Critical Linking: November 2, 2013

An ordinance adopted by the City of Copperas Cove could mean an arrest for patrons if they don’t return library materials.

A recent case landed one man behind bars for a book he’d had checked out for more than three years.

On Wednesday Jory Enck was booked into jail and released for overdue library materials.

Don’t mess with Texas?

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Apparently, the Internet has decided all by itself that men love the same things. There’s enough overlap on these lists to make you wonder if the publications that put them together are all cribbing from some universal guy cheat-sheet. But what’s more interesting is that the themes that underlie these book choices all make assumptions about men that, well, men themselves might not be comfortable with. It’s not that these are bad books individually; many of them are classics and most of them are worth a look. It’s just that, taken together and put in these lists, they seem to showcase an infantile, reductive version of what our culture sees as “masculinity.”

A preettty hilarious take-down of all those “Books All Men Should Read” lists floating out there on the bookternet.

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R.L. Stine, whose “Goosebumps” books are a children’s publishing phenomenon, is reviving another beloved series: “Fear Street,” a best-selling line of young-adult horror books set in the fictional town of Shadyside.

Will they feature high school students tweeting as they run for their lives from each other? (I’m going to read all of these, for the record).

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I can recall being introduced to Martin Amis (whom I was busy plagiarizing at the time) and being shown his new baby. Meeting Martin Amis for me, at nineteen, was like meeting God. I said: “Nice baby.” This line, like all conversation, could not be rewritten. I remember feeling, like Joseph K., that the shame of it would outlive me.

Zadie Smith’s intro to her interview of Ian McEwan might be the best part of the whole thing!

 

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