Issue of January 2, 2011

Welcome to 2011! This is the year and the week that BiblioBuffet turns six years old. On January 8, 2006, we opened our doors—to resounding silence. I am laughing as I write this because I knew so little about the reality of the Internet. Sure, we had a few fans but word has passed, and our growth in the world of the online book community has been fueled by learning (as it should be) and increasing numbers of readers. Nicki Leone and I, partners in BiblioBuffet from opening day, made a strong commitment to offering some of the best online writing around. Which we believe we have kept. Change is inevitable and the beginning of our sixth year is no exception. But one thing will never change—that BiblioBuffet will always offer “writing worth reading,” and that finding “reading worth writing about” will remain our mission.

While those of us in the United States are with rare exceptions trying to keep warm, other parts of the world are trying to cool off. Gillian Polack, at home in Australia and in mid-summer, gave her heated brain free rein to provide a “make-over” to thirteen novels that she deemed ripe for some snarkiness in Middle Aged Festivities.

When he worked as a newspaper reporter, Pete Croatto had the perfect excuse to be curious, to ask any questions he wanted—and to expect answers. It was the part he loved and that he now incorporates into his freelance writing, particularly with his new occasional series, “I’m Just Curious.” In this inaugural piece, he turned to two authors of sports biographies he reviewed recently to satisfy his curiosity about . . . oh, several matters in I’m Just Curious, Part I.

It’s the time of year when gloves become essential for most outdoor activities. But gloves have been a part of human history since the beginning—and not always to protect hands from cold. Lauren Roberts explores the fascinating history of this clothing accessory, spanning gloves ranging from boxing to surgical, in Fits Like a Glove.

What is a birthday without presents? Kind of sad. So Lauren Roberts begins BiblioBuffet’s birthday celebration (as well as the New Year) with lots of them—including news, books, the beginning of book festival season, a terrific publishing house and its books, a book porn video, and a surprising discovery of a superb book blog—all to be found in A Birthday is a Wonderful Thing!

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