A blog about writing and self publishing

The Booker Prize Longlist, Mariko Tamaki’s Imprint, and a Keanu Reeves Comic Book: This Week in Book News

Hello everyone, and happy Friday! Although, to be perfectly honest, I’m writing this on Thursday as we have a long weekend here at Kobo, so if some groundbreaking publishing news happens on Friday and it’s not in this roundup that would be why. But given how little news there has been this week, I highly doubt that will be the case (*knocks on wood just to be safe*).


The biggest news of the week: the longlist for the Booker Prize has been released!

Hilary Mantel up for third Booker prize as 2020 longlist announced

Hilary Mantel’s “masterful” conclusion to her Thomas Cromwell trilogy, The Mirror and the Light, has been longlisted for the Booker prize, putting the British novelist in the running to win for an unprecedented third time.

Mariko Tamaki, author of Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me, has been named the best writer at the 2020 Eisner Awards, and she’s also announced she’s launching a literary imprint focused on publishing comics by LGBTQ+ creators.

Crime fiction house Crooked Lane Books has announced they’re launching a commercial fiction imprint.

Crooked Lane Books Launches Alcove Press

Crime fiction house Crooked Lane Books is launching Alcove Press, an imprint that will focus on commercial fiction. Its first titles will be released in September. Headed by Crooked Lane publisher Matt Martz, Alcove Press will specialize in “book club fiction” that explores family, friendship, and community in stories.


There has been some tension surrounding how the London Book Fair handled refunds after the cancellation of the event due to Covid-19.

Agents Protest London Book Fair’s Handling of Refunds

Calling the London Book Fair tone deaf, literary agents from North America have written an open letter to LBF organizers, protesting their refusal to issue refunds to those who canceled attendance prior to the fair’s official announcement that the event would not take place.

Are we using the full potential of the internet to make virtual book events as great as they can be?

It’s Time to Radically Rethink Online Book Events – Electric Literature

Before the stay-at-home orders came down in Baltimore, the last thing I did in person was participate in a panel conversation about-ironically-“art and the apocalypse.” In retrospect, we should have cancelled, but the threat in Maryland still felt surreal; those were the days when it seemed like we could beat the pandemic by washing our hands.


Author Kristen McGuinness has written a great article about what she has learned in her time as a ghostwriter, bestselling author, editor, and writing coach.


Vanessa Springora’s memoir Consent, which shook the France literature scene, is being adapted into a film.

Book that exposed French author to be made into film – France 24

Paris (AFP) A bestselling book that exposed the acclaimed French writer Gabriel Matzneff as a paedophile is to be adapted for the big screen, its producers said Monday. Publisher Vanessa Springora ignited a huge scandal in France earlier this year with her memoir “Consent”, in which she described how she was groomed by Matzneff when she was 14.


Ethan Herisse, who portrayed Dr. Yusef Salaam in Ava DuVernay’s critically acclaimed When they See Us, will be teaming up with Dr. Salaam again to narrate his audiobook Punching the Air.

‘When They See Us’ star Ethan Herisse to narrate Yusef Salaam and Ibi Zoboi’s ‘Punching the Air’

Both the YA novel and its audiobook will be available for purchase on Sept. 1. Actor Ethan Herisse is once again helping to spread Dr. Yusef Salaam’s message, as he did while portraying him in Ava DuVernay’s highly lauded When They See Us .

A couple more Hollywood stars are entering the literary sphere. Matthew McConaughey has announced he’ll be writing a “playbook” based on the lessons he’s learned throughout his life.

Matthew McConaughey writing book based on life-changing adventures | CBC Books

Books Greenlights, which is drawn from 35 years of the actor’s diaries, will be published on Oct. 20, 2020 Oscar winner Matthew McConaughey didn’t want to write an ordinary celebrity book. “This is not a traditional memoir, or an advice book, but rather a playbook based on adventures in my life,” McConaughey, 50, said in a statement about Greenlights, which comes out Oct.

And Keanu Reeves has announced he’ll be creating a new comic book due out this fall.

Keanu Reeves is creating a new ‘brutally violent’ comic book, out in October 2020 | CBC Books

Books Reeves is the co-writer of BRZRKR, a 12-issue original comic book series about an immortal warrior. Keanu Reeves, the Toronto-raised Hollywood actor, musician and producer best known for his acting roles in The Matrix, Bill and Ted and John Wick, can now add comic book writer to his resume.


And lastly, a wonderful piece mourning the loss of the landline in literature.

An Elegy for the Landline in Literature

“The telephone rang. It was an unusual hour for it to ring.” These two sentences are drawn from Vladimir Nabokov’s short story ” Symbols and Signs,” which appeared in The New Yorker in 1948. They are functionally perfect sentences in a functionally perfect story.

Have a great (long) weekend, folks!


Staff Pick
Laura, Author Engagement Specialist

“I loved this read from debut author Kate Stayman-London. One to Watch tells the story of Bea, a plus-size fashion blogger who is asked to be on Main Squeeze, a a dating show where suitors will compete for her affection. This was a fun read, with lots of pop culture references and reality TV tropes sprinkled throughout. Bea made a compelling heroine and her journey shines a light on the treatment of plus-size women in media, while keeping readers rooting for her happy ever after.”

One to Watch ebook by Kate Stayman-London – Rakuten Kobo

Read “One to Watch A Novel” by Kate Stayman-London available from Rakuten Kobo. USA TODAY BESTSELLER * Real love . . . as seen on TV. A plus-size bachelorette brings a fresh look to a reality show in …

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