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What Are You Reading?

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Reading a book about one of my childhood heroes :wub:

53278-book-review-mel-blanc-man-thousand

I'll have to get that one. Always loved him on The Jack Benny Show. :)

Currently reading 'KL: The History Of The Nazi Concentration Camps.'

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I'll have to get that one. Always loved him on The Jack Benny Show. :)

Currently reading 'KL: The History Of The Nazi Concentration Camps.'

You have to get that book! It is so interesting! I have only read the 1st 20 pages or so and honestly, I'm hooked! :D

I really began appreciating Mel Blanc's talents as a comedian on the Jack Benny Show, especially with characters like Professor Le Blanc, that poor store clerk who Jack torments at Christmas time and that dear old Mexican man - Sy! :lol:

Not to go off topic but, look what I found on good old YT :D

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Later today I'm going to Chapters to pick up a Robert Nozick book. Every Sunday afternoon I like to go book shopping and magazine shopping and just sit around in the evening reading stuff.

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Reading a book about one of my childhood heroes :wub:

53278-book-review-mel-blanc-man-thousand

After finishing that one, I recommend this one...we had her in person and she was an absolute delight. She still has that voice after all these years!!!

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Currently reading two very interesting books.

"HOLD STILL: A Memoir with Photographs" by Sally Mann. Unquestionably one of my favourite photographers, Sally Mann's work haunts me and burrows into my psyche. Her vision and technique are equally exquisite. Heaps of words and insults have been hurled at her...most by know-nothing busybodies. Finally, we get to hear her perspective.

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"unInvited: Classical Hollywood Cinema and Lesbian Representability" by Patricia White". Have only read the jacket blurb and introduction so far, but it looks like an intriguing book. It is always fascinating to discover how many classic films reveal new sub-texts depending on your perspective. Not that I buy all the conclusions drawn from such sub-texts, but in my line of work it is valuable to keep abreast of all that I can. I like to keep an open mind on everything.

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"Letter Perfect" by David Sacks - a history of the alphabet (having a closer look at this one cover to cover).

"Her Majesty's Spymaster" by Stephen Budiansky - about Walsingham perfecting his craft in the service of Elizabeth I.

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Ursula K. Le Guin's thoughtful call to action for writers:

Starts at 5:55

Edited by Patrycja

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Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich

by Peter Schweizer

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^^ Did you get yours? I am hopeful it will be here in the next day or so... I am so looking forward to this book:-)

Edited by Deborah J

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^^ Yes, Deb, it was on my doorstep this evening. Can't wait to dig in!! Hope your book comes in soon!!

:friends:

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Dear lucky people of the UK. Here's your chance to watch Toni Morrison talk about her life and work. This will be available for you for the next 28 days. Or not at all for the rest of us. That's it. I'm getting a VPN account. These national restrictions are ridiculous.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b062mp6k/imagine-summer-2015-4-toni-morrison-remembers

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I pre-ordered "Go Set A Watchman" by Harper Lee. To Kill A Mockingbird is my favorite book and movie so I am sure I will really enjoy this. Just waiting for the time to be able to devote reading it which is very soon :-) I would love to see a movie made as well.

Mary Badham who played Scout Finch in the movie, was on Livestream, reading from the new novel and answering questions about her experiences with the first movie.

http://livestream.com/92Y/watchman

Enjoy !

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Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich

by Peter Schweizer

I like Clinton

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Mary Badham who played Scout Finch in the movie, was on Livestream, reading from the new novel and answering questions about her experiences with the first movie.

http://livestream.com/92Y/watchman

Enjoy !

THANK YOU The Rover!

^^Ddlander..got my copy and cannot wait to start reading it:-)

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I may have mentioned this here before, and I will likely do so again (in part because I assume visitors don't go through the whole thread, and because my memory is good, but sometimes short :D ), but do people know about Project Gutenberg? It's a free ebook site. It is amazing. Use it and spread the word!

http://www.gutenberg.org/

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^^Ddlander..got my copy and cannot wait to start reading it:-)

Good to hear, Deborah J! Busy weekend, have only been able to get a small start, but am already in love with this treasure! ❤️❤️❤️

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^ Subtle, that ;)

Apparently, another JRR Tolkien release is in the works!

100-year-old J.R.R. Tolkien book to be published this summer

BY CORINNE SEGAL August 11, 2015 at 11:14 AM EDT | Updated: Aug 12, 2015 at 1:22 PM

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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, author of “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings,” in 1955. A manuscript from 1914 titled “The Story of Kullervo” will be widely distributed for

the first time this August. Photo by Haywood Magee/Getty Images

A 1914 manuscript that formed the early basis for J.R.R. Tolkien’s works of epic fantasy will be widely published for the first time this summer.

“The Story of Kullervo,” which Tolkien wrote while at Oxford University, has previously only been published in the journal “Tolkien Studies: Volume 7.” It will be widely distributed for the first time in the U.K. on Aug. 27 and in the U.S. on April 5, 2016, according to Amazon.

The book follows the story of an orphan seeking revenge on the dark magician who killed his father. Tolkien based the book on the Finnish epic poem “The Kalevala,” which was published in English for the first time in 1888.

Tolkien never finished “Kullervo,” but wrote that it was an early exploration of epic fantasy that formed the basis for his later work “The Silmarillion”:

“The germ of my attempt to write legends of my own to fit my private languages was the tragic tale of the hapless Kullervo in the Finnish Kalevala. It remains a major matter in the legends of the First Age (which I hope to publish as The Silmarillion).”

His reference to the “First Age” also links the story to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, the Daily Dot pointed out.

An earlier version of this post stated that the book would be published in the U.S. on Oct. 27.

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/100-year-old-j-r-r-tolkien-book-to-be-published-this-summer/

I'll be checking UK Amazon or abebooks.com in a couple of days. No way is any fan waiting till next April!

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A costly trend for libraries as they try to balance services and tech.

The skinny: libraries are launching a fair pricing campaign because the Big Five - Penguin, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Hachette, and Simon & Schuster - are charging exorbitant prices for ebooks to the tune of four times that of their print equivalents.

Why libraries of the future carry a high price tag
Published on Jul 23, 2015
by Carla Lucchetta

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Research shows, most e-book readers buy copies and also borrow them from libraries. Image credit: Devon Christopher Adams/flickr

As e-books grow in popularity, and more people than ever own e-reading devices, libraries are struggling to keep the most popular titles available for lending.

E-books cost them far more than printed versions: the latest John Grisham e-book costs $85 per copy even though the bulk-priced printed book is only $20. If e-book demand starts to eclipse regular books, it’s easy to see why libraries find the current model unsustainable.

Libraries view themselves as a vital part of the health of publishing by fostering a love of reading, supporting writers and providing free access to a wide range of materials. Even so, accessing e-books from publishers has been a constant struggle. At first, publishers didn’t sell to libraries at all. Now they set costs prohibitively high, put restrictions on use, and require costly proprietary software to protect copyright.

Publishers worry that e-book borrowers don’t buy books or that they’ll attempt to copy and share their content but in fact, as the Pew Research Centre discovered when American libraries first began dealing with this issue, most readers borrow and buy books. Armed with this information, libraries are fighting back.

E-books make up between 17 and 20 per cent in a publishing industry of over one billion sales per year, and libraries want to expand their e-book collections to meet the demand. Last month, a coalition of Ontario library associations and Toronto Public Library (TPL) launched a fair pricing campaign – a collective effort to encourage publishers to take serious notice. It’s part of a larger advocacy initiative which will include meetings with the federal and provincial governments and Canada’s competition bureau.

It’s well documented in Canada and the U.S. that the publishers charging the most for e-books or restricting use are the Big Five: Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Hachette and Simon & Schuster. They produce the most in-demand, best-selling titles, so if libraries want the books most people are asking for they have to play by their rules.

One e-book can run between $85 and $100, costing the library far more than the typical $14.99 retail price. Publishers in the Big Five selling e-books at more reasonable prices put restrictions on number of uses, after which the title needs to be repurchased. For instance, HarperCollins allows 26 check-outs per copy; Macmillan permits 52 over two years and Simon & Schuster e-books expire at one year. Smaller publishers with lesser known authors naturally demand few or no restrictions, and are more affordably priced.

E-books are borrowed exactly as their printed counterparts: one book per library member for a one to three week period. Their disappearance from reading devices after that time is handled by the intermediary platform OverDrive. It acts as a publisher’s distribution house, a marketplace for library purchases and a vehicle for user downloads. Author Cory Doctorow, an advocate for fair pricing for libraries in the U.S., and also against the anti-piracy software they use, wrote in Locus Magazine, “These e-books come with restrictions that don’t appear on regular print books; they can’t be sold on as used books once their circulations drop below a certain threshold; neither can they be shared with another library’s patrons through standard practices like interlibrary loan, a mainstay of libraries for more than a century.”

The first challenge at the time the market began to take hold in 2008 was that publishers weren’t offering e-books to libraries at all. They didn’t yet see how to protect copyright and author royalties and needed to conceive a dedicated business model.

“There was a lot of fear,” says Shelagh Paterson, executive director of the Ontario Library Association. “Authors and publishers needed to be assured that e-books aren’t that different than print books, that we’re educated to protect copyright. And with 3,400 public library points – branches and bookmobiles – across Canada, we’re the best shot for authors to have their work found, read and bought.”

At Toronto Public Library, e-book spending has grown from $185,000 in 2009 to $3.5 million in 2015. With next year’s budget in process, and TPL’s main funder, the City of Toronto asking for reductions, city librarian Vickery Bowles says the fair pricing campaign coalition has a solution it hopes publishers will consider: “We’re asking for a new pricing model. For instance, we bought 100 copies of Grey Mountain, the new John Grisham novel, at $85 each, that’s $8500 for just one title. A better pricing model would be we buy 10 copies at a higher price and we have ongoing, or what they call perpetual access to that content. Then we buy 90 copies at a lower price and a year later, they expire.” The campaign has been trying to meet with publishers to propose this idea.

TVO.org reached out to publishers and the Canadian Publisher’s Council to get an idea of their worries about libraries, but none has agreed to comment. John Degen, executive director of The Writers’ Union of Canada (TWUC), says that publishers not publicly communicating their decisions could lead people to reduce this to corporate greed, but it’s not that simple.

“Institutional pricing for libraries has solid business reasoning behind it that works for everyone – providing library patrons with lots of free access, but protecting, to a certain extent, the value of the book in the market. E-books complicate this picture because they don’t naturally wear out with multiple readings like physical books do, and so will not naturally result in multiple purchases by libraries servicing high demand,” says Degen.

A library’s ability to sustain its e-book collection is more difficult in a smaller system, such as Ajax Library whose three branches serve approximately 34,000 members. Last year alone, Ajax’s e-book downloads increased by 25 per cent, causing chief librarian Donna Bright to ask for extra money in her budget.

Always on the lookout to find ways to afford more e-books, Ajax Library recently took part in a download drive that won it $2500 toward its collection. Bright says she’s also looked into an idea born in Douglas County, Colorado where libraries develop their own industry-standard platforms, allowing them to purchase digital content directly from publishers and lend it to members, all in their own control at a lower cost and without involving OverDrive. “We could then create a server arrangement for a consortium of libraries and be able to deal with more local authors and independent publishers.”

Looking to the American model is not a bad idea since U.S. libraries are a year or two ahead of Canada when it comes to dealing with the Big Five, and have learned by trial and error what might work. Where the Ontario fair pricing campaign has yet to attract a name author to do its bidding and kick the initiative into high gear, south of the border exists a coalition of authors concerned, not only about prices and availability, but moving ahead to the sticky issue of Digital Rights Management (DRM), who exactly owns an e-book and why libraries need locked content – something that could disrupt libraries’ ability to meet their preservation mandate.

TWUC’s John Degen suggests two solutions for libraries and publishers: “Libraries should buy few blockbusters and more independent titles,” he says. “That will increase the diversity of offerings, and maybe even provide market incentive to the Big Five to offer deals to libraries.” The other is a question of funding. “If libraries are a valued and well-used public good, fund them properly.”

“It’s not about funding,” says Vickery Bowles. “It’s about pricing models. We’re well funded in Toronto and we still have a difficult time.”

“I understand publishers are in a challenging situation in a changing business landscape. I’m sympathetic to that,” she says. “We want a strong publishing industry here in Canada. But what publishers need to understand is that libraries are part of a vibrant publishing industry and we’re part of the ecosystem of reading. We need to work together.”

http://tvo.org/article/current-affairs/the-next-ontario/why-libraries-of-the-future-carry-a-high-price-tag?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_content=TroublewEbooksblog/Jul30&utm_campaign=TVO

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