Books

The Best Books of the 21st Century (So Far)

Welcome to Today in Books, where we report on literary headlines at the intersection of politics, culture, media, and more.

The Brag is Coming From Inside the House

Book Riot’s Kelly Jensen has spent the last few years becoming a leading name in book banning coverage, and we couldn’t be prouder to see her named as one of Library Journal’s 2024 Movers & Shakers. Subscribe to Kelly’s (free) Literary Activism newsletter to stay up-to-date on book banning efforts and learn about the most effective ways to get involved in your community. Kelly’s work has changed the way I think about the book banning movement and what it’s really about, and I know I speak for all of us here at BR when I say we are deeply grateful for her dedication, intelligence, and ability to get to the heart of an issue. May her efforts continue to succeed.

The Best Books of the Century (So Far)

The New York Times has taken a page from NPR’s book and aggregated their best books of the last 23 years into a cool interactive tool. Filter by year and/or genre and make your way to a read that’s almost guaranteed to be great. The NYT’s end-of-year lists of 10 best books and 100 notable books are consistently varied and interesting, and they’ve informed more than a few of my reading choices over the years. Nice to see them finding creative ways to repurpose content that continues to be relevant and helpful.

What’s the Point?

Why seek a traditional publishing deal when you have the internet and direct access to audience? Does anyone even read anymore? What makes books so special? Author Emma Gannon reflects on these questions and more.

New Legislation Aims to Ban Librarians from Joining the ALA

Yep, you’re reading that right. Louisiana’s House Bill 777 would criminalize libraries and library workers who use taxpayer funds to join the American Library Association. Why? I’ll let Kelly tell.


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