Today is the final day of Banned Books Week and we hope you all had a chance to celebrate. Last night we had a read-out in our Oakland store. People read from Candide and Harry Potter and Beloved and The Catcher in the Rye--great books that we couldn't do without.
Diesel has also been participating in the nation-wide festivities by uploading videos to the Banned Books Week channel:
1. This week (Sept. 24- Oct. 1) is Banned Books Week! Join the Virtual Read-out, the centerpiece of this year's Banned Books celebration. Record a video of yourself reading from your favorite banned or challenged book and upload it to the Banned Books Week channel.
By Rachel Manija Brown and Sherwood Smith
We are published authors who co-wrote a post-apocalyptic young adult novel. When we set out to find an agent for it, we expected to get some rejections. But we never expected to be offered representation… on the condition that we make a gay character straight, or cut him out altogether.
Our novel, Stranger, has five viewpoint characters; one, Yuki Nakamura, is gay and has a boyfriend. Yuki’s romance, like the heterosexual ones in the novel, involves nothing more explicit than kissing.
An agent from a major agency, one which represents a bestselling YA novel in the same genre as ours, called us.
Read the rest of the article in Publishers Weekly HERE
I am appalled and saddened by this article although I shouldn't be surprised, I've known for a long time that I inhabit a bubble where social justice matters. As the book buyer for teen fiction for the Diesel bookstores I consider it a plus when the publisher rep tells me there is a positive LGBT point of view in the story, better yet one of the main characters. This will cause me to give a second look to a title I might otherwise have passed. There is a link in the article to a decent list of YA Fantasy & Science Fiction with LBGT POV that I have posted at the Oakland store.
I must say these issues are far more troubling to me than the general state of the book industry. What kind of industry are we trying to save if a stranglehold is put on open-mindedness and diversity.
A few titles from that list:
We fit them under our beds and over our kitchen cabinets and stack them into twin pillars on either side of the actual bookcase. We set them down in the bathroom and the backseat of the car and on the kitchen tables of friends and family. Booksellers are notorious book-hoarders, so we here at Diesel thought we'd share the places (and mis-places) we stash our stash.
In my eyes, books have always been beautiful. To walk up to the bookshelf, inhale the aroma, gaze upon the selection, and pull that one special book that speaks to you. Something magical happens at that moment. You open the pages and are transported into another world. A world that could be anything: high adventure that has you eagerly turning the page, romance that conjures fond memories or longings, or poetry and art so beautiful it inspires you to create your own.
In this age of electronics, we have the ease to select books almost instantaneously. Via a good review or word of mouth, one can download a book in a matter of seconds. I appreciate the enthusiasm and understand the convenience but remain a proponent for the tangible. Licking your finger, placing it behind the page, ready to turn as soon as the last word on the previous has been read. It's that excitement that can't be reproduced. Curling the pages back as you curl up in a chair....being one with the book, that's for me. You know what I'm talking about.
It seems that publishers are creating more books that appeal to the senses; albeit a textural cover or an interactive interior. It's these features that can't be mimicked on an electronic device. Pages that literally unfold and spill out or pop to life at the turn of a page. Close your eyes and run your fingers over the raised cover and imagine what lies inside. This, is the magic I speak of. Let your imagination run wild. So, let loose, adorn your bookshelf with beautiful, mental sustenance that can be passed down through the generations--it is within your grasp.
1. Seeing Trees.
It isn’t very often that you see a good book trailer (by nature they seem counter-intuitive), but this trailer for Seeing Trees is actually visually arresting and informative. Out today, Seeing Trees: Discover the Extraordinary Secrets of Ordinary Trees is “a gorgeous journey into the life cycle of trees.” If you like trees, come in and check out the book.
2. The Customer Knows Best.
You know the situation all too well. You go to a grocery store, a BART station, or any other wide “parking lotted” location, and you are immediately locked into an uncomfortable stare-down with a pseudo-impassioned plain-clothed youth, armed with a clipboard and an intrusiveness that ranks somewhere between an aggressive homeless person and a Macy's employee desperate to meet a quota. You normally think up some lie, pretend to be on your phone—anything to just get into the store and on with your life.
Thanks to all who entered and congratulations to our winners!
John Sayles' new film Amigo opens August 19th and we're giving away tickets! Comment here or on our facebook page for a chance to win a pair of ticket vouchers to see the film.
The Brentwood winner will win tickets for the Laemmle's Monica 4 in Santa Monica.
The Oakland winner will win tickets for the Cinemark Union Landing 25 in Union City.
About the film:
AMIGO, the 17th feature film from Academy Award-nominated writer-director John Sayles, stars legendary Filipino actor Joel Torre as Rafael, a village mayor caught in the murderous crossfire of the Philippine-American War.
When U.S. troops occupy his village, Rafael comes under pressure from a tough-as-nails officer (Chris Cooper) to help the Americans in their hunt for Filipino guerilla fighters. But Rafael’s brother (Ronnie Lazaro) is the head of the local guerillas, and considers anyone who cooperates with the Americans to be a traitor. Rafael quickly finds himself forced to make the impossible, potentially deadly decisions faced by ordinary civilians in an occupied country.
A powerful drama of friendship, betrayal, romance and heartbreaking violence, Amigo is a page torn from the untold history of the Philippines, and a mirror of today’s unresolvable conflicts.
For Trailer & More Info, Please Visit: www.AmigoTheMovie.com
Playing at these theaters: