Dan Brown

Two-Typewriter Homes: Famous Literary Roommates

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Recently, The Rumpus dug up a great article from a 1998 edition of the LA Times, wherein Saul Bellow describes living with Ralph Ellison in a grand old house in upstate New York. Inspired by this pairing, we decided to poke around to try and find out which other famous writers have lived together, whether before they became famous, while scribbling away, or as established authors living the high life. Just to be clear — we’re not counting famous literary couples (or at least not constant ones, anyway). That’d just be too easy. Click through to read about a few literary greats who split the rent, and you might start looking at that aspiring novelist roommate of yours in a whole new light.
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10 Books That Should Be Challenged Instead of ’50 Shades of Grey’

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Every year, we hear about the hugely depressing spectacle of books being challenged and removed from American libraries and schools because someone out there objects to their content (usually on the grounds of depictions of people enjoying themselves in bed.) This week it was hugely successful erotic novel 50 Shades of Grey, which has been removed from the shelves of libraries in parts of Florida for its depictions of, y’know, people having sex. Absurd as the whole situation is, it did get us thinking about some books that are far more deserving of being removed from library shelves than EL James’s sexual exploits. Obligatory disclaimer: we’re of course not in the market for banning any books, but we’d much prefer to find the kiddies reading 50 Shades of Grey than any of this lot.
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Judging a City by Its Book Covers

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After collecting data from 13,000 bookstores, websites and non-traditional bookselling stores, the Daily Beast has rounded up the top reads within 16 U.S. cities. While fiction picks seemed to waver between Dan Brown, Kathryn Stockett, James Patterson and John Grisham, the non-fiction reads offered… Read More

The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

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1. Harry Potter could star in an upcoming Broadway revival of the ’60s musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. [via Variety]
2. Despite Dan Brown’s best efforts, book sales are down for fall. [via NYT]
3. The formerly confidential, behind-the-scenes account of the Jeremy Piven/Sushi-Gate battle. [via … Read More

Five Paragraphs Plus One Question About the Current Amazon Rankings

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As a professional amateur sociologist, I’m always on the lookout for peculiar confluences of events. Of particular interest to me is what horse gamblers and NBA-play-by-play men call “the trifecta.” Most humans have a special affection for threepeats (they confer greatness), threesomes (they confer, um, juices), and three-legged dogs (we feel bad for them), and I’m no exception. And so I exhort all fellow trificionados to hustle over to Amazon.com’s Bestseller List, where at this moment a rare three-headed beast is visible in the consumer-goods cloud forest.… Read More

McSweeney’s iPhone App Is Sticking It to Dan Brown

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iTunes’ App Store is probably the only place on earth right now where Dan Brown is not number. one. for. ever. Although The Lost Symbol sold enough copies for every man, woman and child in Chicago in its first week alone, the Da Vinci Code author’s iPhone app is currently lagging at #18 in the Books section. The number one spot belongs to a new app by McSweeney’s. It promises new work by Spike Jonze, Chris Ware, and Jonathan Ames, which was enough to get us to stop fiddling with I Am T-Pain for a minute and check it out. Here’s what we… Read More

What the People Are Saying About Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol

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Doubleday announced today that in the week since Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol went on sale, it has sold more 2 million copies of the English language edition worldwide. Impressed, we decided to head over to Amazon.com to check out what the people are saying. (We already know that New York Times book critic Janet Maslin has got a fever, and the only cure is more Langdon.) Surprisingly, the customer reviews are not as positively skewed as we thought they’d be. The number one gripe: formulaic writing. After the jump, a… Read More