Friday, November 30, 2007

Random Assortment of Various Links

Need gift ideas for the manga fan in your life? has a nice list, complete with small reviews. (Thanks to for the tip.)

First week sales totals are in on's Kindle e-book. Although the headlines were many, the sales were few. To cover for their failure, has their lackeys in the press already beating the drum for the version 2.0.

Whoever said comics are dead needs to look at the sales numbers for DC/Vertigo's Y: The Last Man. The trade paperback releases of this title just get more and more popular. First month sales of book two increased a whopping 66% over book one! This news is all the more encouraging considering that Y is actually a damn good read. Check out these reviews.

The 9 most badass bible verses, brought to you by Cracked Magazine. The selections are both apt and hilarious. The accompanying illustrations are just icing on the unleavened bread. (Thanks to BoingBoing for the tip.)

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Gift Tips for the Bookish

Jimbo Vinyl Figure

Gary Panter, one of the late 70's/early 80's greatest punk rock cartoonists (as well as the set designer for Pee-Wee's Playhouse!), has just released "the first officially licensed" figure of his most famous creation, Jimbo. The loinclothed figure is limited to 750 pieces and comes with a 32 page book chronicling the character's various comics appearances thus far. Price: $49.99. Available: here.

Mighty Bright Book Light: Triple LED Deluxe Book Light Kit

This is the book light of choice for most of our staff. If you've ever seen the dark, raccoon-like circles around our eyes, you know it works. It has a telescopic arm, maneuverable head, and AC adapter, not to mention a cool, cyber-snake look. Price: $26.99. Available: In our store.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Book News, In Brief

Norman Mailer wins the 'Bad Sex' award for his fictitious portrayal of the incestuous conception of Adolf Hitler. Do we applaud this victory, or yell out, "Too soon!"? Runners-up for this much lauded prize included the book, Will, by Christopher Rush (wherein the author offers a firsthand account of the dirty deed as performed by William Shakespeare and his wife, Anne Hathaway) and The Stone Gods, by Jeannette Winterson (whose woman-on-robot sex scene is said to have lacked both spark and pulse).

Via AP: Over 100 authors (including John Updike, Anne Tyler and Walter Isaacson) participated in a 'year's best releases' poll initiated by the nation's book critics. Authors and critics were asked to choose five different works in three different categories: fiction, nonfiction and poetry. The winners were novelist Junot Diaz's The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Danticat's Brother, I'm Dying and, in a three-way tie for poetry, Robert Hass' Time and Materials, the late Zbigniew Herbert's Collected Poems and Robert Pinsky's Gulf Music. In a remarkable moment of complete obviousness mixed with confusing rhetoric, John Freeman, president of the National Book Critics Circle, told The Associated Press, "Best-seller lists really only show people what's selling, not what people are reading." Um, that makes zero sense, John.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Book News, In Brief

Imitating the popular Rough Guide cell phone service in Britain, Fodor's Travel Books plans to provide a similar service for Americans. United States of Americans. You Canucks are on your own. To sign up for the service, visit

Short-sighted publishers damn Chinese readers to some of the worst book translations on Earth. Or as our translator in Shanghai tells it, 'Near-sighted pubblers goddamn Chinese red rears to sum of those worse bok transformations in Erf.'

How-to tell if your friendly neighborhood bookstore blogger is desperate for links and news items: They recommend an article like, How-To Pick How-To Books. The internet needs a Bill W. for those of us who realize we've hit rock bottom.