In a world in which everything is moving online, the literary world is finally catching up, and in the last three to four years especially there’s been an explosion of lit and art blogs. But in the literally (hmm. pun?)  thousands of book and poetry blogs out there (the latter much more common than the former) it can be hard finding the actually good stuff. Well-written, frequently updated, readable blogs are as rare as diamonds in the rock (to quote Aladdin). Here are my picks, the gems I discovered after much surfing of the web.

Book blogs:

Asylum – John Self writes with urbanity and authority about all sorts of literary fiction. A great place to discover new things to read, as he’s constantly highlighting forgotten gems and rediscovered or reissued classics.

Chamber Four – I only recently discovered this blog-cum-lit journal-cum-book-site, but am very pleased with it so far. Touted as a “resource for readers”, Chamber Four features book reviews in just about every genre out there, from literary fiction to graphic novels, plays, poetry, and young adult, to name a few. My favorite sections of the website however are their Great Reads Series, where they recommend books, and the columns, especially Armchair Detective, which reviews mystery novels (delicious, and rare, to find any significant interest in mysteries on a literary website)

Eve’s Alexandria – if you like literary/book blogs, chances are you’ll find your way to Eve’s Alexandria eventually. Five literary friends (several of them PhD students) with diverse tastes in books review literary and historical fiction and occasionally sci fi and fantasy. Warm, witty, and eminently readable.

The Elegant Variation – Mark Sarvas, who teaches classes on novel writing through UCLA Extension (sign up for Novel Writing III beginning in January) runs this marvelous, frequently updated blog that features all sorts of literary links and news. Chosen as a Guardian Top 10 Literary Blog

Poetry blogs:

Robert Peake- California poet (and Senior Poetry Editor of Silk Road Review) Robert Peake muses with grace and readability about poetry and the poetic life, including spotlights on favorite poets and poetry news.

Poetry Daily – a new poem every day

Poetry Foundation – five writers contribute to the Poetry Foundation blog, quaintly titled “Harriet”

The Gladdest Thing – Michelle McGinnis posts a new, hand-selected poem from around the web every few days

Enjoy your journey!