A new biography of J.D. Salinger will be published by Simon & Schuster in September. The Private War of J.D. Salinger, according to the publisher, is an "oral biography," written and edited by David Shields and Shane Salerno.
Young Joan Didion.
Joan Didion’s novel A Book of Common Prayer, the story of “two American women whose paths cross in a fictional Central American country on the verge of revolution,” is going to be adapted into the movie. The film will be directed by Campbell Scott—who also stars—and filming starts this Fall in Puerto Rico.
In anticipation of his forthcoming book, The Democracy Project, anarchist David Graeber held a reddit "ask me anything"—and ended up getting nearly a thousand comments. For more, read Bookforum’s 2012 interview with Graeber.
Kudos to Gawker for continuing to publish first-person accounts of the effects of long-term unemployment. Their second batch of twelve “unemployment stories,” which included writing by a stay-at-home-dad, an “at-will” employee, and an unemployed therapist with an MA from Columbia, ran on Monday.
And speaking of long-term unemployment, n+1 publishes notes on the Modern Language Association’s annual conference for job-seeking academics.
The status of hundreds of thousands of rare Islamic manuscripts dating back to the 14th, 15th, and 16th centuries are unknown since Islamist radicals in Timbuktu reportedly torched the library where the manuscripts were being held. According to the Guardian, radicals had been using the Ahmed Baba Institute of Higher Islamic Studies and Research as a base until French troops stormed the Malian city on Monday. When the French arrived, the insurgents set the library, the town hall, and the governor’s office on fire, and fled before the town was captured. The manuscripts “cover areas such as medicine and astronomy, as well as poetry, literature and Islamic law,” and denote the “legacy of [Timbuktu’s] medieval status as an African equivalent to Oxford or Cambridge.”