Sunday, December 25, 2005

Holiday Cheer from Kyohiko Azuma, Part III

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Friday, December 23, 2005

Holiday Cheer from Kyohiko Azuma, Part II

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Thursday, December 22, 2005

Holiday Cheer From Kyohiko Azuma

In honor of our review of Azuma's Yotsuba&!, which just went up over on the main site, we thought we'd post a few holiday-themed strips from Azuma's earlier (and equally awesome) series, Azumanga Daioh. Both series are available from ADV Manga.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2005

A meeting of the (negligible) minds...

Check it out- Paris Hilton, a woman that I consider to be an insult to actually talented celebrities everywhere, is holding a copy of Jacqueline Susann's Valley of the Dolls, a book that I consider to be an insult to decent popular fiction everywhere. Worlds collide!


Tuesday, December 13, 2005

But Wordcandy loves nonfiction readers, too.

A fascinating study of the long and ignominious history of election fraud, Andrew Gumbel's book Steal This Vote: Dirty Elections and the Rotten History of Democracy in America is an ideal choice for the nonfiction reader on your holiday gift list. It's interesting, it's well-written, and (since it assigns roughly equal amounts of historical blame to both Democrats and Republicans) it's one of the few books about American political history that you can safely give to anyone, regardless of their political affiliation.

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Monday, December 12, 2005

Wordcandy is particularly fond of kinky poetry from the 17th century...


As virtuous men pass mildly away,
And whisper to their souls to go,
Whilst some of their sad friends do say,
"Now his breath goes," and some say, "No."

So let us melt, and make no noise,
No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move ;
'Twere profanation of our joys
To tell the laity our love.

Moving of th' earth brings harms and fears ;
Men reckon what it did, and meant ;
But trepidation of the spheres,
Though greater far, is innocent.

Dull sublunary lovers' love
—Whose soul is sense—cannot admit
Of absence, 'cause it doth remove
The thing which elemented it.

But we by a love so much refined,
That ourselves know not what it is,
Inter-assurèd of the mind,
Care less, eyes, lips and hands to miss.

Our two souls therefore, which are one,
Though I must go, endure not yet
A breach, but an expansion,
Like gold to aery thinness beat.

If they be two, they are two so
As stiff twin compasses are two ;
Thy soul, the fix'd foot, makes no show
To move, but doth, if th' other do.

And though it in the centre sit,
Yet, when the other far doth roam,
It leans, and hearkens after it,
And grows erect, as that comes home.

Such wilt thou be to me, who must,
Like th' other foot, obliquely run ;
Thy firmness makes my circle just,
And makes me end where I begun.

-John Donne

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Sunday, December 11, 2005

Wordcandy-friendly Gift Shopping Advice for the Organizationally Impaired!

Still not finished with your holiday shopping? Running low on time and inspiration? We here at Wordcandy have assembled a list of ten book-related gift options, any one of which any book lover will be delighted to receive. Think of it as our gift to you!

For gadget geeks: only offers a few Wordcandy-friendly titles (The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy among them), but these self-playing digital e-books (cost: $34.99 and up) look like fun options for the book-loving gadget-ophile on your list.

For emergency stocking stuffers: is having a half-price sale on hundreds of fiction titles between now and December 24th. It’s a lot to hunt through, but we saw mega-cheap versions of books from Wordcandy authors like Diana Wynne Jones and Lloyd Alexander.

For those who like to eat (and drink):
Try assembling a book-and-food (or booze) combination. Give a copy of Laura Esquivel’s Like Water For Chocolate along with the ingredients to make one of the recipes in the book. Or stick a copy of P.G. Wodehouse’s Prohibition-era novel The Small Bachelor inside a juice pitcher, accompanied by a bottle of your moonshine of choice.

For book-loving girls:
A $14.95 ‘Reading Is Sexy’ shirt from! (They have these for guys, too, but we would only recommend giving them to a man who is very secure in his masculinity.)

For book-loving guys:
For a mere $39.95, Kung-fu bookends from are the ideal way to add a little testosterone to your bookshelf.

For those who get a little sick of The Night Before Christmas:
There are some mighty fine non-nauseating kids’ Christmas stories out there- our favorite is Berkeley Breathed's The Red Ranger Came Calling.

For those who journal:
Behold! The ideal Wordcandy reader’s journal- $11, also from

For those anal about book lending:
An old-fashioned library-style lending kit ($24.95, from so you can track exactly WHO has your books, WHEN they borrowed them, and your thoughts as to WHY THE HELL they haven’t given them back yet.

For those who do not sneer at movie adaptations:
1. Try a copy of Emma and the movie Clueless for the Austen fan on your list (or Sense and Sensibility and Kandukondain Kandukondain, its little-seen-in-the-Western World Bollywood film adaptation, if the Austen fan in question is the kind of person who would turn their nose up at Clueless).

2. The book and the movie version of Roald Dahl's The Witches for any obnoxious kids you know.

3. A copy of The Blue Fairy Book and Jim Henson’s The Storyteller DVD for fairytale readers.

4. A book/film package of The Thin Man for mystery readers.

5. A book/film package of The Mouse That Roared for… people who laugh at that kind of thing.

And for the impossible-to-shop-for person who has everything:, a not-for-profit organization that distributes school supplies to needy American classrooms, is the perfect place to donate money in any booklover’s name. The site features hundreds of donation requests, many of which come from classrooms where 100% of the students are on free or reduced lunch programs. Everyone who contributes will get a thank-you note when the project is fully funded. This is an excellent way to cross some names off of your list and spread the Wordcandy love to kids in need.

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Thursday, December 08, 2005

The Lion, the Witch, and the Lord of the Rings rip-off

Based on previews alone, this movie would have won my vote for "Stupidest Literary Adaptation of 2005". However, I also hated the preview for the film version of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which I ended up loving, and quite enjoyed the preview for the newest Pride and Prejudice movie, from which I practically fled the theater. So I'm reserving judgment until Friday. Any advance screeners should e-mail us and tell me whether or not to get my hopes up.

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Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Wordcandy loves poetry, even when it spits upon grammar conventions...

i like my body when it is with your
body. It is so quite new a thing.
Muscles better and nerves more.
i like your body. i like what is does,
i like its hows. i like to feel the spine
of your body and its bones, and the trembling
-firm-smooth ness and which i will
again and again and again
kiss, i like kissing this and that of you,
i like, slowly stroking the, shocking fuzz
of your electric fur, and what-is-it comes
over parting flesh.... And eyes big love-crumbs,

and possibly i like the thrill

of under me you so quite new

-e.e. Cummings

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Monday, December 05, 2005

The Nora Roberts Machine

This post was originally going to be a rant about how American book covers are so much less attractive than the covers offered overseas, complete with many telling examples... but, as usual, I got distracted and didn't get beyond pulling the covers for Nora Robert's latest trilogy.

The group of us happened to be on vacation in London this spring when the second book of the "In the Garden" trilogy ("Black Rose") was released. Julia and I were delighted to discover how great the cover looked. (We actually spent quite a bit of time looking at different covers of some of our favorite books. Julia bought many, many Heyer novels.) I am not sure why we get the less appealing covers here in the states but we should definitely take a page (the cover page) from our friends in the UK.

In other news, we have the release dates for Ms. Roberts's 2006 books, which I will put at the end of this post. Looking over the list, I think this has the potential for being an okay year, but I have my doubts. We have a few more "In Death" books and a new trilogy. I am not sure if this is going to be a good or a bad thing, since based on the titles of the books I am thinking they are going to deal with magic. Ms. Roberts and magic can be an iffy combination. But at least they're coming out quickly.

Don't forget to look for the gold "NR" logo on Roberts's books- this indicates that the book is a completely new title, not one of Roberts's fifty million reprints.

THE QUINN BROTHERS (Trade Paper reissue)

ORIGIN IN DEATH (Mass market paperback)
THE QUINN LEGACY (Trade paper reissue)

BUMP IN THE NIGHT anthology featuring “Haunted in Death” novella (Mass market paperback)

BLUE SMOKE (Mass market paperback)

BORN IN DEATH (Hardcover)
MEMORY IN DEATH (Mass market paperback)
MONTANA SKY (Trade paper reissue)

MORRIGAN'S CROSS, Vol. 1 The Circle Trilogy (Mass market paperback)

ANGEL'S FIST (Hardcover)
DANCE OF THE GODS, Vol. 2 The Circle Trilogy (Mass market paperback)

VALLEY OF SILENCE, Vol. 3 The Circle Trilogy (Mass market paperback)


Saturday, December 03, 2005

Damn it, why don't I know anyone in Chicago?

The Lifeline Theater is apparently showing a play version of Wordcandy Goddess Georgette Heyer's 'The Talisman Ring'. It runs until December 11th.

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