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Back in March 2015, James Patterson (pictured, via) and the Scholastic Reading Club established a partnership to help school libraries. Initially, Patterson vowed to give away $1.25 million.
Since this announcement was made, over 28,000 applications were sent in vying for these funding grants. In consideration of all these requests, Patterson has decided to increase his donation amount to $1.75 million. So far, $500,000 has been handed out to 127 different schools.
Here’s more from the press release: “Scholastic Reading Club will match each dollar with bonus points that allow teachers to buy materials, including books, for their classrooms…With the school library initiative, Patterson’s mandate was to make the application process as simple as possible for librarians. The online application poses a single question: ‘What would your school library do with $1,000 to $10,000?'”
Journalist Todd S. Purdum has landed a deal with Henry Holt. Purdum will write a biography profiling musical theater icons Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II.
The publisher has set the release date for Spring 2018. It was chosen to coincide with the 75th anniversary of the opening of their acclaimed Broadway show, Oklahoma!.
Purdum had this statement in the press release: “These are the songs and stories I grew up with, the original cast albums that my parents played till they were worn thin, and I could sing the scores in in my sleep. In watching the joy with which my own children have discovered Rodgers and Hammerstein, and the enormous worldwide commercial and critical success their work still enjoys, I became certain that the fascinating story of their collaboration was ripe for a fresh telling, not only to the Baby Boomers who love The Sound of Music, but to even younger generations who will appreciate the pioneering contributions this team made to one of America’s most important native arts.”
A cover has been unveiled for Tim Federle’s young adult novel, The Great American Whatever. We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think?
Prior to this project, Federle published a picture book (entitled Tommy Can’t Stop!), two middle grade books (Five, Six, Seven, Nate! and Better Nate Than Ever), and two cocktail recipe books (Tequila Mockingbird: Cocktails with a Literary Twist and Hickory Daiquiri Dock: Cocktails with a Nursery Rhyme Twist). Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers has scheduled the publication date for March 29, 2016.
Here’s more from The Huffington Post: “Federle had a mature audience in mind when he began writing the book, originally titled Quinn, Victorious, five years ago, basing the plot on his personal experiences as seen through characters in their mid-20s. The success of the two Nate books, which are geared toward middle-grade readers, inspired him to trim 10 years off Quinn’s age and emphasize the character’s defining, post-adolescent moments instead – including brushes with self-doubt and an early sexual encounter. Still, he hopes the new book, which is shades darker than Nate but no less droll, will resonate with grown-ups as well as young adults.”
The Staten Island Yankees will be hosting “George R.R. Martin Night” on August 8 in New York. During this event, the Staten Island Yankees will be called the “Staten Island Direwolves.”
According to MLB.com, Martin himself will be present and signing autographs. A wolf from the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary will also be a guest; this animal will make an appearance on the field.
The players will wear specially-made jerseys with fabric that features a brown fur and gray material design. One jersey will be auctioned off to raise funds for the wolf sanctuary. (via DNAinfo.com)
The cover has been unveiled for Sarah Ahiers’ Assassin’s Heart. We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think?
According to EpicReads.com, Kate J. Engbring served as the designer for this project. HarperCollins Children’s Books has set the publication date for February 02, 2016.
Stephen King has shared a free digital audiobook which contains his short story, Drunken Fireworks. According to Entertainment Weekly, readers can access this work on King’s website.
The New York Times reports that Tim Sample served as the narrator for this project. This piece will be featured in the forthcoming collection, The Bazaar of Bad Dreams.
Each short story in this collection is accompanied by a passage of commentary from King on his writing process. Scribner, an imprint at Simon & Schuster, has scheduled the release date for November 3.
Writer Rick Moody has signed a deal to write a new memoir. Henry Holt, an imprint at Macmillan, will publish The Long Accomplishment in 2017.
With this book, Moody will offer month-by-month details on the first year of marriage shared between himself and his second wife Laurel Nakadate. Executive editor Barbara Jones negotiated the deal with literary agent Melanie Jackson.
Here’s more from the press release: “Moody’s most intimate book to date, The Long Accomplishment begins at the happy start of Moody’s second marriage and follows him and his new wife through a sudden, yearlong storm of troubles. Although Moody worries that his past bad behaviors have somehow brought these trials – including serious illness, abruptly aging and infirm parents, a child custody battle, the deaths of close friends, and a calamitous home invasion – upon the family he loves, with humor, wit, and heartrending insight, he discovers that love is a sturdy boat, indeed the only boat, that can carry us across.”
Ralph Fletcher, who is a beloved trade and professional book author, steps into our Author Spotlight.
The cover has been unveiled for Rhiannon Thomas’s young adult novel, Kingdom of Ashes. We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think?
According to EpicReads.com, Jenna R. Stempel served as the designer for this project. This book, the sequel to A Wicked Thing, will be released on February 23, 2016.
As of late, John Green seems to be devoting his efforts to various YouTube series, film adaptations based on his young adult novels, and charity projects. Given this busy schedule, many fans have been wondering about when he will publish a new book.
Entertainment Weekly reports that Green explained in a recent Reddit AMA session that he doesn’t “want to publish until I’ve written something I can feel proud of. That hasn’t happened yet. Hopefully I’ll make more progress soon.”
Earlier this month, Green shot a vlog discussing what it means to be human. In that video, he revealed that he had been working on a novel about “how we define personhood.” At the moment, the PEN / Faulkner Foundation is hosting an auction and one of the items is to have your name appear as a character in an upcoming John Green novel. Over on Twitter, the author pledges not to kill off this character, but he “can’t promise when the book will be finished.”
I’m an avid chewer of books but, surprisingly, I don’t read a lot of literature from my own country. Oh horror! Gasp with me! It’s an abominable shame. The reason for this is, a) I read mostly YA, b) most famous YA books are by American authors, and c) it seems much easier to get […]
Earlier this year, Starz gave the green light for a TV adaptation based on American Gods. Neil Gaiman, the author behind the book, will not only serve as an executive producer, but also a screenwriter.
Variety.com reports that fellow executive producer Bryan Fuller confirmed that Gaiman will write several episodes. When the announcement about the TV show was first made, Gaiman expressed that he feels “relieved and confident that my baby is in good hands.\"
Here’s more from Deadline.com: “The 2001 novel concerns a brewing war between old and new gods, with traditional gods from myth and religions steadily losing believers to deities that reflect more modern concerns, such as love of money, technology, media, celebrity and drugs. The book centers on Shadow Moon, an ex-con hired as a bodyguard by one of those older gods trying to push back against the new gods’ successes.”
National Book Award-winning author Sherman Alexie plans to write this debut picture book, Thunder Boy Jr. Artist Yuyi Morales created the illustrations for this project.
Publisher Megan Tingley negotiated this deal with literary agents Nancy Stauffer and Charlotte Sheedy. Editor in chief Alvina Ling and associate editor Bethany Strout worked on editing the manuscript together. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers will release this book on May 03, 2016.
Here’s more from the press release: “Thunder Boy Jr. tells the story of a little boy who is named after his dad. But Thunder Boy Jr. doesn’t want to share a name; he wants a name that is all his own, and he goes through many possibilities—Not Afraid of Ten Thousand Teeth? Touch the Clouds? Old Toys Are Awesome? Just when all hope is lost, his dad helps him find the perfect name, one that celebrates the love between father and son.”
The cover has been unveiled for Brittany Cavallaro’s A Study in Charlotte. We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think?
This story explores what a friendship between the progeny of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John H. Watson. Click here to download free eBook editions of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s works about the original detective duo.
According to EpicReads.com, Katie C. Fitch served as the designer for this project. Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint at HarperCollins Children’s Books, has set the release date for March 1st.
Elizabeth Gilbert has written an essay for entitled “Confessions of a Seduction Addict.” With this autobiographical piece, published in the New York Times, Gilbert recounts her past obsession with the act of seduction.
Gilbert even shares details on how this unhealthy habit played a role in the dissolution of her first marriage. That divorce, while painful, eventually lead Gilbert to embark on a journey chronicled in her mega-hit memoir, Eat, Pray, Love. Here’s an excerpt from the essay:
“Seduction is the art of coercing somebody to desire you, of orchestrating somebody else’s longings to suit your own hungry agenda. Seduction was never a casual sport for me; it was more like a heist, adrenalizing and urgent. I would plan the heist for months, scouting out the target, looking for unguarded entries. Then I would break into his deepest vault, steal all his emotional currency and spend it on myself.”
Back in 2013, J.K. Rowling announced that she would be working on a Harry Potter-related play. Over on Twitter, the author announced that Harry Potter And The Cursed Child will open at London’s West End in Summer 2016.
BBC News reports that Rowling collaborated with Jack Thorne, a seasoned playwright, and John Tiffany, the director, to create this original story. She revealed that the tale being told in this theatrical production should not be considered a “prequel,” but it does feature an “untold part of Harry’s story.”
At this point in time, no announcements have been made as to who will play The Boy Who Lived. We’ve collected all Rowling’s tweets about this project in a Storify post embedded below—what do you think? (via BuzzFeed.com)
Five new essays were posted on the Pottermore website: “Alchemy,” “Vernon & Petunia,” “The Sword of Gryffindor,” “Extension Charms,” and “Hatstall.” Thanks to this new content, Harry Potter fans now know about the symbolism behind Albus Dumbledore and Rubeus Hagrid’s names.
SPOILER ALERT: If you don’t want to know more, you should stop reading now!
Entertainment Weekly reports that “Rubeus and Albus are derived from red and white, two colors that are traditionally associated with alchemy…Hagrid represents the red base metal, which is associated with warmth and wildness, while Dumbledore is more in line with gold and the color white, which is impressive and intellectual, but can also be detached.” Together, these two characters make-up the ideal father figure for The Boy Who Lived.
Throughout the year, J.K. Rowling has revealed several new details about the Harry Potter series (primarily through Twitter). Readers have been made aware of the existence of an American wizarding school, that Moaning Myrtle’s full name is Myrtle Elizabeth Warren, and that Fred Weasley’s death at the Battle of Hogwarts \"was the worst for\" the author. Do you have any other burning questions that you wish Rowling would answer? (via TIME.com)
Did you ever wonder how Paulo Coelho carved out his career as a writer? Director Daniel Augusto teamed up with screenwriter Carolina Kotscho to shoot a biopic called “Paulo Coelho’s Best Story.”
The video embedded above offers glimpses of actor Júlio Andrade playing the role of The Alchemist author. Earlier this year, the film was screened at the Miami International Film Festival; a theatrical release date has been set for July 31st.
James Ellroy‘s residence in the Hollywood Hills has hit the market for just shy of $1.4 million.
“A lovely Spanish Hacienda in the hills,” the 3 bedroom includes an office, where the author of The Black Dahlia works. In the real estate listing, you can see his bookshelves and framed photos of various book covers. The Los Angeles Times points out that the house wouldn’t be out of place in L.A. Confidential. Check it out:
The movie version of “L.A. Confidential” used the architecturally significant Lovell House, designed by Richard Neutra, as Patchett’s modern-minimalist digs. That was a departure from the book, which described Patchett’s place as “a big pseudo-Spanish: one story, low slate roof.”
The cover has been unveiled for Michelle Modesto’s Revenge And The Wild. According to the Epic Reads blog, this book marks the debut of Modesto’s career as an author.
We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think? The team at HarperCollins Children’s Books has set the publication date for February 02, 2016.
Who says you can’t talk about the horsing around club? Author Chuck Palahniuk has decided to create a child-friendly version of his beloved novel, Fight Club.
In the video embedded above, Palahniuk drops several expletives while reading a hilarious story about a “horsing around club.” According to Mashable.com, readers “can share all of your favorite Fight Club moments with your children, without fear of scarring them.”
Since May 2015, Palahniuk’s fans have been enjoying the Fight Club 2 comics series. Thus far, two issues have been released. Dark Horse Comics will publish three more installments from July 2015 until September 2015. (via Esquire.com)
Did you ever wonder why the Dursleys hated the Potters?
J.K. Rowling has released a new piece of writing on Pottermore.com, the home of all things Harry Potter, which gives some background. Here is an excerpt from the piece:
James was amused by Vernon, and made the mistake of showing it. Vernon tried to patronise James, asking what car he drove. James described his racing broom.
Vernon supposed out loud that wizards had to live on unemployment benefit. James explained about Gringotts, and the fortune his parents had saved there, in solid gold.
Vernon could not tell whether he was being made fun of or not, and grew angry. The evening ended with Vernon and Petunia storming out of the restaurant, while Lily burst into tears and James (a little ashamed of himself) promised to make things up with Vernon at the earliest opportunity.
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Tombquest author Michael Northrop talks about his books!
Q: Are any of your characters based on real people?
Michael Northrop: None of the characters are based entirely on real people—and I don’t know anyone who’s been brought back from the dead!—but they all have some bits and pieces and traits and tics from real people. As a writer, pieces of yourself make their way into all of your characters. I like to think that I have some of Alex’s determination, and some of Ren’s serious work ethic.
I’ve also visited many of the places mentioned in the books, so I was able to bring real history and a real sense of place into the books. As a New Yorker, I’ve spent many hours at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (and in the subway system!) and I was also able to visit London and the British Museum, where Book 2 takes place. It did rain while I was there . . . just not blood rain.
Q: If you had to trade places with one of your characters for a day, who would it be?
Michael Northrop: That’s an easy one—I’d trade places with Alex and spend the day having a blast (of wind) with the scarab!
Q: In real life, would any of your characters be friends of yours?
Michael Northrop: I like all of the main characters! Luke might be too cool for me, but if we found ourselves together we could definitely talk sports for an afternoon and probably catch a game. And Alex and Ren are a tight little BFF unit—they don’t necessarily need a third wheel following them around and trying to write down everything they say as research for the fourth book. So I’d probably end up hanging out with Todtman and practicing my horrible German.
Michael Northrop, Author
MSNBC host Chris Matthews is reportedly working on a book about Robert F. Kennedy aka RFK.
Politico has the scoop:
The book is Matthews’ first on the former New York Senator and Democratic presidential candidate, and the third to touch on the Kennedy family dynasty. Matthews also authored “Jack Kennedy: Elusive Hero,” which came out in 2012, and “Kennedy & Nixon: The Rivalry that Shaped Postwar America,” which came out in 2011.
Bobby Kennedy authored several books himself, before he died in 1968, including:
To Seek a Newer World and The Enemy Within. In addition, Kennedy’s son Maxwell Taylor Kennedy published an edited version of RFK’s journal in 1999 called Make Gentle the Life of This World: The Vision of Robert F. Kennedy.
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The cover has been unveiled for C.J. Redwine’s The Shadow Queen. We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think?
Sarah N. Kaufman served as the designer; she incorporated a real carved apple for this project. Balzer + Bray, an imprint at HarperCollins Children’s Books, has set the publication date for February 23, 2016. (via EpicReads.com)