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News stories from the book world in January 2009


E-books spark crisis

21 December 2009

This has been a week of dramatic developments in the publishing world, as publishers scramble to work out how to navigate a completely new playing field. The debate centres around four crucial issues: who controls e-book rights, the timing of e-book editions and what the prices and royalty rates for e-books should be.  Read more

Is this a revival of the short story?

14 December 2009

Is it possible that the short story is at last getting a new lease of life? The form, long beloved of writers, seems to be reaching new audiences through the Internet and benefiting from new opportunities in the form of prizes.   Read more

No country for old typewriters

7 December 2009

It didn't seem a slow news week, but the amount of coverage which has been given to the sale of Cormac McCarthy's typewriter in the last few days has been truly astonishing. The American writer bought the machine, an Olivetti Lettera 31, from a pawnshop for $50 (£30) in 1963.  Read more

Borders UK goes into administration

30 November 2009

The troubled British book chain Borders went into administration last week. The chain, which had been the subject of a management buyout in July, proved unable to trade its way through the recession. It was already in the process of closing down its Book Etc stores when the end came.   Read more

So what's the Google Settlement all about?

23 November 2009

You may be thoroughly bored with the Google Settlement (see last week's News Review) but it has a significant impact on authors' rights so it's worth making the effort to understand what it's all about.   Read more

Google Settlement agreed

16 November 2009

The New Google Settlement (see News Review 7 September) looks like a reasonable resolution of a thorny set of problems. Bowing to pressure from foreign governments and the US Department of Justice, the revised Settlement presented to the district Court in New York shortly before midnight on Friday limits the scope of the scheme to works registered with   Read more

The tragic saga of a bestselling author

9 November 2009

Stieg Larsson has been continually in the news ever since publication of his first book, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. The third part of the Milennium trilogy, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, has recently been published in the UK and the US.   Read more

Too much, too fast

2 November 2009

These are nervous times in the book world. Too much seems to be happening too fast and no-one is sure what it means or where we're all going to end up.   Read more

UK versus US readers

26 October 2009

A recent study from Book Marketing Limited, which runs the Books & Consumers survey, and Bowker, which runs the US equivalent, PubTrack, has highlighted some interesting differences between British and American readers.   Read more

A sober Frankfurt

19 October 2009

No-one expected Frankfurt to be a ball this year. Everyone knew that the big parties were cancelled - no more trying to crash the big Bertelsmann extravaganza and none of the other opulent parties of old. It's still a shock to find that it was so very subdued.   Read more

The Kindle goes global

11 October 2009

This was the week when, in the middle of an unsurprising Booker and an unremarkable Nobel Prize for Literature, Amazon launched its much-heralded Kindle 2 international edition.   Read more

It's Frankfurt time again

4 October 2009

The annual Frankfurt Book FairWorld's largest trade fair for books; held annually mid-October at Frankfurt Trade Fair, Germany; First three days exclusively for trade visitors; general public can attend last two. starts on 14 October and already publishers from around the globe are gearing up for the many meetings, arranged weeks ago, which they will be packing in with publishers from all over the world.   Read more