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Book News: Even Mark Twain Has A Shirtless Picture On The Internet

A photo of Mark Twain from the 1880s.
Wikimedia Commons
A photo of Mark Twain from the 1880s.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

  • Open Culture dug up an old picture of Mark Twain, who clearly did not heed his own (possibly apocryphal) advice: "Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society."
  • Three independent bookstores have filed a class action lawsuit against Amazon and the so-called "Big Six" publishers (Random House, Penguin, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, Hachette and HarperCollins). The lawsuit, filed last week, claims that the DRM (digital rights management) that Amazon uses on its Kindle ebooks creates a monopoly. The DRM prevents content bought on an Amazon Kindle from transferring to a non-Amazon device, such as a Nook.
  • Tenth of December author George Saunders was interviewed by The Paris Review for Valentine's Day about "one of the great under-narrrated pleasures of living: long-term fidelity & love." Aww.
  • Bill O'Reilly's next book will be Killing Jesus: A History, publisher Henry Holt announced on Wednesday. Two of O'Reilly's previous books, Killing Lincoln and Killing Kennedy, were huge commercial successes. According to the press release, the new book is the "story of Jesus of Nazareth as a beloved and controversial young revolutionary brutally killed by Roman soldiers."
  • DC Comics is introducing a same-sex marriage plotline in the next issue of "Batwoman" for the lesbian superhero. In the meantime, she will continue to "struggle to defeat Medusa and a horde of villains." This comes in the middle of the continuing controversy over DC's hiring of anti-gay activist Orson Scott Card to write a Superman story.
  • Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

    Annalisa Quinn is a contributing writer, reporter, and literary critic for NPR. She created NPR's Book News column and covers literature and culture for NPR.
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