Publishers Weekly August 9, 2021

Publishers Weekly magazine is the definitive professional resource covering every aspect of book publishing and book selling. Over 20,000 book and media professionals turn to Publishers Weekly each week for news and information. Publishers Weekly covers the creation, production, marketing and sale of the written word in book, audio, video and electronic formats.

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51 Numéros

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1 min
the week in publishing

Control of Scholastic was called into question when it was revealed that, in his will, Dick Robinson bypassed family members and left his controlling stake in the publisher to Iole Lucchese, a company executive who was named Scholastic chair following Robinson’s death. Sales at Harper-Collins rose to $1.99 billion in the fiscal year ended June 30, up 19% from the prior year, and profits jumped 42%, to $303 million. Return-to-office plans remain in flux as Hachette Book Group reversed its decision to begin a hybrid work model in September, while Harper-Collins said it will try a hybrid test pilot program in late October. Marysue Rucci, editor-inchief at Simon & Schuster, will move to Scribner as v-p, publisher, and editor-in-chief of the newly formed Marysue Rucci Books imprint on September 7. Michael Rockliff, a longtime…

8 min
censorship on the rise worldwide

Since the start of the Covid pandemic, there’s been a rise in instances of government censorship of books around the world. In October 2020, the International Publishers Association released a 106-page report, “Freedom to Publish: Challenges, Violations and Countries of Concern,” that outlined 847 instances of censorship in a host of countries, including France, Iran, Serbia, and the United Kingdom, as well as the United States. According to the report, in 55% of those instances, the censorship was undertaken by government authorities. The report is downloadable from the IPA website. Since that report was issued, efforts to censor books have continued. In July, the Hungarian government imposed an $830 fine on the distributor of the Hungarian translation of Lawrence Schimel’s children’s book What a Family!, citing a law that bans the…

2 min
print sales end july on a down note

Unit sales of print books dipped 1.7% in the week ended July 31, 2021, compared to the week ended Aug. 1, 2020, at outlets that report to NPD BookScan. Once again, adult fiction and YA fiction were the only categories to post increases over last year. All three nonfiction categories had declines in the week, and juvenile fiction sales were flat. Adult nonfiction sales fell 8.8% compared to a year ago. Mark Levin’s American Marxism remained #1 on the category list, selling about 92,000 copies. Another conservative author, Ben Shapiro, was second with The Authoritarian Moment, which sold more than 37,000 copies in its first week. Last year at the time, Mary Trump’s Too Much and Never Enough was #1, selling just under 155,000 copies, and she was joined by…

4 min
publishers see green in ‘green knight’

Adaptations of Arthurian legend have long been popular in Hollywood, but as with superhero movies, many of those films have drawn from various sources and focused on the origin story: Arthur pulls the sword from the stone, becomes king of all Britons, starts the order of the Knights of the Round Table, and goes down in pseudohistory. The Green Knight, released on July 30, is an exception: director David Lowery relied solely on the late-14th-century romance Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as the basis for his movie, and publishers of the poem are taking advantage of that decision. The poem was written in Middle English by an anonymous author known alternately as the Gawain Poet and the Pearl Poet. In it, King Arthur’s nephew Sir Gawain accepts a challenge from…

3 min

DEAL OF THE WEEK CreativeSoul Book Goes to St. Martin’s Kahran and Regis Bethencourt, the founders of Creative-Soul Photography studio and authors of Glory: Magical Visions of Black Beauty, sold a new book to Monique Patterson, v-p, editorial director, acquisitions outreach at St. Martin’s Publishing Group. Creative Soul Fairy Tale Book, Patterson explained, is a “book of popular fairy tales showcasing children from the African diaspora, Creative-Soul style,” aimed at kids ages eight and up. It’s a book, she said, that she “would have adored having as a child.” Tanya McKinnon of McKinnon Literary sold world rights to Creative Soul Fairy Tale Book. Publication is planned for winter 2023. Dray, Kamoie Re-up with Morrow Lucia Macro, v-p and executive editor at HarperCollins’s William Morrow division, has re-signed the bestselling writing team of…

1 min
yes, please

The latest helping fromThe Great British Baking Show winner Nadiya Hussain, Nadiya Bakes, is “stunning and scrumptious,” our starred review said, with recipes that “balance rich flavors with her trademark precision.” It secures a debut-week spot on our hardcover nonfiction list at #5 and, in addition to sweet treats, offers “savory bakes, perfect for lunches or dinners.” (Editor’s note: If you think mango and coconut yogurt cake with German buttercream sounds just right for breakfast, no judgment here.)…