Seeing the light, in print

Even though it is seven pages long, I recommend reading this article: The News Business: Out of Print: Reporting & Essays: The New Yorker.
(A printable version of the whole thing can be downloaded here.)

"Since 1990, a quarter of all American newspaper jobs have disappeared. The columnist Molly Ivins complained, shortly before her death, that the newspaper companies’ solution to their problem was to make “our product smaller and less helpful and less interesting.” That may help explain why the dwindling number of Americans who buy and read a daily paper are spending less time with it; the average is down to less than fifteen hours a month. Only nineteen per cent of Americans between the ages of eighteen and thirty-four claim even to look at a daily newspaper. The average age of the American newspaper reader is fifty-five and rising."

Yet: "we need to consider what will become of those people, both at home and abroad, who depend on such journalistic enterprises to keep them safe from various forms of torture, oppression, and injustice. “People do awful things to each other,” the veteran war photographer George Guthrie says in “Night and Day,” Tom Stoppard’s 1978 play about foreign correspondents. “But it’s worse in places where everybody is kept in the dark.” "

Reading notes, reviews and interviews

Via Crime Down Under, some reading notes on Sidney Bauer, author of Alibi and two other legal thrillers, which don’t seem readily available in the UK, sadly. (I discovered a similar problem while looking for books by Gabrielle Lord.)

International Noir Fiction revisits Jo Nesbo, with a question about whether series character Harry Hole is more "real" (has a more complete internal life) than other Scandinavian fictional detectives.

It’s a Crime is on a roll just now, with an excellent review of Ritual by Mo Hayder , and the news that The Book Show from SkyArts is now on YouTube, currently featuring an interview with the aforementioned Mo Hayder. There is also a great two-part (part 1 here and part 2 here) report of Ian Rankin’s recent visit to Cardiff University, on what happens next when you’ve finished with Rebus and other crucial matters.

The Gentle Axe by R. N. Morris is reviewed at Revish by "3Rs", who writes "modern historical classic, you’ll have to read it to believe it". Reading Matters features The Ghost by Robert Harris, and Crime Scene NI is blown away by Sam Millar’s Bloodstorm. The same blog is running an interview with Brian McGilloway, author of the superb Borderlands and its recent sequel, Gallow’s Lane.

Table Talk discusses the excellent, award-winning Broken Shore by Peter Temple as part of the Awards Project, which is a lovely initiative. And World Enough in Time reviews The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly and Girl with the Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier, in a post for last Sunday’s salon.

Detectives Beyond Borders features an excellent two-part interview (part 1 here and part 2 here) with Mike Mitchell, Friedrich Glauser’s translator. Meanwhile, Random Jottings discovers the delights of Agatha Raisin (as yet unsampled by Petrona).

Finally, a strange one: M. J. Rose pitches to J. K. Rowling to repackage the Harry Potter books as graphic novels. "Sure, millions of people bought the Potter books, but that’s only a fraction of the population. I know you don’t need the money.  It’s not about that.  My plea to you is that you allow more kids to see how fantastic Harry’s world is in the full-color setting of a graphic novel. Ms. Rowling, the American publishing world is waiting breathlessly for Dan Brown’s next book.  I think they would go absolutely insane over a graphic novel telling of Harry Potter." And so it goes on, with Oprah thrown into the mix.