Jonathan Lethem reviews the 1959 adaptation of Earth Abides, starring Burt Lancaster

As part of HiloBrow's Movie Objects series of essays, Jonathan Lethem writes about Burt Lancaster's hammer in the 1958 movie adaptation of George R. Stewart's almost last-man-on-earth novel, Earth Abides.

Earth Abides surrounds a feral-looking Burt Lancaster, fresh off the set of John Huston's The Unforgiven, with a cast of New York stage actors and unknowns, among them a young Gena Rowlands and the unforgettably eccentric character actor Timothy Carey.

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Philip K. Dick Conference 4/29-4/30 in So Cal

On April 29-30 at Cal State Fullerton, fans, scholars, authors, and artists will celebrate surrealist science fiction author Philip K. Dick with an extravaganza of talks, panels, and exhibits! Special guests include Dr. Ursula Heise, Jonathan Lethem, Tim Powers, and James Blaylock. — Read the rest

Boing Boing Gift Guide 2015

It's that time of year again! Welcome to Boing Boing's 2015 Gift Guide, where you'll find toys, books, gadgets and many other splendid ideas to humor and harry your friends and family! Scroll down and buy things, mutants!

Writers against mass surveillance

A group of writers from around the world, including Nobel laureates, have signed onto a petition calling on the world's governments to limit online surveillance. I was honored to be asked to be among the initial signatories, in good company with the likes of Margaret Atwood, Don DeLillo, Martin Amis, Günter Grass, Pico Ayer, Will Self, Irvine Welsh, Jeanette Winterson, Lionel Shriver, Paul Auster, Dave Eggers, Jonathan Lethem, and many, many others. — Read the rest

Philip K. Dick Festival coming to San Francisco, September 22-23


The Philip K. Dick Festival, scheduled for September 22-23 in San Francisco, is sure to be a heady, reality-bending time. Organizer and Total Dick-Head blogger David Gill informs us that he's lined up presentations by Jonathan Lethem, Erik Davis, Paul Sammon, and many other big thinkers on such subjects as self-induced amnesia, computer simulations, mysticism, dystopia, and, of course, drugs. — Read the rest

Jonathan Lethem discusses his tribute to Talking Heads' Fear of Music

Jonathan Lethem's latest is a book in the 33 1/3 series, Talking Heads' Fear of Music, a tribute to Talking Heads brilliant, seminal album, one of the greatest records of all time. In Wired, Geeta Dayal interviews Lethem about his book and the approach he took, and leaves me drooling for the chance to read it myself:

Lethem chose not to take a journalistic approach with Fear of Music; there are no interviews with the band members, Eno or anyone else involved in the album's creation.

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Criterion Collection: Top 10 Lists

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 Images Peeping-Tom--Criterion-Collection

I love film and dig dates to the art house but I'm woefully lacking in my knowledge of classic and "important" cinema. Of course, a terrific curriculum in film history can be found in the Criterion Collection. My recent faves include the essential creep-outs of Peeping Tom (1960) and Carnival of Souls (1962). — Read the rest