Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and we are here to help woo your smarty-sweetheart. Or else creep out your smarty would-be sweetheart. Either way, these Valentines are the perfect thing to share with that bookish someone.
Have a better line? We want to hear it. Submit your best literary come-hither right here, or on Twitter using #LiteraryComeOns; the three best entries (picked by the Nouvella staff, as we enjoy V-day with our cats) submitted by Wednesday, February 13th will join our series of cards, and the winners get a free book (or tote bag) of their choice from our store.
Don’t see how any woman can resist.
I laughed out loud for at least two minutes.
Ernest Hemingway (fishing, hunting, Midnight in Paris)
Sylvia Plath (death, oven, daddy)
J.D. Salinger (old, recent, white people problems)
Franz Kafka (art, child, for president)
George Orwell (cctv, big brother, lived here)
John Cheever (young, short stories, gay)
Anthony Burgess (is America falling apart, wife assaulted)
Mark Twain (national forest, pipe, Tom Sawyer)
Anne Sexton (death, model, and Sylvia Plath)
Dorothy Parker (gin)
Hunter S. Thompson (Johnny Depp, gonzo, wallpaper, funeral)
Ayn Rand (Jesus, valentine, funeral)
William S. Burroughs (junky, gun, danger)
Ken Kesey (bus, magic bus, acid tests)
Ezra Pound (poetry, cake, mugshot)
Mikhail Bulgakov (morphine, and Stalin)
Yukio Mishima (body, severed head, patriotism)
Martin Amis (money, teeth, invasion of the space invaders)
Orson Scott Card (empire, piggies, treason)
Gertrude Stein (Picasso, and Hemingway, and Alice B. Toklas)
J.K. Rowling (new book, hot, and family)
Jonathan Franzen (glasses, girlfriend, time)
Bret Easton Ellis (Twitter, boyfriend, brat pack)
Salman Rushdie (girlfriend, fatwa, wives)
Kingsley Amis (beach, hangover)
When drunk (dead) authors text…
Customers often bring me books off the shelves and ask me if I can tell them anything about them. There are times when I’ve read it, didn’t like it, and don’t want to admit it- this customer could love it! It could be their kryptonite! There are also times when I haven’t read it but have heard Some Interesting Things about it. In times like these, I reach into my bag of bookseller euphemisms- phrases that I’ve noticed I use when I don’t want to say exactly what I think (or what I’ve heard) about a certain tome. Here’s a handy-dandy cheat sheet:
It’s Great if You Like Downton Abbey: It’s set in England during a war. I think there’s a maid in it.
It Reminded Me of The Great Gatsby (or something by Edith Wharton/Evelyn Waugh): It’s about rich people doing stupid things. Every single character is annoying.
It’s Gut Wrenching: You’re holding The Things They Carried.
It’s Heart Wrenching: You’re holding The Remains of the Day."
I don’t really understand art, and like all idiots, I tend to hate that which I don’t understand. However, if I’m able to suspend my “Hey hippie, get a real job,” reflex, I think this is beautiful. I especially like the NYPL checkout card motifs.
"The best book I read last year — and by “best” I really just mean the book that made the strongest impression on me — was The Shallows, by Nicholas Carr. Like most people, I had some strong intuitions about how my life and the world have been changing in response to the Internet. But I could neither put those intuitions into an argument, nor be sure that they had any basis in the first place. Carr persuasively — and with great subtlety and beauty — makes the case that it is not only the content of our thoughts that are radically altered by phones and computers, but the structure of our brains — our ability to have certain kinds of thoughts and experiences."