Talking About Books . . .

Go Set a WatchmanBoth The Wall Street Journal and The Guardian have published the first chapter of Harper Lee’s forthcoming book Go Set a Watchman. If you don’t want to read it, you can listen to it as read by Reese Witherspoon. You can also read a review of the first chapter here.

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The QuartetAmerican historian and professor Joseph Ellis has been writing about the founding of our nation for a long time. His latest book on that subject, The Quartet: Orchestrating the Second American Revolution, 1783-1789, is getting a lot of publicity, including a very positive review in The New York Times.

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The Girl in The Spider's WebThe Girl in the Spider’s Web (Millennium Series #4) by Swedish journalist and bestselling author David Lagercrantz will be available on August 27, 2015. It was commissioned by the estate of Stieg Larsson who died from a heart attack after completing three of the ten novels he envisioned in his Millennium Series.

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Michael Dirda, my favorite book reviewer, is one of the most knowledgeable bibliophiles you will ever have the pleasure of receiving book suggestions from. Here is his list of summer’s hidden gems.

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The Poky Little PuppyWhen you were a child you probably owned one or more Little Golden Books. But do you know the story behind these wonderful children’s books? Mentalfloss has the story here.

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What books DIDN’T influence you? That’s an unusual question with some interesting answers.

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“Where 15 or 20 years ago the big trade publishers were, oddly, swamping the market with sort-of-scholarly micro-histories of salt or longitude, they now seem, with exceptions of course, to be tiptoeing away from specific, knotty, deeply researched and nuanced books about things. The sorts of book on which they tend now to rely are investigations of “big ideas”. Their lodestars or exemplars are the Malcolm Gladwells and Daniel Kahnemans and Nicholas Carrs.” So writes Sam Leith in a Guardian article concerning the crisis in high-caliber nonfiction publishing. Does anyone provide the in-depth researched nonfiction that we used to get from the mainstream publishers? Yes, the university presses.

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Daniel Britton, who is dyslexic, has created a font that illustrates the frustration that dyslexic people feel when they try to read. Think about that next time you zoom through a book.

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