CRITICAL LINKING: January 3, 2011

Our daily round-up of bookish links. Tastes great with coffee.


“As publishers, indies enjoy a few distinct advantages over the competition. First, they can emphasize titles of local interest by local writers. Second, they can showcase the books in their shops. Third, because of advances in printing, they can bring books to market more quickly than traditional publishers. Just as important, when an independent bookstore sells a copy of one of their own titles, they collect all the profits, rather than a sliver.”

Read local?


“While many comparisons come to mind for Holden (Hamlet and Seymour Glass being two of these, though each is overly generous to that snotty, sighing teenager), we think Gatsby fits like a well-crafted glove. Holden is American literature’s archetype for teenage angst and refusal to grow up, and Gatsby — a man building his world around a childhood dream — seems a natural extension.”

Dead wrong. Someone who hates phonies so much would never grow up to be Jay Gatsby.


“But if there is to be hope, there must be a path it can travel; and if there is to be redemption, there must be a redeemer. Who or what shall it be? Again, according to the program, it can only be one thing — the digital humanities, which does make an appearance in some of the panels that pose the question of the profession’s health and survival. The digital humanities is the name of the new dispensation and its prophets tell us that if we put our faith in it, we shall be saved. But what exactly is it?”

Can anyone say “academic bubble”?


“But interestingly enough, Muji notebooks actually come with a lot of the same functionalities as MS Word, allowing Ondaatje to cut and paste his novels as he goes along.”

“A lot of the same functionalities.” Name another one.


“Now a new Michiko, call herself @ActualNYTMK has appeared on the scene begging @criticmichiko to quit impersonating her. “

Wake me when someones makes a James Wood bot.


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