“If she could not have joy, she was determined to have light…”

Years ago, when the great Harold Ross was editing the New Yorker, he’d pore over writer’s manuscripts and if there was a name he didn’t understand or a person he felt wasn’t properly identified, he’d scribble in the margins two words: “Who he?” When Elizabeth Scalia told me she was writing a new introduction to [Read More...]

Judging a bookstore by its covers

My blog neighbor Nancy French visited a bookstore in Tennessee the other day and got an eyeful: There, right next to the nice Civil War section (this is Tennessee, after all) is apparently a “sexuality” section, showing various sexual positions in plain view.  And when I showing, I mean showing. One book promised to make this [Read More...]

Creating an Arctic bible: how do the Eskimos say “desert”?

Here’s something the original authors of sacred scripture never had to think about: Later this spring, an entire Bible in Inuktitut, the language of Inuit people and the most widely spoken aboriginal tongue in Canada’s Arctic, will be dedicated at an igloo-shaped church in Nunavut, an autonomous region carved out of the Northwest Territories in 1999. [Read More...]

What’s the world’s best-selling Catholic book?

You might be surprised.  Check out this release: In his foreword to YOUCAT – the Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church – Pope Benedict XVI urges readers to “study this Catechism with passion and perseverance.” The book’s amazing, global popularity suggests that millions of Catholics have embraced the Holy Father’s call. YOUCAT now ranks as the best-selling [Read More...]

Closing the book: Encyclopedia Britannica goes out of print

Wow.  It really is an end of an era: After 244 years, the Encyclopaedia Britannica is going out of print. Those coolly authoritative, gold-lettered sets of reference books that were once sold door to door by a fleet of traveling salesmen and displayed as proud fixtures in American homes will be discontinued, the company is [Read More...]

Nevermore: did you know you can actually see the raven that inspired Poe?

I sure didn’t. Details: When it comes to literary greats, inspiration can come from anywhere. For famed gothic writer Edgar Allen Poe, one idea came from a raven, which inspired his famous poem of the same name about the foreboding bird. Now that little black muse is enshrined in a history exhibit for all to [Read More...]

The “affirmative orthodoxy” of Archbishop Dolan

Now that he’s about to get the red hat, Archbishop Timothy Dolan is getting a closer look — and it sounds like a new book about him may be a good introduction: Cardinal-designate Timothy M. Dolan of New York is becoming the most visible Catholic churchman in the Western Hemisphere. He is also a down-to-earth [Read More...]

“We may be seeing the future of Christianity’s encounter with the book”

There’s a long but intriguing essay here by Professor Alan Jacobs that explores how the rapidly changing technology — from cell phones to iPads and Kindles — may have a profound impact on Christianity in the developing world.  He draws some interesting parallels between the small screen (cell phones) and the big screen you find [Read More...]

Did you get a Kindle for Christmas? Try this cover for it

How cool is this? For information on how you can get your own, check out this website. They can accommodate iPads and various types of Kindle tablets, too. [Read more...]

Here’s a first: a New Testament annotated from a Jewish point of view

It’s a view we don’t consider very often, but a new, ground-breaking book offers some intriguing food for thought: The New Testament is constantly being re-interpreted from a variety of perspectives. From feminists, to socialists, to traditionalists; there’s even a version as seen through the prism of Star Wars. Well now, you can add to [Read More...]


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