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Anthropological study of metaphor takes 2020 Diagram prize, pulling ahead of Introducing the Medieval Ass in public vote
A Dog Pissing at the Edge of a Path has beaten Introducing the Medieval Ass to win the Diagram prize for oddest book title of the year.
Both books are academic studies, with the winning title by University of Alberta anthropologist Gregory Forth. It sees Forth look at how the Nage, an indigenous people primarily living on the islands of Flores and Timor, understand metaphor, and use their knowledge of animals to shape specific expressions. The title itself is an idiom for someone who begins a task but is then distracted by other matters.Continue reading...
More than 12,000 authors had protested that Amazon’s audiobook arm was deducting writers’ royalties when users return titles
Audible has changed, but not reversed, a controversial policy that allowed listeners to return or exchange audiobooks, with the cost deducted from writers’ royalties rather than absorbed by the Amazon-owned company, after thousands of authors protested.
A letter signed by 12,228 authors and backed by major organisations including the US’s Authors Guild and the UK’s Society of Authors, expressed concerns over Audible’s “easy exchange” policy, which allowed subscribers to return or exchange an audiobook within 365 days of purchasing it, with the money then deducted from the writers’ royalties.Continue reading...
Danish Bond star Mikkelsen to take over the role of dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald in the third Harry Potter prequel
Depp stepped down from the role after losing his high-profile libel case against the Sun newspaper over an article that labelled him a “wife beater”. Previous reports suggested that Mikkelsen was director David Yates’ preferred choice to replace Depp, and was “in talks” to play Grindelwald.Continue reading...
Abrams, who is a romance author along with her political work, has joined the ‘romancing the runoff’ fundraiser
Rallying behind Stacey Abrams, the Democratic politician, voting rights activist and romance author, American romance novelists have helped raise nearly $400,000 to help elect two Democratic senators in Georgia.
Now, Abrams herself has joined the “Romancing the Runoff” fundraiser, and has donated a copy of the first of her eight published romance novels – one signed with both her real name, and her pen name, Selena Montgomery.
Thank you @RomancingRunoff for your amazing efforts. I’m privileged to be one of you. For the cause, I’d like to throw in an autographed copy of my first novel, Rules of Engagement, in the rare hardback version. Both Selena & Stacey will sign. https://t.co/32aiezmJmWContinue reading...
German media firm, already owner of the giant Penguin Random House, says acquisition of another major publisher is ‘approvable’ within monopoly rules
German media group Bertelsmann is set to acquire publisher Simon & Schuster for $2.17bn, less than a year after it took control of Penguin Random House (PRH).
Bertelsmann outbid Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, which owns publisher HarperCollins, in a contest for the company that is home to Dan Brown, Hillary Clinton and Stephen King. ViacomCBS put the company up for sale this year in order to refocus on its online and advertising operations.Continue reading...
Penguin Random House Canada’s plans to publish a new work by the ‘professor against political correctness’ has reportedly prompted numerous complaints
The announcement of a new book from Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson, the self-styled “professor against political correctness”, has prompted dozens of complaints from staff at his publisher in Canada, according to a report.
Vice’s story on Tuesday said that the announcement of Peterson’s forthcoming Beyond Order: 12 More Rules for Life, a follow-up to his global bestseller 12 Rules for Life, prompted “several” staff at Penguin Random House Canada (PRH Canada) to confront management. Peterson’s views on subjects including transgender rights, gender and race have been controversial. Last year, Cambridge University rescinded its offer of a visiting fellowship to Peterson following criticism from faculty and students. Also in 2019, 12 Rules for Life was temporarily pulled from sale in a New Zealand book chain after the terrorist attack on a Christchurch mosque, over perceived links between Peterson’s fanbase and Islamophobia.Continue reading...
The poet had been wrongly included among more than 300 figures whose collections were associated with wealth obtained from colonial violence
The British Library has apologised to Carol Hughes, the widow of the former poet laureate Ted Hughes, after it linked him to the slave trade through a distant ancestor.
Hughes’s name had been included on a spreadsheet from the library detailing more than 300 figures with “evidence of connections to slavery, profits from slavery or from colonialism”. Hughes’s link was through Nicholas Ferrar, who was born in 1592 and whose family was, the library said, “deeply involved” with the London Virginia Company, which was set up to colonise North America.Continue reading...
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell author picked for Piranesi, alongside Denise Mina, Julian Barnes and the late Eavan Boland, in prizes for ‘enjoyable’ books
Sixteen years after she published her debut, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, Susanna Clarke has made the shortlist for the Costa book awards for her second novel, the long-awaited Piranesi.
The Costas recognise the “most enjoyable” books across five categories, with 708 books submitted this year. Piranesi, the fantastical story of a man who lives in a house in which an ocean is imprisoned, was described by the judges of the £5,000 Costa best novel award as “magnificently imagined”. Clarke, who was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome after publication of the bestselling fantasy Jonathan Strange, said she was “so pleased” to make the Costa lineup.Continue reading...
Craig Brown wins prestigious award for nonfiction with book that judges say ‘has reinvented the art of biography’
Craig Brown has won the Baillie Gifford prize, the UK’s top award for nonfiction, for One Two Three Four: The Beatles in Time, a take on the band that judges said had “reinvented the art of biography”.
A mix of history, diaries, autobiography, fan letters, interviews, lists and charts, Brown’s book tells the story of the group and those within their orbit. Chair of judges Martha Kearney called it “a joyous, irreverent, insightful celebration of the Beatles, a highly original take on familiar territory”.Continue reading...