Between the Covers 20/05/2012
Your weekly guide to what's really going on inside the world of books
Sunday 20 May 2012
We love flavorwire.com's new collection of "extremely silly photos of extremely serious writers", which shows that even Nobel Prize-winners kick back and let their hair down from time to time.
Among them are Susan Sontag dressed as a teddy bear; Zore Neale Hurston performing a "crow dance"; Truman Capote "asleep" at Studio 54, with a lady's bonnet propped over his face; Ernest Hemingway kicking a beer can; and Maya Angelou on Sesame Street. Between the Covers would love to see this become an obligatory part of every publicity campaign, and of the writers publishing new books within the next couple of months, suggests that Hilary Mantel could take on Hemingway in beer can football, Michael Frayn would do a lovely crow dance, Richard Ford would be great on Sesame Street, Jonathan Franzen might like to wear a bonnet, and we'd do almost anything to see Martin Amis in a bear suit.
To mark its tenth anniversary this year, Hesperus Press is launching a competition for readers to "uncover a classic" and see their name in print. Readers are invited to nominate an out-of-print or neglected book and write a 500-word introduction explaining why it deserves to be republished and given a new lease of life. The Hesperus Press editorial team will choose one book to publish in September this year, complete with the reader's introduction. Nominations close on 1 June, and further details are at hesperuspress.com, under "competition".
Congratulations to Richard Dawkins, the first ever Fellow of the Royal Society to have a book shortlisted for the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize. His The Magic of Reality (Bantam Press, £20) joins books by previous prize winners Christiane Dorion and Robert Winston, and newcomers Clive Gifford, Richard Platt and Alex Frith. Between the Covers very much hopes to be invited to the award ceremony on 15 November. Last year, writers and journalists mingled with august fellows, including a real life astrophysicist who had interrupted his studies to wander down and find out what all the fuss and champagne was about.
Superfans of the Eurovision Song Contest, which takes place in Azerbaijan on Saturday, may like to extend the glory by buying a copy of David Mort's weird fiction A Song For Europe (£7.99, FeedARead.com). The plot is a typical one: "... just when it seems that Pete has hit rock bottom, an Internet cock-up changes his life forever. The boozy assistant caretaker from Liverpool is handed another chance of success when the fledgling democracy of Slavonicia hatches a sensational plan to save the nation from economic meltdown. The amiable but naive Pete finds himself recruited to boost the impoverished country's chances of boarding the EC gravy train. His task: to ensure that Slavonicia wins the Eurovision Song Contest. Others, however, have a different agenda ... watching the Eurovision will never be the same again!" Douze points for effort.
We are looking forward to Friday's National Towel Day, a day to celebrate the life and work of Douglas Adams, when The Literary Platform will announce the winner of their Douglas Adams Animation Competition, and Tor UK will reveal plans for new print and digital publications. Now there's a publisher that knows where its towel is.
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Review: Cilla, ITV TV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Thailand beach murders: Thai PM suggests 'attractive' female tourists cannot expect to be safe wearing bikinis
- 2 Scottish independence: What you shouldn't tweet about if you want to avoid jail today
- 3 Scottish independence: Five reasons Salmond is secretly hoping for a 'No' vote
- 4 Isis plan to 'behead random member of the public' in Sydney thwarted by Australian police
- 5 Scottish independence: Andy Murray backs Yes campaign in eleventh hour decision
Laurie Lee's Rosie: What is it like to inspire a writer's work and be immortalised forever on the page?
Downton Abbey: Liam Neeson wants to be a stableman in period drama
The Walking Dead season 5 synopsis is full of spoilers and existential questions
Star Wars 7 leaked set photo of Adam Driver changes everything
Pharrell Williams says 'Blurred Lines' criticism is out of context
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter