Late last year, author Edmund White suffered a stroke and recovered; sadly, according to news reports based on the author’s Facebook page, White had another stroke earlier this month. He seems to be on the mend again. Yesterday, a blog post wished him a speedy recovery “so he could continue his work and his feud with Gore Vidal.” White wrote a response: “Gore Vidal and I have buried the hatchet. Thanks for your good wishes.” In February, just a few months after White’s first stroke, he chatted with Michael Silverblatt on Bookworm about his newest novel, Jack Holmes and His Friend.
Jennifer Egan is taking over the New Yorker's Page Turner blog’s twitter feed for the next several nights to publish an original sci-fi story. The story will also be run in the magazine’s forthcoming Science Fiction issue.
Philip Roth wants readers of the Atlantic to know that despite what Joseph O’Neill wrote in his April feature for that magazine, the New Jersey novelist did not have a “crack-up” in his mid-50s—just a bad reaction to some pain medication. In a correction letter to the Atlantic, Roth writes, “After knee surgery in March 1987, when I was 54, I was prescribed the sleeping pill Halcion, a sedative hypnotic . . . that can induce a debilitating cluster of adverse effects, sometimes called “Halcion madness.” My own adverse reaction to Halcion . . . started when I began taking the drug and resolved promptly when, with the helpful intervention of my family doctor, I stopped.”
When Zuccotti park was raided last November during the late-night Occupy Wall street eviction, one of the most memorable images—for book lovers anyway—was Democracy Now reporter Amy Goodman picking up Aldous Huxley's Brave New World Revisited out of rubble that was apparently being carted off to the dump. The dystopian classic was one of about five-thousand titles in the grassroots “people’s library” that gave free books to everyone during the encampment. Now, the destroyed library is becoming a focal point of an Occupy lawsuit against the city. According to the Village Voice, OWS lawyer Norman Siegel has referenced Nazi Germany and the Koran book burnings in Florida, saying, “The bottom line is: You don’t nuke books.” Siegel speculates that the library lawsuit could lead to much broader charges that the raid was unconstitutional.
“Chortle,” “gargantuan,” “obscene,” and “swagger” are now included in standard English, but they entered the language as literary neologisms, thanks to Lewis Carroll, Rabelais, and Shakespeare.