Critical Linking: October 19, 2014

Test your knowledge of fiction’s bad guys, from Hannibal Lecter to Nurse Ratched.

This quiz on fictional villains is tough.


Since then, the game has gotten bigger, spreading to other countries and languages. In a new blog post, Facebook has unveiled which books are beloved in nations that have had 20,000 or more responses—that is, France, India, Italy,Mexico, Brazil, and the Philippines.

What did they find? In those six nations—as in the U.S. and U.K.-dominated first tally—the Boy Who Lives dominates. Readers in Mexico and Italy revere Gabriel Garcia Marquez, whose One Hundred Years of Solitude ranked only #38 in the first list. And readers in many places are fond of a Stephen King book that in English is known as It—but which, in French, becomes the equally concise Ça.(Also interesting: Except in India, the Deep South-focused To Kill a Mockingbird is nowhere to be found.)

An interesting look at the results of that Facebook meme about which books most affected you throughout the world.


[C]heck out some of the greatest first novels written since 1950 — some that sparked great careers, some that are still the writers’ best work, and some that remain free-standing (but hopefully not for long!).

A solid list of 50 of the greatest debut adult novels published since 1950. Would you add any others?



A nifty infographic comparing the lives of Jane Austen and Charles Dickens and what impact when, where, and how they grew up had on their writing.

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