Critical Linking: May 4, 2012

A new public service is emerging online: authors and readers who are sifting through the morass of self-published books out there to find the quality titles amid the dross.

The image I have here is of people looking through garbage cans for glass bottles.


“ ‘Fifty Shames,’ “ he said, “paid more than my first two books that took several years to write. It’s just kind of mind-boggling to me.”

If you can’t beat ’em, parody ’em.


Expert ratings are correlated with Amazon ratings, suggesting that experts and consumers tend to agree in aggregate about the quality of a book. However, there are systematic differences between these sets of reviews.

That sound you hear is Ron Charles smashing his computer with a bacon-hammer.


Why do so many people say they’ve always dreamed of owning a bookstore?

Maybe I am under-thinking it, but isn’t it that book nerds would love to spend their days surrounded by books?


Celeste Ng, Jesmyn Ward, and Robin Sloan recommend their favorite books in our newest podcast, Recommended. Download it for free from Apple Podcasts or Google Play.