Sunday, September 14, 2008

Links & Reviews

Since we've had some major developments in several theft cases in the last few days I'll have a separate roundup on those later today. Here are the rest of the week's links:

- Author David Foster Wallace is dead at age 46, of an apparent suicide. Coverage from the NYTimes, LATimes.

- Google announced that it's begun a newspaper digitization project; their plan is to make newspaper archives searchable and browseable. AHA Today offers up links to some other similar projects. Digitizing newspaper archives is a good idea, but I wish they'd make sure their current efforts are on the right track before bouncing off and doing other things. Google Books still needs work, folks.

- Mick Sussman's NYTimes essay "Attack of the Megalisters" is getting lots of buzz in the biblioblogosphere, and rightly so; it's a good piece.

- The Houghton Library blog points out the new (and delicious-looking) Harvard University Press publication Audubon: Early Drawings, available this month.

- A short talk by Marcus Rediker - given at Mt. Vernon this summer when he accepted the George Washington Book Prize for his book The Slave Ship: A Human History - is reprinted in The American Scholar.

- The proposed Harry Potter Lexicon was ruled a copyright violation this week, giving JK Rowling a major legal victory. Coverage from TeleRead, Boston Globe, Jacket Copy, Reuters, The Guardian, GalleyCat.

- Paul Collins examines John McCain's frequent use of the phrase "my friends," and profiles a band of spelling reformers.


- Bob Woodward's The War Within is reviewed by Josiah Bunting III in the Washington Post.

- Also in the Post, Fergus Bordewich reviews Annette Gordon-Reed's The Hemingses of Monticello.

- Olivia Judson reviews Richard Fortey's Dry Storeroom No. 1: The Secret Life of the Natural History Museum in the NYTimes.

- Gavin Menzies' latest pseudo-historical tome, 1434: The year a magnificent Chinese fleet sailed to Italy and ignited the Renaissance, is reviewed by Damien Thompson in The Telegraph. Thompson: "Menzies is an exponent of misinformation disguised as scholarship with the aid of footnotes, dodgy citations and even dodgier logic."