Books Weekly News Digest- September 19th 2014

Books Weekly News Digest- September 19th 2014

Lord Of The Flies Anniversary Celebrated With Archive Loan To University Of Exeter

The archive of acclaimed author William Golding has been given on long-term loan to the University of Exeter and will be made available to academics and the public. The loan marks the 60th anniversary of the publication of Golding’s classic, Lord of the Flies, with the archive material featuring a hand-written draft of one of the most significant novels of the past six decades.

The archive includes drafts and notes from the majority of Golding’s books. The author’s daughter, Judy Carver, arranged for the material to be moved from a bank vault to the University. This is the first time students, academics and the public will have access to this early version of Lord of the Flies, which is written on a hardback school exercise book. The writing in the book is small and at times difficult to read; nevertheless it gives readers a great insight into the author’s writing process.

There are a number of changes in the hand-written draft – some subtle, some more significant. For one, the published novel opens with the meeting beside a lagoon between Ralph and ‘Piggy.’ In the draft, however, the tale begins with a description of how the plane carrying the boys was attacked during an atomic war. Golding initially described Piggy as ‘rather fat,’ though in the final version he is referred to as ‘very fat.’

Golding’s Lord of the Flies was rejected by ten publishers and one literary agent before it was finally published in the autumn of 1954 by Faber and Faber. By that time, Golding was a teacher and had written two other unpublished novels alongside some non-fiction. The author died in 1993 and today (19th September) would have been his birthday.

You can read an interview with the author’s daughter here. Or, click here to view our range of William Golding products.

RNIB And HarperCollins To Produce New Releases In Accessible Formats

A partnership between sight-loss charity RNIB and publisher HarperCollins will see all the books nominated for this year’s Man Booker Prize being published in accessible formats for blind and partially-sighted people. The six titles will be available on the 14th of October, which is the day when the Man Booker Prize winner will be announced. Previously, blind or partially-sighted people have had to wait months after a book is published before it is published again in accessible formats. In addition to the books shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, the charity will also be publishing large print, braille and talking book copies of Sophie Hannah’s new title, The Monogram Murders. The book is the first Poirot novel in 40 years that will be available to blind readers at the same time as sighted readers.

Minecraft: It’s Not Just A Game…

Have you ever played Minecraft? As simple as it is addictive, Minecraft is a computer game played by millions of gamers across the globe. The game, played by children and adults alike, is based around the simple concept of building 3D-block constructions and then defending them. But it’s not just a game – Minecraft has also produced a top-selling series of guidebooks, including The Combat Handbook and The Construction Handbook. In fact, a whopping 8.2 million of these guidebooks have been sold across the globe in 21 different languages. An upcoming fifth instalment, entitled Blockopedia, is an encyclopaedia-style book containing everything players need to know to make the most out of the game’s blocks. It will be published in early December, just in time for Christmas!

In the meantime, you can check out our range of Minecraft products here.

Oliver Jeffers To Visit UK

Famous illustrator Oliver Jeffers will be celebrating his 10th year of creating picture books with a visit to London’s Southbank Centre. On the 1st-2nd of November, Jeffers will be taking part in numerous events, including an ‘in conversation’ evening with fellow illustrator Quentin Blake. Jeffers will be talking to his fans about how to create picture books, as well as hosting a ‘sketch-off’ between guest illustrators. In celebration of his work, the Discover Children’s Story Centre in East London will be hosting a year-long exhibition entitled ‘The Wonderful World of Oliver Jeffers,’ launching on the 27th of September.

You can browse our Oliver Jeffers products here.

Bradford Prepares For Its First Literature Festival

Bradford is busy with the final preparations for its first ever literature festival, which is taking place on 26th-28th September. Organisers have promised that it will be the ‘most diverse’ festival of its kind in the UK. The festival, which will host 25 different events across the city, is a taster for the full-length, 10-day festival that will take place next May. The September festival will welcome a whole host of big names, including comedian Shazia Mirza and poet Lemn Sissay.

Take a look at the Bradford Literature Festival website to find out more.

The National Trust Partners With Two New Publishers

The National Trust has teamed up with publishers Nosy Crow and Faber to produce a whole new range of children’s and non-fiction books. Partnering with Faber, the National Trust aims to produce up to four, joint-name non-fiction books every year. These books will delve into Britain’s past and present, telling the story of the connection between place and people. Between 2013 and 2014, the sale of children’s books grew by 600% in National Trust shops, indicating the popularity of the titles. Nosy Crow will be the exclusive publisher of the National Trust’s range of children’s titles, with the first books expected to launch in March 2016.

Meanwhile, the National Trust will continue its existing publishing contract with Pavilion Books for its illustrated range. In the future, the partnership will see the publishing of more books with topics relating to gardening, craft, cookery and more.

Take a look at our National Trust range here.

Which stories were you most interested in this week?

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