Thursday News: a decade-long bestseller, literacy campaigns, decluttering unread books, and proposal puzzle book
Only one book has made the Amazon Top 10 every year for the past decade – I did not expect this one, but after reading the article, I get it. Hint: it’s nonfiction. I have removed any identifying information from the description below so you can see the results for yourself.
The popular . . . book has made the Amazon Top 10 bestseller list every year for the past decade. No other book appears even three times—though a volume from the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series shows up in six of ten years. (Hover with your mouse on desktop or swipe on mobile to see all the rankings through 2016.) – Quartz
7 million books and counting: One man’s fight for literacy among city’s at-risk kids – This Chicago Tribune profile of Brian Floriani is indicative of just how much one person can do with passion and a mission. Not that everyone has it in them to start a charity or program. But we can all make a difference. The holidays, for example, provide many opportunities to gift books to children, as this Detroit Free Press article notes. I love the idea of having kids wake up to a wrapped book at the foot of their bed, and it would certainly be a special gift beyond any holiday celebration. And if you want some inspiration, check out Brian Floriani’s story.
Hanging back in the corner near the door [of a third-grade classroom at Rowe Elementary] is Brian Floriani, a tall, slightly sheepish guy in a baseball cap who is, almost single-handedly, responsible for the uproar. The charity he founded in his North Shore garage seven years ago, Bernie’s Book Bank, has now distributed more than 7 million books, and counting, to kids in the Chicago area.
The plan? To deliver 12 books per year, every year to every at-risk child from birth through sixth grade, throughout Chicagoland. Those kids are at Women, Infants and Children (WIC) centers and at schools like Rowe, where the percentage of children eligible for free or reduced lunch hovers at around 80 percent. – Chicago Tribune & Detroit Free Press
Organization Guru Marie Kondo’s Tips for Dealing with Your Massive Piles of Unread Books (or What They Call in Japan “Tsundoku”) – If any of you watched the Gilmore Girls reunion show, you may get a chuckle out of this mention of Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. But even if you haven’t heard about Kondo’s book, you may appreciate this video and post on how to manage all those piles of unread books – assuming you want to actually do something with them, of course.
“Many people say that books are one thing they just can’t part with regardless of whether they are avid readers or not,” Kondo writes, “but the real problem is actually the way in which they part with them.” . . .
Some of the books we own may spark joy, in other words, but almost all of them spark a range of other feelings besides. Even so, the holiday season having come upon us again, we’ve got no choice but to make at least a little room on our shelves — or our floors — to accommodate the new books we’ll no doubt receive as gifts. Farewell, then, to all those extra copies of bestselling punctuation guides. Only after they’ve gone will we see about breathing some life into the volumes to which we’ve grown more deeply attached. After all, a year’s end, as many a writer knows, provides the ideal time for reflection. – Open Culture
Man Creates Incredible Hand-Carved, Puzzle-Filled Proposal Book – I can’t even describe the amazingness that is this book. Has anyone written something like this into a Romance novel proposal? Because what a beautiful meta moment that would be.
Each page of the book tells a unique part of their story together. It also includes a puzzle she had to solve before she could continue to the next chapter. When she came to the last page and solved the final puzzle to reveal the ring, her boyfriend was already down on one knee ready to ask for her hand in marriage. – Wide Open Country