BTW News Briefs

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Here’s what’s happening this week in the book industry:

Simon & Schuster has announced the creation of Avid Reader Press, a new imprint within the company to be led by Jofie Ferrari-Adler, vice president and publisher, and Ben Loehnen, vice president and editor-in-chief. In order to run the new line, which will publish its first books in late 2019 or early 2020, Ferrari-Adler and Loehnen will leave their current editorial positions.

Michael Szczerban will direct a new illustrated books imprint at Little, Brown and Company, which will launch next fall and ultimately publish 20 to 25 titles a year. Serving as vice president and editorial director of the new line, Szczerban will “publish distinctive, bestselling illustrated books of the highest quality that entertain, inform, and inspire — while expanding the possibilities of visually driven nonfiction and connecting readers to their passions.”

The National Book Foundation has announced that actor Nick Offerman will host the 69th National Book Awards.

Penguin Random House has acquired majority ownership of Brazilian trade publishing house Companhia das Letras. Penguin first invested in the company in 2012, taking a 45 percent share.

In response to a lawsuit filed by former CEO Demos Parneros in August, Barnes & Noble has alleged in a court filing that Parneros was justifiably fired because he sexually harassed a female employee, bullied executives, and attempted to sabotage an imminent sale.

At Workman, Erin Kibby has been promoted to marketing coordinator and Laura Marciniak has been promoted to digital production associate.

Tessa Meischeid has joined Penguin Young Readers as senior publicist.

At Tom Doherty Associates, Rebecca Yeager has been promoted to advertising and promotions manager; Sara Di Blasi has been promoted to marketing assistant for Tor Teen, Starscape, and school and library marketing; and Renata Sweeney has been promoted to digital marketing manager for Tor, Forge Books, Tor Teen, and Starscape. In addition, Anthony Parisi has joined the company as associate director for Tor Teen, Starscape, and school and library marketing, while Isa Caban has joined the company as marketing manager for Tor Teen, Starscape, and school and library marketing.

Publishers Weekly has named its best books of 2018; the publication’s top 10 books include Asymmetry by Lisa Halliday (Simon & Schuster); Educated by Tara Westover, the Indie Next List number-one pick for March 2018 (Random House); and Heavy: An American Memoir by Kiese Laymon (Scribner).

The Orwell Foundation in the U.K. is launching the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction. The new £3,000 prize is sponsored by the Orwell estate’s literary agency, A.M. Heath, and Orwell’s son Richard Blair. The Orwell Book Prize, which was previously open to both nonfiction and fiction, has been renamed The Orwell Prize for Political Writing and will now award nonfiction titles only.

Kirkus Reviews has announced the winners of the 2018 Kirkus Prize. The winning authors will each receive $50,000.

The Southern California Independent Booksellers Association (SCIBA) has announced the winners of its 2018 Book Awards.

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