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November 2, 2009

Shorties (John Irving, Hottest Bands in Canada, and more)

The Sacramento Bee interviews John Irving about his new novel, Last Night in Twisted River.

Did you have specific aims for the book, or are you just telling a story? Does your art have a purpose?

I think having a purpose is different than having a message. I don't really write message novels, aside from "The Cider House Rules" or "A Prayer for Owen Meany." ("Cider House" was about abortion, "Owen Meany" about Vietnam.) In the other 10 novels I'm more of a social writer than a political one.

i(heart)music has posted the 2009 results of its "hottest bands in Canada" bloggers poll.

Paste lists its top 50 albums of the decade (2000-2009).

Keep up with the list of aggregated "best of the decade" music lists, updated daily.

The Guardian examines the Hammond organ's place in rock and roll.

The 2010 IMPAC Award longlist has been released, and contains 156 books, including Largehearted Boy Book Notes contributors Rabih Alameddine, Tom Piazza, and Roxana Robinson.

Jonathan Safran Foer talks to NPR's All Things Considered about his controversial new book, Eating Animals. An excerpt form the book is also provided.

"More than anything, I want people to come away with the idea that meat matters," Foer says. "I am not asking other people to come to these conclusions. I am asking people to see something that they already know, which is that what we choose to eat when ordering at a restaurant, what we choose to buy at a supermarket, is frankly one of the most important decisions we'll make all day."

Amazon MP3 has a new batch of 50 albums for $5, including:

The Antlers' Hospice
The Avett Brothers' Four Thieves Gone - The Robbinsville Sessions
Jay-Z's The Blueprint 3
Johnny Cash: The Best of the Sun Years
Rodrigo y Gabriela's 11:11

Anne Heller, author of Ayn Rand and the World She Made, talks to NPR's All Things Considered about the author's literary and political legacies.

This week Five Chapters is serializing a new short story by Emma Straub.

io9 reviews John Darnielle & John Vanderslice's tour EP, Moon Colony Bloodbath.

The Quietus excerpts from Stevie Chick's new book, Spray Paint the Walls: The "Black Flag" Story.

The New York Times notes the increased number of indie rock bands playing wedding receptions.

Weddings, of course, have been the secret sustainer of the music world since time immemorial. But for just as long, wedding bands have been a source of embarrassment for those forced to play in them. The Dexter Lake Club Band has neatly subverted this construction by the simple expediency of creating a band that actually rocks. In the process, they’ve become one of New York’s premier wedding bands for people who would never dream of hiring a wedding band.

State Magazine interviews singer-songwriter John Vanderslice.

Win Peter & Max: A Fables Novel and Fables: The Deluxe Edition, Book One in this week's Largehearted Boy contest.

Follow me on Twitter for links that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.

also at Largehearted Boy:

best of the decade (2000-2009) online music lists
daily mp3 downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists


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