Some Bookish Links

So, I’m enjoying my Linktastic! posts listing stuff I read that was interesting and that I think YOU might find interesting. I’m going to try to do them on a semi-regular basis. In this edition, for your perusal, are a bunch of articles I had on hand about books, authors and other bookish matters. (Some of these are really old because I’ve been working on this post for months and I tend to not read links I get pointed to right away–bad blogger.)

  • What better way to celebrate books than using their spines to create some poems? (Who needs magnets!?) Need some inspiration first? Check out this flickr set of examples from the Somers Library. (Originally brought to my attention by Travis at 100 Scope Notes who has his own gallery of samples.)
  • Ever wonder how NYPL sorts their books to fill holds? Wonder no longer, read about it in “That Mighty Sorting Machine Is Certainly One for the Books” by Kate Taylor. There is also a video of the sorter in action. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I have always been fascinated with the annexing aspect of the library because it was so distant and mysterious and really enjoyed the video for that reason.
  • Angels and Ages: Lincoln’s Language and its Legacy by Adam Gopnik is a fairly old article from The New Yorker magazine. It’s also one of my all time favorite articles. It’s a great look at Lincoln’s last day and also how real history isn’t always what gets written in the history books.
  • Yale Alumni Magazine recently ran a brief feature by Alex Beam on the Psychology of the Bookplate. Beam covers a lot of territory in a short space ending, as I would have myself, by suggesting that e-books will never be the same as real, physical books anymore than they will manage to occupy the same place as real books. But first Beam talks about the bookplate acting as a way to possess and even become a book. My personal library has no bookplates–I think of them as something very near damage when it comes to a book (though I love a good signed book as much as the next girl). But when I was in grade school my aunt worked for a publisher and had access to tons of books that she gave to my school’s library. Each book had a bookplate indicating it was donated by . . . me. It’s a strange thing to walk around a school and be thanked by strangers for books when you’re eight years old–bookplates are powerful stuff. Not as powerful as an e-book. Not yet anyway:

“Their library exists on a server farm, where real estate is cheap. My library is here, in this room where I am writing.”

  • The Subconscious Shelf (a blog from the magazine) reminded me why I fell in love with The New Yorker in the first place. I can’t afford the monetary or physical strain of subscribing again. But I will be a faithful reader of this blog that analyzes user submitted photos of bookshelves. What could be better? This idea is so right, so pure, that I can add nothing to make it more enticing. Go, read it now, finish this post later. I think one of my life goals just became getting my shelves analyzed there (I’d like to see them handle my hodgepodge of picture books, YA books, and what not). Exclusive Bonus Content: This also ties in with my post about personal library organization.
  • Here is an old article from the NYT about E-Readers and eye strain. Basically, nothing works perfectly to read in bright sunlight or dim light but there are pros and cons to all of the different reading media available. I still prefer books, but that might have to do with being able to get books from the library. Who knows?
  • I love Charles Dickens. And I especially love A Christmas Carol and all of the different movie versions it has inspired. One of my friends once told me that he read it every year on Christmas Eve (or thereabout, I can’t remember the specific day) and he would only get a gift from his sister once he had finished it. Anyway, there is only one manuscript of that famous novel and, amazingly, it’s available online for your viewing pleasure! (I find it really hard to read, but then I have a hard enough time with my own handwriting so maybe you all will fair better.)
  • Not exactly book related, but definitely worth reading for all the twitter users out there now that Twitter’s archive belongs to the Library of Congress. (First thoughts: Who would want all those tweets? I guess we know why I’m not an archivist . . .)
  • Also not exactly book related, BUT the Eclipse movie is out now and maybe you want a taste of it without paying for a pricey ticket. I direct you to Jen Lancaster’s improved version of the story. For bonus awesome check out all of her like-themed posts (read: random but funny) here.
  • Last, but not least, I haven’t made it any secret that I think Jacob is way more fun and better in every possible way than Edward. That said, here is an explanation of why Jacob cannot win.

“Why does Team Jacob always have to lose? Because Eclipse is a movie about rejecting adulthood, not just as a person but also as a culture. It’s about rejecting adult relationships between men and women, but also between people of different races and between people from the city (like Victoria’s army) and people from Forks. It’s about never crossing boundaries, never leaving home.”

And on that note, I will leave you dear readers.