A few links and the potential for discussion they inspire, to inspire your Wednesday and lead you into the rest of the week...
- The place and future of the children's book app for e-readers has been debated and questioned for a long time now. Recently, it has popped up in discussion at the Festival of Australian Children's Literature, touching such topics as extended play as a health concern and the "slush pile" that is the iTunes children's book store. This debate will only continue as scholars, authors, and doctors of all fields consider how to even define or categorize e-books and whether children "just to do visuals and play, rather than think about words and constructing meaning."
- At the Miami Book Fair International, Sherman Alexie shared his thoughts about the role of book fairs specifically in this age of e-readers. Alexie notes that books are individual experiences, but book fairs capture a much older tradition of storytelling in a group, something that can't yet be replicated by the "cruddy" experience of e-books. He also talks about the value he finds when a book is banned, understanding that, "I wrote the book that needs to be read. Percival Everett, the writer, always says that if you’re getting banned, then you’re offending the right monsters."
- Apparently Donald Sutherland wants the new Hunger Games film, Catching Fire, to stir a revolution. Whether this is just a marketing ploy or a sincere call to the youth, Sutherland has chosen to focus on one of the more valuable aspects of the series -- its political critique and the effects that may have on its readership and viewership. That the text can be read in numerous ways and applied to many larger and smaller political arenas (global conflicts to students' rights, for example) is what Sutherland harnesses in having this discussion. Unfortunately, I don't see this film franchise as the transformative experience he claims it to be, but I could be wrong.
- Eric Carle's newest book, Friends, has just been published, and the site Brain Pickings gives it and the acclaimed author-illustrator a very well-deserved and vivid spotlight.
- Lastly, an infographic travel guide to Middle Earth, since there's always room for a fantastical adventure in our very real lives.