July 14, 2017

Liu Xiaobo

Literary critic and Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo has died at 61. At the New York Review of Books, Perry Link remembers Liu’s life and activism. Link attributes Liu’s independence his upbringing during China’s Cultural Revolution, when schools were closed. “With no teachers to tell him what the government wanted him to think about what he read, he began to think for himself—and he loved it.” Link compares Liu to Chinese President Xi Jinping, who grew up during the same time period but used his time away from the classroom “to begin building a resume that would allow him . . . to one day vie for supreme power.” “Two hundred years from now,” Link wonders, “who will recall the names of the tyrants who sent Mandela, Havel, and Suu Kyi to jail? Will the glint of Liu Xiaobo’s incisive intellect be remembered, or the cardboard mediocrity of Xi’s?”

Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards is writing a memoir, which will be published by Touchstone next spring. The still-untitled book “will draw on Cecile Richards’ personal stories of fighting for social justice throughout her life, from growing up as the daughter of Ann Richards to her early experiences as a labor organizer,” as well as her work with Planned Parenthood.

HuffPost is planning a bus tour of the country, in order to “listen and learn what it means to be American today.” Beginning in September, editor in chief Lydia Polgreen will lead a rotating team of HuffPost employees on a trip across the country, which Politico reports will avoid “the coasts for the likes of Fort Wayne, Indiana, Oxford, Mississippi and Odessa, Texas.” According to unnamed sources, the costs of the nation-wide trip could be around $1 million.

George Andreou is taking over the role of director at the Harvard University Press. Andreou was most recently a vice president and senior editor at Knopf.

Publishers Jamie Raab and Deb Futter, formerly of Grand Central, are starting a new imprint at Macmillan. Celadon will publish around twenty books of fiction and nonfiction per year.

Publisher’s Weekly reports that Milo Yiannopoulos and his PR team are artificially inflating the number of copies sold of his new book Dangerous. Although a representative told PW that the book has sold 100,000 copies since it was released last week, the actual numbers from Amazon and BookScan show just under 20,000 have been purchased. In a statement, Yiannopoulos claimed that the higher figure includes books purchased by wholesalers, and that anyone saying otherwise is “fake news.”

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