Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Few Items of Bookish Interest

I'm about two sittings away from finishing Stephen King's new novel 11/22/63. You'll get a review next week, but here's a preview: It's approximately 1,398 better than Under the Dome.

In the meantime (the only downside of my penchant for reading long novels, especially during the winter, is the long gap between reviews), here are three literary items of relative importance.

1. The 2012 Tournament of Books list announced — The ToB (as those hip to the lingo call it) is one of the best bookish events of the year. If you're unfamiliar, the tournament consists of a March Madness-like bracket of match-ups pitting two novels against each other — a judge carefully selected from the literary community makes the call (and publishes his/her reasoning) and the winner moves on. I've only read three (The Art of Fielding, The Tiger's Wife, The Marriage Plot) of the 16 on this year's list (and, incidentally, wasn't a huge fan of two of those three), so I've got some work to do before the winner is announced March 7. What's your pick to win? I'm rooting for The Art of Fielding, but I think The Tiger's Wife may take it. 

2. USA Today's Bestselling Books of 2011 — Not surprisingly, The Help is No. 1. A little bit surprisingly, all three Hunger Game novels are in the top 10 and all three Millennium Trilogy novels are still in the top 13. It's not until #47 that a literary fiction novel actually published in 2011 makes the list — The Paris Wife, by Paula McLain.

3. The Joy of Books — Thanks to my friend Jeff for pointing out this nifty little stop-action video of a bookstore organization project.

(Finally, if you're interested, here are links to my two Book Riot posts this week: An op/edit about how print is here to stay, which sparked a great conversation in the comments, and a look at my Top 5 Miscast Literary Roles.)


  1. Thanks for the link about the Tournament of Books-I don't always get to read most of the contenders but it's fun to check out,nonetheless. With the first of the Hunger Games trilogy based films coming in March,I'm not surprised that those books are still on the bestseller lists(I read the first one and it was better than I expected).

    Interested to read your review on 11/22/63 next week-I thought it was one of King's best works to date.

  2. The Tournament of Books list looks pretty good. I'm eager to see who makes it to the second round.

  3. I haven't quite been able to talk myself into Hunger Games yet, but I'm getting closer.

    I have 100 pages to go in 11/22/63, and I hate that I have to work right now and can't go finish it...

  4. Me too - second best tournament of the year! (After the real March Madness, of course...)

  5. Thanks for reposting your Book Riot piece on e-books. What a great conversation. I had never thought about the pro-paper, low-technology argument, but it makes so much sense. While I'm one of those who, like you, reads both paper and e-books, there's something about the physical book as an object of art that I just cannot let go of. Great post, Greg.

  6. OLD FOLLOWER.....Meanwhile.....Book Review and also a Giveaway on my blog if you care to stop.

    Stop by for a Review of DEAD IS THE NEW BLACK and a Giveaway of THE WICKED WIVES.


  7. It's nice to see the Book Blogger Hop up and running again. I'm using it now to track my wishlist reading progress. I hope you stop by.