“He was mastered by the sheer surging of life, the tidal wave of being, the perfect joy of each separate muscle, joint, and sinew in that it was everything that was not death, that it was aglow and rampant, expressing itself in movement, flying exultantly under the stars.” ~Jack London, The Call of the Wild
Writer and social justice activist Jack London turned every life adventure into a published story. A master of fiction, his writings ran the gamut from novels and short stories, to poems, and plays, and he also wrote nonfiction essays and worked as a journalist. Born on January 12, 1876 in San Francisco, to an unwed mother, London never knew his father. He grew up poor, which was among the conditions he attributed to his success as a writer. London would become one of the most widely read and financially successful writers of his time.
In a sort of literary tour of the United States, we’d like to begin highlighting some of the top books from each state. What does a book have to do to make the list for each particular state? Our criteria is twofold: either the book must be set in the state, or the author must be from the state or have written the book while living in the state. Obviously, the book must also be a good one! Understandably, our list of top books from each state is subjective. We may leave out a title you feel should be included. Be sure to add your own thoughts and tell us your favorites in the comments below. For today, we begin at the beginning with Alabama. We've picked two great books from this sweet home, southern state.
The Newbery Medal is given out each year by the American Library Association (ALA) for outstanding achievement in American children's literature (watch for our post announcing this year's winner later this month!). For over ninety years, it has been a significant authority on the reception and evolution of children's books. Its impact is well known. Winning books receive widespread attention in libraries, schools, and book stores, and the publisher is wont to emblazon the shiny medallion on the cover of every printed copy of the winning book. While the award itself receives ample public attention, the man for whom it is named remains relatively obscure.
"Eala Earendel, engla beorhtast ofer middangeard monnum sended"
The above quote comes from a line of Anglo-Saxon poetry. J.R.R. Tolkien, a linguist and scholar of Anglo-Saxon culture, encountered the line in his research and became fascinated with the word "earendel." Though his Anglo-Saxon dictionary translated the word as "shining light," Tolkien believed that the word sounded like it came from a language "far beyond ancient English."
Happy New Year! We hope you awoke this morning full of hope and excitement for what 2019 holds. For many of us, the turning of the calendar is an opportunity to reflect on the past year and set goals and plans for the upcoming one. These may be health and fitness related, social and relational, work-based, or any of the many other types of resolutions you hear being thrown around by January 1 optimists. We’ve been thinking of some resolutions of our own, specifically book-based resolutions. Whether you’re a seasoned bibliophile, a novice collector or reader, or an avid fan of all things written word, what follows are some suggestions that might be right up your New Year’s resolution alley.
It's New Year's Eve which means another year has come and gone. Today is a perfect day for reflection. As such, we wanted to revisit some of our most popular blog posts of the year and thank you, our readers, for returning to our site and engaging with us about all things books and book collecting. We love this community, and we're thankful for you. Here's to another great year of bookish posts in 2019! For now, enjoy a review of these great articles from the past year. Happy New Year!
Today marks the anniversary of the birthday of Rudyard Kipling, the world renowned author who brought a new (and often controversial) perspective to British imperialism. During his lifetime Kipling would cross continents, win a Nobel Prize, and befriend the celebrated authors of his day.