Happy Halloween, fellow readers. This week’s diverse bookish news update will be brief. Even though I no longer live in South Korea, I do still have a lot of friends there and have spent much of the weekend tracking down loved ones to make sure they’re safe after the tragedy in Itaewon. My heart goes out to those who survived, my condolences to those who lost loved ones, and if I’ve sent you a message and you haven’t responded yet, please get in touch?
Here’s a few interesting nuggets of diverse book news, then I’m going to go tell more folks I love them, as should we all.
- Given how annoying James Patterson has been being lately, I feel very conflicted about the news that there’s a television adaptation of his Alex Cross series on the horizon. Aldis Hodge is set to star, and since I enjoy his acting, I’m even more conflicted. Just hire Black writers, y’all, please. [Deadline]
- I had absolutely no idea that Mennonites have a historic presence in Central Asia, but writer Sofia Samatar–who has both Somali Muslim and Dutch German Mennonite ancestry–has just released The White Mosque, a memoir/travelogue of her own journey through the region, including insights on her ancestor’s travels. This sounds like a much better travelogue than the only other book I’ve read set in Central Asia, Apples Are From Kazakhstan. [LA Times]
- I don’t know how this article manages to make the popularity of sexy romance novels on TikTok sound so deeply unsexy, but rest assured, the actual phenomenon is hot. Also, thanks to the specificity of TikTok’s algorithms, it’s pretty easy to find content in niches you enjoy, whether that be exclusively queer, racially preferenced, monster romance or whatever other legal, consensual thing you choose. [Huffington Post]
- Last thing–no link here, but I am officially obsessed with the series adaptation of Anne Rice’s Interview With the Vampire., which is both like and thoroughly unlike the original series of books. I haven’t been so giddy to watch each new episode of a show since I was a kid and that was the only way to watch shows, whether or not I liked them. I can’t really put my finger on why I love it so much–I tried here but didn’t do a very good job–and none of the articles I’ve read encapsulate what I personally think makes the show so mesmerizing either. But if I had to, I’d say it’s because the center of the show isn’t the vampirism, it’s the relationships, which are a normal, relatable sort of toxic. The monstrosity of vampirism pales beside an eternity of abuse, but also makes that abuse and the way that it coexists with a love that is desperate to become healthy, much easier for us poor mortals to examine clearly. I could talk about this show for ages, but I’ll stop here and just say give it a watch if you can. [AMC+]
Peace, beautiful people. Tell the folks you love you love them, enjoy the last of autumn, and read something good.
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