Between The Covers: 10/07/2011
Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books
Sunday 10 July 2011
*We're sorry to report that the title of the authorised biography of Steve Jobs, iSteve: The Book of Jobs, has been changed by its author in favour of "something simpler and more elegant".
The book, by Walter Isaacson (who has previously written biographies of those other great geniuses Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein), will now be called just: Steve Jobs. How boring.
*On its 40th birthday, Project Gutenberg is giving a gift to readers: a free, 15-page ebook about the history of the project, from its founding by Michael Hart in 1971 to the 36,000th free ebook, which was put online this year. The first text to be available by the project – which aimed to make books available to readers in much the same revolutionary way that Gutenberg's printing press did in the 16th century – was The United States Declaration of Independence, on 4 July 1971. Hart typed it in upper case, because there was no lower case on his computer, and alerted all of the 100 users of the pre-internet system that was then used. The file size was 5k, and was downloaded by six users.
*Caps off to this column's favourite equestrian, Clare Balding, whose agent has sold her memoir of childhood to Viking. The book will be called My Animals and Other Family, and is due for publication in September 2012.
*And fascinators on for the novelist Amanda Craig, who has just heard that her novel Hearts and Minds (Little, Brown) has been reprinted for the fourth time this year, and who is also off to the Royal Garden Party this week. Craig has been asking friends what to wear to the glamorous occasion. We hear that suggestions from some author friends (Amanda Vickery, Susan Hill) have been more useful than those from others (Nick Cohen, Marcus Berkmann)...
*Congratulations, too, to The New Puritans, the group of 15 young authors including Nicholas Blincoe, Matt Thorne, Alex Garland, Toby Litt, Scarlett Thomas, Daren King, Geoff Dyer and Rebecca Ray who contributed to the All Hail the New Puritans anthology of short stories in 2000. (Though, as Blincoe points out, 10 years on some of them are more Middle-Aged Puritans now.) We're told that the anthology is to be the subject of an academic monograph dedicated to the group and its legacy, compiled by a team of 10 Spanish academics led by one Dr Jose Francisco Fernandez at the Universidad de Almeria. The project was based on the Danish Dogme 95 movement, and had a 10-point manifesto which promised textual simplicity, grammatical purity, linear narratives and absolutely no poetry. Bizarrely, it is not thought to have been the subject of a serious academic work to date. "We were going to demand 15 academics, so that we had one each," Blincoe tells The IoS. "But Daren would probably want two." We're just pleased that the Puritans are being hailed, at last.
*Commiserations, however, to the authors of News of the World? Fake Sheiks and Royal Trappings, whose Amazon bestsellers' ranking strangely dropped from 11,962 to 13,548 in the hour following the news of the paper's closure. Readers, you don't have to boycott everything with NotW in the title, you know.
Filming to begin on two new series due to be aired on Dave from next year
TVBBC hopes latest Danish import will spell success
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Indonesia executions: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford will refuse to wear a blindfold when she faces firing squad
- 2 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 3 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 4 The top 50 cities for young people to live in
- 5 Uploading pictures to find out how old you are gives Microsoft the right to post them wherever they want
The C-Word - review: Sheridan Smith shines in a warm, honest adaptation of Lisa Lynch's book about living with cancer
X-Men Apocalypse: First look at Jubilee and Jean Grey played by Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner
American Horror Story: Hotel Angela Bassett set to make 'lots of trouble' with Lady Gaga in season 5
Game of Thrones season 5 episode 4 - review: Sansa is in danger of becoming another footnote in Westeros' bloody history
Adam Sandler's The Ridiculous Six: Make-up 'used to darken skin of actors to make them look Native American'
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils