Private: Novel critical of Iraq conflict in the works, and more

John LeCarre, author of the excellent The Spy Who Came in From the Cold and other Cold War Era novels, has been sharply critical of the U.S. war on Iraq and now is writing a book based on the conflict. (Via Moby Lives.)

Last Friday, Steve at splinters charged that “the TLS, the world’s finest literary newspaper, has been strangely flat lately.” He speculates that the dip in quality may be traceable to the current editor, Peter Stothard. Stothard is “an ex-editor of The Times itself – appointed by the US citizen Rupert Murdoch – and seems to spend a lot time on the other side of the Atlantic.”

According to Wired, fifty years ago, “a German psychologist nearly destroyed comic books by alleging that degenerate story lines and artwork were turning a generation of children into juvenile delinquents.” (Via Arts Journal.)

The New York Times reported yesterday that Amazon “is negotiating with several of the largest book publishers about an ambitious and expensive plan to assemble a searchable online archive with the texts of tens of thousands of books of nonfiction.”

Simon & Schuster intends to reduce the number of new titles it publishes and cut 5% of its workforce. (Via Moby Lives.)