work for us. The more you know your reading habits and yourself, the easier it will be to tell if it’s time to just give up on a book or power through. Know the signs and be easy on yourself, because it’s OK to let go of a book sometimes. Reading is fun, don’t let a bad book ruin it for you! – Bustle