Every year, the American Library Association compiles reports of challenged and banned materials from libraries around the country. The Top Ten Frequently Challenged Books are reported annually, and the results can act as a cultural barometer of sorts, reflecting the country’s tolerance (or lack of it) on certain themes or issues.
Regardless of which titles make the list each year, one thing we can always count on from the annual Top Ten is at least one surprise. The 2015 list did not disappoint, presenting an especially diverse range of titles and containing more adult books than usual, including The Holy Bible!
While each book on the list this year is worth of examination, these first-timers are of particular interest. All three were very well received by critics and the public alike, and each is ground-breaking in its own particular way: Continue reading “Book Bingo: Banned”
We truly live in a global age, where events half a world away can impact us here the next day. When it comes to cultivating a better understanding of people living elsewhere, little can inspire empathy and understanding with the thoroughness and subtlety of a good book. Reading translated international fiction, perhaps you’ll spend time with characters living vastly different lives from your own; or perhaps more will seem familiar than you anticipate. And so, for Book Bingo 2016, we invite you to read a book translated from another language. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Signs Preceding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera, translated by Lisa Dillman. In this stark, fable-like story, a young woman attempts to travel on foot from Mexico to the U.S. to deliver a package and find her brother. This won the 2016 Best Translated Book Award, with judge Jason Grunebaum writing “This novel of real pathos and unexpected displacement in self, place, and language achieves a near perfect artistic convergence of translator and author, while giving readers an urgent account from today’s wall-building world.” Continue reading “Book Bingo: Translated From Another Language”
Yes, you should probably check out the big prize winners of the Pulitzer, Man Booker, and National Book Awards. But why not shake things up and try a lesser-known award, like the winner of the Spur Award for Westerns? I lassoed some other award winners too, most of which double as other bingo categories.
Joy Williams’ piercing, memorable tales shine light on the darkness that awaits in everyday life. Her most recent collection, The Visiting Privilege, contains several new stories mixed with highlights from previous works. The 2016 PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story is a much-deserved recognition for this underrated author.
Our guest blogger today is Ruth Dickey, executive director of Seattle Arts & Lectures (SAL). She’s here to share some titles by authors who are coming up in the new SAL 2016-2017 season, as well as some from previous years, to help you fill the “Written by a SAL Speaker (past or upcoming)” square.
I’ve been looking forward to the return of Summer Book Bingo all year. As a kid, I loved nothing more than summer reading – the freedom of diving into piles of books and the fun of reading to complete a challenge (while talking to other kids who were reading too) was the best part of summer for me. So I couldn’t be more delighted to be entering into our second summer of Book Bingo with our friends at the Seattle Public Library, and to spend a whole summer reading, and thinking about, and talking about, and having fun with books. And all of you!
I have the pleasure of writing about the “Written by a SAL Speaker, past or present” square for bingo, which is exciting and also overwhelming. I just finished my third season at SAL, and from each season, there are several books that I have pressed ardently into the hands of friends and strangers. That’s a long list already, and we haven’t even talked about our 2016/17 season! So rather than create an overwhelming list, here are the five books from authors coming to SAL next season that I’m most excited to read this summer: Continue reading “Book Bingo: Seattle Arts and Lectures Author”