Monday, August 11, 2014

The Free Bin: Lawrence Block, Hotel Libraries, and Book Dirt’s New Companion Blog

  • I can’t help but be biased: the biggest news in this round-up is the launch of Film Dirt, a Book Dirt spin-off where I’ll be sharing some of my research on lost films, plus reviews and articles on silent film—plus a few modern obscurities. While I’ve reprinted some film-related Book Dirt content to get the site started, new articles will debut this week, so bookmark or subscribe to be among my first readers. (You can also find additional content on the Facebook page.)

  • NPR talked to Lawrence Block while walking around New York City. You can read the article, but you’re missing out if you don’t listen to the audio version—not just to hear the man himself, but the sounds of the city that Block credits with writing his first Matthew Scudder novel. You read that right: “The town was writing that book," Block says. "The hideous crime that Scudder talked about on the next day's writing was the one I read about on the subway downtown. And, you know, the city never failed me. It always provided something."

  • During my Ireland trip last year, I was pleased to find one of my hotel room stuffed with books. I can hardly imagine how I’d react to find an entire library. Huffington Post has collected a list of hotels with interesting libraries that would make any traveler leave the Kindle at home. Don’t miss the photo of the thatched-roof reading room in Curacao. 

  • In the wake of the release of Dave Egger’s newest novel, written in all dialogue, The Rumpus takes a look at other all-dialogue novels—plus some dialogue-heavy books like The Friends of Eddie Coyle. 

  • The Guardian has a list of what they’re calling “The weirdest Frankenstein books ever.” While some are more experimental and/or literary than flat-out weird, it would be hard to disagree with the strangeness of a book deemed a cross between Frankenstein and Field of Dreams.

If you enjoyed any of these links, do let me know. Heck, if you thought they were dumb, I’d still be interested to hear about it. Let me know why, and we can bicker.


  1. I've read Brittle Innings, and it's strange but very good.

  2. Womnderful Kelly - will definitely listen to the Block broadcast (sic) - thanks chum.

  3. Kelly, I'll be visiting "Film Dirt" and reading your views and reviews on lost and silent films. And, of course, I'll be listening to the Block interview as soon as I can.