Happy Friday, everyone! This week saw a big book announcement and some huge news for indie authors; it was also a week that included Star Wars Day, Cinco de Mayo, and, this coming Sunday, Mother’s Day here in North America… which all feel very different when celebrated from inside our homes (although I did appreciate being able to wear my Star Wars onesie to work on Monday… no one had any idea). Regardless of isolation, I hope you’re managing to celebrate these little holidays through thematic meals, zoom calls with friends and family, or appropriate movie marathons. It’s the little things, right?

Perhaps the biggest news story this week is that Stephanie Meyer has announced a release date for the newest book in the Twilight series. Midnight Sun will retell the story of the original books but from the perspective of Edward.

‘Twilight’ Author Says She’ll Release Prequel, A Moment Fans Thought May Never Come

Fifteen years after the first “Twilight” book was released, author Stephenie Meyer has announced she will release “Midnight Sun,” the prequel to the saga long anticipated by fans. The new edition to the series retells the story of “Twilight” – a love story in which human Bella Swan falls for vampire Edward Cullen – from Cullen’s perspective.

And the biggest news this week in the indie publishing world: Apple has launched it’s new website, Apple Books for Authors, which will allow PC users to publish directly on their site for the first time!

PC users can now publish direct with Apple!

Apple Books For Authors has launched and the all-new site now provides help to authors for every stage in their publishing journey. And here’s the biggest news of all: PC users can now publish direct with Apple Books. That’s right!

The Virtual Bologna Bookfair was a success, drawing in 60,000 online visitors.

Bologna’s Virtual Fair Draws 60,000 Online Visitors

The Bologna Children’s Book Fair hosted a virtual edition of the fair this week, from May 4-7, and attracted more than 60,000 online visitors, 75% from outside Italy, organizers reported. In all, the fair counted 400,000 page views across the fair’s affiliated sites.

The head of the Frankfurt Book Fair announced that while the event will go on as promised, there will be some significant changes.

Frankfurt’s Boos Promises a Reinvented Book Fair

In an interview with Publishers Weekly hosted and broadcast by the Publishers Without Borders Facebook channel, Frankfurt Book Fair director Juergen Boos said that the fair will go on, but it will be a “completely different” experience.

After a steady decline in sales due to the pandemic, print book sales have risen over the last week!

Sales of Print Units Rose 10.9% Last Week

Unit sales of print books rose 10.9% last week over the week ended April 25 at outlets that report to NPD BookScan. Units were up 4.7% over the comparable week in 2019 as well. The two adult categories led the week’s gains driven by a big jump in sales in the adult nonfiction category.

A literacy charity in the UK conducted a survey to see how reading habits have changed since the pandemic began.

The books that could flourish in this pandemic era

In 1944, a debut novel was published in the US that went on to become the country’s bestselling fiction book of the entire decade. At such a seminal time in history, when World War Two was in its final stages, what literary masterpiece could have caused such a stampede?

The Pulitzer Prize Winners were announced this week with Colson Whitehead winning his second Pulitzer for fiction his novel The Nickel Boys.

Pulitzer Prizes: A Guide to the Winning Books and Finalists

Here are the 2020 contenders for fiction, nonfiction, poetry, history and biography. Fifteen books were recognized as winners or finalists for the Pulitzer Prize on Monday, in the categories of fiction, general history, biography, poetry and general nonfiction.

And the Kobo Emerging Writer’s Prize announced its shortlist this week!

Jesse Thistle & Zalika Reid-Benta shortlisted for $10K Rakuten Kobo Emerging Writer Prize | CBC Books

Métis-Cree scholar Jesse Thistle and Toronto-based writer Zalika Reid-Bentaare among the 17 finalists for the 2020 Rakuten Kobo Emerging Writer Prize. Thistle and Reid-Benta are recognized for their books From the Ashes and Frying Plantain , respectively.

More celebrities have started reading to us to keep us entertained during isolation. Now you can have the tale of Harry Potter read to you by the boy who lived himself!

A trip down memory lane with Harry Potter At Home | Wizarding World

year, we brought Hogwarts to you with a very special campaign called Harry Potter At Home. As the year comes to a close, we take a look back at some of our favourite moments.

Or if you’re more of a Lord of the Rings fan, you can listen to Andy Serkis read The Hobbit (I sincerely hope he does voices).

Andy Serkis to read ‘The Hobbit’ live for charity

Andy Serkis is going there and back again. The actor and director announced on Thursday that he will be reading J.R.R. Tolkien’s all the way through, in one sitting, on live stream to raise money for charities fighting coronavirus.

A new book about Meghan and Harry is in the works, and the authors have apparently snagged an interview with the former royals.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Reportedly Agree to Tell-All Biography

Forget about the adorable elephant documentary, this is the juicy stuff we’ve been waiting for. Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, who are now more than a month into their unceremonious exit from the British royal family, have reportedly cooperated with journalists who penned a tell-all biography about their new life.

If isolation has you missing being able to go your local library to browse and read, then you’re in luck! The New York City Library has released a track of library ambient noise for you to put on while you peruse your bookshelf and settle in with a good book.

Miss Reading in Public? Bring the Sounds of the Library to Your Home – Electric Literature

If you enjoy reading Electric Literature, join our mailing list! We’ll send you the best of EL each week, and you’ll be the first to know about upcoming submissions periods and virtual events. If you live in New York, there are probably a lot of noises you miss right now.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Staff Recommendation
Joni, Author Engagement Specialist
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The Party ebook by Elizabeth Day – Rakuten Kobo

Read “The Party” by Elizabeth Day available from Rakuten Kobo. AN OBSERVER BOOK OF THE YEAR A gripping story of betrayal, privilege and hypocrisy, set in the unassailable heart of the…

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