How I read 10 classics in 30 minutes; Books about books, words, and punctuation; Dave Eggers’ THE CIRCLE and Donald Antrim’s The Hundred Brothers.
A quick note for those of you who receive this by email. Don’t forget that there is an audio file attached to this email. You can download and listen to our show right on your computer. Just look for the link at the bottom of the email. It came to our attention recently that some of you didn’t realize that there was an audio element to our show, and indeed, the audio is the primary way we talk about books. Give it a try if you haven’t listened before. Thanks!
Today, I read Jane Eyre, Moby Dick, and eight other classics:
I bought some classics for the new baby of a dear friend. I just couldn’t resist, and I couldn’t resist telling you about these incredibly cute board books for babies. There are two separate series: The first are “BabyLit” books by Jennifer Adams with art by Alison Oliver. These are counting, color, and weather primers all based on classics. The second series, Cozy Classics, are by Jack & Holman Wang. These tell the story of classic novels in just 12 words, illustrated with felted figurines. I just love these, though they may really be a gift for new parents rather than the baby.
This week’s selection, chosen by Michael: Lexicon by Max Barry, read by Harry Corrigan and Zach Appelman
Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.
Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 40,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 7-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook
Books, Words, & Punctuation (09:52)
Michael and I are both reading (or want to read) books that have words and language as a theme. It’s purely coincidence, but we thought it would be fun to tell you about these.
Shady Characters: The Secret Life of Punctuation, Symbols, & Other Typographical Marks by Keith Huston looks at the history of punctuation and other symbols. It’s perfect for word and type nerds.
A Compendium of Collective Nouns: From an Armory of Aardvarks to a Zeal of Zebras by Jason Sacher is a coffee-table-style book that is highly illustrated and so much fun to read. A Cog of Robots, anyone?
A Little History of Literature by John Sutherland from the publisher of A Little History of the World by EH Gombrich and other books in the series. The book features many short chapters about books, literature, publishing, reading habits, awards, and spotlights many authors and classic works of literature. It’s fun, very readable, and incredibly interesting.
Two books we can’t wait for you to read (22:32)
Donald Antrim recently won a MacArthur genius grant, and Michael talks about his novel The Hundred Brothers. It’s the story of 100 sons who gather together to search for the ashes of their father.
I’ve been raving to anyone who will listen about Dave Eggers’ The Circle. It’s the story of Mae Holland, who takes a dream job at a California tech company called The Circle. I think this novel can be read on two levels: Mae’s story is an entertaining page-turner on its own, but it’s also a fascinating look at where technology may take us.