Should books include credits like films?


This post is by David Barnett from Books | The Guardian


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Books are generally presented as the work of one person, but almost 60 others worked on mine. But will readers care enough to read about them?

We writers lead a necessarily solitary life – at least, that’s what we like to think. Though the act of writing can involve lots of lonesome glaring at an open Word document (with occasional breaks for coffee and Countdown), the process of turning deathless prose into an actual book involves a lot more people than the name on the cover suggests.

This is why my publisher Trapeze, an imprint of the Hachette company Orion, is starting to put full, movie-style credits at the back of their books. They asked me if I was amenable to this for my forthcoming novel Things Can Only Get Better, after trialling it in Candice Carty-Williams’s hugely successful Queenie. Of course I said yes – not only because I ...

Publisher accused of ‘ripping off’ best-selling book on racism


This post is by Lanre Bakare from Books | The Guardian


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Ben Lindsay’s We Need To Talk About Race has similar cover and title to prizewinning book by Reni Eddo-Lodge

The publisher of a new book about racism in the UK has been accused of “ripping off” Reni Eddo-Lodge’s best-selling polemic Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race, after announcing a book with a strikingly similar cover design and title.

Ben Lindsay – the author of We Need To Talk About Race – which focuses on ethnicity and the church – and his publisher SPCK launched the book online on Thursday.

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Turkish translation of Paulo Coelho ‘removed mention of Kurdistan’


This post is by Sian Cain from Books | The Guardian


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Publisher and translator express shock that version of Eleven Minutes published in Turkey had reference cut

A Turkish publishing house is pulling its translation of the Brazilian author Paulo Coelho’s Eleven Minutes after readers discovered that the translation had removed a reference to Kurdistan and changed it to the Middle East.

In the English translation of the original Portuguese, Coelho writes: “She went into an internet cafe and discovered that the Kurds came from Kurdistan, a nonexistent country, now divided between Turkey and Iraq.” The Turkish translation changes the second part of the sentence to “it was written on the internet that the Kurds lived in the Middle East.”

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True crime author’s claims to have interviewed serial killers contested


This post is by Sian Cain from Books | The Guardian


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Mind Games by Paul Harrison withdrawn from sale, after his accounts of interviews with Ted Bundy, Peter Sutcliffe and others were called into question

Publishers of a true crime book by an “experienced criminal profiler” have pulled his work from sale, after his claims to have interviewed serial killers including Ted Bundy and Peter Sutcliffe were called into question.

Described as “the master of the true crime genre” by Martina Cole, Paul Harrison is the author of more than 33 books, including his latest, Mind Games, issued by Urbane Publications in October 2018. The Doncaster author says he worked as a police officer in the UK for three decades, “serving as a dog handler, intelligence officer, as a detective and later as a profiler”, and that he “worked closely” with the FBI’s Behavioural Science Unit in Quantico, Virginia for six months in 1982.

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Summer reading: dive into the perfect book


This post is by Alex Preston from Books | The Guardian


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As publishers vie to persuade us to pack their titles for the holidays, we chart the evolution of the ’beach read’

Summer reads, beach reads, holiday reads … at this time of year, the publishing world works itself into a sweat trying to force its novels into our carry-on luggage, or over the ether on to our Kindles. There are more books sold in the summer than during any other season: the well-established publishing calendar tends to see hardbacks released in the autumn to be given as gifts at Christmas, then repackaged as paperbacks in late spring. As Donna Harrington-Lueker sets out in her history of the beach read, Books for Idle Hours, the summer publishing rush is at least a century old, and has typically aimed “airy and froth-like” books on “young ladies” (the quote is from an 1888 work on summer books by Arlo Bates). The summer ...

Are millennials really driving ‘cancel culture’ – or is it their overcautious critics?


This post is by Sofka Zinovieff from Books | The Guardian


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Older generations argue that young people’s insistence on equality in all things – including books – threatens to stifle free speech. But is that always true?

I wouldn’t normally air my dirty literary linen in public, but here goes. When I finished writing my novel Putney, about a 13-year-old girl who has a “love affair” in the 1970s with an older man and realises decades later that it was actually abuse, my previous editor at Jonathan Cape chose not to publish it. The reasons emerged this year when he was interviewed in the Spectator. “If Lolita was offered to me today,” Dan Franklin said, “I’d never be able to get it past the acquisition team – a committee of 30-year-olds, who’d say: ‘If you publish this book we will all resign.’” He pointed to #MeToo and social media as fundamental factors: “You can organise outrage at the drop of ...

From Uber driving to huge book deal: Adrian McKinty’s life-changing phone call


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Despite awards and acclaim for his crime fiction, the impoverished novelist lost his home and was set to quit – then the phone rang

It was1.30 in the morning in Melbourne and Adrian McKinty had just got home after dropping off his last Uber customer of the night at the airport. His phone rang. It was Shane Salerno, agent to authors including Don Winslow, and it was a call that would pull McKinty into “some major league craziness”, ending in a six-figure English-language book deal and, last week, a seven-figure film deal from Paramount for his forthcoming novel The Chain.

“Don told me you’ve given up writing,” said Salerno. McKinty, an award-winning crime novelist, had recently blogged about his decision to quit being an author. Beginning with his debut, Dead I May Well Be, written while he taught high school English in Colorado, and continuing with his award-winning series ...

Death of the novel is greatly exaggerated, say UK booksellers


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Books industry shrugs off a 3% decline in fiction sales, with strong stories driving recent growth in non-fiction

The death of the novel has been pronounced for more than a century, in a series that stretches back from Will Self through VS Naipaul as far as Jules Verne. But the latest rumblings of its demise, which come courtesy of a drop in fiction sales in 2018, have been comprehensively dismissed by the books world, with new books from Margaret Atwood and Philip Pullman expected to drive a return to growth this year.

The Publishers Association’s yearbook suggested this week that sales of fiction dropped in physical formats last year, down 7% to £359m. The fall was not offset by a 4% rise in digital fiction sales, to £229m, with overall fiction sales down 3% in 2018 to £588m.

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Penguin stops printing Pedro Baños book after antisemitism claims


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Investigation led by Julia Neuberger finds Spanish edition of How They Rule the World has ‘echoes of Jewish conspiracy theories’

Penguin Random House has stopped short of demands to withdraw Pedro Baños’s How They Rule the World from sale, but will print no further copies of the book after an external review found the Spanish-language edition contains “echoes of Jewish conspiracy theories”.

The publisher initially rejected allegations of antisemitism in the book, which claims to reveal “the 22 secret strategies of global power”. But after continued pressure from organisations including the Campaign Against Antisemitism, which called for the book’s withdrawal, Penguin commissioned an external review, led by Julia Neuberger, which yesterday announced its results.

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New chapter? UK print book sales fall while audiobooks surge 43%


This post is by Mark Sweney from Books | The Guardian


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Publishers hit by surprise 5.4% fall in 2018 – but warn against proclaiming terminal decline

UK book sales fell for the first time in five years in 2018, despite the success of bestsellers such as Michelle Obama’s autobiography, Becoming.

The UK publishing industry was hit by a surprise fall of £168m (5.4%) in sales of physical books last year, ending a period of growth stretching back to at least 2014.

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Oliver Twiss and Martin Guzzlewit – the fan fiction that ripped off Dickens


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Press baron Edward Lloyd caused outrage with his cheap imitations of Dickens’ great novels – and paved the way for his own hugely popular ‘penny dreadfuls’

They are both orphans who leave the poorhouse to fall in with a criminal gang, but while Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist has stood the test of time, Oliver Twiss, a cheap copy that was rushed out to cash in on Dickens’ popularity and which the novelist despised, has largely been forgotten.

Oliver Twiss was one of many plagiarisms of Dickens published by the press baron Edward Lloyd, with Barnaby Budge, Martin Guzzlewit, The Penny Pickwick and Nickelas Nickelbery also hitting shelves in the mid-19th century. Dickens loathed the rip-offs, and went to court to have them banned. The judge refused, ruling: “No person who had ever seen the original could imagine the other to be anything else than a counterfeit, bearing no resemblance ...

No luxury: book containing tampons is runaway hit


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Protest against Germany’s 19% tax on sanitary products sells out first print run in one day

Open up a book and you can find a whole world. But the first book from the German startup the Female Company offers something more straightforward: within its covers are 15 tampons. And it is flying off the shelves.

The Tampon Book is a protest against Germany’s 19% tax on tampons as “luxury goods” – and a way of getting round it. Books are taxed at 7% in Germany, and so the founders of the Female Company, which sells organic sanitary products, decided to publish one and include tampons inside it. Released earlier this spring, the first print-run sold out in a day and the second in a week, said the publisher, with around 10,000 copies sold to date. Only the English-language edition is currently available.

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Faber & Faber: by Toby Faber review – the untold story of a publishing giant


This post is by John Mullan from Books | The Guardian


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They turned down Ulysses and Animal Farm, but still shaped 20th‑century literature

All publishing houses have archives, but for anyone interested in 20th-century literature the archive of Faber & Faber is a fabled treasure house. This is the firm that was, as Toby Faber puts it, “midwife at the birth of modernism”. In 1924 Faber’s grandfather, Geoffrey Faber, aspiring poet and fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, had been installed as chairman of the Scientific Press, recently inherited by another All Souls fellow, Maurice Gwyer. It published mostly books and journals for nurses. Geoffrey Faber renamed it and started making it into a literary publisher. Within his first year he had installed TS Eliot as a fellow director and acquired his backlist.

The firm would go on to publish Ezra Pound, WH Auden and James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake. Then Robert Lowell, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, ...

Faber & Faber: by Toby Faber review – the untold story of a publishing giant


This post is by John Mullan from Books | The Guardian


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




They turned down Ulysses and Animal Farm, but still shaped 20th‑century literature

All publishing houses have archives, but for anyone interested in 20th-century literature the archive of Faber & Faber is a fabled treasure house. This is the firm that was, as Toby Faber puts it, “midwife at the birth of modernism”. In 1924 Faber’s grandfather, Geoffrey Faber, aspiring poet and fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, had been installed as chairman of the Scientific Press, recently inherited by another All Souls fellow, Maurice Gwyer. It published mostly books and journals for nurses. Geoffrey Faber renamed it and started making it into a literary publisher. Within his first year he had installed TS Eliot as a fellow director and acquired his backlist.

The firm would go on to publish Ezra Pound, WH Auden and James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake. Then Robert Lowell, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, ...

‘There’s no safety net’: the plight of the midlist author


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Only 5% of authors earn the income Virginia Woolf once argued was needed to work – today around £30,000. Two authors explain what it is like to have success, but no money

Four years ago, Kerry Hudson had just won a prestigious French literary prize when one late payment left her unable to make the rent on her sublet flat in Whitechapel. Could she continue as a writer? Or would she have to return to her old job in the charity sector?

Louise Candlish had 11 novels under her belt when, a couple of years ago, she found herself considering quitting. “Some of them had really flopped,” she says. “I had got myself into that catch-22, where your sales figures aren’t as healthy as they once were or as good as retailers would like. So then your book comes out and it’s not stocked in as many places, so it ...

‘There’s no safety net’: the plight of the midlist author


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Only 5% of authors earn the income Virginia Woolf once argued was needed to work – today around £30,000. Two authors explain what it is like to have success, but no money

Four years ago, Kerry Hudson had just won a prestigious French literary prize when one late payment left her unable to make the rent on her sublet flat in Whitechapel. Could she continue as a writer? Or would she have to return to her old job in the charity sector?

Louise Candlish had 11 novels under her belt when, a couple of years ago, she found herself considering quitting. “Some of them had really flopped,” she says. “I had got myself into that catch-22, where your sales figures aren’t as healthy as they once were or as good as retailers would like. So then your book comes out and it’s not stocked in as many places, so it ...

Penguin orders independent review of book over antisemitism claims


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Julia Neuberger to analyse Pedro Baños’s How They Rule the World, which includes passages about the Rothschild family

Penguin Random House has asked Rabbi Baroness Julia Neuberger to independently review one of its books, Pedro Baños’s How They Rule the World, after allegations of antisemitism made against the author continue to grow.

Concerns had been raised over imprint Ebury’s decision to cut 30,000 words from the English-language edition of the Spanish book, including passages about the Rothschild family, a banking dynasty often subject to antisemitic conspiracy theories. Baños, a colonel in the Spanish army, had also called the Rothschilds “dominant” and has compared them to the Illuminati in interviews. The cover of both the English and Spanish editions also features octopus tentacles – imagery long associated with antisemitism.

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Torn apart: the vicious war over young adult books


This post is by Leo Benedictus from Books | The Guardian


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Authors who write about marginalised communities are facing abuse, boycotts and even death threats. What is cancel culture doing to young adult fiction?

Earlier this month, the author and screenwriter Gareth Roberts announced that his story was being removed from a forthcoming Doctor Who anthology. Having been shown Roberts’s past tweets about transgender people, BBC Books said that his views “conflict with our values as a publisher”. At least one of the book’s other contributors, Susie Day, had promised to withdraw from the project if Roberts were included. “I raised my concerns, and said if he was in, I was out,” Day said.

A few days before, at the Hay festival, the Irish author John Boyne had described a campaign against his own book, A Boy Called Jessica, about a boy and his trans sister. He was insulted on Twitter for his appearance and his sexuality. (Like Roberts, he ...

Naomi Wolf faces ‘new questions’ as US publisher postpones latest book


This post is by Alison Flood from Books | The Guardian


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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt had said it would stand by Outrages after row in UK over its historical accuracy, but has now recalled copies from stores

Naomi Wolf’s US publisher has postponed the release of her new book and is recalling copies from booksellers, saying that new questions have arisen over the book’s content.

Outrages, which argues that the Obscene Publications Act of 1857 led to a turn against consensual sex between men and an increase in executions for sodomy, was published in the UK on 20 May. Wolf has already acknowledged that the book contains two errors, after an on-air challenge on BBC Radio 3 during which the writer and broadcaster Matthew Sweet told her that she had misunderstood the term “death recorded” in historical records as signifying an execution. In fact it denotes the opposite, Sweet pointed out, highlighting that a teenager she said had been “actually executed ...

‘Highly concerning’: picture books bias worsens as female characters stay silent


This post is by Donna Ferguson from Books | The Guardian


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Guardian research shows that the top 100 illustrated children’s books last year showed growing marginalisation of female and minority ethnic characters

The most popular picture books published in 2018 collectively present a white and male-dominated world to children, feature very few BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) characters and have become more biased against girls in the past year, Guardian research reveals.

In-depth analysis of the top 100 bestselling illustrated children’s books of 2018, using data from Nielsen BookScan, has been carried out by the Guardian and Observer for the second year in a row.

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