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It's Friday, so you know what that means! Esther is here to give you a little update on what we're reading and some interesting news.
Akshay writes, "I just started reading an interesting book called The World Without Us, by Alan Weisman. It’s a thought experiment about what would happen to the earth if humans suddenly vanished. Weisman talks to architects, chemists, and biologists, and describes the exact manner in which our handiwork would come apart. He describes the slow collapse of houses, bridges, and monuments, and then the takeover of all of our cities and towns by the natural world. It’s weirdly fascinating, sort of like a disaster movie without any people in it."
As for myself, I mentioned last week that I was about to start reading A Passage to India by E M Forster, and I'm currently halfway through. It does not, in my opinion, read like a white guy trying to figure out what he's seeing in India in the 1920s. Rather than being travel writing, it is a novel that shows the tensions between the Indians and the occupying English during the 1920s. Gandhi, while he is not directly mentioned, was active during this time, and many of his ideas and arguments are at least glossed over indirectly in the book. While it's an attempt to try to include the Indian perspective, it is still solidly from the English point of view. The language is poetic and the characters intriguing. I look forward to finishing it.
Some news for all of you in New England: Two NE Booksellers Launch Network of Independents
And something a little more global: Taipei 2011: Positive Vibes
If you'd like to try your hand at winning an award: Dan Poynter's Awards for eBooks Calls for Submissions
For fans of the Wall Street Journal: Paper Starts New Website
A very useful resource for editors: Kapost Launches Salesforce for Editors
And for anyone following the Borders saga: Waiting for Borders