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Top Books By State: Utah

By Adrienne Rivera. May 11, 2024. 11:28 PM.

Topics: Pulitzer Prize, American Literature

Today, we continue our exploration of the United States of America through literature, focusing on the state of Utah. Known for its natural beauty, deserts, skiing, the Sundance Film Festival, and hosting the 2002 Winter Olympics, Utah is a gorgeous state full of opportunities for experiencing art, sport, and nature. Today, we focus on two books whose genres are rooted in fact, though some aspects may be fictionalized. Join us as we take a closer look at two iconic books in their respective genres of true-crime and nature writing in our Top Books by State Series:

     
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Top Books by State: Tennessee

By Adrienne Rivera. Apr 21, 2024. 6:15 AM.

Topics: Pulitzer Prize, American Literature

Tennessee is a beautiful southern state with a rich history. Besides being home to beautiful forests and mountains, such as in the Appalachian and Cumberland Mountains, Tennessee boasts two of American music’s most important cities: Nashville for country music and Memphis for the blues. Today, we continue our Top Books by State series by looking at three of the best books set in Tennessee. Set in a variety of locations and periods, these books showcase the beauty of the Tennessee landscape:

     
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Best Quotes from Ursula K. Le Guin

By Adrienne Rivera. Apr 14, 2024. 6:15 AM.

Topics: Awarded Books, American Literature, Science Fiction

Legendary speculative fiction writer Ursula K. Le Guin's career spanned sixty decades, twenty novels, hundreds of short stories, and poems, literary criticism, and translations. She won eight Hugo Awards and six Nebula awards and was nominated numerous times for each. She won five Locus Awards and the National Book Award. Her astounding legacy has inspired both readers and writers for generations. She is widely considered one of the most essential science fiction writers ever.

     
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Top Books by State: New York

By Adrienne Rivera. Apr 6, 2024. 5:51 PM.

Topics: American Literature

New York is the next stop on our literary journey throughout the fifty states. Richly diverse in people and landscape, New York is a wealth of culture, activity, and beautiful scenery. From the hectic buzz of New York City to the beautiful forests and farms of upstate New York, which is full of amazing things to do and see. Today's novels span decades of American literature, showcasing both the city and rural areas throughout the history of the state. From the earliest days of America to modern city living, these books represent some of the best books set in New York. Join us as we take a closer look at The Empire State in this edition of our Top Books by State Series:

     
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Top Books by State: Vermont

By Adrienne Rivera. Mar 17, 2024. 6:54 AM.

Topics: Poetry, Pulitzer Prize, American Literature

Today, we continue our literary road trip through the United States by taking a closer look at some books set in the great state of Vermont. This New England state, home to hot, humid summers and long, frigid winters, possesses a landscape of great natural beauty. Known for agriculture and forestry, Vermont's landscape has served as an inspiration to writers and artists for years. Join us today as we take a closer look at Vermont in our Top Books by State series: 

     
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Newbery Medal Winning Authors Series: Charles Boardman Hawes

By Adrienne Rivera. Feb 24, 2024. 11:09 PM.

Topics: Children's Books, American Literature, Newbery Award

The John Newbery Medal is awarded annually to a children's book that represents the height of achievement in that field of literature. 1924's winner is particularly notable because he passed away before receiving the award. Today in our Newbery Medal Winning Authors series, we look at the 1924 winner, Charles Boardman Hawes, who, in his short life, earned the most prestigious award for children's book writers in America.

     
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Speculative Fiction Writer Octavia Butler: A Reading Guide

By Adrienne Rivera. Jan 7, 2024. 5:51 AM.

Topics: Awarded Books, American Literature

Octavia Butler was born in 1947 in Pasadena, California. From a young age, her mother encouraged her love of stories and writing, from buying her a typewriter in her childhood to using money for surgery to support her writing. Inspired by racial segregation and the prevalence of the white male protagonist in science fiction, Butler turned her attention to speculative fiction. She studied writing at UCLA and the Clarion Science Fiction Workshop. She sold short stories to anthologies and eventually released a novel that would become the first in her legendary Patternmaster series. Butler published throughout the entirety of her life, even throughout a battle with depression and writer's block. Her impressive body of work earned her both the Hugo and Nebula awards. She is also the first speculative fiction writer to receive a MacArthur Fellowship. She passed away in 2006 at the age of fifty-eight. Her work continues to impress and inspire. Join us today as we look at some of her most important works.

     
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Gertrude Chandler Warner and The Boxcar Children

For most people, the biggest names in mysteries are Agatha Christie and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. While those beloved masters are well known worldwide, for many young readers, their first introduction into the genre is through another author: Gertrude Chandler Warner, author of the classic children's series The Boxcar Children. Join us today as we take a look at her life and work.

     
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Best Quotes from Ernest Hemingway

American novelist, short story writer, and journalist Ernest Hemingway is widely considered one of the most important and influential writers in American literature. Throughout his decades-long career, he produced seven novels, multiple short story collections and novellas, and non-fiction pieces, which include three decades of war coverage and travel journalism. Several of his novels, including For Whom the Bell Tolls, The Sun Also Rises, and A Farewell to Arms, have earned the unofficial status of Great American Novel and are considered classics outside of America. Hemingway is known for his simple, clear style that conveys complex meaning without overly complex structure or wording. He is the recipient of both the Pulitzer and Nobel Prizes. Today, we look at some of the best passages in Hemingway's classic style.

     
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Remembering Anne Rice

By Adrienne Rivera. Oct 22, 2023. 6:15 AM.

Topics: Horror, Legendary Authors, American Literature

Renowned horror writer Anne Rice passed away on December 11, 2021, at 80, due to complications relating to a stroke. Born Howard Allen Frances O'Brien in 1941, Rice developed an interest in writing at an early age. She spent much of her young life in New Orleans, a city featured prominently in some of her most famous works.

     
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