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Book news: celebrating Noah Webster, political authors and more

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Hot on the heels of the celebration of the OED comes the news that Yale will fete Noah Webster. It has been 250 years since the birth of the man who created the first comprehensive American dictionary. There will be cupcakes and academic panels in New Haven, Conn., on Wednesday and Thursday. The Noah Webster House in West Hartford, above, is open as a museum year-round, Thursday through Sunday afternoons (cool fun fact: My grandmother lived there as a girl).

The website YA for Obama has grown to more than 1,300 members, a combination of authors of young adult books, young adult readers and other friends. A similar YA for McCain site has launched; with just seven members, it’s off to a slower start.

The group Authors for Obama in Los Angeles is holding a fund-raiser at Bergamot Station in Santa Monica on Sunday. ‘People here love books and authors and Barack Obama,’ says the organizer, author Diana Wagman. ‘What a perfect combination.’ Aimee Bender, Janet Fitch, Percival Everett, Susan Straight, Marianne Wiggins, Marisa Silver, Ron Carlson and more will be reading; tickets are $75.

Wired has profiled Jay Walker’s library, tucked inside his New England home. His holdings include valuable books -- a Kelmscott Chaucer and the first celestial atlas (1660) that didn’t put Earth at the center of the solar system -- and high-end geek ephemera, including an original model of the Sputnik satellite. I’m almost too overwhelmed to type; the photos are nothing short of spectacular.

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-- Carolyn Kellogg


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