Danny Tyree: Are you crazy about Bookazines? | Homes and lifestyle

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(Cartoon by Dave Granlund / caglecartoons.com)

Did you receive your copy of Queen Elizabeth II: Reign in Pictures in time for Her Majesty Platinum Jubilee ceremonies?

As a bookazine fanatic, I certainly did.

Ask for forgiveness? What is a bookazine, you ask? (I promise I’m only making educated guesses about your requests. I don’t have the ability to read your mind. Neither does that new colleague you undressed with your eyes. But I digress.)

Bookazines combine the permanence of a book with the vivid images, concise text and exciting layouts of a magazine. (If you grew up reading Illustrated Classics comics, you can probably appreciate the mix of formats. You may also appreciate how bookazine paper clippings distract you from the trauma of your parents THROWING away your comics.)

The glossy paper and factoid-infused sidebars of the bookazines make for engaging reading. (I’d still love to see the historical sidebar “10 people who were horribly inbred, but aren’t in line for the throne anywhere. Go figure.”)

Perhaps you have seen bookazines in a bookstore magazine rack or on a website offering digital downloads. You’ve surely come across them vying for your attention in grocery store checkout lines. (“Hmmm… Shakespeare: his chaotic career OR three more Slim Jims. Whether it is more noble to suffer the slings and arrows of scandalous indigestion or…”)

periodicals such as Time, Life, All about the story and All about space have created a cottage industry for these unique collectible special editions. Sometimes literally a cottage industry. (“Elvis Left the cottage: candid photos of small rooms where the king was tricked into playing. “)

Some book reviews spotlight iconic and perennial celebrities such as John Wayne, Marilyn Monroe Where The Beatles. Others are rushing to capitalize on hip celebrities of less lasting impact. These are the “notables” who will one day find themselves in the “Where are they now – and by all holy things, how can we keep them confined there?” newspaper section.

I know more arrogant bibliophiles despise bookazine aficionados, but they should be glad people read. Readers shouldn’t have to prove themselves by making a lifelong commitment to a single long paragraph that (unlike the The great Wall of China) CAN be seen from outer space.

Reading doesn’t have to be a chore. Curling up with a good book should be fun, not the equivalent of eating your veggies while climbing the gym rope.

I admit it. Life coming to me quickly has given me a shortened attention span. So sue me! (Brought to you by the editors of All About Ambulance Chasing.) Longer attention spans aren’t all they’re made out to be anyway. They just give you more time to savor the atomic wedgie you received for being a critical bookworm.

There’s still plenty of room for growth in the bookazine space, but it’s getting harder and harder to find new angles on well-covered topics like Waterloothe Titanic or black holes. (“Did Napoleon escape the island of Elba through a tear in the space-time continuum? No, probably not. Ooookay… more than 95 pages to fill…”)

Right now I’m accumulating more bookazines than I actually read; but one day I’ll play catch-up and be the life of the party, sharing sparkly treats.

Unless someone steals the show by inventing “podillies” – the cross between a podcast and a wet willie.

Stop undressing this colleague with your ears! The law should throw you the bookstore!

— Satirical columnist Danny Tyree welcomes email responses to [email protected] and visits to his Facebook fan page The Tyrads of Tyree. It is syndicated by Cagle Cartoons and the author of Yes, your butt still belongs to the church. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.


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