This week! Books!
The antitrust trial over Penguin Random House’s proposed acquisition of Simon & Schuster is now in its third week. There’s a whole lot of coverage and smaller bits to chew on, and if you want a deep dive, Publishers Weekly and Publishers Lunch ($ link) have comprehensive coverage.
Just two of the eyebrow-raisers yesterday came when agent Andrew Wylie testified that he doesn’t do auctions, and when author Charles Duhigg asserted that authors don’t want advances higher than they can possibly earn out. (Um, yes they very much do).
But I also wanted to touch on two articles that discuss the impact on authors and the independent publishing ecosystem. Bookseller Richard Howorth argues in the NY Times that industry consolidation threatens the number of quality midlist books that get published, and Nicole Chung writes about the need for independent publishers to survive so they can nurture authors.
On the other side of the universe, NFTs may soon be coming to a textbook near you as Pearson is considering using blockchain to profit from used textbook sales.
Is your pandemic-addled brain struggling to finish books? The Atlantic rounds up 12 books that will get you into reading again.
Colleen Hoover is dominating the bestseller lists with multiple titles in a way we haven’t seen since Michael Crichton’s heyday. Laura Miller looks at her rise (it’s more than BookTok). Hoover has been a savvy promoter through the years, but she’s also a model of perseverance who started out self-publishing and now has 24 published titles.
It’s not personal, but it can really feel like that sometimes. Jillian Medoff talks about breaking up with her agent.
In writing advice news, Gilbert Bassey talks about the five must-haves for a good ending.
And if you’ve ever wondered how book to film deals work, over at Jane Friedman’s blog Sangeeta Mehta interviews Allison Hunter and Jennifer Weltz on the ins and outs of New York to Hollywood.
This week in bestsellers
Here are the top five NY Times bestsellers in a few key categories. (All links are affiliate links):
Adult print and e-book fiction:
- Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
- It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover
- Verity by Colleen Hoover
- Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover
- The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Adult print and e-book nonfiction:
- The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
- Finding Me by Viola Davis
- This is Your Mind on Plants by Michael Pollan
- Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer
- Educated by Tara Westover
Young adult hardcover:
- Long Live the Pumpkin King by Shea Ernshaw
- One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus
- Violet Made of Thorns by Gina Chen
- Family of Liars by E. Lockhart
- Loveless by Alice Oseman
Middle grade hardcover:
- Wonder by R.J. Palacio
- Refugee by Alan Gratz
- Skandar and the Unicorn Thief by A.F. Steadman
- Ground Zero by Alan Gratz
- Daughter of the Deep by Rick Riordan
This week on the blog
In case you missed them, here are this week’s posts:
Don’t forget that you can nominate your first page and query for a free critique on the blog:
And keep up with the discussion in all the places!
And finally, I’m going to write more about this article in due time, but I really enjoyed author Mohsin Hamid’s recent article about our age of polarization and what we gain from writing and reading.
Have a great weekend!
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