Book News Roundup: Is this the end for Amazon Books?

  • Congratulations to Seattle Civic Poet Anastacia-Renee, who Humanities Washington just announced as this year's James W. Ray Distinguished Artist, and to poet Cassandra Lopez, who is a recipient of the James W. Ray Venture Project Award. Also, the press release kind of buries the fact that this is the last year of the James W Ray awards, which annually gave $80,000 to local artists.

  • The Washington Ecopoetry Map provides an online map of poems that specifically mention various Washington state natural landmarks. Click around on this one for a while and you're likely to find a new poem to love.

  • If you're a freelance writer, please sign up for Obamacare now. The deadline is December 15th.

  • Is Amazon giving up on the Amazon Books model already? This post at the Digital Reader indicates that Amazon has backtracked on three potential Amazon Books locations, but the company told Geekwire that they're still "excited" about physical bookstores. We'll see, but I think there's plenty of reasons to doubt the sincerity of Amazon's commitment to brick-and-mortar bookselling.

  • I'm okay with the fact that I did not make the list of 2018's most scathing book reviews. A scathing book review is fun to write, but it should be the most sparingly used weapon in a book reviewer's arsenal. Negative book reviews are great, of course, but a little bit of performative outrage goes a long way.