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Jane Austen, we presume?









This may or may not be a portrait of Jane Austen as a thirteen-year-old girl.


In memory of Ray Bradbury, here are some words on the circus that changed his life.

So when I left the carnival that day I stood by the carousel and I watched the horses running around and around to the music of “Beautiful Ohio” and I cried. Tears streamed down my cheeks because I knew something important had happened to me that day because of Mr. Electrico. I felt changed. And so I went home and within days I started to write. And I’ve never stopped.


Reproductive rights in YA literature, featuring titles that suggest some frightening things in this context: Thumped, Partials, and Eve.


On why a particular pedophile joke is funny… and this is more interesting than I thought it would be, I promise.

In his lifelong study of folklore, the great scholar Alan Dundes frequently deconstructed the jokes we laugh at, including the sick ones. Naturally, he wrote about “gallows humor,” but he was careful to distinguish it from something called “executioner’s humor”—jokes told not by the man in the noose, but by the hangman, the one complicit in the awfulness of the situation. According to Dundes, cracking wise means the hangman acknowledges the murder, admits his role in it, and by owning it, believes himself absolved from guilt.


An interview with Oscar Hijuelos who, I confess, I enjoy watching interviews with a lot more than reading them. I think something about his mannerisms is charming.


They may sound nice, but apparently enhanced e-books are not the way we want to get children started reading.

Unlike print versions or basic ebooks, enhanced ebooks distract children from the story and stop them remembering narrative details according to new research.


[The Great Gatsby is] more than an American classic; it’s become a defining document of the national psyche, a creation myth, the Rosetta Stone of the American dream.

That’s a big, fat duh. Man climbs ladders of success and society and becomes living farce to reclaim lost love, achieves American Dream which only ends in tragedy. It doesn’t get much more American than that.

As a sidenote, though, I do disagree with this part:

And yet all the attempts to adapt it to stage and screen have only served to illustrate its fragility and its flaws. Fitzgerald’s prose somehow elevates a lurid and underdeveloped narrative to the level of myth.

I can say that I saw the Washington Ballet do “The Great Gatsby” at the Kennedy Center in… 2009 or 2010? And it was brilliant.


Fifty Shades of Grey is a rare and beautiful-if-club-footed unicorn. Apparently. And here’s what we can learn from it.

And also, whether or not you should even bother to read it. Although, let’s be honest, whether or not you’ve acted on these plans you know you’ve totally already decided.


Adorable analysis of The Perks of Being a Wallflower trailer. Yes, it takes place in the ’90s (pre-edit I cringed pretty hardcore), and yes, Emma Watson is totally doing the Manic Pixie Dream Girl-thing, though I never ever read Sam that way at all in the at-least-five times I read the book. Did you?


The 42 subgenres BookRiot recognizes: located here.

The two genres I recognize:
Really kind of shitty