Many blogs are currently featuring summer reading lists (several of them linking to a recent Guardian article). If you don’t have a queue of books, it is easiest to go to one list: I recommend this one by Amy of Books, Words, and Writing (which she found via Rebecca’s Pocket — Rebecca being Rebecca Blood who wrote the excellent "Weblog Handbook"). The link is to an aggregate of "articles containing book recommendations", and is regularly updated.
If you prefer the alternative approach, in which someone recommends one book to read, Jenny D on Light Reading thinks she has a favourite book of 2006. But it is only June! The vast amount and speed of Jenny’s reading surely means there is an evens chance another contender will emerge — it is always worth visiting Jenny’s blog for eclectic recommendations that you wouldn’t have thought to buy otherwise.
On Buy a Friend a Book blog, which as we know is leading up to the July contest, Debra Hamel links to a post on Original Content, in which Gail Gauthier is collecting up recommendations for children’s books. So if the friend for whom you buy a book is a child or young adult (or teen as we used to call them!), keep an eye on Gail’s post, which is also being regularly updated. While on the subject, Kathryn Judson of Suitable for Mixed Company has a post about a project to list "cool girls from children’s literature" , currently up to 200.
In the spirit of extreme altruism, I mention a posting by David Montgomery at his blog Crime Fiction Dossier in which he announces a contest in which the prize is the latest book by Joseph Finder (signed, if you are into that sort of thing). All you have to do is to send David an email. Finder is the author of the excellent Paranoia. David is editor of Mystery Ink (among other things).
On It’s a Crime is an important posting about an upcoming talk by Debi Alper, author of Nirvana Bites and Trading Tatiana. If you can get to Dulwich in London on 29 June, be there (further details at the link).
In all the hot air that’s been doing the rounds about John Updike since the incident at Books Expo and his views on blogging (can you believe that someone called David Baddiel likened Updike’s writing to Shakespeare’s in the Times yesterday, in a nauseatingly sycophantic piece which I can only hope was satire?), this posting on Miss Snark, "Can I call John Updike the Nitwit of the Day?", is pretty apt. People who don’t blog should not pronounce on it as they can’t, by definition, know what they are talking about. A bit off-topic for this post, but Miss S also has a characteristically laconic post on "Building Blog Traffic". People who advise bloggers to have a comments facility if they want to attract traffic, and don’t have a comments facility on their own blogs, are sitting ducks for the likes of Miss S.
Here is a fun posting from Paperback Writer about where authors of genre fiction can go to promote their books.
I have recently started reading Silence of the Grave by Arnaldur Indridasun, which so far is excellent. Reading Matters blog (Kimbofo) links to an interview with the author in the Guardian.
I’ll finish off this round up with a link to a post by Marie of Deep Thinker, "Getting the Voice Right for Historical Fiction". Do read it.