Golden Monkeys, Great Audiobooks, Columbo, Faberge Eggs & More: Endnotes 12 November

Golden Monkeys, Great Audiobooks, Columbo, Faberge Eggs & More: Endnotes 12 November

Friday, 12 November, 2021

Every Friday, we celebrate the weekend — and all the reading and relaxing and daydreaming time ahead — with Melissa's favorite book- and travel-related links of the week. Why work when you can read fun stuff?!

This post is part of our Endnotes series.


That’s a family of golden snub-nosed monkeys (Rhinopithecus roxellana if you’re into Latin) hanging out up there. They’re found in the mountain forests of southwestern China — mainly the Hubei, Shaanxi, Gansu, and Sichuan provinces. Their luxurious golden coat isn’t just pretty to the eye; it keeps them snuggly warm, too. According to National Geographic, ‘Many have been pushed into high-altitude isolation, where they leap across branches, traverse icy rivers, and weather long winters at nearly 10,000 feet, shielded by that coveted coat.’ These monkeys are highly social and form groups of up to 400 members. Their diet includes fruits, seeds, bark, herbs, flowers, and lichen. Which brings us to this short video; treat yourself.

  • Writer’s Digest asks: Would Mystery Author Agatha Christie Make a Good Amateur Detective?

  • This article makes the case for why audiobooks can sometimes be better than reading on the page. ‘Audiobooks aren’t cheating. They aren’t a just-add-water shortcut to cheap intellectualism. For so many titles in this heyday of audio entertainment, it’s not crazy to ask the opposite: Compared to the depth that can be conveyed via audio, does the flat text version count?’

  • I loved Neal Stephenson’s enthralling cinderblock of a novel Cryptonomicon, and I’m looking forward to reading his latest Termination Shock next week when it’s released. In this interview, the author talks about climate change, the future of democracy, the metaverse… little stuff like that.

  • Well, this is pretty magical.

  • Heads up, Canadians! The Rose family’s mega-mansion from Schitt’s Creek is for sale! ‘The custom-designed banquet hall can host 150 guests (and is the setting of the Rose’s annual Christmas party in one episode), decorated decadently in blue and gold tones with marble and granite floors…In the formal dining room, cherubs fly across the ceiling frescos, looking down upon marble floors created in the Renaissance-style.’

  • Read an excerpt from the new book The Library: A Fragile History by Andrew Pettegree and Arthur der Weduwen. The book introduces you to ‘the antiquarians and philanthropists who shaped the world’s great collections, trace the rise and fall of literary tastes, and reveal the high crimes and misdemeanors committed in pursuit of rare manuscripts.’

  • UNESCO recently chose the Iranian city of Kermanshah as a ‘creative city’ of gastronomy. ‘No Persian meal is complete without an abundance of herbs. Every table is set with sabzi-khordan, a basket of fresh herbs, radishes, and scallions often tucked into a piece of fresh flatbread with a bite of feta, cucumber, or walnuts.’

  • This is a delight! Messy Nessy Chic invited writers to submit short stories inspired by a photo of a French woman carrying a 6-foot long baguette. Here are the results.

black and white photo of a french woman carrying a 6-foot long baguette on a paris street
Photo courtesy of Messy Nessy Chic
  • Mr. B’s Emporium is a fantastic bookshop in Bath, England. In addition to carefully curating the best books to sell on its shelves, Mr. B’s also publishes books. The latest is Iberia by long-distance cyclist and award-winning travel writer Julian Sayarer. The book is an account of his impromptu journey across Portugal and Spain, from Lisbon towards Barcelona, during the pandemic on an old blue bicycle named Miles.

  • Travel writer Mark Baker recommends Central Europe’s best second cities. ‘Sure, grand capitals like Prague, Budapest, and Vienna offer a taste of the region, but to experience what makes Central Europe distinct — the unique national cultures, surviving remnants of old kingdoms and monarchies, remnants of the two world wars (and the many conflicts that came before), and remains of the region’s (mostly) disastrous experiment with communism — you have to get out and poke around the provinces.’



Wishing you a moment in which you see the ordinary everyday in a new way.

Top image courtesy of Wang LiQiang/Shutterstock.

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Every Friday, we share our favorite book- and travel-related links. This week, we've got authors leaving Goodreads, flight attendant advice, realistic PIs in fiction, the beauty of Albania, Austen objects, and more.
Every Friday, we share our favorite book- and travel-related links. This week, we've got Wes Anderson films ranked, the origin of 'a dark and story night,' an island where walrus sing, Moby Dick Big Read, and more.
Every Friday, we share our favorite book- and travel-related links. This week, we've got foodie manga, armchair vs. IRL travel, bots reading audiobooks, the tasty history of baklava, Simon Le Bon on travel, and more.

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