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Scottish author Iain Banks diagnosed with gall bladder cancer, given 'several months' to live

Scottish author Iain Banks recently informed readers that he has been diagnosed with gall bladder cancer and has only months to live.

The well-loved fiction and sci-fi author, who wrote The Wasp Factory and Consider Phlebas, issued an official statement on his website, which explained that the gall bladder cancer had spread and effectively ruled out any opportunity for surgery:

“The bottom line, now, I’m afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I’m expected to live for ‘several months’ and it’s extremely unlikely I’ll live beyond a year. So it looks like my latest novel, The Quarry, will be my last.

As a result, I’ve withdrawn from all planned public engagements and I’ve asked my partner Adele if she will do me the honour of becoming my widow (sorry – but we find ghoulish humour helps).”

Banks, who has not yet decided if he will undergo chemotherapy to extend his life, also informed his fans that his publishers are working diligently to move up the publication date of The Quarry so that he will be around when it hits shelves. In the meantime, a website will be up and running soon where readers can keep track of his progress. Read Banks’ full statement here.

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Author and TV writer Maria Semple talks ‘Where’d You Go, Bernadette’, ‘Arrested Development’, and the ‘Bernadette’ movie
The New York Times’ haiku blog is the best thing about National Poetry Month

Author and TV writer Maria Semple talks 'Where'd You Go, Bernadette', 'Arrested Development', and the 'Bernadette' movie

Where’d You Go, Bernadette, released in paperback today, tells the story of Bernadette Fox, a brilliant architect turned neurotic housewife who spends her days planning a family trip to Antarctica per her teenage daughter’s request. What results is a hilarious epistolary novel constructed almost entirely of letters and email correspondence. When Bernadette goes missing, it becomes her daughter’s sole purpose to track down her mother in this story about family, failure and bouncing back. The second novel from television writer Maria Semple, Where’d You Go, Bernadette, made a splash in the book world in 2012 and is now being made into a feature film. We caught up with Semple to talk about the book, the movie and everything in between: READ FULL STORY

Jo Nesbo's 'The Bat' gets U.S. release date -- See the exclusive new cover!

If you’re a U.S. fan of Norwegian author Jo Nesbo, we have some good news!

Nesbo’s first novel, The Bat, is going to be distributed in the U.S. for the first time as a Paperback Original on July 2. The first of three books in the Inspector Harry Hole series, The Bat tells the story of Harry Hole’s work on the Oslo Crime Squad, located in Austrtalia. When called to observe a case, Hole discovers a serial killer. The crime thriller then mixes suspense with romance when Hole stars to fall for a friend of one of the victims.

The Vintage Crime/Black Lizard publication of The Bat follows the U.S. release of Nesbo’s second book, Phantom, on Apr. 23 and the final book in the trilogy, The Redeemer, in May.

Check out an exclusive first look at The Bat‘s new cover below! READ FULL STORY

Jane Goodall's new book delayed amid alleged plagiarism scandal

Seeds-of-Hope.jpg

Less than a week after The Washington Post first claimed that Jane Goodall’s latest book, Seeds of Hope: Wisdom and Wonder From the World of Plants, contained multiple passages that were lifted from other sources, Grand Central Publishing has postponed the book’s release.

The primatologist, who is most famous for her work with chimpanzees and the creation of the Jane Goodall Institute, wrote Seeds of Hope with freelance writer Gail Hudson. The book was originally scheduled to be released next month, before a total of 12 passages were called into question for plagiarism. Word-for-word copy appeared to be lifted from a website for Choice Organic Teas, as well as others, including several passages that appeared to be lifted from Wikipedia.

In an email to The Washington Post, Goodall issued an apology and stated that, “This was a long and well researched book, and I am distressed to discover that some of the excellent and valuable sources were not properly cited, and want to express my sincere apologies.”

We’re not so sure we would call Wikipedia an “excellent and valuable source,” but perhaps that’s one of the many things Goodall will work on now that the book’s released has been pushed back.

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'Girls' guest star Bob Balaban really has written a best-selling series of books about a bionic dog. No, really...

McGrowl.jpg

One of the best jokes on last night’s Girls involved Hannah’s therapist, played by guest star Bob Balaban, mentioning he had written a bestselling series of children’s books about a bionic dog.

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Will Stephenie Meyer make 'The Host' a trilogy?

The big-screen adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s The Host doesn’t hit theaters till March 29, yet there’s already chatter that the Twilight author might turn this sci-fi thriller into a trilogy.

“Once you’ve created characters that have life to them, unless you kill them all, you know where their stories go. You’re always aware of what happens next,” Meyer told the Associated Press earlier this week. “I’ve got outlines for the next books. I would hope that this would be a three-book arc, but we’ll see.”

Not so fast, cautions a source close to Meyer, who tells EW that there’s been no new news to report on the sequel/trilogy front. Besides, Meyer’s plate is pretty full at the moment — in addition to promoting The Host she’s a producer on the newly Sundance-acquired Austenlandstarring Keri Russell.
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Bill O'Reilly to write 'Killing Jesus: A History': See the cover here

Stephen Rubin, president and publisher of Henry Holt and Company, announced that Bill O’Reilly, best known for anchoring the Fox News program The O’Reilly Factor, will follow-up his best-selling books, Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot and Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination That Changed America Forever, with another chronicle of events. O’Reilly’s newest venture is of a more biblical fashion. Along with Martin Dugard, O’Reilly will write Killing Jesus: A History.

According to a press release, “Killing Jesus will tell the story of Jesus of Nazareth as a beloved and controversial young revolutionary brutally killed by Roman soldiers. O’Reilly will recount the seismic political and historical events that made his death inevitable.”

“Jesus Christ has not walked among us physically for more than 2,000 years, yet his presence today is felt the world over and his spirit is worshipped by more than 2.2 billion people. His teachings, his legacy, his life as a flesh-and-blood man, and his death created the world in which we live,” O’Reilly said in a press release.

The book will be published on Sept. 24. Check out the cover below: READ FULL STORY

Legendary music biz executive Clive Davis opens up about Whitney Houston, Kelly Clarkson, and his own bisexuality in new memoir

Soundtrack-of-My-Life

It is almost easier to list the artists legendary music business executive Clive Davis hasn’t worked with than the ones he has during his half century-long career. Suffice it to say that the founder of Arista and J Records and the current chief creative officer of Sony Music Entertainment has overseen releases by everyone from voice-of-his-generation Bob Dylan to Milli Vanilli who, as it turned out, weren’t even the voices of themselves.

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Randi Zuckerberg, sister of Facebook's CEO, signs a two-book deal

The Associated Press reports that HarperCollins has announced a two-book deal with Randi Zuckerberg, the sister of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Randi is planning to write a memoir titled Dot Complicated, as well as a children’s book. The memoir, which is scheduled for a Nov. 5 release, will provide insight into the digital world. From her time as Facebook’s marketing director to her time as a mother and founder of the Zuckerberg Media Company, Randi will share her experiences with life in the digital age.

“I am thrilled to be working with HarperCollins to share some of my own crazy experiences on the front lines of social media and to inspire people of all ages to embrace technology, as well as the new set of social norms that come along with it,” she said.

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'The World According to Wonder' photo book: A preview of 10 fascinating Hollywood portraits

WONDER-BOOK

Hollywood’s untold stories are what we pop culture-obsessed live for, and how about when those juicy tales are paired with beautiful photography? Well, it’s pure heaven.

And that’s exactly the combination percolating in a new over-sized photo book, The World According to Wonder, which was published and made available on Amazon.com a week ago today. The huge book — which clocks in with almost 400 pages — chronicles one of Tinseltown’s most interesting and risqué production companies, World of Wonder, which was founded 21 years ago by producers Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato. Via the company, the pair are responsible for entertainment you undoubtedly love, everything from TV’s RuPaul’s Drag Race and Million Dollar Listing to movies like Party Monster and The Eyes of Tammy Faye. (And truly, much, much more.)

More than 300 never-before-seen portraits — mostly shot by photographers Idris Rheubottom and Tony Craig — fill the pages, spotlighting personalities as varied as Pamela Anderson, Perez Hilton, La Toya Jackson, Kato Kaelin, Marily Manson, Carnie Wilson, Linda Evangelista and Joey Ramone. Stories paired with the photos chronicle how the highlighted folks are a part of the World of Wonder world and helped build it into the Hollywood player that it is today.

As a taste of what’s inside, EW has a peek at 10 of the tome’s most interesting — and EW-ish — portraits, as well as the captions penned by Bailey and Barbato themselves. Click through for a look at everyone from Tori Spelling and RuPaul to the Beekman Boys and John Waters.

NEXT PAGE: Actress Pam Anderson…

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