Lee Child is the author of the immensely popular Jack Reacher series. You probably know Tom Cruise was cast as Reacher in two movies, but I hope you also know he doesn’t fit the description of the character.
The series has been ongoing for more than 20 years. It’s high quality writing, but I’ve only read the first two in the series. Reacher never pulled me in like others in the genre.
But the author has jumped ship. He claims he’s done writing. Now Reacher will continue on, but written by the author’s younger brother.
This seems, well, odd. No one says Lee Child hasn’t earned the opportunity to stop writing. Other authors who have written long, popular series typically don’t just stop writing them. There are several recent examples of authors who continued writing until their death. But let’s say Lee Child is the exception. He’s done. Okay.
In mentioning the previous authors it goes without saying that if the series is still being written at the time of their death, then there is no conclusion to it. That’s what I find most annoying about this. If he no longer wants to write the series, why not finish it over a final book or two. Wrap things up nice and tight for the millions of readers he’s amassed? Oh, right. Money.
The other issue I have with this is that the mystery genre seems to be the worst at this very thing. Authors will write a series for decades and never actually finish it. Sometimes they die and sometimes it gets passed along to someone else forever and ever. Young adult series, though often much more popular than mysteries, are always finished. Literary fiction, same. But mystery, nah, let’s keep this thing going for eternity.
I hate when series or characters are continued after the author’s death. It’s never about anything other than money. I imagine the publisher fought tooth and nail to continue the series once it learned of Child’s desire to retire. I know the counter is that the series continues for those readers I mentioned, but it isn’t the same. It’s never the same.
If you spend any time browsing Netflix, then you’ve seen that Marie Kondo has a new show that recently debuted. I can probably use some help tidying up, but I have no interest in the show.
But when you follow literary accounts on Twitter it’s hard to not hear about book-related “controversies”. Apparently she’s advising people to throw out their books and the internet of readers is having none of it.
I live in a small apartment by myself. And I’ll most likely have to get two new bookshelves this year. It hasn’t once crossed my mind that instead of new bookshelves I should just rid myself of my books. I just…can’t. Even though I’m not exactly sure where I’ll put the new ones when I have them.
But maybe I’m crazy.
They’re everywhere. Every time I read a story about a new show or miniseies it appears to have been adapted from a book. I’m trying to figure out if this has been the case for decades or if I’m just more aware of it now.
Think of movies. Think of TV series. Think of what you see created by Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix. So much of their content is adapted from books. Cable networks and streaming services seem more likely to adapt books into something else, but broadcast networks jump into the mix too.
This isn’t meant to be a criticism. Authors are wonderful. But it makes you wonder if there are authors more concerned with the adaptability of their work than the quality of it.
Not surprising. I’m just going to brainstorm some possible titles.
Thirteen Reasons Why Trump Colluded With Russia
If Trump Did It
All The Lies We Cannot See
Big Little Hands
Donald Trump And The Election Thief
Guys, this is meant to be funny. Let’s not get too serious here. But really, any thoughts on a possible title?
Today is Prime Day on Amazon. The site’s Black Friday type day in July. All Amazon devices are marked down, including Kindles. But I already have a Fire tablet. I’m in no need of an ereader.
Last night once I settled in after work I decided to take a look at the deals. There are many. But very few on anything I’d want. Largely absent from the deals? Books.
I understand that books may not be as sexy as other items, but why not I Clyde them when other media is included? There are a few books included, but hardly enough to write about.
I’d like to see $1, $2, and $3 paperback categories. Hardcovers for $5 or $10. That’s my idea of real deals on Prime Day. I’ll be sitting this one out for the third straight year.
By now you’re aware that Bill O’Reilly is no longer on Fox News. I imagine you’re also aware that he’s one of the most prolific authors writing today. That may soon be changing.
Publishing is like anything else, a business. It’s about money. While at Fox News he had millions of people to promote his books to. He was able to sell a great number of books this way. But that could be changing. After it became publicly known that his employer had paid out millions of dollars to settle sexual harassment allegations made against O’Reilly he was taken off the air.
His book sales saw an immediate downturn. His forthcoming book has not been pulled, though one can only wonder how much longer his publisher will be willing to release new books written by him if the financial numbers are no longer there.
The topic of his publisher standing behind him after the allegations came to light may surprise some, but not me. It’s all about the money.
Y’all know I hate every kind of book list. Every kind. I just came across one that may take the top spot in the worst kind of way. “7 Books You Should Read If You Want To Get Rich”.
Let’s say I read the books. Then take whatever advice or guidance they supply. That obviously guarantees riches are coming to me, right? Nothing unreasonable there.
Book lists rarely do much more than play on our desires and/or fears. Books do this on their own. Do we really need reputable news sources or websites throwing g together a list to do exactly the same? I don’t think so.
Remember when Amazon launched as a bookstore? Remember when Amazon was simply an online retailer? Remember when there was no such thing as ebooks until Amazon launched the Kindle?
Amazon gets criticized for everything it does. The company just recently agreed to buy Whole Foods, which may bring changes to the grocer once the deal is finalized.
What I don’t understand is that there are numerous companies in different aspects of our lives. But Amazon can never escape blame for anything. The company doesn’t need me or anyone else to defend it, but I think it’s time we acknowledge that Amazon’s offerings are aren’t so bad. So it isn’t just a bookstore anymore, and that’s a good thing.
We’ve all been to the airport. Take off our shoes. Remove belts. All electronics removed. That funky machine that makes you put your arms in the air. Now the TSA is moving closer to requiring that books and magazines be taken out of bags too.
The TSA of course would have you blame carriers. The government would have you blame terrorists, but the question I still have is, “Really?”. Is this really going to make airports in America that much safer by forcing people to remove their books and magazines from their bags? I don’t have the answer. But we can’t deny the possibility and likelihood of discrimination. Someone with brown skin reading a book in Arabic just so happens to get screened more thoroughly. An Hispanic looking person with a book about immigration in America also undergoes additional screening.
These things already happen today. I believe this new policy only makes these instances more likely and prevalent. I always take books when flying. From now on I’ll just put them in my checked bag.
In previous years McDonald’s has had campaigns to give away books in their Happy Meals. I think the campaigns usually last about a month. This year hadn’t been any different. Except that the books are only being distributed in Canada. The most American of companies is picking Canada over the US. Justin Trudeau over Donald Trump. The cold over the not as cold. Ugh.
Fix this, McDonalds! Now.
PS: I’m pretty sure the US campaign will be later this year.