Harper Lee, seen here receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2007, actually wrote Go Set a Watchman first. But she set it aside when her editor suggested focusing on Scout's flashbacks instead — and she did, in what became To Kill a Mockingbird. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images hide caption

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It's clear from this child's reckless nighttime e-reading that someone has not kept up with their subscription to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Mari/iStock hide caption

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Prime Minister Tony Abbott rankled the judges of the Prime Minister's Literary Award with a last-minute announcement. Judge Les Murray later called Abbott's pick a "stupid and pretentious book." Stefan Postles/Getty Images hide caption

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When it comes to picturing Elena Ferrante, readers have even less material than they do on Thomas Pynchon. They'll have to continue to settle for stock photography such as this, a shot of her native Naples, Italy. Angelafoto/iStockphoto hide caption

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Sitting on the steps outside her London home, Doris Lessing learns from reporters that she won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Literature. Shaun Curry/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Toni Morrison has been busy this fall, first announcing her plans to keep her archives at Princeton and then sparring amiably with Stephen Colbert. With a book coming out in spring 2015, she appears intent on keeping up the pace. Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Not long after the publication of In Cold Blood, the book was adapted into film. Here, Truman Capote (left) stands beside Scott Wilson (center) and Robert Blake, the actors who played convicted killers Dick Hickock and Perry Smith, respectively. Hulton Archive/Getty Images hide caption

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