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Barnes & Noble Announces CEO’s Departure

Barnes & Noble has announced the departure of Ronald D. Boire, the company’s chief executive officer.

On August 16, Barnes & Noble made public that its board had determined that Boire, who joined the company last July after serving as CEO of Sears Canada, was “not a good fit for the organization and that it was in the best interests of all parties for him to leave the company.”

B&N Executive Chairman Leonard Riggio, who was scheduled to retire at the company’s annual meeting on September 14, will postpone his retirement and, along with other members of the executive management team, assume Boire’s duties until a new CEO is hired. The search for Boire’s replacement began immediately.

Amazon to Start Collecting Sales Tax in Alabama

Under Alabama’s new and voluntary Simplified Use Tax Remittance Program, Amazon has agreed to collect and remit sales tax in the state starting November 1, according to numerous media reports. Under the program, remote sellers agree to collect a flat sales tax of eight percent; however, they are allowed to deduct and retain a discount equal to two percent of the taxes they collect.

Though the program is open to all sellers deemed eligible under the program, Julie Magee, the Alabama revenue commissioner, referred to Amazon’s decision to collect and remit as a “partnership” that will be “a huge benefit for the state and means additional, much-needed revenues, especially as Amazon continues to capture more and more of the online retail market share,” as reported by

Alabama’s Department of Revenue noted that “in the event that there is a change in federal law … that removes current federal limitations on states’ ability to enforce their sales and use tax jurisdiction … those businesses registered with the department as a participant in the program at least six months prior to the change in law will continue to qualify for the program.”

PEN/Nabokov Award Revived to Honor International Writer

PEN America is reviving and revamping its PEN/Nabokov Award, which was last awarded in 2008, to honor a writer born or residing outside the U.S. for an outstanding body of work.

The PEN/Nabokov is the first PEN America honor specifically focused on international writers, said PEN America president Andrew Solomon. The award’s previous iteration was the PEN/Nabokov Award for Fiction created in 2000, which granted $20,000 biennially for achievement in literary fiction.

Last week, the organization announced that the new $50,000 prize, now called the PEN/Nabokov Award for Achievement in International Literature, will be presented to “an international writer whose work, either written in or translated into English, represents the highest level of achievement in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and/or drama, and is of enduring originality and consummate craftsmanship.”

The inaugural recipient of the prize, which is administered in conjunction with the Vladimir Nabokov Literary Foundation, will be named in February 2017 at the PEN America Literary Awards Ceremony in New York.

Christian Robinson to Illustrate 2017 Children’s Book Week Poster

The Children’s Book Council has confirmed that acclaimed illustrator Christian Robinson will design the 2017 Children’s Book Week poster, commemorating the 98th annual Children’s Book Week.

Children’s Book Week, staged annually by the CBC’s Every Child a Reader program, is scheduled to take place next year from May 1-7.

Robinson is the illustrator of a number of picture books, including Gaston by Kelly DiPucchio (Atheneum Books for Young Readers) and Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers), for which he received a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor and a Caldecott Honor.

Sesame Workshop and Running Press Team Up

Running Press and Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit media and educational organization behind Sesame Street, have formed a partnership to offer classic Sesame Street characters and stories in new editions and packaging.

Titles to be published by Running Press will include six deluxe story book and treasury collections, an inspirational book for adults, as well as four titles in Running Press’ mini-kit format.

The partnership launches this fall with A Very Elmo Christmas, a special slip-cased edition of two popular Elmo stories, including holiday stickers and a Christmas countdown poster.