Aug 4, 2010
Our listeners share several ways to find books set in a specific location; We investigate series and trilogies and remember some of our favorites; and two books we can't wait for you to read.
Books on the Nightstand is going on vacation! Ann is on vacation up in Maine this week, and I'm taking next week off to clean my basement (do I know how to live, or what?), so there will not be another new episode of the podcast until August 18. Never fear; we've lined up some guest blog posts from our friends at Random Acts of Reading, and we've discovered a relatively new book podcast that we think you'll enjoy. Guys Can Read is a weekly podcast from Luke Navarro and Kevin McGill and it's very informal and conversational, just like Books on the Nightstand. We urge you to check it out!
In episode 86, we read an email from a listener who wanted an easy way to find books set in a particular destination and we got several suggestions. Annette, the Random House rep for NYC pointed us to Idlewild Books, which is a travel store that also carries fiction and everything is organized by country or region. LibraryThing was also recommended several times, including the Reading Globally group and LibraryThing's Common Knowledge search. Then of course, there's your local library, both their online search, if available, and the librarians themselves.
Several listeners have suggested we do an episode on series, so here it is. Some of the series we talk about include The Three Investigators (which Ann and I both remember fondly), Brian Jacques' Redwall, Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books and Alan Bradley's Flavia DeLuce mysteries.
Another question we received was about trilogies. Why so often are there three books in a series? We have a couple theories, but nothing definitive. Ann checked Wikipedia and, while they don't give a reason as to why three is better than two or four or more, there is some interesting information on the history of trilogies.
It also occurred to us that most series are either children's books, mysteries or works of science fiction or fantasy. There must be some general fiction series out there that we're missing. Tell us what we've overlooked and any other thoughts you have on series or trilogies. Do you wait until all the books in a series are out before you start it? Is three better than two or four? Let us know!
While driving home the other day, I saw a sloppily-corrected typo on a billboard and it reminded about a new book that's just out called The Great Typo Hunt by Jeff Deck and Benjamin Herson. These guys traveled across the country and corrected typos wherever and whenever they saw them. Sometimes they were thanked; sometimes - not so much. The project started out as a blog, which you can check out here. Ann is thrilled to be able to finally tell us about The Tower, The Zoo and the Tortoise by Julia Stuart, which will arrive in North American bookstores on August 10. Balthazar Jones is modern-day Beefeater who lives at the tower of London with his wife Hebe, and Mrs. Cook, the world's oldest tortoise. This quirky novel (and there's no better word to describe it) has already found a legion of admirers amongst booksellers and is perfect for fans of The Guernsey Literary and Potato-Peel Pie Society and Major Pettigrew's Last Stand.