This isn’t exactly a new feature, but we’re carrying on the fine tradition of Emily’s “Web Newberys,” begun a year and a half ago—a column that evolved into “Freebies and Cheapies” and then disappeared. But we’re always on the lookout for book news and facts and oddities—as well as freebies—and we need a place to put them. So, here’s Book Bits: a catch-all post for all that quirky stuff that’s fit to link to.
Eight tips and tricks to get the most out of Project Gutenberg: Project Gutenberg has been around for a long time: a treasure house of literary classics that can be yours absolutely free, once you figure out how to get around in it. If you’ve ever visited PG, you might have found yourself overwhelmed by sheer text. This handy post from EBook Friendly has some cool ideas for adapting to a mobile device, quick downloads, and other tips.
Interview with Rebecca Dudley: One of my favorite wordless picture books from last year was Hank Finds an Egg (here’s our favorite-books discussion, and here’s a print review). When I was a kid I used to make dioramas, and I’m still fascinated with them, so naturally I gravitate to such a diorama genius as Rebecca Dudley. Here’s the interview with her, and it includes a link to an 8-minute documentary of the artist at work—such fun!
Netflix for the picture-book set. This sounds interesting—Sproutkin, a book service that works like Netflix except that instead of one-three movie DVDs at a time they send you a selection of picture books, postage paid. Some of them you may opt to buy. So far the service is limited to picture books in two age categories, 0-3 and 3-6, possibly because paper remain the medium of choice for picture books. It could be a blessing for moms who don’t have regular library access, or those who would like to build a home library with limited risk, since you can return the ones you don’t want to keep. Here’s an explanation of the backstory and how it works.
Not for everybody: So, what if Breaking Bad were re-imagined as a Little Golden Book? We only get the cover and a full-page spread here, but it does make you think . . . Or does it?