Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Happy 450th Birthday, Shakespeare!

"With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come."
- William Shakespeare

Happy birthday to one of literature's greats: the very own William Shakespeare. We don't think you look a day over 450.

Although Shakespeare's exact birthdate is unknown, it is traditionally celebrated on April 23rd every year. Shakespeare was baptized on April 26, 1564.



And how does someone as classic as Shakespeare celebrate his 450th birthday? With cake, of course! This year, Stratford-upon-Avon is hosting a giant party for the literary legend, complete with a many-tiered cake.

Interestingly enough, in Shakespeare's time, birthdays were  less eventful. The traditional "Happy Birthday" song had yet to be composed, and candles certainly didn't adorn his cake.

Nevertheless, we wish Shakespeare a wonderful birthday. Read a book or see a play to celebrate Shakespeare's monumental birth!

"To me, fair friend, you never can be old,
For as you were when first your eye I eye’d,
Such seems your beauty still." 
- William Shakespeare

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Superior Person's Tuesday!

MITHRIDATIZE, v. To gradually make immune to a poison, by the consumption over a long period of increasing doses. From Mithridates, King of Pontus from 120 to 63 B.C., who is said to have so poison-proofed himself. "No, the spices won't worry me at all, Mrs. Krishnaswamy; after ten years of Maria's cooking, I'm completely mithridatized." 




Each Tuesday, we’ll offer up a Superior Word for the edification of our Superior Readers, via the volumes of the inimitable Peter Bowler. You can purchase all or any of the four Superior Person’s Books of Words from the Godine website. Mithridatize appears in the second.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Swallows and Amazons on the New York Times blog

Motherlode contributor KJ Dell'Antonia included the Swallows and Amazons series by Arthur Ransome on a list of her nine favorite children's books that erase gender reading. We're thrilled that a series set in the 1930s is still pleasing moms today! Be sure to check out the complete series here and, in case you missed it, watch last weeks clip from the TODAY show, in which Swallows and Amazons received similar praise. Many of the Swallows and Amazons titles will be available for purchase as e-books this spring!

For more mentions of Godine titles, check out our March Review Round-up!

Literary Happenings 4/14 - 4/18

Here at Godine we realize the importance of participating in a literary community. Luckily our home city of Boston is full of great book readings, lectures, poetry slams, and book groups. If you're looking for things to do this week, why not check out some of these events, free unless otherwise noted!:


Tuesday 4/15
Wednesday 4/16
Thursday 4/17

Friday 4/18 

If you know of a literary event we overlooked, add it in the comments below! If you'd like to spread the word about upcoming events to be included in our weekly Literary Happenings, please e-mail us at info@godine.com.
  

Friday, April 11, 2014

Happy Birthday, J. M. G. Le Clézio!

We would like to extend the warmest birthday wishes to author J.M.G. Le Clézio, who turns 74 years old on Sunday, April 13th. Le Clézio is a master novelist of over 40 works, and in 2008 he was awared the Nobel Prize in Literature. We are proud to have published three of Le Clézio's novels: The African, The Prospector, and Desert. 


The African is autobiographical, and it focuses on Le Clézio's childhood. Le Clézio leaves war-stricken Europe to be reunited with his father, a doctor in Nigeria. The beautifully stunning work shares how freedom can be felt even on an African savannah. To read more about The African, click here.

Desert is a fantastic story told in two parts. It described the world of a young boy, Nour, and the migration of his people, the Blue Men. Nour and his people look for a home to call their own, but war keeps driving them out. This poignant masterpiece showcases all of Le Clézio's talent. To read more about Desert, click here.

The Prospector is set on turn of the century Mauritius, where young Alexis L'Etang enjoys a wonderful life with his family. But when her father dies, Alexis becomes obsessed with finding a mythical buried treasure, and his adventures force him to reflect on his condition. To read more about The Prospector, click here.

We hope J.M.G. Le Clézio has a wonderfully happy birthday. Thanks for all of your literary contributions, and we can't wait to celebrate again next year.


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Getting creative for poetry month!

Interns Erinn and Serene were feeling all the poetic buzz this April, and decided to participate in some found poetry exercises! Inspired by this Erasure Poetry blog, we've taken three Godine titles and created our very own erasure poems. An erasure poem is a type of found poetry created by erasing words from an existing text in prose or verse and framing the result on the page as a poem. So, without further delay, here are our three poems!


1) From Lark Rise to Candleford by Flora Thompson

“The Besieged Generation”

filthy, furtive fact of life
overflowing with secret
wife, mother, ordinary life
little mouse of a woman, seldom seen
whose eyes would glow of love
one son, a picture stamped upon her mind





 2) From War in Val D’Orcia by Iris Origo

She will go on August 15th, my birthday, in the middle of the garden path.
In a few days they tell us, 'it is to be,' they say.
As they sit, drinking their classes of wine, the most highly specialized human beings.
Both of them are Russian officers.
I say: ‘No,’ I belonged to the depth of the inevitability of war. 


3) From As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning by Laurie Lee

“One Midsummer Morning”

In the torrid street, cool air, wet tiles, and wine-soaked wood:
            this place was yours
Pot-boys and men holding goblets of sherry, piled round the counters
succulently enthroned on great banquets, twitching on beds of palm-leaves
Also on offer would be sizzling pork or lamb
But then this after all, was some of the best in the world

That’s how I remember it: a proliferation of watchmen, taxi-drivers, sleek officials
fastidiously biting into tart pink flesh,
            tasting half-forgotten seas, half-remembered empires
The surge of heroes was a way of life,
buried away from the burning sky;
so successfully come to terms with this particular priority of pleasure


Feeling creative? Grab the nearest book, make a copy of any page you'd like, and block out words or phrases until you've got yourself a brand new poem! We'd love to read what you come up with, so feel free to share in the comments or tweet us your poem @GodinePub! 


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Superior Person's Tuesday!

HALIEUTICS, n. Fishing. "No, I can't claim any great expertise in nonparametric statistics, and I realize their relevance to the selection criteria. On the other hand, I have some twenty years' experience in halieutics, and I'd be looking to build further on that if I were to get the job."


It takes luck and patience to be an expert in halieutics



Each Tuesday, we’ll offer up a Superior Word for the edification of our Superior Readers, via the volumes of the inimitable Peter Bowler. You can purchase all or any of the four Superior Person’s Books of Words from the Godine website. Halieutics appears in the second.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Literary Happenings 4/7-4/11

Here at Godine we realize the importance of participating in a literary community. Luckily our home city of Boston is full of great book readings, lectures, poetry slams, and book groups. If you're looking for things to do this week, why not check out some of these events, free unless otherwise noted!:

Monday 4/7


Tuesday 4/8


Wednesday 4/9

Thursday 4/10


Friday 4/11

If you know of a literary event we overlooked, add it in the comments below! If you'd like to spread the word about upcoming events to be included in our weekly Literary Happenings, please e-mail us at info@godine.com.