Midweek Links: Literary Links from around the Web (December 21st)

All the best literary links that are fit to, well, link

What are the best escapes in literature? Greg Mitchell picks his top 10.

R.O. Kwon celebrates the amazing Asian-American fiction published in in 2016 that countered “a year full of xenophobia.” — “Donald Trump, Brexit, Marine Le Pen, Alternative for Germany (AfD), the Netherlands’ Geert Wilders — 2016 has been a banner year for nativists and white supremacists, and I’ll join in with all those lamenting a catastrophic year’s events. Not everything’s been hateful, though. I’ve loved, in particular, one heartening trend countering the upsurge of xenophobia: this year’s bonanza of English-language fiction published by writers of Asian descent.”

Kevin Nguyen talks about the problems of race and politics in the publishing industry: “After the election, there was no soul searching on Book Twitter. No one questioned the power structures of publishing. Can we talk about how one of the Big Five publishers is owned by News Corp? Often the publishing of things like Bill O’Reilly’s twisted histories is justified as a means to support literary fiction. But does anyone ask if that trade-off is worth it?”

Big publishing gets all the attention, but indie presses publish some of the best writing. At Bookriot, Liberty Hardy writes about the best indie press books you might have missed.

Your favorite authors pick their favorite books of 2016 at Google Play.

Pamela Paul gives a behind-the-scenes look at how the New York Times Book Review covers books: “The Book Review at The Times reviews about 1% of the books that come out in any given year.”

Do you need a last-minute gift for a book lover in your life? This list has you covered.

Fantasy authors Ken Liu and Kate Elliott talk about portraying powerful women in fantasy fiction: “Frankly, a person doing research has to deliberately avoid or reject modern scholarship to pretend that in the past women were ciphers with no influence upon the societies they lived in and no access to power, education, skills, work, travel, art, and so on.”

Finally, happy holidays everyone! And if they aren’t happy, well, take comfort in these 10 amazing books about horrible holidays.

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