Kapka Kassabova has won the British Academy’s Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize for Global Cultural Understanding, which honors “an outstanding contribution to global cultural understanding that illuminates the interconnections and divisions that shape cultural identity worldwide.” Kassabova is the author of Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe, a hard-to-classify meditation on territory surrounding the intersections of Greece, Turkey, and Bulgaria. In the book, Kassabova roams “this ‘back door to Europe’ in an effort to find out, up close, what borders do to people, and vice versa. Her book is a deconstruction of the looming, nonspecific anxiety that comes from continually having to justify your right to exist on one or another side of a line.”
Hong Kong’s the People’s Books Cafe, the last known bookshop selling titles banned by the Communist Party in China, has been closed. According to The Guardian, sources say the shop closed “under pressure from the government.” This follows the detention of five city booksellers in 2015, who were shut down for their associations with a publisher of books that were critical about China’s leadership.
Alice Walker’s novel The Color Purple is being adapted for the screen again—this time as a musical. Oprah Winfrey, who starred in the original film version directed by Stephen Spielberg, is one of the new movie’s producers.
Jane Cockram has sold her debut novel, The House of Birds, in a high-six-figure deal to Sara Nelson at Harper. Nelson purchased the book in a preemptive deal from Rob Weisbach at Rob Weisbach Creative Management. In a statement, Harper says the novel follows a woman to an estate described famously by her mother in a memoir. There, she “discovers a world of family secrets tied to the past that may have the power to change her future.”
The New York Times reports that it has passed the milestone of 4 million subscribers, with more than 3 million digital subscriptions and more than 1 million print. The company has also reported a net income of about $24.9 million in the past year. The majority of paper’s income is being generated by readers themselves: “This quarter, subscription revenues accounted for nearly two-thirds of the company’s revenues,” Mark Thompson, the chief executive and president, said in a press release. “We’re investing aggressively in our journalism, product and marketing and are seeing tangible results in our digital growth.”