Round one goes to Random House, which “won” its battle with Wiley Agency’s Odyssey Books over digital rights. Wiley created Odyssey to publish e-books and signed an exclusive deal with Amazon to offer e-books of 20 classic titles, from the likes of Philip Roth, Martin Amis and John Updike, which Random House promptly protested. Since most of the Odyssey authors had print deals with Random House, the publisher claimed the digital rights as well; this week the matter was quietly settled between the two groups. Wiley has not released any statement about the resolution, but Random House announced that it will shortly sell 13 of those 20 Odyssey titles at various online sites (not just Amazon). For more, check out http://on.wsj.com/9DRGkA.
The battle for the future of Barnes & Noble gets ugly, with Len Riggio, chairman of the board, working hard to urge shareholders to reject any offers from Ron Burkle to purchase 30% of the company. Publishers Weekly breaks it down, http://bit.ly/b8tBqf.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention digital books and digital reading devices. Amazon.com was back in the news this week as its newest Kindle (called K3 by customers) started shipping. Reviews of the new device, which is lighter, slimmer, faster and offers better screen resolution, have been uniformly good and the first wave of K3 owners seem quite happy. Meanwhile, additional devices are entering the market at low prices, a color e-reader will be available soon, and everyone is waiting to see the price wars that will develop – especially around the holidays.
In other publishing news:
* The 10 highest-paid authors; James Patterson is at #1 with $70 million, http://bit.ly/cl7uNr.
* CVS will sell a $100 Sylvania netbook and a $179 e-reader this fall – Tylenol not included, http://bit.ly/dcUxDo.
* The words ‘Climate change’ and the ‘vuvuzela’ leave a mark on the Oxford Dictionary of English, http://bit.ly/9NELYm.
* ‘Get Ready for Ads in Books,’ (product placement in TV, movies paves the way), http://bit.ly/cQrQHm.
* ‘Breathtaking Adaptations: 13 Classic Books Transformed Into Graphic Novels,’ http://huff.to/bm7ubg.
* ‘Obama Gets Franzen Novel Early, and Publishing Panic Ensues,’ http://nyti.ms/9qBYTy.
* ‘Booksellers Brace for â€˜Mockingjay’ Landing’ (and have high hopes for a bestseller), http://nyti.ms/b8ttOS.
* Check out the e-readers coming soon to Borders, including a tablet, http://bit.ly/92sZHb.
* ‘Medieval Copy Protection – the Book Curse to Keep Thieves at Bay,’ http://bit.ly/aok7PT.
* ‘Fusion: The Synergy of Images and Words,’ (great photos of readers with their books worldwide), http://bit.ly/9f0Xdw.
* ‘Aluratek’s E-reader Cracks the $100 Barrier,’ http://bit.ly/a9cFvX.
* Try the Ray Bradbury quiz in honor of his 90th birthday, http://bit.ly/byaLFQ.
* ‘Homer the Memoir Cat Gets a Comic Book,’ http://bit.ly/aH4Ad8.
* ‘Color Comes to an E-Reader, the Literati,’ http://nyti.ms/cFH36P.
* ‘6 ‘Flashlight Worthy’ Children’s Books to Read After You Finish Mockingjay,’ http://huff.to/d9CIdy.
* ‘HarperCollins Releases Kids’ iPhone Apps,’ http://bit.ly/99rEUi.
* ‘The ABCs of E-Reading: People Are Reading More, Even While in a Kayak,’ http://bit.ly/bpJkcp.
* New Laura Lippman thriller sells more e-books than hardcovers, http://bit.ly/aYU5H1.
* ‘Empty Space: 40+ Stunning Minimalistic Book Covers,’ http://bit.ly/aIb4QM.
* ‘Cakes and Cupcakes Inspired by Books,’ (amazing and mouth watering!), http://bit.ly/cU751F.
* ‘Five Books to Read After Checking the Egg Recall List,’ http://bit.ly/bGAY53.
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