New Anne of Green Gables Adaptation is Grim: Critical Linking, May 15, 2017

Sponsored by The Nix by Nathan Hill. New in paperback.

Depending on how you look at it, Anne of Green Gables is either a heartwarming, funny tale about a spunky girl coming of age, or it’s a dark saga about a child repeatedly submerging her own trauma in order to survive. The former has long been the popular perception of L.M. Montgomery’s beloved book, but the latter lends itself better to prestige drama ― so, naturally, the new Netflix/CBC series “Anne with an E” sets about excavating the tragedy at the heart of Anne, mostly obliterating the joyous comedy of the original tale along the way.

I’ve watched all but the last episode of the new Netflix Anne adaptation, and it is very dark. Anne is an abused, traumatized orphan–which she’s always been–but without the charm or optimism. More here.

The Nov. 8 election has already inspired a tsunami-sized wave of aspiring women politicians. An upcoming book from “Grace and Frankie” actress June Diane Raphael and Emily’s List Chief of Staff Kate Black aims to help them run ― and win.

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Her character on G&F is who I want to be when I grow up, and this makes that feeling stronger.

But after reaching a peak in 2014, sales of e-readers and ebooks have slowed and hardback sales have surged. The latest figures from the Publishing Association showed ebook sales falling 17% in 2016, with an 8% rise in their physical counterparts. At the same time, publishers’ production values have soared and bookshops have begun to fill up with books with covers of jewel-like beauty, often with gorgeously textured pages. As the great American cover designer Peter Mendelsund put it to me, books have “more cloth, more foil, more embossing, page staining, sewn bindings, deckled edges”.

This is so irritating–ebooks sales are falling because they usually cost more than a paperback, full stop. Can we please stop weirdly fetishizing book covers?