The Right Way to Organize Your Bookshelves

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Welcome to Today in Books, where we report on literary headlines at the intersection of politics, culture, media, and more.

Queer Eye for the Bookish Guy

Interior designer to the stars Jeremiah Brent is on a hell of a PR tour as he prepares to join the cast of Netflix’s Queer Eye upon Bobby Berk’s departure, and he has thoughts about the right way to arrange your bookshelves. I’ve seen a lot of takes about bookshelves-as-design-elements in my time, and while they are usually a reliable source of pearl-clutching among purists, I can’t find much about Brent’s approach that would offend delicate booknerd sensibilities. I’d love to hear from you, dear readers: how do you arrange your shelves? Does design/art/appearance factor in, or are you more of a stack-’em-high-wherever-you-can shelver?

The Q1 Reports Roll In

Time is a flat circle, yet we are somehow nearly one-third of the way through 2024. The year got off to a slow start, at least as book releases go, but we’re in it now, folks. Vogue has dropped a list of the books of the year so far and then some—the picks extend well into summer. I can heartily second the emotion for Splintersand since this is a list on the internet, I’m contractually obligated to point out at least one thing they missed: James by Percival Everett. 

Zen and the Art of Book Lending

What do you do when you’ve loaned a friend a book and it seems like they aren’t going to return it? Kristen Arnett weighs in in the latest edition of her “Am I the Literary Asshole?” column at LitHub, and no, the answer is not to continue “silently building up [your] resentment.”

New Documentary Tells the Untold Story of Black Librarians

Coming in early 2025Are You a Librarian: The Untold Story of Black Librarians will explore the ways that Black librarians have influenced culture, literary and beyond. Check out the trailer here, and in the meantime, don’t miss the Oscar-nominated documentary short, The ABCs of Book Banning, streaming now on Paramount+.

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