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In this week’s edition:, a book critic reminds people why reviews exist; free speech activists attempt to reconcile their support for the First Amendment with the harm of hate speech following the horrid attack on Salman Rushdie; millions of kids are going back to school without access to books that address key questions about history and personal identity; TikTok influencers are turning against Amazon; and more.

What is a Hit Piece?
Christian Lorentzen’s Diary (Substack)
In the wake of a scathing review of Jared Kushner’s new White House memoir, a book critic examines the role of reviews and what, if anything, reviewers owe authors.

A Watermark, and ‘Spidey Sense,’ Unmask a Forged Galileo Treasure
The New York Times
One of the University of Michigan Library’s most prized possessions, a manuscript thought to be written by Galileo in 1610, has been determined a forgery.

The Stabbing of Salman Rushdie Renews Free Speech Debates
The New York Times
Following the recent attack on Salman Rushdie, many Americans struggle to balance freedom of expression with their concerns about hate speech.

Are Literary Festivals Doomed? Why Book Events Need to Change
The Guardian
Post-pandemic, organizers of book festivals are confronting some tough realities while trying to engage more diverse audiences.

Students Lose Access to Books Amid ‘State-Sponsored Purging of Ideas’
The Washington Post
As the new school year begins, many students across the country are returning to classrooms and school libraries that have been stripped of books written by LGBTQ+ authors and authors of color. Six states have passed laws that require parents to review all books available at school, with another five states considering similar legislation. No one is tracking how many individual districts have adopted similar rules.

Louisiana Librarian Suing Right-Wing Activists Who Defamed and Harassed Her
Lit Hub
A middle school librarian in Denham Springs, Louisiana, is fighting back against a right-wing activist group that has harassed and defamed her online over her defense of LGBTQ+ books and authors. The librarian, Amanda Jones, was previously named 2020 School Librarian of the Year by the Louisiana Library Association.

Gen Z TikTok Creators are Turning Against Amazon
The Washington Post
A coalition of 70 TikTok stars with more than 51 million combined followers is refusing to support or work with Amazon until the company meets the demands of the Amazon Labor Union and treats its workers fairly.