• January 11, 2017

    Marlon James. Photo: Jeffrey Skemp

    Marlon James has announced plans for a series of fantasy books. James told Entertainment Weekly that the idea for the book came from an argument about the film version of The Hobbit. “I remember saying, ‘You know, if an Asian or a black hobbit came out of the Shire, nobody would have cared. We would have just moved on,’” James said. “And my friend said, ‘Well, Lord of the Rings is all this British and Celtic mythology.’ And I said, ‘Well, you know… Lord of the Rings isn’t real.’ . . . I think the argument ended with me saying, ‘You know what? Keep your d— Hobbit.’” The Dark Star Trilogy will be published by Riverhead in 2018.

    Clare Hollingworth, the journalist who first reported the news that World War II had started, died yesterday at age 105. The New York Times writes that Hollingworth, who continued to report well into old age, “was never so happy . . . as when she was roaming the world equipped with little more than a toothbrush, a typewriter and, if need be, a revolver.”

    After a CNN investigation uncovered over fifty plagiarized sections in Monica Crowley’s 2012 book What the (Bleep) Just Happened, HarperCollins has decided to stop selling the book. Politico reports that Crowley, who was chosen by President-elect Donald Trump for a senior communications position at the National Security Council, also plagiarized many sections of her Ph.D. dissertation.

    Breitbart News has hired Wall Street Journal financial reporter John Carney to head a finance and economics section, a move Media Matters calls “a transparent play to give the website a veneer of credibility.”

    English PEN is defending Dangerous author Milo Yiannopoulos’s right to free speech, and dismissed calls for Simon & Schuster to terminate the deal as “censorship.”

    The New York Times looks at the “lucrative but often overlooked niche” of conservative publishing. Although the bestselling books at right-leaning imprints usually involve criticisms of President Obama or the Clintons, a Trump win—which brings with it a more philosophically diverse readership—has put conservative publishers on edge. According to Regnery president and publisher Marji Ross, the outlook for their market “is far, far different with Trump as president than it would have been with Hillary Clinton as president. It’s hopeful, but cautious.”

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