400 Authors Will be at the L A Times Festival of Books

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on April 20, 2012 – 2:48 pm -

The 17th annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books offers a two-day program of writers and celebrity authors unmatched by any other literary event across the country. More than 400 authors are scheduled to appear in panel sessions and on eight stages set up across USC’s University Park Campus this Saturday and Sunday.

This year’s festival blends familiar features with newer events reflecting what’s hot today in the literary marketplace. While festival goers can stroll once again with their families in the Target children’s area or listen to novelist Anne Rice discuss her latest supernatural fiction (Sunday) and Ben Fong-Torres’ memories of his Rolling Stone days (Saturday), actor John Cusackwill discuss not a book but his latest book-related project, the film “The Raven,” in which he portrays Edgar Allan Poe on Saturday. Read more…..

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No Pulitzer Prize for Fiction this Year

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on April 18, 2012 – 4:12 pm -

The Pulitzer Prize Board had three fiction finalists to choose from but they couldn’t pick a winner.

Maybe they should have settled on Karen Russell’s “Swamplandia!” — a first novel about an odyssey through the Everglades.  The heroine is Ava Bigtree, who has grown up wise beyond her 13 years in her family’s alligator theme park. Agile and inventive, the book is also incredibly funny, and a clear winner over “Train Dreams” by Denis Johnson and “The Pale King” by David Foster Wallace.

BusinessWeek picks five more works of fiction worthy of the prize:  Read more…….


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J.K. Rowling Moves on to Adult Fiction

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on April 13, 2012 – 8:59 am -

After selling an estimated 450 million “Harry Potter”  books, J.K. Rowling is moving on to adult fiction.

Her new book will be called “The Casual Vacancy.”

Ms. Rowling’s new publisher, Little, Brown and Co., called the novel “blackly comic” and says, “When Barry Fairweather dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty facade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils…Pagford is not what it first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?”

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Facebook says it owns the word “book”

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on April 9, 2012 – 9:52 pm -

Facebook  is trying to take over the world. Or, at least, the world where people can use the word “book” without facing copyright penalties.

Indeed, if Facebook’s newest user’s agreement, released in late March, is anything to judge by, Mark Zuckerberg’s nefarious aims have no bounds. The agreement included the word “book” in its list of effectively trademarked terms – a savvy way to enable lawsuits galore against users who Facebook feels have “misused” the term.

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Commercial Fiction: James Patterson Explains Why His Books Sell Like Crazy

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on April 1, 2012 – 11:13 am -

According to Nielsen, James Patterson ranks as the country’s top-selling author.  He has 13 books coming out this year. He had 11 last year. To date, the 65-year-old author has published 95 books—his most recent, “Guilty Wives,” hit shelves this week.

Patterson says his work is commercial fiction. It’s a little different from really serious literature.  He has a well-practiced system: he writes a detailed outline and then hires someone—often a former colleague from his advertising days—to write the ensuing scenes, usually in 30 to 40 page chunks. He will review those pages every few weeks, sometimes providing notes on them and other times re-writing them entirely.

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The Book that Reads You

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on March 23, 2012 – 12:56 pm -

In January, a new publisher called Coliloquy appeared on the Kindle.   Coliloquy’s books are a little different — at certain pre-defined moments, readers are asked to make a choice. Which character should the protagonist date? What event should they go to? In which narrative direction do you want to travel?

Then, Coliloquy collects data about your decision and uses them in one of two ways; they either commission authors to write serial narratives, and the writer agrees to follow the narratives that the majority of readers have chosen to follow, or the author writes multiple versions of a narrative, with readers receiving different tales depending on their decisions.

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Best Fiction: 1966 versus 2012

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on March 19, 2012 – 8:57 am -

The Daily Beast is in a retro mood this week, comparing the best-selling novels of the Mad Men era with today’s.

They compare the best-selling works of James Michener, Louis Auchincloss, Irving Stone, Graham Greene, John O’Hara, Helen MacInnes, Len Deighton, Jacqueline Susann, Adela Rogers St. Johns, and Bel Kaufman with those of Clive Cussler, David Weber, Patricia Briggs, Vince Flynn, William Landay, J. D. Robb, Randy Wayne White, Jonathan Kellerman, and James Patterson.

Which do you think is better? 


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Audiobooks are going Hollywood

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on March 15, 2012 – 9:13 am -

Samuel L. Jackson is part of an all-star cast of actors who have signed on with Audible.com, the 17-year-old Amazon-owned company, to bring classic novels to life for a fast-growing population of audiobook fans worldwide.  Other participants include  Dustin Hoffman performing “Being There;” Susan Sarandon performing “The Member of the Wedding;” Kate Winslet performing “Therese Raquin;” Nicole Kidman performing “To the Lighthouse;” and many more.  Jackson, Sarandon and Winslet’s efforts are part of the initial release, along with Anne Hathaway’s performance of “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.”

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Erotic Novel setting American Women Abuzz

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on March 12, 2012 – 2:57 pm -

“Fifty Shades of Grey,” an erotic novel that has been described as “Mommy porn” and “Twilight” for grown-ups, has electrified women across the country, who have spread the word like gospel on Facebook pages and school functions.

The novel is introducing women who usually read run-of-the-mill literary or commercial fiction to graphic, heavy-breathing erotica. And in the cities and suburbs of New York, Denver and Minneapolis, the women who have devoured the books say they are feeling the happy effects at home.

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The Greatest Fiction Ever Told?

Written by Free Audio Books - Free audiobooks on March 8, 2012 – 10:30 pm -

Are the gospels of Mark, Matthew, Luke and John a historical account of the life of Jesus, or the greatest fiction ever told?

Renowned Bible scholar John Dominic Crossan answers this question unequivocally in his new book,”The Power of Parable:  How Fiction by Jesus Became Fiction about Jesus.”

Crossan asserts that the gospel writers never intended for the gospels to be taken literally; they were not recounting history. Instead, the gospels are parables meant to communicate Jesus’ meaningful and important teachings.

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