Dog-Eared and Dispatched: September 6, 2015
This week we bring you updates in the form of fun and unexpected footnotes – plus a few industry surprises. Marvel announces plans for an upcoming series, TED-Ed brings Whitman to life, and Harry Potter might just be a villain. What?! Ready? Set? Read!
- Bertelsmann, which currently controls 53 percent of Penguin Random House, has announced that it is interested in increasing its stake in the publishing behemoth
- As you will recall, publishers spent much of 2014 renegotiating their contracts with Amazon, desiring to set higher prices for ebooks; they succeeded. Unfortunately, with the new higher prices, ebook sales fell to 24 percent of sales (down from 29% percent) – perhaps because the publisher-set ebook prices are so close to Amazon’s discounted hardcover prices that consumers find ebooks the less tempting option. The sales slump has contributed to a 7.8% decline in book sales during the first half of 2015 compared to 2014.
- Marvel has announced plans for a Guardians of Infinity comic series.
- Lena Dunham has published her first short story through the email service, Lenny.
- JetBlue has placed three book vending machines in South East Washington, D.C. so kids have access to free books.
- Bernie Sanders is rising in the polls and the bookstacks.
- The astonishing popularity of The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep has resulted in a book deal with Random House and lofty sales numbers this week.
- TED-Ed enlisted three animators to interpret the poem, “A Noiseless Patient Spider.”
- Stephen King superfans can test their knowledge with this crossword puzzle.
- The Guardian featured a story asking three writers of color if “non-white authors are bound to the race narrative.”
- Celebrity + Social Media = Viral Marketing: Singer Lily Allen is propelling the career of poet, Mira Gonzalez.
- Hollywood is tasking the talented Eddie Redmayne and Nicholas Hoult with challenging and captivating literary roles in upcoming major films.
- The National Book Foundation will award the 2015 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters to Don DeLillo.
- Actress Scarlett Johansson has failed to keep a revealing French book from being translated to English.
- Readers may never be done talking about Harry Potter, and as proof, this week an Antagonist video has gone viral.
- Portlandia’s Carrie Brownstein has started her book tour with a launch event in Brooklyn.