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Randi Spray

The Art of the Novella

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

One day whilst browsing at Hearthside, I came upon a little orange book. The book was “Parnassus on Wheels” by Christopher Morley and I quite enjoyed it. It’s about books and I love books. And at the end of this book was a list labelled “More titles in the Art of the Novella series.”

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Randi Spray

What young adult novels have taught me about how America will be destroyed

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

In 2008, Suzanne Collins published “The Hunger Games” and a publishing phenomena was born: teen post-apocalypse dystopian novels. This was a bandwagon to which I happily attached myself, combining as it does the bleak bitterness of adult dystopia with the frothy writing style of young adult fiction.

Randi Spray

A month in book photos

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

I could come up with some grand reason for having gathered together the photos you see below, but I won’t. It was curiousity, plain and simple, that caused me to type “book” in to the search bar of the AP Exchange periodically during October. I wanted to see what kind of photos of books would pop up over the course of a month and these are the best of the results:

There were small people reading:

Randi Spray

Choose Neil Patrick Harris

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

If you read only one celebrity biography ever, make it “Choose your Own Autobiography” by Neil Patrick Harris. Not because you love NPH, though why wouldn’t you love NPH? Not because you think he has the most life-changing things to say out of any celebrity, I haven’t read any other celebrity biographies so I can’t judge. Read “Choose Your Own Autobiography” because it’s fun.

Melissa Griffiths

Almost famous

By: Melissa Griffiths | Blog:

After missing out on an opportunity to attend a star-studded fundraiser concert featuring Willie Nelson, I decided that when opportunities arise, I should take them, however weird the circumstances might be. So, when I got a text message that someone had recommended me to be on a reality television show set to film in Juneau, I ignored my gut instinct to stay very far away and called the woman seeking a couple willing to fake-buy a home. 

Melissa Griffiths

We've got a win, but don't stop now

By: Melissa Griffiths | Blog:

Congratulations to everyone who has the opportunity to get married! Maybe I'm still in the honeymoon phase, but I think marriage is great. 

I was in a rental car between Seattle and Redmond, Oregon, when former State Reporter Mark Miller texted me the news. Of course, things evolved over a few days as a stay was requested and talk of fighting the decision inevitably bubbled up, but I didn't allow that to stop me from feeling very happy for my friends who now have that same right I do. I'm looking forward to the wedding invitations.

Randi Spray

Book quirks

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

Books bring out the weirdness in people, not the subject matter. I’m referring to the actual, physical object that is a book, because everyone has their book quirks.

I have a friend who treats his books like priceless artifacts. Whenever I borrowed a book from him in high school, I was given strict admonitions against breaking the spine or dog-earing pages. That was hard for me because I was borrowing 500-plus page fantasy epics and I always loose my bookmarks.

Randi Spray

Booker season: And the winner is...

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

“The Narrow Road to the Deep North” by Richard Flanagan.

I may not have liked this one but I can see why the Man Booker judges picked it. The prose is gorgeous. A liquid velvet thing. Living and breathing and stunning.

Randi Spray

Booker season: 'How to Be Both'

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

If I had to pick one word to describe “How to Be Both,” Ali Smith’s Man Booker Prize shortlisted novel, I would choose gentle.

I tried not to choose it. I tried to come up with any other way of encapsulating my feelings toward this book. But I kept coming back to gentle.

Randi Spray

Booker season: An unconvincing future

By: Randi Spray | Blog:

I’ll admit it was with great excitement that I settled down to read the Man Booker Prize shortlisted “J” by Howard Jacobson. I’d heard it was a dystopia and I, along with most of America, love dystopian novels.

“A novel to be talked about in the same breath as ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ and ‘Brave New World,’” reads the front flap.

No, I don’t think it will. 

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