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Industry News: Amazon Drops IPG Titles, Rowling Inks a Deal, New Nook, Barney Rosset Dies

February 25, 2012

Amazon Removes Independent Book Distributor’s Titles 

The Independent Publishers Group (IPG) is the second-largest independent book distributor in the industry, but if you want to buy its books for Kindle, you can’t. IPG has announced that Amazon has removed Kindle versions of its books after IPG rejected new terms proposed by Amazon. According to a statement from IPG President Mark Suchomel, every one of its clients that he talked to backed its  refusal to accept the new terms. About 5000 titles are affected. The changes may be the result of technological improvements that allow Amazon to deal directly with small publishers rather than working through a distributor.

JK Rowling To Publish Adult Novel for Little Brown

In 1997, JK Rowling published the first Harry Potter novel with Scholastic. Now, she’s signed a deal with Little, Brown for an adult novel. No details have been released about genre, plot, title, or release date, but Rowling promises the book will be “very different to the Harry Potter series.” The forthcoming novel will be released in both hardcopy and e-book format. Rowling has previously announced that she’s through with Harry Potter.

B&N Announces Scaled-Back Version of Nook Tablet, Drops Some Prices

Barnes and Noble has introduced a new version of its Nook Tablet with 8 GB of storage for $199, in order to compete more directly with the Kindle Fire. The store will still offer the 16 GB Nook Tablet for $249, and has dropped the price of the Nook Color to $169. Both versions of the Nook Tablet have 1 GB of RAM, which allows for better performance than the Nook Color and the Kindle Fire, which both have 512 megabytes of RAM. Meanwhile, a new version of the Kindle Fire, currently #2 in tablet sales, could be released as soon as May.

Publisher Barney Rosset, Censorship Opponent, Dies at 89

In 1959, Grove Press publisher Barney Rosset received an uncut version of Lady Chatterly’s Lover through the mail, hoping it would be confiscated for its content. It was, and Rosset won the legal battle that ensued, which said the sexual content wasn’t prurient because it was central to the plot. A similar chain of events occurred in 1961 with Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer, a semi-autobiographical story that included explicit details about Miller’s sexual conquests. Rosset also published works by Malcolm X and Che Guevara, as well as Jack Kerouac. Rosset died this week in New York. He was 89.

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