THE BBC CALLS
I was delighted to receive an e-mail from BBC World Book Club on BBC World Service telling me that they liked my review of Hisham Matar’s beautiful novel about Libya [amazon_link id=”0385340435″ target=”_blank” ]In The Country of Men[/amazon_link] and would like me to submit a question for an interview of the author. I may get to ask the question if we can sort out the time difference. I will let you know when you can hear my big moment on BBC radio.
HIKING BOOK AUTHOR RESPONDS
A few months ago I reviewed [amazon_link id=”0977053636″ target=”_blank” ]Over the Top and Back Again[/amazon_link], a memoir about a husband and wife trekking in the Alps. You can see that review here. And here is an update from author, Brandon Wilson.
Thanks for your review, Vera. This was (and remains) an incredible journey, which began with leaving our jobs, selling most of our possessions, and leaving a cozy life in Hawaii, to face the daily struggles of climbing the unforgiving Alps for 111 days in all types of conditions. With that sort of commitment, there was no turning back. We knew we had 1900 kilometers to cover to complete the route and only a limited amount of time before the huts closed and snow covered the passes. I, too, had experienced the beauty of the area for the past 30 years on shorter journeys and looked forward to an Alpine rhapsody–but this experience proved that hiking the Alps is like love: hot, steamy, cold, stormy and ultimately demanding. One update for your readers: Over the Top & Back Again: Hiking X the Alps just received the 2010 Book of the Year Bronze Award (Travel Essay category) by ForeWord Reviews presented at the American Library Association annual conference in New Orleans.
REACHING ACROSS THE POND
I have been pondering how I can help readers of the Library who come from across the pond. They have to put up with my American spelling of “Traveler’s” and countless Americanisms. (Note the commenter who took umbrage recently at my using “bookshop” and “bookstore” interchangeably in my article on Paris Book Stores.)
Now if you click on a title of a book, (Like for the 4th of July, maybe you want to get the American view of 1776 and find out what the British forces were up to, also, in [amazon_link id=”1416542108″ target=”_blank” ]1776[/amazon_link] by David McCullough) or if you do a search in the Amazon search box, you will be whisked magically to an appropriate Amazon store–in Britain, France or the United States. I would be happy to add more countries, if a reader requests that convenience. And I would also be grateful if you live in Britain or France, if you would try this out and let me know if it works correctly.
MORE WAYS TO SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS
Plus One: Google has provided a little widget called “Plus one” to web sites so that you, the reader, can recommend your favorite sites.When your friend is doing a search–let’s say for “travel literature” and A Traveler’s Library turns up in the search results, Google will tell them that you recommended the blog. You can see how helpful that might be to people who value your opinion. So take a look up at the top of the near right hand column, and change the the number in the box to indicate that you like A Traveler’s Library.
I’ve been trying to think what Mark Twain’s reaction would be to see himself on a postage stamp. Probably say that he thought he was worth more than a few cents. At least, he would say, it is called a “forever stamp.”
The stamp, the post office explains, shows Twain as an older man; the steamboat in the background evokes a way of life along the Mississippi River…Stamp designer Phil Jordan collaborated with stamp artist Gregory Manchess, who based his portrait of Twain on a photograph taken around 1907.
The commemorative is now available, and if you read and enjoyed our Twain book reviews, like Puddin’ Head Wilson, or the biography by J. Loving, or A Tramp Abroad, you might want to add it to your outgoing snail mail.
Keep those comments coming–what question would you ask Hisham Matar if you had a chance? Does the Amazon link to British and French bookstores work?