We're hitting the ground running today, getting ourselves back up to speed. As is often the case, all sorts of good links have accrued during the period of our brief neglect and so we share them with you herewith. Also, do make sure to stop by Friday when we're going to be offering not one but two groovy titles in our Friday TEV Giveaway ...
* A group of UK writers are going on the record urging that children be taught the classics. Nick Hornby dissents (not altogether surprisingly).
* The dangers of local small town coverage - Rushdie is identified as a fish.
"The further you go into the mountains, the more dangerous it gets," said author Salmon Rushdie, speaking of the remote country of Kashmir where he spent boyhood summers, a region now torn by war between Muslims and Hindus.
* Whatever your opinion on the subject, you know things are bad when the lawyers move in to feast.
* NEA Director of Literature David Kipen uses the occasion of the Oscars to lament the treatment of screenwriters at the hands of Netflix and IMDB. (Interestingly, his new title is not mentioned as it's clearly deemed less pertinent to his film cred than his forthcoming book The Schreiber Theory, which gets a nod from the Boston Globe.)
* We're late to the game mentioning From The Stacks, the latest cool idea from the gang at Utne:
Utne receives some 1,200 magazines, newsletters, journals, weeklies, and zines. Add in hundreds of books, CDs, and DVDs, and it's a flood of media that lines the walls of our library and piles high on our desks. All the ideas, people, and stories inspire lively daily chatter, but can't all fit into our bimonthly magazine. So we've decided to share the gems here: Welcome to "From the Stacks," a new weekly feature on Utne.com. Check in every Friday for the freshest highlights of the independent and alternative media.
* The Strand has sold a Shakespeare Second Folio for $100,000. No link, we just got a release, so here are the details:
Strand Bookstore's Rare Book Room sold one of its most prized and coveted volumes this past weekend to an anonymous collector of books and Americana who is also a major industrial figure. The book, a William Shakespeare Second Folio published in 1632 and which sold for $100,000 dollars, had been in Strand's legendary Rare Book Room's Gold Safe at the store's 12th street location for over 25 Years.
Third generation owner Nancy Bass said the sale was a bittersweet one on both a personal and professional level. "Its hard to let go of a book that was part of our store for such a very long time and something that is truly a rarity created by a literary master. At the same time I'm comforted that in an age of technology, celebrity and instant gratification that something so important is still appreciated, is still considered desirable. Its a confirmation of the timelessness of great literature and its intrinsic value."
While this was store owners Fred and Nancy Bass's most expensive book, they still count among their rare treasures a first edition of Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind and a $35,000 dollar copy of James Joyce's Ulysses signed by both Joyce and Henri Matisse, who illustrated the book.
* Finally, in the 'sphere, we've been delinquent in not having linked sooner to the long-awaited return of Sean Walsh, via the excellent The Midnight Bell ... Dan Green writes a long and thoughtful post on Stephen Dixon's latest (Dixon was a first-round LBC nominee for Old Friends.) ... Scott reports on a Lawrence Weschler reading in San Francisco ... Laila has some "fans" in the government ... and poor Maud almost loses her pay.