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This week we roundup literary sensations old and new, starting with Brit Bennet's dazzling debut The Mothers, and ending with the revelation, some would say confirmation, that 16th century genius, Shakespeare, wrote some of his plays in collaboration with others. As for his eclectic and inventive insults - he certainly created enough of them to be able to share the credit with others and have plenty left over to claim for himself!

Along the way we allow our imaginations to soar with three aviatrixes who dared to take to the skies in an era when it was believed that women didn't have the intelligence, stamina or strength to pilot an airplane. We also catch up on this week's new books, and bring you the answer to the last fiendish Wordplay.


Your Editor, Davina
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mothers1. Editor's Choice

The Mothers by Brit Bennett

Hardcover (Oct 2016), 288 pages
Publisher: Riverhead Books

BookBrowse Rating: 5/5, Critics' Consensus:  5.0/5
Review by Poornima Apte

Buy at Amazon |  B&N |  Indie

Every now and then the publishing industry gushes about a young author destined to become the next sensation in literary circles. Hardened cynics like yours truly invariably roll their eyes and try to take the adulation with a pinch of salt. I am embarrassed to admit that I had not read any of Brit Bennett's perceptive essays about race before I finished her incredibly brilliant, sage and moving debut novel, The Mothers. But now that I have read almost all her work, I am here to tell you: this phenom is the real thing. ... continued

Full access to our reviews & beyond the book articles are for members only. But there are always four free Editor's Choice reviews and beyond the book articles available.
crossing2. Editor's Choice

Crossing the Horizon by Laurie Notaro

Hardcover (Oct 2016), 464 pages
Publisher: Gallery Books

BookBrowse Rating: 5/5, Critics' Consensus:  4.3/5
Reviewed by Kim Kovacs

Buy at Amazon |  B&N |  Indie

In Crossing the Horizon, Laurie Notaro takes us back to a time when flying was a rare and risky occupation, and when it was believed that women didn't have the intelligence, stamina or physical strength to pilot an airplane over long distances. This fictionalized account focuses on three real-life figures who vied to make history as the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean.... This highly satisfying account is sure to win Notaro many new fans and introduce readers to this fascinating and little-known aspect of history. ... continued

Full access to our reviews & beyond the book articles are for members only. But there are always four free Editor's Choice reviews and beyond the book articles available.

shakespeare3. Beyond the Book: Shakespearean Insults

Every time we review a book we also explore a related topic. Here is a recent "beyond the book" article written by James Broderick for Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood:

"You taught me language. And my profit on't is, I know how to curse." That's the lament of Caliban, the resident savage of Shakespeare's The Tempest, but it's also the the savvy modern reader's takeaway of Shakespeare's plays. Among the linguistic legacies of Shakespeare, eloquent and eclectic cursing and insults must certainly be included.

The man knew how to cut someone down to size ("Away, you three inch fool!") with a dazzling array of metaphorical maliciousness ("You are now sailed into the north of my ladies opinion, where you will hang like an icicle on a Dutchman's beard.") and poeticized putdowns ("Thou clay-brained guts, thou knotty-pated fool, thou whoreson obscene greasy tallow-catch!")
thisweek4. Published This Week

Interested to know what notable books published this week?
Click on any of the book jacket images to view info about the book on BookBrowse.

Balcony on the Moon The Word Detective Uprooted On Living Fields Where They Lay 
Float The Boat Rocker The Mistletoe Murder We Show What We Have Learned and Other Stories You Will Not Have My Hate 
Television Black Elk The Terranauts Teethmarks on My Tongue 
news5. News

Oct 25 2016
Ending years of speculation (or perhaps simply fueling more), Elizabethan playwright Christopher Marlowe is to be credited as co-author on Oxford University Press editions of three of Shakespeare's plays after researchers verified Marlowe's contribution "strongly and clearly enough", according to editor Gary Taylor. The plays are Henry VI Parts I, II and III.

Twenty-three international scholars were involved in the research which has identified 17 of 44 Shakespeare plays as being co-written with others. "We can now be confident that they didn't just influence each other, but they worked with each other. Rivals sometimes collaborate," says Taylor.

Oct 25 2016
Paul Beatty has become the first US winner of the Man Booker Prize for
The Sellout. Until 2013 the award was open only to citizens of the Commonwealth of nations (in essence, the UK and former British colonies). In 2014 the award was opened to authors worldwide so long as their work is in English and published in the UK.

Oct 14 2016
Four new adventures (one for each season of the year) have been published to mark the 90th anniversary of the first Winnie-the-Pooh book, along with the introduction of a new character - Penguin.

Brian Sibley, who has written the new stories, says, "While pondering what other toys Christopher Robin might have owned, but which were never written about, I remembered seeing a photograph of father and son playing on the nursery floor with Winnie-the-Pooh and a penguin! The thought of Pooh encountering a penguin seemed no more outlandish than him meeting a kangaroo and a tiger in a Sussex wood, so I started thinking about what might have happened if, on a rather snowy day, Penguin had found his way to Pooh Corner."

Brian Sibley (1949) is author of over 100 hours of radio drama and has written and presented hundreds of radio documentaries, features and weekly programs. He is also the author of many movie 'making of' books, including those for the Harry Potter series, and The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies.

wordplay6. Wordplay

Solve our fiendish Wordplay puzzle, and be entered to win the book of your choice!

"One S D N M A S"

The answer to last Week's Wordplay: S A Thief T C A T

Set a thief to catch a thief (also it takes a thief to catch a thief)"

Meaning: The best person to recognize a thief is another thief, presumably because they share the same way of thinking.

Apparently, the essence of this proverb can be found in Pleasant Notes upon Don Quixote, a 1654 commentary by E Gayton on Miguel de Cervantes' early 17th century work. It is also to be found in Thomas Fuller's Church-History of Britain (1655), so presumably the expression was in reasonably common use at the time. Indeed, given that the Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs notes that Callimachus (writing in the second half of the 3rd century BC) said "being a thief myself I recognized the tracks of a thief", the chances are the expression has been around for a very long time. A similar proverb is an old poacher makes the best gamekeeper.

Past Wordplays
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