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September 4, 2012

Shorties (Fall Reading Picks from Junot Diaz and Amitav Ghosh, Stream the New Album by the xx, and more)

Scene Asia gets fall reading picks from authors Junot Diaz, Amitav Ghosh, and others.

NPR is streaming the new xx album, Coexist.

Jennifer Egan's top 10 books of all time.

The Daily Californian profiles the band The Purity Ring.

To someone who knows nothing about Canadian geography, the fact that Purity Ring began work for the basis of their critically acclaimed debut Shrines while split up between Halifax and Montreal might not seem all that striking. But the duo’s partnership was a tale of two cities almost one thousand miles apart, and, much like the “future pop” label that has been slapped onto them by countless music blogs, came as the result of two contrasting but ultimately symbiotic styles. After all, Purity Ring are a paragon of duality, as evidenced by the simultaneously grotesque and intimate musings of singer Megan James lining every song on the band’s only LP, released in July. But perhaps the best example of the dichotomy the two embrace comes from the music itself, a unique blend of hip-hop beats and pop melodies curated by former Gobble Gobble drummer Corin Roddick.

Comics Bulletin lists the top 10 dense graphic novels and comics.

WFMU's Beware of the Blog digs up JFK tribute 45s.

The September issue of Bookslut is online and contains interviews with Victor LaValle, Tan Twan Eng, and much more.

The Guardian Music Blog ponders the new UK anti-squatting law on British music.

Dante's nine circles of Hell, recreated in LEGO.

The New York Times reviews Michael Chabon's new novel Telegraph Avenue.

There are moments here and there in "Telegraph Avenue" where Mr. Chabon, himself sounds as if he's trying very hard "to sound like he was from the 'hood," but for the most part he does such a graceful job of ventriloquism with his characters that the reader forgets they are fictional creations. His people become so real to us, their problems so palpably netted in the author’s buoyant, expressionistic prose, that the novel gradually becomes a genuinely immersive experience — something increasingly rare in our ADD age.

At Esquire, Benjamin Percy reviews the book.

Paul Simon discusses recording his Graceland album with World Cafe.

The Morning News continues its "Reading Roulette" feature on modern Russian literature with a profile of Nikolai Klimontovich.

Win D.T. Max's new book Every Story Is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace and a $100 Threadless gift certificate in this week's Largehearted Boy contest.

Amazon MP3 has over 100 digital albums on sale for $5.

Amazon MP3 offers over 500 albums for sale for $2.99.

Follow me on Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest, Facebook, and Stumbleupon for links (updated throughout the day) that don't make the daily "Shorties" columns.

also at Largehearted Boy:

previous Shorties posts (daily news and links from the worlds of music, books, and pop culture)

100 Online Sources for Free and Legal Music Downloads
Atomic Books Comics Preview (the week's best new comics & graphic novels)
Book Notes (authors create playlists for their book)
daily mp3 downloads
Largehearted Word (the week's best new books)
musician/author interviews
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)
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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