Thursday, May 11


Thursday, March 31


Thursday, April 03

The Trivial Eye: Young Adult Novels

by Jason Toon
Today, the day after International Children's Book Day, seems like a good time to celebrate Young Adult novels. Of course, in a better world, they would just be called novels. Those who judge a book by which section it's shelved in are missing out. The best YA fiction can be as serious, as funny, and as moving as anything on the latest prize shortlist - and I'm sure at least one of these classics has left an indelible impression on you, too.


read more…


Monday, February 17


Wednesday, July 17

There Can Be Only Pun: Bathroom Books

by Sean Adams

You guys, I have an addiction. I'm addicted to puns. I need them. I can't get enough of them. I HUNGER FOR THEM. That's why I've set up this weekly blog feature: so you guys can feed my addiction. Every week, I'll name the topic, give you some examples, and then you'll pun away in the comments, on Facebook, or on Twitter. I'll choose the best ones and post them here next week. Sound good? Good! Let's do it!


We're going highbrow today, you guys. We're looking for books that belong in the bathroom. Wait, haven't we done this before? No, that was bands in the bathroom. Anyway, here are some examples of what we're looking to put in our library of potty literature:

read more…


Wednesday, March 13


Wednesday, November 28

The Trivial Eye: James Bond Novels

by Jason Toon

James Bond: the man who saved the Trivial Eye. Yes, for my visual-trivia column's return after a two-month hiatus, what better subject than the deathless British agent's various visual (re)incarnations? Over the last 60 years, 007's cover artists have taken full advantage of their license to depict. Do you know which Ian Fleming novels are interpreted in the cover illustrations below?

read more…


Thursday, June 07


Wednesday, February 08

The Trivial Eye: Book Jackets of the 20th Century

by Jason Toon

The 20th century was lousy with wars, dictatorships, unrest, and anxiety - but how about those books, huh? All that turmoil (plus mass literacy and ever-cheaper printing) made for a spectacular outpouring of literary expression, the depth and variety and power of which dwarfed all that had come before it. Can you identify these eight works published in the 1900's by these details taken from their first edition jackets?

Answers can be found by clicking here. Please post your guesses, speculations, or arguments below! But know this: the Trivial Eye is presented for public amusement and no prizes are offered other than that familiar feeling of aggravation that so much of your mind is occupied by useless trivia.

read more…


Monday, November 14

Book Report: The Gun

by Scott Lydon

We're kinda behind on this one, because it's already been praised by NPR and The Atlantic and The New York Times and pretty much everyone who enjoys non-fiction. But with our audience... well, we're on the web, and magazines and newspapers don't always get noticed in this digital age. So today Scott's going to tell you a little bit about The Gun by C. J. Chivers. If you don't feel like reading us, you can just check out this three minute video and get the idea:



The Gun is the history of the AK-47, and indirectly the story of the evolution of the machine gun. Short version: it's a really good book. Long version: we'll see you inside for Scott's review.

read more…