Macmillan Ends Windowing for Ebooks; ALA Recommends Closing Libraries During Pandemic | Book Pulse

Macmillan ends the windowing system for ebooks. PRH offers libraries discounts. ALA says to close the public libraries. Rick Atkinson wins the American History Book Prize, and Alex Kotlowitz wins The J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize.

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COVID-19 and Publishing

Macmillan CEO John Sargent ends the windowing system for ebooks writing: “Dear Librarians, Authors, Illustrators and Agents, There are times in life when differences should be put aside." Publishing Perspectives has more.

In further news, PRH is discounting ebook and audiobook titles for sale to public libraries for the next 90 days. Publishing Perspectives has more on that as well.

The Associated Press reports that Amazon has told suppliers it will limit what can be sent to its fulfillment warehouses as it shifts its focus to items that support the pandemic response. Books are not on their list of priorities. Publishers Weekly has more details, including the strong possibility that this will not be the rule for big publishers.

ALA officially recommends closing public libraries to the public.

The NYT writes about what has happened to a debut author (and artist, actor, and dancer) as their big day comes in the moment of social isolation. Also a piece on walking, and authors who celebrate the activity.

Vulture reports on how NYC bookstores are searching for community with their readers as social distancing takes over. The NYT also has a report. As does The Washington Post.

Belletrist is offering space to help promote books.

PEN America cancels the 2020 World Voices Festival.

George R.R. Martin says he is writing every day while he practices social isolation. He writes on his blog: “Things are pretty grim in the Seven Kingdoms… but maybe not as grim as they may become here.” Plus, he offers a hand-washing mantra from Frank Herbert’s Dune.

The L.A. Times has “11 authors, from Laila Lalami to Jonathan Lethem, on the books they might finally read in quarantine.” There is also a report on how the bookstores of L.A. struggle to “stay afloat amid coronavirus concerns.” Social isolation allows time to organize your home library. The L.A. Times has a story of 2,000 plus in need of order.


The L.A. Times reviews Recollections of My Nonexistence: A Memoir by Rebecca Solnit (Viking: Penguin): “a powerful examination of the way small moments can accumulate in a brilliant mind to formulate big ideas and even help conceive a better world.”

NPR reviews Later: My Life at the Edge of the World by Paul Lisicky (Graywolf: Macmillan): “beautifully composed and structured.”

The Washington Post reviews Darling Rose Gold by Stephanie Wrobel (Berkley: Penguin): “a maelstrom of a suspense story through which mental illness, maternal meshugas and vengeful rage swirl unchecked. Over-the-top is an adjective that barely does this tale justice; but, then again, the real-life story on which it’s based is even more distastefully baroque.”

Briefly Noted

Rick Atkinson wins the American History Book Prize for The British Are Coming: The War for America, Lexington to Princeton, 1775-1777 (Henry Holt, Macmillan; LJ starred review). The NYT has a report.

Alex Kotlowitz wins The J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize for An American Summer: Love and Death in Chicago (Nan A. Talese: Random House; LJ starred review), look for the full press release online later today.

The finalists are announced for the Triangle awards.

The Windham Campbell Prizes (the world’s richest) will be announced tomorrow. The Guardian talks with a past winner, the poet Ali Cobby Eckermann.

In LJ, Barbara Hoffert has a report on the National Book Critics Circle award winners.

Novelist Yiyun Li is starting a book club for War and Peace. It begins today.

The EarlyWord YA & MG Galley Chat is today.

NYT has reading (and watching and listening) suggestions for True Crime fans.

Book Marks offers “10 New Books About Womxn's History for Womxn's History Month.”

LitHub has “10 new books to support right now!

Vulture interviews Jerry Saltz, How To Be an Artist (Riverhead: Penguin).

Electric Lit interviews Paul Lisicky, Later: My Life at the Edge of the World (Graywolf: Macmillan).

Datebook features The Companions by Katie M Flynn (Scout: Gallery: S. & S.).

Paste excerpts Spoiler Alert!: The Badass Book of Movie Plots: Why We All Love Hollywood Cliches by Steven Espinoza, Kathleen Fernandez-Vander Kaay, Chris Vander-Kaay (Laurence King: Chronicle).

The Guardian writes about Robin, Batman’s sidekick, including the fact that there were female Robins.

Amazon has now reversed its stance on Mein Kampf, allowing its sale again. The NYT has the details.       

Anne Giwa-Amu clashes with Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie once more. LitHub has details.

Eduard Limonov has died. The NYT has an obituary.

Authors on Air

The L.A. Times has a piece on the changes from the novel to the series Little Fires Everywhere and how Celeste Ng is happy with them, saying “I wanted it to have space to be its own thing.” On a related note, Vanity Fair features Reese Witherspoon, in a piece written by Ann Patchett.

The Black Widow debut date has been moved due to the coronavirus. Birds of Prey will be made available for home viewing next Tuesday, ahead of schedule. Deadline has details.

PBS NewsHour re-airs a 2004 interview with Philip Roth as an adaptation of his novel, The Plot Against America, debuts on HBO.

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