We start with a clip of Flannery O’Connor at 5 years old, with her chickens. She’s only on screen for a couple of seconds, but it’s a great glimpse — and the narration of the entire clip is hilariously terrific. (Via Maud Newton and Terry Teachout.) . . . Speaking of Maud, she reflects on eight years (!) of blogging, and kindly mentions The Second Pass among recommendations of several other sites. . . . Ariel Levy selects the latest book for The New Yorker’s Book Bench book club, and, not to give anything away, but the Bench also interviews Amy Bloom. . . . Michael Cho’s cover design and illustration for this year’s edition of the always beautiful Best American Comics is pretty great. . . . As Laura Bush’s memoir hits bookstores, Craig Fehrman unearths an old ad in McCall’s for Eleanor Roosevelt’s reminiscences. . . . Dedi Felman reports from a panel about translating books into films at the PEN World Voices Festival, and finds a gap between the American participants, like Richard Price, and the French, like Philippe Djian. “When asked what was lost and what was gained by the cinematic translation of his work, Djian responds, ‘All was lost.’ ” . . . The May issue of Open Letters is up, and the site has also published a book of “the best from our first three years.” . . . A very sad event in Oregon: a fire that destroyed a used-book store. . . . Neglected Books Page says that Gene Lees, “one of the finest jazz writers ever,” who recently passed away, was wise to give up fiction after a couple of early novels.
Tuesday May 4th, 2010