‘S.’ By J.J. Abrams Upsets Librarians
Of any group of people, I would have thought librarians to be the most imperturbable, but it appears they can get their knickers in a twist just like everyone else. According to The Hollywood Reporter, librarians are so “enraged” by the new bestselling mystery by director J.J. Abrams, S. — it made Amazon’s top 10 in the first week — they’re cancelling orders for it.
But one group unimpressed by the literary theater are librarians, who have been complaining to one another on message boards that the loose material is easy to misplace and reporting they have canceled orders — 50 copies at Cleveland's Cuyahoga County libraries alone. Many are irked that an elaborate Hollywood-style marketing campaign, complete with stylized trailers and a strict embargo, left them clueless about the contents of the relatively pricey book.
I haven’t seen the book yet, but I’m intrigued by the images and reports of it being “chockablock with maps, postcards and marginalia, all stuffed into a well-wrought re-creation of an old library book”. Fantastic! But I guess it could cause problems for librarians, if it’s as complicated as it looks.
Says Lesley Knieriem, a librarian in Rogers, Ark., who canceled her order, "I bought it sans review on the strength of the author name and online buzz, and boy am I sorry."
I don’t think I will be — do you? It does amuse me that a book could "enrage" librarians, but if you’re a librarian, would you be willing to take a risk that the book might survive intact? Or is it all just a bad idea?
There's a very interesting interview with J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst about S. conducted by Neil Gaimain for the BBC.
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