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Some people handle books so tenderly that even after they’ve read one cover to cover, it looks untouched. They turn each page carefully, and always use bookmarks. They refrain from cracking the spine. They never eat as they read, so the pages aren’t dotted with red sauce or spotted with chocolate. And they wouldn’t dream of leaving a book lying around where their Yorkie-poo (or toddler) might nibble the corners.
I am not like that.
When I read a book, I move right in and make myself at home. I dog-ear pages, underline, highlight and make marginal notes. I’ll use the blank pages to make shopping lists or jot down phone numbers. At the ballpark, I’ve been known to use that space to list the opening line-ups of both teams. By the time I’m through reading a book, you can definitely tell that I’ve been there.
In a follow up to an earlier story, the Conan Doyle estate may appeal the ruling against it's copyright claim according to this Publishers Weekly story.
"Is Sherlock Holmes truly a free man? Not so fast say attorneys for the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
In a December 23 decision, an Illinois federal court held that Holmes and other characters and story elements in more than 50 Sherlock Holmes stories are in the public domain. But attorneys for the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle this week insisted that the complete characters of Holmes and Watson won’t be freed until the final 10 stories published after 1922 enter the public domain, in 2022."
Book Collections and Inheritance: The Quandary
BiblioTech bookless library in San Antonio proves very popular
Shebooks: do we need a place for strictly female readers?
Two authors, Mohsin Hamid and Anna Holmes, weigh in on the pros and cons of e-reading, from the Sunday New York Times.
This New York Times story has the details.
"A federal judge has issued a declarative judgment stating that Holmes, Watson, 221B Baker Street, the dastardly Professor Moriarty and other elements included in the 50 Holmes works Arthur Conan Doyle published before January 1, 1923, are no longer covered by United States copyright law, and can be freely used by new creators without paying any licensing fee to the Conan Doyle estate."
Does reading actually change the brain?
"The neural changes that we found associated with physical sensation and movement systems suggest that reading a novel can transport you into the body of the protagonist," says Gregory Berns. "We already knew that good stories can put you in someone else's shoes in a figurative sense. Now we're seeing that something may also be happening biologically."
A tough nut to crack to be sure, but Randall Munroe has taken a stab at it on his wonderfully quirky What If? site.
"The average person can read at 200-300 words per minute. If the average living writer, over their entire lifetime, falls somewhere between Isaac Asimov and Harper Lee, they might produce 0.05 words per minute over their entire lifetime. If you were to read for 16 hours a day at 300 words per minute, you could keep up with a world containing an average population of 100,000 living Harper Lees or 400 living Isaac Asimovs."
“There is no author whose books I look forward to more than Vaclav Smil,” Bill Gates wrote this summer. That’s quite an endorsement—and it gave a jolt of fame to Smil, a professor emeritus of environment and geography at the University of Manitoba. In a world of specialized intellectuals, Smil is an ambitious and astonishing polymath who swings for fences. His nearly three dozen books have analyzed the world’s biggest challenges—the future of energy, food production, and manufacturing—with nuance and detail. They’re among the most data-heavy books you’ll find, with a remarkable way of framing basic facts. (Sample nugget: Humans will consume 17 percent of what the biosphere produces this year.)