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E.L. Doctorow, author of The Book of Daniel, Ragtime, and Billy Bathgate, died in New York Tuesday at age 84. The New Yorker has provided links to all of his appearances in the magazine.

They’re at it again. The parents. The ones who think their children only ought to read books that promote Christian values. Those parents.

Meanwhile the number of people who believe there are books that should be banned is on the rise. The demographic breakdowns are interesting.

In just four years, the percentage of Americans who believe there are any books that should be banned has increased by more than half: 28% believe this to be the case today, vs. 18% in 2011. One-fourth (24%) are unsure, which leaves nearly half of Americans convinced that no books should be banned completely (48%).

We don’t generally mix the words “Amazon” and “profit” together in the same sentence, but following their second quarter results, times may be a-changin’.

Remember the letter “Authors United” sent to the Department of Justice, accusing Amazon of being a monopoly? Jousting knight J.A. Konrath has fisked it in a letter of his own.

I don’t know if you’re required to take their bogus complaint seriously, or if you can simply dismiss their bad logic, ridiculous examples, and outright lies. If you’ve already seen through their nonsense, you can stop reading this letter right now, and toss it into the garbage on top of theirs.

It’s disappointing when you attend a debate and one side fails to show up. On the other hand, the ridicule showered upon the absent side helps to make up for the disappointment. We attended this non-debate, and were amused.

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Go Set a Watchman (Did you think it would be quiet by now? DID YOU.) sold over $1.1M books in its first week.

The argument has been settled. Hogwarts is tuition free.

Salman Rushdie says he could not depend on fellow writers for support to write The Satanic Verses today.

“I’ve since had the feeling that, if the attacks against The Satanic Verses had taken place today, these people would not have defended me, and would have used the same arguments against me, accusing me of insulting an ethnic and cultural minority.”

Okay, if Yeats isn’t buried there, who is? (Jimmy Hoffa!)

Finally, 125 men who vaguely resemble Ernest Hemingway. Who wouldn’t want to miss that? The contest isn’t until tomorrow (Saturday), so all you heavy-set men with white beards still have time.