5   +   8   =  

Know what’s better than a list? How about a mega-long feature length list? This past week has provided fiction lovers with the 100 best comic book characters of all time and the 50 best book covers ever! These were compiled over at Paste magazine and Shortlist respectively, so take a look and see if you agree with their picks.

The works and private writings of Ian McEwan have been bought by literary archive powerhouse, the Harry Ransom Center, based in Texas. The institute, which is a famous part of the University of Texas at Austin, has acquired McEwan’s unpublished manuscripts, email correspondences (covering 17 years!) and other drafts of work. If you’re wondering why a centre located in a southern US state has received these documents rather than a British one, the answer is: money. Our libraries just don’t have the funding or endowments to purchase these types of resources on a vast scale.


Turning attention to literary archives this side of the pond though, the British Library has now placed around 1,200 ‘treasures’ on their website. Including the earliest known writing of Charlotte Bronte and some early drafts of Oscar Wilde’s Importance of Being Earnest, the Library’s project means that, no longer confined to the library itself, these works are available to be looked at and examined digitally. These pieces can be found at the ‘Discovering Literature’ website. The purpose of this was to help provide teachers with a platform to engage students in literary studies in a more inspiring way.

Hollywood actress and Natasha Romanoff herself, Scarlett Johansson, is suing a French author, Grégoire Delacourt, for defamation of character due to references to her private life made in his book. Even though the story does not feature Johansson – simply another woman who people mistake for the actress – the star is unhappy with the way she has been represented and portrayed in the novel.

If you manage to save up enough dosh and head over to Harry Potter World in Florida, you’ll be in for a treat. The central wizarding trio of Harry, Ron and Hermione will feature in a newly filmed set of scenes for the ‘Escape from Gringotts’ ride. The actors have all come back together to create these extra scenes, to be played to the ride’s visitors. Sounds magical.

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