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My Favorite Literary Love Letter

I'm not the most die-hard Austen fan. Lizzie Bennet is one of my favorite heroines, Colonel Brandon, one of my favorite male characters. As I grow older, though, I fall more and more in love with the book, Persuasion. I'm convinced that the older Jane...

The Creepiest Children’s Book in America

Before Michael Berenstain turned his parent's legacy, The Berenstain Bears, into books for Christian children only, he was actually a very cool guy. In the 1980's, his illustrations were far beyond anything his parents had done and no book he wrote was scarier than The...

Watch Banned Book, Uncle Tom’s Cabin 1903

This is the oldest, surviving film version of the very important book, Uncle Tom's Cabin. A very loose translation, this silent movie is offensive and full of disgusting stereotypes. Ironic considering Harriet Beecher Stowe put her literary efforts into humanizing slaves, creating the most sympathetic...

Charlotte Lucas is Alive and Well

Or maybe she's not doing so well. A friend I know whose in her mid 50's (I'll call her, Patty), was talking to me the other day about how she is taking back her loser of an ex-boyfriend. This was a much younger man who cheated on...

Alice in Wonderland in 1903

I'm a sucker for silent movies and now the first film version of Alice in Wonderland has been restored. Even though it was made in 1903, there's some pretty high tech stuff going on. Just wait until you see her shrinking to fit through the door...

Self Publishing 102: Getting into the Bookstores

Otherwise called, "why isn't the bookstore carrying my self published book?" One of the biggest obstacles as a self published writer (I am one!) is getting your printed book into the bookstores, especially the bookstore chains. I've found that many independent bookstores are more open to...

If Jo Married Laurie

Warning: This is an article that has *spoilers* for both the book and movie, Little Women. After watching and reading these so many times, they tend to blend together. One of the great literary crimes of all time, is the moment Laurie proposes in Little Women...

Yuppie Porn Authors Writing About Happy Endings

It's risky to write a novel about your true life, love story. If you do so, there's an extra dab of pressure to make it work. After all, people seem to gloat in the failure of others. The recent news about Elizabeth Gilbert's divorce from "Felipe" in...

Self Publishing 101: Choosing Your Publisher

UPDATED 12/14/17 I've made it easy for you. You're welcome. Self publishing sucks. Believe me, I get it. Not only am I self published but I have worked in the book business for years, enough to know what gets into the stores and what doesn't. I know...

Books to Read if You Love Jane Austen

I had one very enthusiastic Austen fan in Springfield, Ohio who would come into my B. Dalton three times a week, asking me if I could find any books that had anything to do with Darcy or Jane Austen, in general. She would buy anything...

Jane Austen and Aging

I noticed something recently as I viewed Sense and Sensibility for the first time in years. As I watched Marianne Dashwood make a fool of herself over Willoughby, I was unnerved and this close to throwing my popcorn at the screen. He's not that into you anymore. Don't...

Hey, Schools. Give The Virginian a Chance

A few years ago, at Barnes & Noble, a bunch of high school kids started coming in to buy Lonesome Dove as recommended reading for school. As I handed them the five pound, 900 page novel, they gasped and I sympathized. Their situation was worse...

Forgotten Writers – Phillis Wheatley

Do you know who Phillis Wheatley is? If you said no, you're far from being alone. Even a bookseller I worked with who prided himself on his black heritage didn't know. He's a talented artist who was making church panels of famous African Americans. I asked...

The Worst Book I Ever Read

In 2005, I was shocked by a French movie called Ma Mère. I was going through a Louis Garrel kick and ordered it online only to be thankful that my roommate wasn't home to catch me watching a movie where some guy has sex with his...

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