BTW News Briefs

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

Amazon employees who demonstrated against the mega-retailer on the company’s annual Prime Day were joined by activists and immigrants to protest Amazon’s labor practices and its involvement with ICE’s deportation efforts. The protests on Monday, July 15, began in seven U.S. cities, including in New York City, where hundreds of protestors demonstrated outside the annual Amazon Web Services summit.

Judge Charles R. Nagle denied Quad’s motions for an expedited trial in the Department of Justice’s suit to block the company’s purchase of LSC Communication and set a trial date of November 14. The department argued that the deal between the two major printing companies would harm competition.

Barnes & Noble has formally sent information to B&N shareholders regarding Elliott Advisors’ offer to buy their shares of the company for $6.50 each. The deal would expire on August 6.

Sony Pictures Entertainment and HarperCollins are partnering with former Fox 2000 President Elizabeth Gabler and her team to source literary material and produce film content across all platforms. Material will be derived from all sources including, but not limited to, the HarperCollins catalog; the new venture will launch later this summer.

HarperCollins Children’s Books has announced plans to launch HarperAlley. The new graphic novel imprint for readers of all ages, to be led by editorial director Andrew Arnold, will release its first titles in the fall of 2020. Arnold, former art director and acquiring editor at First Second, told PW he hopes to publish around 30 books a year.

Arcadia Publishing is working on building a new publishing program that puts out hyper-local titles for children. This initiative, to be run by former DK Editorial Director Nancy Ellwood, is the regional publisher’s first step into publishing books for children.

The University of Chicago Press is adding three new marketing and distribution partners: CanvanKerry Press, Dalton Watson Fine Books, and the American Institute of Musicology. Titles from each publisher will be distributed by the Chicago Distribution Center around the world.

Casemate Group announced that it will distribute print books by Mercier Press, effective immediately. Mercier is the oldest independent Irish publishing house in North America. Mercier publishes approximately 30 books annually and has a backlist of about 600 titles.

In the U.K., Abrams & Chronicle Books has announced that Inez Munsch will become the new managing director of the company, effective September 23. Munsch, who is currently the U.K. and export sales director at Hardie Grant Publishing, takes over from Brenda Marsh, who has served in the position since June 2016.

Starting July 29, Paul Whitlatch will join Crown as executive editor. He was most recently at Hachette Books.

Josh Harwood has joined Bookazine as the company’s Northeast sales director, serving independent bookstores. He was previously the director of national accounts at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

John McKay has joined the Association of American Publishers (AAP) as senior vice president of communications. Most recently, he served as an executive officer with the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

The Romance Novelists’ Association has announced the writers who will compete for the organization’s 2019 Joan Hessayon Award. Each year, 300 spots are offered to unpublished romance writers, all of whom have had their debut novels accepted for publication after passing through the RNA’s New Writers’ Scheme.

Share your news in BTW News Briefs! Publishers and industry partners are welcome to e-mail editorial@bookweb.org with news about awards, imprint launches, distribution changes, staff promotions, and more.