The most common things left behind in hotel rooms are chargers, “intimate” items, and books. Every year, Travelodge releases a list of those unfortunate tomes, and here is this year’s top ten, and for your snarky pleasure, comments from Amazon readers.
Topping the list, to the surprise of literally no one who has ever seen the internet, we have the third in the inexplicably best-selling Fifty Shades series. (So many unanswered questions from the first two, I know…. ).
Review: Be under no illusions Dear Readers, this book is terribly written. It makes Twilight look like Anna Karenina and that is saying a lot since it started as Twilight fan-fiction (if that isn’t enough to put you off then you cannot be saved, good luck to you). I’ve read stories by 5th Graders with more character development and narrative drive than this.
Review: Bare to You is as close to Fifty Shades of Grey as a book can get and not be called Fifty Shades of Grey.
Review: Poorly written dialogue & sex scenery* make this book very boring.
(*Sex scenery? What is that, exactly?)
The Catcher in the Rye author, who died in 2010, left instructions to publish his unseen works, including new stories featuring his most famous character Holden Caulfield.
J. D. Salinger was always a guarded artist. He kept a very small inner circle of only “seven or eight people,” says his son Matthew, outside of which nobody could have known that the author continued to write through the years, let alone that he planned to release any more of his works.
But a new documentary and accompanying book, both simply titled “Salinger,” are said to reveal both Salinger’s instructions to publish a handful of never before seen stories and details of the elusive writer’s private life. Of the latter, the documentary’s director Shane Salerno says he and writer David Shields have uncovered new details about Salinger’s mysterious first wife–Sylvia Welter, a suspected Gestapo informant–as well as the young Jean Miller (only fourteen when they met) with whom he shared a long correspondence followed by a brief relationship.
For me, those sordid details Salerno and Shields boast of leave a bad taste in my mouth. The delivery, against the wishes of Salinger’s family and close friends, gives them all the credibility and dignity of a TMZ scoop. However, the duo insist that their sources regarding the author’s plans to publish are reliable, being “independent and separate” of one another.
Remember, just a few months ago, when the summer seemed endless and our Loyal Blog Readers were asked what books were going into beach bags and which were being chucked in the backseats of cars? Some were novels recommended by a friend; others were purchased because of the rave reviews of trusted literary critics; still others were ones that had been Christmas gifts that we were finally going to have time to read. Well, now those readers report back, with thumbs up or down or sideways about those earlier choices, and some that snuck in somehow…impulse buys or gifts. Here’s what you had to say about your summer reading selections:
Me, an hour ago on Tumblr: Scroll, scroll, scroll, scroll, scroll, scroll, scroll, scroll… Wait. What’s this?
Yep. It’s time for a new cinematic interpretation of the Ultimate Forbidden Love. It’s been seventeen years, believe it or not, when the then 17-year-old Claire Danes starred as Juliet, opposite 22-year-old Leonardo di Caprio as Romeo.
This time, the play is returned to Shakespeare’s intended era and setting, the early 14th century in Verona (the Danes-di Caprio version was a “hip and modern” take, set in a “suburb of Verona”).
Visually, this new film looks lush and beautiful (at least from the trailer). Its young stars, 17-year-old Hailee Steinfeld as Juliet and 21-year-old Douglas Booth could be described as lush and beautiful as well.
(Orson Scott Card poses at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, in 2008. Wikimedia Commons/ Nihonjoe)
There is a reason I frequently shy away from reading biographies: people suck. Even the best people suck. If you want to go on admiring someone, don’t know them personally. The art, of course, speaks for itself. It need not be burdened by the shortcomings of its creator. But (at least for me) it is difficult to separate the two once you know. You cannot, as the saying goes, unsee something.
Today, a lot of people, including myself, were surprised to learn that beloved science fiction writer Orson Scott Card (Ender’s Game) is an anti-gay activist, and has been for a very long time. In 2008, he wrote that “marriage has only one definition, and any government that attempts to change it is my mortal enemy. I will act to destroy that government and bring it down.” Responding to the Supreme Court decision on the topic of gay marriage, Card told Entertainment Weekly ”it will be interesting to see whether the victorious proponents of gay marriage will show tolerance toward those who disagreed with them when the issue was still in dispute.”
Hmmmm…. interesting that someone who is against tolerance wants to see how people with tolerance respond….