Critical Linking

The Cutest Little Free Libraries You Ever Did See: Critical Linking, January 24, 2020

Critical Linking is a daily roundup of the most interesting bookish links from around the web sponsored by Book Riot’s new literary fiction podcast Novel Gazing



“…Little Free Libraries are exactly what they sound like…tiny “libraries” where anyone can pass by and take a book that’s inside or leave one if they’d like. They are alllll over the world and you can register to “host” one on your property, or wherever. You can order a pre-built little library OR you can build one yourself. They are all really cute, but here are some extra-cute ones.”

Some of these are nicer than my Average Unfree Apartment.

“But if I remove the experience of the book—just mentally set it aside while considering this—does the movie stand on its own just fine? Honestly, yes. It’s a product of its time in a lot of ways, and yet ahead of its time in its focus on the relationships between women, family, and community. One of the major changes from the book to the film was the fleshing out of the aunt characters, played magnificently by Stockard Channing and Diane Wiest, who make the film about a million times better every time they are on screen. The film has different goals than the book—and that might actually be okay.”

I find that one person’s adaptation trash is another’s treasure, but that’s just me.

“I want to be clear: I am saying all of this as someone who has devoted my professional life to books, who enjoys a kitschy book tote and has huffed many a page in my time. I understand the romance of the book.

But I also recognize that liking books does not make me a good or smart or special person. My preference for them is not a unique quality that proves my moral superiority, or in fact anything that it’s worth constructing my personal identity around. Neither is my preference for shelving my books spine-out, organized by genre and publication date. All of those preferences are value-neutral statements.”

I see what you’re saying, but so we’re clear: I’m never going to tear my books in half.