Boing Boing 

Final Pratchett novel is out: The Shepherd's Crown

Well, The Shephed's Crowd (a Tiffany Aching book) is out in the UK, anyway -- (idiotically) the US release will be Sept 1.

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Judgey: Web game that lets you judge a book by its cover

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Judgey is a fun site that lets you rate a book's cover, then see if your rating matches up with its Goodreads rating. Great way to remind yourself of all the bad design in the world!

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Podcast: Effective Altriusm interview with the author of "Doing Good Better"

Rick Kleffel talks to William MacAskill, the core of Effective Altruism, discussing EA and his book about it. It's much more pragmatic and entirely reasonable, not about extreme statistics and speculations."

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DJ Molles closes out The Remaining series

The Remaining: Extinction

I'm half way through DJ Molle's recently released, final book in The Remaining series, Extinction. This post-zombie America adventure captures the genre perfectly!

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New volume of SF from around the world: 28 stories from 25 countries

Lavie Tidhar writes, "The Apex Book of World SF 4 is out today - this is the fourth volume of the series began in 2009, and features 28 stories from 25 countries, seven of which are translations, and it is the first volume to be edited by Mahvesh Murad - marking this also as the first genre anthology ever edited by a Pakistani woman."

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Absurdly awesome covers from 1930s boys' magazine: The Hotspur

The Hotspur was a boy's story newspaper from Britain that launched in 1933 and featured fantastical covers with giant monsters, robots, and extraterrestrials in conflict with stalwart humans.

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Tales of the Gold Monkey, another lost tv treasure

Join a former flying tiger, his awesome dog and a Grumman G-21 Goose as he explores the south Pacific, fights Nazis, and has a broken relationship with a pretty singer/spy. This should have been my life, not a one season tv show you've never heard of!

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Howard the Duck

Naturally the DVD for this incredible, baffling movie is only $6.48!

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Jenny Hart's embroidered cover for Postmistress

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Our friend Jenny Hart illustrated the cover to Penguin's re-issue of The Postmistress by Sarah Blake. It one of six books in the Penguin by Hand collection, "comprising six of Penguin's most popular women's fiction titles of recent years, all with new and beautiful craft-inspired jackets."

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This poster for the Cincy Comicon pays homage to old comic book ads

cincyconCartoonist Tony Moore (co-creator of The Walking Dead comic book series) designed this very fun poster for the Cincy Comicon (September 12-13), which pays homages to the old comic book ads for novelties and practical jokes. He did such a good job that I asked him to write a bit about it.

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How to help get guitars and instruction into the hands of inner-city and at-risk youth

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MUSACK's goal is simple: get guitars and instruction into the hands of inner-city and at-risk youth. It's not about turning kids into rock stars. If it happens, great... hope they remember us. Our foundation wants to afford kids a platform to say "I exist. I'm here. I have something to say." In a world where school systems are seeing record breaking budgetary shortfalls, we're trying to pick up the slack in a real, feet on the ground, grass roots way. You want to learn how to play? We'll give you what you need.

Oddly, we started in Nantucket, of all places, 5 years ago when our charity founder, Donick Cary (writer on Parks and Recreation, The Simpsons, and Letterman), who was born and raised in Nantucket, noticed an alarming rise in suicide and drug abuse in the year-round community. Nantucket is a great place during the summer months, but in the off season, those that live there, largely an immigrant service population, suffer brutal isolating harsh winters. With little else to do, a large portion of youth on the island resort to drugs and despair. So Donick started MUSACK as a way out. More a community destination than a "school" per se, we made a deal with the kids: Show up regularly and we will give you everything you need to succeed. And it's been pretty amazing. In the 5 years since we've started, we've put some 150+ kids through our Nantucket program and this year marks the opening of four (working on five) locations in the Los Angeles area in inner-city areas that desperately need our help. Our goal is to have outlets in every major city by the end of the decade.

So, how do we make our money:? You keep asking the right questions! Okay... Every year, Donick holds a giant concert in his backyard in Hancock Park, Los Angeles. We invite 500+ people to come with their families, sit on blankets, eat some great food and check out some amazing bands in an insanely intimate setting. This year marks our 5th show. It's like a tiny, backyard Coachella. Previous guests have included YO LA TENGO, JONATHAN RICHMAN, THE POLYPHONIC SPREE, SUPERCHUNK, MIKE WATT + THE SECONDMEN, CHILDISH GAMBINO, SHE & HIM, JOHN DOE, JODY STEPHENS of BIG STAR, HORACE PANTER of THE SPECIALS and many, many more.

We're doing it again: This SATURDAY, AUGUST 22 from 12PM-11PM:

MUSACK'S FIFTH ANNUAL ROCK AND ROLL CARNIVAL WILL REAR ITS UGLY HEAD AGAIN!!!! Who's gonna be there??! Oh, I dunno: JOHN DOE & EXENE CERVENKA? RANCID? THE BIRD AND THE BEE? Not satisfied yet? How about THE WRECKING CREW, who recorded every song you've ever heard ever (check out their documentary!) Still not enough? How about RICHARD CARPENTER, one half of the legendary "THE CARPENTERS"? Maybe you've heard of them? THE WARNING? NO AGE? DELUX? SHANE SPEAL, THE KING OF CIGARBOX GUITAR and HORACE PANTER (of The SPECIALS)??? DJ SETS FROM: SHEPARD FAIRY? DAN WILCOX? DJ LAWLESS? JANDISCO SOUND SYSTEM? WHAT MORE DO YOU NEED?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?! OH, and some other SPECIAL GUESTS...

So, yeah... it's gonna be a killer day for a great cause. All these great bands in a dude's backyard in Hancock Park, Los Angeles? You need to go to this. It's gonna be an epic day.

Tickets and information here

Chastity belts were a joke, then a metaphor, then a hoax


Historian Albrecht Classen got so tired of hearing people blithlely assert that chastity belts were ever a thing that he wrote The Medieval Chastity Belt: A Myth-Making Process, explaining how a 15th century hoax that appeared in a manuscript that also feature fart jokes and devices for making people invisible became canon.

From Sarah Laskow:

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Steampunk diving mask


A new delight from Ukrainian steampunk leatherworker Bob Basset: Steampunk Art Leather Dive Helmet, $1100.

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Kickstarting a middle-grades SF anthology

Corie writes, "We have a project Happy Mutants may be interested in -- an anthology of science fiction stories for middle grade readers, with a focus on diversity and representation. We have 22 great stories from a wide range of authors, from Hugo and Nebula winner Nancy Kress, to relative newcomers in the field."

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Trailer for Patricia Highsmith movie about troubled 1950s lesbian love affair

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Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara star in Carol, a new movie based on Patricia Highsmith's novel, The Price of Salt. Published in 1952 under the pen name Claire Morgan, it's about a troubled love affair between a rich bored housewife and a poor frustrated department store shopgirl. Some critics believe Nabokov borrowed liberally from The Price of Salt in writing Lolita.

The late Patricia Highsmith is the author of Strangers on a Train and the Talented Mr. Ripley (read my review here), both of which were adapted into excellent movies, so I have high hopes for Carol.

RELATED: Patricia Highsmith's "Desert Island Discs"

Piracy vs the MPAA: yet another box-office record smashed

The movie studios continue to demand Lord High Internet Executioner status because "piracy is destroying the film industry," even as box office records are smashed anew: Straight Outta Compton put its studio over the $2B mark in record time.

Podcast: Ian McDonald talks about Luna: New Moon (also coming to CBS!)

Science fiction titan Ian McDonald's forthcoming novel Luna: New Moon is the subject of the latest installment of the always-great Coode Street podcast (MP3).

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