Farewell, Iain Banks, and Other News


On the Shelf


  • Iain Banks died Sunday, age fifty-nine. Friends and colleagues pay tribute.
  • “A stiff-legged figure in a wolf suit cuts a caper, pawing at the air, eyeing the page in front of him with mischief of one kind and another in mind. It’s Max, of course, there on the front of to celebrate what would have been the eighty-fifth birthday of his creator, Maurice Sendak.” Is the doodle not in the spirit of the famously touchy Sendak? 
  • Scarlett Johansson is suing a French novelist for using her name—a character resembles her, so he refers to her that way for about sixty pages—sans permission.
  • The Indiana Department of Education is trying to facilitate summer reading by making three thousand books available online and matching said titles to students’ interests and reading levels.