Dan Brown to Publish New Novel

Apr 21, 2009 by

Dan Brown, undoubtedly the most discussed of all authors in recent times (at least in the circles that we swim in anyway), is slated to publish his long-awaited novel, The Lost Symbol.  The novel is a sequel to The Da Vinci Code, and from the article:

Inevitably, it involves a global cult and a race against time to unlock a secret formula.

Details of the plot are likely to remain fiercely guarded until much nearer the publication date of September 15, but intrigue centres on whether Brown’s vast and conspiracy-crazed international fanbase can divine any clues about the novel from its title: The Lost Symbol.

Also, something to send fans screaming in delight, or detractors screaming in anguish for sullying bookstores with future copies of the book:

Jason Kaufman, Brown’s US editor, said: “From the first page, Dan’s readers will feel the thrill of discovery as they follow Robert Langdon through a masterful and unexpected new landscape. The Lost Symbol is full of surprises.”

Read about it in the Times here.

Btw, I loved this quote from the Times:

His books have antagonised Christian groups and upset sensitive lovers of fine English prose but their protests have been drowned out by record-breaking sales.

Absolutely neutral, that one. 🙂

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RIP, JG Ballard

Apr 20, 2009 by

Various sources around the internet reported on the death of JG Ballard, author of books such as Empire of the Sun and Crash.

Such was his influence that the adjective ‘Ballardian’ has made it to the Collins English Dictionary:

defined as “resembling or suggestive of the conditions described in J. G. Ballard’s novels and stories, especially dystopian modernity, bleak man-made landscapes and the psychological effects of technological, social or environmental developments”

Read it from BBC here.

Update: Boingboing has a host of links related to Ballard’s death.  Go here.

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Related Posts

British Science Fiction Association (BSFA) Award winners announced!

Apr 13, 2009 by

The British Science Fiction Association has announced the winners of their annual BSFA Awards.

They are:

(Thanks to Science Fiction Awards Watch)

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Slate’s Audio Book Club discusses Infinite Jest

Apr 7, 2009 by

I’ve mentioned in the previous incarnation of this very site that Slate has a podcast of their Audio Book Club, where they discuss a selected classic or new piece of work in every episode.

This recent episode has the Book Club panel discussing the beloved (and equally bewildering) Infinite Jest by the David Foster Wallace.

Interesting discussions – go check it out.

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Commentary on the Mumbai Attacks by Arundhati Roy and Salman Rushdie

Apr 3, 2009 by

A lot has been said about the tragic Dec 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai India.  It has been covered by the various news channels from around the world in infinitely more detail than a humble podcast can possibly muster. 

However, in our last show Gem mentioned a commentary made by Booker Prize winning author Arundhati Roy in the Guardian on the attacks, who summed it up as:

The only way to contain (it would be naïve to say end) terrorism is to look at the monster in the mirror. We’re standing at a fork in the road. One sign says Justice, the other Civil War. There’s no third sign and there’s no going back. Choose.


Mr Rushdie begged to differ, and responded in this video:


This isn’t new by a longshot, but something about publicly debated literati fisticuffs appeal to me.

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