September 12, 2017

Lani Sarem’s YA novel Handbook for Mortals debuted at No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list when it was released in August. Quickly, however, questions were raised about the book’s legitimacy on the list: Did the author, who most people in the YA community had never heard of, somehow game the system? The Times quickly pulled the book from the list. Now, the author is trying to make her side of the story known. “While I am not selling the books through traditional channels established by the book industry,” she writes, “the sales of my book are quite real.”

Ira Lightman

According to poet Ira Lightman, plagiarists are serial in their thefts. They “never do it once,” he states. And he should know: Not just a poet, Lightman has become a “poetry sleuth.” His specialty: busting plagiarists.

The Brooklyn Public Library has announced the shortlist for its annual book awards. Finalists include Moshin Hamid’s Exit West, David Grann’s Killers of the Flower Moon, Kim Phillips-Fein’s Fear City, and Richard Rothstein’s The Color of Law.

“Like a recumbent sloth jolted into a panicked flight response, David Brooks has belatedly noticed the rancid politics of right-wing racial confrontation.” Baffler editor and The Money Cult author Chris Lehmann offers a scorching assessment of the New York Times columnist.

Viking will publish William Trevor’s story collection Last Stories in May 2018. As the title suggests, Trevor, who died in 2016, intended this to be his final book.

Tonight, McSweeney’s is celebrating the launch of its fiftieth issue with a party at Pete’s Candy Store in Brooklyn. Contributors scheduled to read their work include Matthew Sharpe, Daniel Levin Becker, Haris Durrani, Dan Kennedy, Aparna Nancherla, and Sean Wilsey.

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