вторник, 10 июня 2008 г.

Author-Finalists Named For US Book Awards

A live tribute on Italian TV to Pope John Paul II's 20 years in office wasn't supposed to be a call-in show. But that's how it ended up. As host Bruno Vespa was recounting some of the pontiff's initiatives, the control room alerted him that a special guest was on the phone, hoping to put in a few words. The caller? Right, John Paul II, who was watching and wanted to say "thank you."

If you're a serious bicycle rider or know someone who is, the German manufacturer Hercules is offering what it says is a first - and just in time for Christmas. The innovation: an automatic transmission for two-wheelers. A small circuit board adjusts the gears to the bike's speed. The rider can check it all on a display panel. Trekking bikes will be the first to feature the new system, listing at about $750. Author-Finalists Named For US Book Awards

Literary lion Tom Wolfe and scholar Harold Bloom are perhaps the best known among those whose works were named this week as finalists for this year's National Book Awards. Winners, chosen by the National Book Foundation, will be announced Nov. 18 in New York. The candidates for the prestigious fiction and nonfiction prizes:

Fiction "Charming Billy" Alice McDermott

"Damascus Gate" Robert Stone

"The Healing" Gayl Jones

"Kaaterskill Falls" Allegra Goodman

"A Man in Full" Tom Wolfe

Nonfiction "All on Fire: William Lloyd Garrison and the Abolition of American Slavery" Henry Mayer

"Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human" Harold Bloom

"A Slant of Sun: One Child's Courage" Beth Kephart

"Slaves in the Family" Edward Ball

"There Once Was a World: A 900-Year Chronicle of the Shtetl of Eishyshok" Yaffa Eliach

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