Between the Covers 08/09/2013
What's really going on in the world of books
Sunday 08 September 2013
Those of us who are familiar with the literary PR company Midas have been amused and slightly freaked out a new photograph. Taken to promote bookshops in the Books Are One's Bag campaign (a new and more upmarket extension of booksaremybag.com, which launches with parties at bookshops around the country on Saturday), it appears to show Midas's staff dressed up as the Royal Family. Unless, that is, it shows the real royals nipping out to their local independent bookstore, but they don't strike us as big readers .... At the risk of getting them all hanged for treason, the photograph shows, from left to right: Felicity Denham (last seen by Covers shivering in the freezing cold press tent at the Hay Literary Festival), Becky Short, Daniel Freeman, Tory Lyne-Pirkis (who knows the rules of polo and makes a freakishly good Queen), Steven Williams (CEO), Fiona Marsh and Tony Mulliken (chairman, aka the Prince of Wales).
Between the Covers is reserving judgement about Sophie Hannah's new novel starring Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot, which will be set in the late 1920s. But judgement has been cast on the recent trend for so-called mash-up novels, which give classics a new, genre-fiction flavour. The latest to drop into our inbox is a new version of Sense & Sensibility "with a twist" (of course), which is described as "exactly the sort of novel we would expect from Jane Austen ... if she had lived in a world of magic." A crime against classic fiction that would horrify the fastidious Belgian detective.
Bill Bryson has written and recorded an exclusive short story to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital's Love Hearts Appeal. The story can be downloaded for free from audible.com, which will donate 50p to the charity for each copy downloaded. The 12-minute story is about being hit on the head by an automatic parking barrier, and describes exquisitely Bryson's "genius for painful outcomes": he claims to have "sat in more collapsing chairs ... than any other person alive". Grab a biscuit and a quiet spot and find it at http://bit.ly/17RWBcL
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Planes go hybrid-electric in important step to greener flight
- 2 North Korean prison officers 'cooked prisoner's baby and fed it to their dogs', more horrific accounts from UN report reveal
- 3 Antonio Martin shooting: Mayor says there should be 'no comparison' to Ferguson
- 4 Antonio Martin shooting: Police and protesters clash over teenager's death just five miles from Ferguson, Missouri
- 5 British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever