“The excuse of ‘this is how we’ve always done it’ is so worn out it’s a meme at this point. Perhaps it IS new to you to have to read more widely. Perhaps it IS new to you that you have to seek out these books because they’re not going to jump on your desk to announce themselves. But, being smart, intelligent, savvy, and literate, you’re absolutely capable of doing the work.”—Author Kelly Jensen, a former librarian, admonishes current librarians to read (and promote) diverse titles in “A Librarian’s Guide to Finding Diverse Books Before They’re Published (& How To Nominate Them for LibraryReads)” at Book Riot
“Now I’m going to be going through every book to see if, like, a Dr. Seuss is signed. It’s really going to slow down my process.”—Library specialist Lisa Monthie, on the discovery of an ultrarare signed copy of Harry S. Truman’s 1960 autobiography, Mr. Citizen, by Waco (Texas) High School librarian Carri Nowak, in the Waco Tribune-Herald
“The real Gothic deals with humanity at its worst and most profound. People can sometimes mistake the Gothic for maidens called Elsie running around in a nightgown and seeing a ghost, and actually what the Gothic always did was look very closely at political and religious and social injustice, and human transgression, human wickedness, and ask questions of the readers about their own conscience. So that’s what I’ve done with Melmoth.”—Novelist Sarah Perry, author of bestseller The Essex Serpent, on her forthcoming fiction (Oct. 16), in the Independent
In memoriam, Tom Wolfe, 1931-2018: “I found early in the game that for me there’s no use trying to blend in. I might as well be the village information-gatherer, the man from Mars who simply wants to know. Fortunately the world is full of people with information-compulsion who want to tell you their stories. They want to tell you things that you don’t know.”—In conversation with the Paris Review in 1991
"What Tom did with words is what French impressionists did with color.”—Editor Larry Dietz remembers friend Tom Wolfe in the San Francisco Examiner
“I’m like a blob of Play-Doh. Roll me around in enough stuff, and I take it all on.”—Poet and Whiting Award winner Tommy Pico, who presented his latest eclectic epic poem, Junk,at Powell’s City of Books in Portland, Oregon.
Megan Labrise is a staff writer and co-host of the Kirkus Podcast, Fully Booked. Photo of Sarah Perry is by Jamie Drew and the photo of Tom Wolfe is by Mark Seliger.