Carnegie Medal Award Winners

July 21st, 2014

 

 

Donna Tartt and Doris Kearns Goodwin Win Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction.

 

On June 29, at the American Library Association Annual Conference in Las Vegas, the Andrew Carnegie Medals were awarded to:

FICTION – Donna Tartt for The Goldfinch

I’m about a quarter of the way into this very long novel and it seems a bit of a shaggy dog story to me at this point, but I reserve judgment until I finish (I respect that it has won numerous big-time awards!).

imagesNZL3ODLL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NONFICTION:  Doris Kearns Goodwin for The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism

imagesQOP6KG3A

 

Nadine Gordimer, author and anti-apartheid activist, dies at 90

July 14th, 2014

 

Nadine Gordimer,  South African writer and Nobel Prize-winner, has died at the age of 90.  The author of over two dozen books – fiction and non-fiction – died  yesterday in Johannesburg.   Three of Gordimer’s books were banned in South Africa during the apartheid era.  See here: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/15/books/nadine-gordimer-novelist-and-apartheid-foe-dies-at-90.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&version=LargeMediaHeadlineSum&module=photo-spot-region&region=photo-spot&WT.nav=photo-spot&_r=0

Library Reads – Books recommended by librarians across the country

July 14th, 2014

Screen-Shot-2014-06-10-at-2_00_39-PM

梅蘭芳回憶錄

July 3rd, 2014

124362725_11n梅蘭芳回憶錄 Mei Lanfang hui yi lu / 梅蘭芳 著,2013

梅蘭芳回憶錄》係由梅蘭芳口述,許姬傳與許源來記錄。全書分《舞臺生活四十年》和《東遊記》兩部分。《舞臺生活四十年》在50年代初出版了前兩集,第三集手稿在文革中遺失,後經收集曾經在報刊登載的部分以及梅夫人保存的最後兩章,終於在80年整理出版。與其他梅蘭芳回憶錄版本不同的是,這個版本還在第三集後附有梅蘭芳記錄日本之行的《東遊記》。

第一集記述了梅蘭芳的家庭,學藝過程,初次到上海和囘北京演出的情況。第二集講述了他第二和第三次到上海,以及到武漢時期的演出概況。第三集特別介紹了梅蘭芳演出《奇雙會》、《天女散花》、《童女斬蛇》、和《霸王別姬》的情況,以及和余叔岩、楊小樓合作所演的戲目。最後一部分《東游記》則是梅蘭芳1956年夏應邀訪日演出時的個人見聞隨筆。

梅蘭芳自己認爲他並沒有什麽天生過人之處,起先教他的師傅直接跟他說祖師沒給他飯吃,自己的姑母形容他是“言不出衆,貌不驚人”,他日後的成就則完全可以説是他個人後天努力的結果。回憶錄中處處可見梅蘭芳對排戲過程以及唱念做打極其細緻的講解,有的甚至是逐字逐步推敲,大師、宗師之譽實在恰如其分。他的回憶錄,對於研究中國戲曲史,特別是近代京劇表演藝術及其發展,具有極高的學術和歷史價值。

John–Chinatown

Summer Reading Recommendations

June 23rd, 2014

Your Summer Reading List:

Rashida Jones, Elizabeth Gilbert, Bill and Melinda Gates and many more

share their book recommendations - From The TED Blog

summerreadinglist_istock_34481384_HiRes_983px

IMPAC Award goes to Colombian novelist Juan Gabriel Vasquez

June 19th, 2014

Colombian novelist Juan Gabriel Vásquez on Thursday became the first South American writer to win the  International Impac Dublin Literary Award, for “The Sound of Things Falling”.

http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/06/12/juan-gabriel-vasquez-wins-international-impac-dublin-literary-award/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

回首萧瑟處

June 10th, 2014

s25683429回首萧瑟處 Hui shou xiao se chu / 沈钰 著 2013

沈鈺的長篇小説《回首蕭瑟處》講述了女大學生鄭雨晨及其家人在文革期間的悲慘遭遇。主人公鄭雨晨思想一貫“進步”,在文革前曾違逆祖母的意願,執意把自己在家中發現的祖父所遺留的金條上交政府,並自豪“以實際行動背叛了剝削階級的祖上,實踐了自己在入團申請書上寫下的誓言— 與一切腐朽的剝削階級思想徹底決裂。”

因爲自己的“進步”表現,鄭雨晨獲得了就讀軍工學院的資格。可是好景不長,因爲家庭的“黑”背景被查出,鄭雨晨被勒令轉校,自此厄運便接踵而來:武鬥,下鄉,被要求與家庭劃清界限,抄家,父親被監禁身亡等等等等。最後雨晨選擇了“撲向萬丈深淵,撲向大地母親的溫暖懷抱。”

讓作者下決心要完成這部小説的是中國的年輕一代對這場浩劫的無知。雖然故事是以小説的形式表現的,但從實際上來講,情節並沒有讓人感到有任何虛構誇張的地方。經歷過或了解那場中華文明和民族大浩劫大災難的人們都很清楚,比鄭雨晨一家遭遇類似或更爲悲慘的人數以万計。作者親歷文革,又身處四川,對四川造反派之間武鬥之殘酷、荒誕尤爲熟悉,因此也花了不少的篇幅對此進行了描寫。

John-Chinatown

 

Baileys Women’s Fiction Prize goes to Eimear McBride

June 5th, 2014

The Irish author Eimear McBride has won the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction for her debut novel, “A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing.”

[The book, although published in Great Britain, will not be published in the U.S. until SeptemberIt certainly sounds interesting.... click on the title to go to Amazon and take a look at the reader reviews - half of them praise the book as the best novel ever, and half of them hate it.  J in the Branches]

http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/06/04/eimear-mcbride-a-debut-novelist-wins-baileys-fiction-prize/

 

Northern California Book Awards – 2014

June 3rd, 2014

The Northern California Independent Booksellers Association announced their awards at the end of April for books published in 2013 and written or illustrated by Northern Californian authors or artists:          

 

FICTION

a constellation of vital phenomena

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra (Hogarth)

NONFICTION

Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal by Mary Roach (W.W. Norton)

REGIONAL

cool gray city of love

Cool Gray City of Love: 49 Views of San Francisco by Gary Kamiya (Bloomsbury)

CHILDREN’S PICTURE BOOK (Tie)

Battle Bunny by Mac Barnett and Jon Scieszka (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)

The Dark by Lemony Snicket and Jon Klassen (Little Brown Books for Young Readers)

MIDDLE GRADE READERS

Al Capone Does My Homework by Gennifer Choldenko (Dial)

TEEN LIT

Boxers & Saints by Gene Luen Yang (First Second)

FOOD WRITING

The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World’s Great Drinks by Amy Stewart (Algonquin)

POETRY

Fire Break by George Albon (Nightboat Books)

SPECIAL MENTION

Robert Duncan: The Collected Later Poems and Plays by Robert Duncan & Peter Quartermain (Editor), University of California Press

Robert Duncan: Collected Essays and Other Prose by Robert Duncan & James Maynard (Editor), University of California Press


Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction – Shortlist Announced

June 3rd, 2014

 

The winner will be selected tomorrow, June 4.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie - Americanah

Hannah Kent - Burial Rites

Jhumpa Lahiri - The Lowland

Audrey Magee - The Undertaking

Eimear McBride - A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing

Donna Tartt - The Goldfinch

 

2014 Shortlist

Americanah_med  burial-rites_med  lowland_med

undertaking_med  A-Girl-is-a-Half-Formed-Thing_med  goldfinch_med