Book Geek Bulletin: Hobbits, Harry Potter, and Hemingway

Book Geek Bulletin header: Hobbits, Harry Potter, and Hemingway
Book Geek Bulletin is a regular feature where we round up what’s going on in the world of literary culture and books—both here in Minnesota and around the world.

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Local Lit | Global News | Page to Screen

Local Lit

Warner Bros. has acquired the film rights to Fly a Little Higher, the book by Laura Sobiech about her son, Zach—“the Lakeland teenager who wrote the hit song ‘Clouds’ as a farewell to family and friends before he died of osteosarcoma.”

Tol-Con logoTol-Con, a Middle Earth fan convention coming to Minneapolis in November 2016, and Bauhaus Brew Labs, “a local craft brewery run by fellow Tolkien geeks,” have announced a limited-edition Tolkien beer for the event . . . “and yes, IT COMES IN PINTS!”

Coffee House Press author Brian Evenson was profiled in the New Yorker ahead of his newest collection, A Collapse of Horses, which comes out in March 2016. Also in Coffee House news, Mr. and Mrs. Doctor by Julie Iromuanya has been named a finalist for the PEN Literary Awards.

Shelf Awareness recently featured Minnesota bookstore Beagle and Wolf and its annual Night In festivities.

Some details are trickling in about the TV adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s Likely Stories, which was previously set to begin filming this past November.

Global News

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child coverThe script of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the play opening on London’s West End this summer, will be released in print and ebook formats on July 31, 2016—both Harry’s birthday and author J. K. Rowling’s. Pottermore notes that “the Special Rehearsal Edition of the script book [the version to be published in July] will later be replaced by a Definitive Collector’s Edition.” Less than a day after the news was announced, preorders had already sent the book to the top of the Amazon and Waterstones bestseller lists.

The bookselling world briefly panicked earlier this month when a mall executive with supposed knowledge of Amazon‘s future plans claimed that the online retailer was looking to open “300 to 400 bookstores” similar to its brick-and-mortar location in Seattle. Amazon refused to comment, but the executive retracted his statement, and most experts agree that the real number is probably much, much, smaller.

The attorney for Cassandra Clare has responded to a lawsuit filed by fellow fantasy author Sherrilyn Kenyon claiming Clare’s Shadowhunter series copied from her own Dark-Hunter.

Producer Scott Rudin and screenwriter Aaron Sorkin will adapt Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird for Broadway.

After months of silence, Chinese authorities have announced that three Hong Kong booksellers critical of the mainland regime who went missing last fall have been detained under suspicion of “illegal activities.”

A short story collection by a North Korean author writing under the pseudonym Bandi “is on its way to becoming an international literary sensation.” The Accusation, which is set in 1990s North Korea, has picked up multiple pre-empt deals—in which a publisher offers a lucrative enough deal that an author agrees to sign with them rather than allowing competitive bids from other presses—for publishing rights in various countries.

Publisher Simon & Schuster has launched Riveted, an online community for fans of YA fiction.

And recently announced are the winners of the NAACP Image Awards (which include a literature category) and finalists for the British Science Fiction Association Awards and the Audie Awards for audiobooks.

Page to Screen

Will, a drama pilot from TNT focusing on a young William Shakespeare, has cast Colm Meaney (best known to geeks as Star Trek‘s Chief O’Brien) and Mattias Inwood (The Shannara Chronicles). The pair will play London theater builder James Burbage and his son, Richard.

Bad Wolf, the production company with a Doctor Who connection, has picked up TV rights to A Discovery of Witches, the best-selling 2011 debut novel by Deborah Harkness and the first in her historical/fantasy All Souls trilogy. The author will reportedly write several of the episodes.

A Discovery of Witches cover Across the River and into the Trees cover  The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society cover

Pearce Brosnan will star in an adaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s Across the River and into the Trees. Martin Campbell, who worked with Brosnan on Goldeneye, is directing.

Deadline reports that “much-in-demand Brit actress Rosamund Pike is circling long-gestating project Guernsey,” based on the 2008 New York Times bestseller The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Pike notably starred in the 2014 literary film Gone Girl, based on the novel by Gillian Flynn.

Other recent deals news:

A teaser is out for season 6 of Game of Thrones, set in the Hall of Faces at Braavos’s House of Black and White.

Also out are a first look at the new Jason Bourne movie (based on the character created by Robert Ludlum in his novels) and new trailers for Me Before You (based on the novel by by Jojo Moyes), The Divergent Series: Allegiant (based on the novel by Veronica Roth), season 2 of Outlander (based on the series by Diana Gabaldon), BBC/AMC miniseries The Night Manager (based on the novel by John Le Carré), and High-Rise (based on the novel by J. G. Ballard).

Following a conflict with the new release date for Star Wars: Episode VIII, the Warner Bros. adaptation of Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One will now open in 2018 instead of December 2017.

And Netflix has signed on Orange Is the New Black (based on the memoir by Piper Kerman) for a fifth, sixth, and seventh season and House of Cards (based on the novel by Michael Dobbs) for a fifth. A trailer is also out for House of Cards season 4.

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