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Posts by: Amanda Hildebrand

Shakespeare Didn’t Make up as Many Words as We Think

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For the Guardian, Alison Flood writes on the bias of the Oxford English Dictionary towards “famous literary examples” instead of the actual origin, resulting in the incorrect attribution of several still-used words and phrases to Shakespeare. Flood writes that there are multitudes of evidence showing earlier usages of phrases such as “wild goose chase” and “it’s Greek […]

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Roald Dahl’s Hidden Village Home

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Take a stroll through the storybook town of Great Missenden, a tiny village in the county of Buckinghamshire in Britain, and the home of children’s literature’s grand-wizard, Roald Dahl, in the latter half of his life. For Hazlitt, Michael Hingston tours Great Missenden and reflects on the similarities between the little town and the settings […]

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Bringing Diversity to the Comic Book Store World

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Ariell Johnson, owner of Amalgam Comics and Coffeehouse in Philadelphia, is the East Coast’s first black female comic book store owner. For CNN, Ryan Bergeron talks with Johnson about opening up the geek world to young black girls, bringing comic authors of color to the forefront, and creating a welcoming space for comic lovers everywhere.

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How to Survive as a Villain in Literature

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On NPR’s All Things Considered, Petra Mayer offers advice to those who she describes as the “unpunished” villains of literature (O’Brien from Orwell’s 1984, X-Men’s Magneto, Milton’s Satan): win over the audience with your cause and relatable personal faults, and you’ll not only survive to the last page but maybe also land a spot in the […]

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Sandra Cisneros on Her First Apartment

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Rachel Martin, host of the NPR series Next Chapter, sits down with Sandra Cisneros, beloved author of The House on Mango Street, to reflect on Cisneros’s experience of moving into her first apartment. Cisneros speaks on the independence she found away from her “father’s roof,” and delivers brilliant wisdom on how to accept loneliness, how to […]

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Your Favorite Pokémon’s Book of Life Advice

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Never fear Pokémon GO-ers (and those of you who have managed to avoid the Poké-wave); the pocket monsters aren’t quite done yet—they’re writing a book. More specifically, it’s an “inspirational guide to life,” as described by Emma Oulton for Bustle. The Pokémon Book of Joy, besides having the most uplifting title ever, will feature adorable illustrations […]

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Kid’s Lit: Team Order or Team Nonsense?

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Children’s literature as a genre has grown exponentially from early morality-racked lesson books to modern goofy masterpieces such as Captain Underpants—how did we switch from Order to Nonsense, and have we completely switched over? At Slate, Katy Waldman sits down with literary critic and professor Seth Lerer to discuss the evolution of children’s literature and the […]

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Soldiers-Turned-Authors on War Literature

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For NPR Books, Quil Lawrence talks with a handful of soldiers-turned-authors about the genre of war literature that has been catalyzed by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. These authors want their audiences to know that war is not all Hollywood-scale battle scenes, and warn against the glamorization of war stories and hero-worshipping of veterans.

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Publishers Need Diversity, Too

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The publishing industry is at a cultural turning point, with recognition and celebration of writers of color on the rise. But despite the surge in the publishing industry’s interest in works by writers of color, the people working behind the scenes still lack much-needed diversity. Recent studies have found that the majority of those who […]

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Outside the Lit Community, Looking In

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Most writers, especially those who are just starting out, feel lost and lonely in a literary world that seems to have pre-constructed cliques that are so hard to infiltrate. Anne Korkeakivi, an ex-pat and ever-traveling author with literary connections spread around the world, tells us that we are all peripheral to the literary community, and […]

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Fiction’s Rise of Female Friendships

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Readers are shifting focus from outdated gender expectations and conceptions of identity, and as a result, complex, non-compartmentalized female friendships are blooming in fiction. Books about these friendships are spaces for female writers and readers to explore the complexity of their relationships and selves without the influence of men, whose presence can quickly turn a […]

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You Have to Get Up

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Corporate escapee-turned-author Xu Xi shared a few choice fiction writing tips with the Jakarta Post. She suggests utilizing the formulas in spreadsheets to calculate timelines and characters’ ages, and recharging your writing energy by getting up from your desk and “being responsible for yourself”—which means cleaning up the house and doing other chores, simple tasks that […]

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Cuba’s Unfinished Race Revolution

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I want readers to understand how racism and antiracism can exist at the same time even in a revolutionary setting. Antiracism in Cuba: The Unfinished Revolution by author and professor Devyn Benson is the long-untold history of racism against Black Cubans.  The San Francisco Bay View interviewed Benson about the recent publication of her book, […]

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Serial Fiction While You Wait for Next Week’s Episode

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NPR talks with the creators of Serial Box, a company self-described as the “HBO for readers.” Serial Box releases “episodes” you read over a 10-16 week season, in the hopes that readers will anticipate the next installment like they would the next episode of The Bachelorette, or binge-read a series after purchasing the complete box set.

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Books by Bicycle, within an Hour

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Londoners, if for whatever conceivable reason you need a book on your front doorstep within the next hour, there’s an app for that.  NearSt is a new London-based app that offers a selection of books from nearly forty local bookstores that can be browsed, ordered, and delivered straight to you via bicycle courier. However, the app […]

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New Book Shows Why Seinfeld Sticks

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Now what’s… the big deal… about Seinfeld? Two decades later, the hit sitcom is still being referenced, watched, and loved by audiences around the world. Author and TV critic Jennifer Keishin Armstrong explores the great question of the show about nothing in her new book Seinfeldia. The secret, Armstrong says, is in the show’s almost […]

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Book Deserts Leave Low-Income Children without Books

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A recent study has revealed that low-income neighborhoods in Detroit, Washington, DC, and Los Angeles, are lacking in children’s books in their schools, stores, and libraries, creating “book deserts” for children living in poverty. Limited access to opportunities for reading has serious repercussions for these children in both their personal and educational development, Phys Org […]

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Borderland Books That Travel

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Veliz Books, a new literary press based out of El Paso, has just begun work delivering contemporary literature to the borderlands. The press has already published three books by talented Latino authors, and each is translated into English, Spanish, and Portuguese. Veliz translated means “suitcase,” reflecting the press’s mission to “create books that travel.” Find […]

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20 Years of Latino Children’s Literature

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The American Library Association’s Pura Belpré Awards just had its 20th anniversary this past weekend, celebrating two decades of outstanding Latino writers and illustrators who create books for Latino children and teens. The Monitor reported on the event, which featured dozens of prominent Latino authors and illustrators whose work has showcased and celebrated Latino culture, heritage, […]

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Black Girls Rock! Founder to Release Debut Book

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Beverly Bond, creator of the annual BET award show Black Girls Rock!, is releasing a book to continue her mission of celebrating the achievements and history of black women and girls around the world. Black Girls Rock!: Celebrating the Power, Beauty and Brilliance of Black Women will “combine powerful photography with inspirational advice, original poetry, and […]

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Reading Outside the Curriculum

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Unseen, a literary magazine founded by Singaporean university students, wants us to release ourselves from “the pressure-cooker environment of examinations” and all the literature we’re required to read for them. The Unseen creators believe that reading outside of the curriculum encourages literary creativity and exploration, and want to spread the wealth to their peers everywhere.

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George Gets Curious about Ramadan

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Children’s literature’s most beloved rambunctious primate, Curious George, has a new installment in his adventures, and this time he’s curious about a holiday most Americans remain clueless about: the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. The Huffington Post reflects on the timeliness of It’s Ramadan, Curious George in light of increasing Islamophobia in American culture. Author Hena Khan […]

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Fighting for Community Pride with Street Murals

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Isla Maciel, a small, poor community on the outskirts of bustling Buenos Aires, is experiencing a cultural makeover in the form of street art. Young artists aim to ignite communal pride, educate on issues of inequality and violence, and display the marginalized voices of Isla Maciel on every surface of the community with beautiful murals—some […]

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