Ten Facts You May Not Know About J. K. Rowling

By Matt Reimann. Jul 29, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Children's Books, Literature

J. K. Rowling, author of the bestselling Harry Potter series and several crime fiction novels, celebrates her birthday July 31st. A real-life "rags to riches" story, Forbes ranked her as the forty-eighth most powerful celebrity in 2007. Take a look with us as we explore ten facts you might not know about the beloved author.


Jane Eyre and Other Classic Bildungsromans

By Matt Reimann. Jul 28, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Literature

A bildungsroman is a novel which follows its protagonist during a significant period of maturation. The book focuses on the main character's childhood or adolescence over a span of years as she navigates the world and investigates her place in it. The bildungsroman became highly popular in 19th century British novels, particularly in the works of Charles Dickens, but still retains its popularity today. Discover more about this form and some essential bildungsromans in the following article. 


Collector Spotlight: Enhancing a Collection with Signatures and Artwork

By Andrea Koczela. Jul 27, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Book Collecting

Part two of our interview with David A. Williamson, one of the largest Stephen King collectors in the world. In 2009, he bought Betts Books and one of his greatest joys is helping other King collectors find that “special” collectible for their own collections. He lives in Fairfield, CT, is married and has three children.


Six Famous Horror Novels Based on True Stories

By Kristin Masters. Jul 26, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Horror, Movie Tie-Ins

On July 26, 1984, Edward Gein died in a state mental institution. Gein's case stole the headlines in November 1957, when police went to his farmhouse to investigate the disappearance of local hardware store clerk Bernice Worden. Gein had been the last customer at the store and had been seen loitering on the premises. Officers were horrified to find Worden's corpse hanging in the barn--along with a collection of household items and a suit made out of human skin, and bowls made from human skulls. It seemed that Gein was responsible for the deaths of countless victims, not just that of Worden. 


Famous Authors Who Ventured into Screenwriting

By Kristin Masters. Jul 25, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Movie Tie-Ins

On July 26, 1942, legendary author William Faulkner started a five-month stint as a screenwriter for Warner Brothers. By this time Faulkner had already made a name for himself as a prominent literary figure, thanks to The Sound and the  Fury (1929), Light in August (1932), and Absalom, Absalom! (1936). But Faulkner had yet to attain any financial stability from his writing, so he turned to screenwriting to generate additional income. He penned two screenplays: To Have and Have Not (based on the novel by Ernest Hemingway); and The Big Sleep (based on the eponymous Raymond Chandler novel). Both movies starred Humphrey Bogart and met with critical acclaim. 


Franz Kafka: A Dark and Surreal Tale

By Kristin Wood. Jul 23, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors

With a name that has become synonymous with the complicated and the surreal, Franz Kafka had a distinctive voice that set him apart from his literary contemporaries. His knack for creating stories reminiscent of nightmares – both in terror and senselessness – resulted in a legacy that continues to ensnare new readers in each coming generation.


A Retrospective on Suspense Novelist John D. MacDonald

By Claudia Adrien. Jul 22, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Mystery & Crime

Crime and suspense novelist John D. MacDonald published more than 78 books, with more than 75 million copies in print by the time of his death in 1986. Among his varied achievements, his novel, The Executioners, was adapted into the Hollywood film Cape Fear. Novelist Stephen King called MacDonald "the great entertainer of our age, and a mesmerizing storyteller."


Collector Spotlight: Acquiring an Authoritative Stephen King Collection

By Andrea Koczela. Jul 21, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Book Collecting

David A. Williamson began collecting Stephen King novels and memorabilia in the 1980s and has amassed a collection that ranks as one of the largest in the world. In 2009, he bought Betts Books and one of his greatest joys is helping other King collectors find that “special” collectible for their own collections. He lives in Fairfield, CT, is married and has three children. He has generously shared his collecting experience and expertise with Books Tell You Why in the following interview. 


John Gardner and the Art of Fiction

By Andrea Koczela. Jul 20, 2014. 9:00 AM.

Topics: American Literature, Literature

John Champlin Gardner (not to be confused with the James Bond author John Edmund Gardner) was a successful American writer and academic. Born July 21, 1933, he is best known for Grendel, his retelling of Beowulf, and On Moral Fiction, his controversial volume of literary criticism.


Ten Tidbits About Ernest Hemingway

By Kristin Masters. Jul 19, 2014. 9:05 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Nobel Prize Winners

Born on July 21, 1899, Ernest Hemingway distinguished himself as a journalist and fiction writer. A winner of both the Pulitzer Prize and the Nobel Prize, he's considered a legendary author of the twentieth century. Also known as "Papa," Hemingway earned a reputation as a "man's man." He loved hunting, drinking, and women. But there's much more to Hemingway than you might think! 


About this blog

How can I identify a first edition? Where do I learn about caring for books? How should I start collecting? Hear from librarians about amazing collections, learn about historic bindings or printing techniques, get to know other collectors. Whether you are just starting or looking for expert advice, chances are, you'll find something of interest on blogis librorum.

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