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Negative Assumptions Trigger Poor Reading: Today in Books

Negative Assumptions Trigger Poor Reading

According to new research published in Scientific Study of Literature, negative assumptions about science fiction trigger poor reading. Washington and Lee University professors Chris Gavaler and Dan Johnson measured how an automatic assumption that science fiction texts are less worthwhile predisposes readers “to a less effortful and comprehending mode of reading – or what we might term non-literary reading.” “We can now show objectively that the weakness is with the reader, not the story itself,” said professor Gavaler.

Bad Sex In Fiction Award 2017 Nominees

The Literary Review announced its 2017 nominations for the Bad Sex in Fiction Award. The award recognizes “outstandingly bad” scenes of sexual description in good novels. The nominees are: Seventh Function of Language by Laurent Binet, The Destroyers by Christopher Bollen, Mother of Darkness by Venetia Welby, As a God Might Be by Neil Griffiths, The Future Won’t Be Long by Jarett Kobek, War Cry by Wilbur Smith (with David Churchill), and Here Comes Trouble by Simon Wroe. You can read the cringe-worthy excerpts in the linked piece. Previous winners of the award include Erri De Luca and Morrisey.

Anansi Boys Adapted As Radio Drama

BBC Radio 4 is adapting Neil Gaiman’s Anansi Boys as a six-part radio drama. The story follows Mr. Nancy, an incarnation of the West African trickster god Anansi, from American Gods. British comedian and actor Lenny Henry will play Mr. Nancy in the radio adaptation; Jacob Anderson (Game of Thrones) and Nathan Stewart-Jarrett (Misfits) will play Nancy’s sons. Anansi Boys will begin airing on Christmas Day.

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