The Global 50: The World’s Largest Book Publishers

Pearson’s commitment to publishing allowed it to widen the company’s lead as the world’s largest book publisher in 2011. While Pearson, with holdings in both the trade and educational publishing segments, was able to increase its revenue last year, its closest rivals lost ground, according to Livres Hebdo/Publishers Weekly’s annual ranking of the world’s largest publishers. Second place Reed Elsevier, for example, saw its publishing sales fall as it had created a risk management division, which has no book-related sales.

Among other top 10 companies, Hachette Livre sales dipped due to spotty softness worldwide, including a small decline in the U.S. Grupo Planeta sales were also off in 2011, and with economic conditions worsening in Spain the publisher faces a difficult 2012. Softness in the school market resulted in a decline in sales at McGraw-Hill Education in 2011, but the company remained the largest U.S.-based book publisher.

Read More (Publishers Weekly)


10 Classic Books You Read in High School You Should Reread

By Kevin Smokler

It’s all too easy to look at the novels assigned to us as high school students as monuments or mist, to be worshiped or abandoned as we did our outfit to the junior prom. That either/or narrative matches both how we encounter these “great books” in education (as non-negotiable requirements) and an educator’s hope for our response (that their “greatness” changes our lives). That may be a whole lot no-shades-of-gray thinking on my part. As proof, I’ll accept a “meh” opinion on Moby-Dick or The Scarlet Letter from anyone assigned to write an essay on it as a teenager.

Is there a third way? Read More…

Top E-book Sellers Week of 2/24/2013

Hachette Takes Top Four Ebook Best-Seller List Spots as Ebook Prices Inch Up

Hachette had a very good week selling ebooks. The top four spots in our ebook best-seller list this week are all titles from Hachette and they each represent success in the new art of ebook pricing strategy and promotion.

Safe Haven by Nicholas SparksSafe Haven by Nicholas Sparks was the No. 1 best-selling ebook every week in 2013 until this week. It had flirted with the bottom of the list near the end of 2012 — ranked No. 25 on Dec. 1 and No. 23 on Dec. 17. What changed? Price. The ebook was $7.99 on Dec. 1 and was dropped to $3.99 around the new year. It started the year off at No. 1 and didn’t relinquish its grip until this week even though the price was raised back to $6.64 on Jan. 8. It now sells for $5.79.

The Nos. 1 and 4 books are both part of the Beautiful Creatures series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Last week, four books in the series took the list by storm, rocketing up the ranks due at least in part to a price drop to $2.99. Even as the prices increased this week to anywhere from $5.79 to $8.89. In fact, even as the prices went up, the ebooks continued to move up the list:

Beautiful Creatures 3

– Beautiful Creatures moved to No. 1 from No. 2

– Beautiful Darkness moved to No. 4 from No. 8

– Beautiful Chaos moved to No. 7 from No. 17

– Beautiful Redemption moved to No. 10 from No. 11

An Hachette spokesperson told Digital Book World in regards to the Beautiful Creatures price shifts that the price promotions in this case were being driven by retailers.

And, last, powerhouse author James Patterson’s new book came on Feb. 18, Alex Cross, Run. It also benefited from a one-day “new and noteworthy” Amazon homepage promotion. The title shot up to No. 3 on the list from No. 21. The price of the ebook was dropped four days prior to $11.99 from $12.74 in late Jan. It was $14.99 in early Jan.

Meanwhile, due in part to the Beautiful Creatures price increases, the average price of an ebook best-seller increased this week to $8.04, up from an all-time low last week of $7.56. Retailers still haven’t seemed to start discounting Macmillan titles per the publishers’ settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice to resolve a lawsuit alleging collusion and price-fixing in the ebook market.

One last note: The first non-Hachette book on the ebook best-seller list is Wait for Me, a self-published hit by Elisabeth Naughton.

See the rest of the the best-seller lists for the week ending Feb. 24:

– Digital Book World Best-Selling Ebooks Priced $10.00 and Above
– Digital Book World Best-Selling Ebooks Priced $8.00 – $9.99
– Digital Book World Best-Selling Ebooks Priced $3.00 – $7.99
– Digital Book World Best-Selling Ebooks Priced $0.00 – $2.99

– See more at:

Random House Penguin Merger Approved By Department Of Justice

The Justice Department has closed an investigation of a proposed merger between Penguin and Random House and will take no action to stop the deal that would create the world’s largest publisher of consumer books.

“The combined company will control 26 percent of the global consumer publishing market.”

Read More (Associated Press)

How the People Saved Book Publishing

The following is a highly edited and altered excerpt from an introduction to my new ebook, Finding the Future of Digital Book Publishing.

Whatever happened to newspapers? They used to be an area of growth and a cash machine. Today, the industry is written about as a patient on life support. Magazines are in the neighboring hospital bed to newspapers. Television is suffering from the twin ailments of piracy and new competition from its streaming partners (Hulu, Netflix, etc.). The music industry? What music industry. It’s half of what it was a decade ago.

All victims of digital disruption.

Read More (Forbes)


Augmented Reality Is Revolutionizing the Publishing Industry (Finally!)

After years of incubation, it is finally clear that AR is going to transform our mobile computing experiences. With an Augmented Reality (AR) app, you can point your smartphone or tablet at an icon or picture that is on an enabled page and get additional information about what you are seeing.

Popular Science used this in a recent issue to bring up a video of inventors talking about their inventions.

Read More [PC Magazine]

It’s Platform Power’s position that all publishing projects should be planned as multimedia projects. AR is just one of the many technologies that will allow you to monetize your intellectual property. Stay tuned here to learn more about the latest in publishing, marketing, and building your platform.

Three Predictions for Book Publishing in 2013

This year, for the second time in a row, I spoke with about a dozen ebook and book-publishing experts to get their predictions on what would happen in book publishing in 2013. I compiled the information and published this: Ten Bold Predictions for Ebooks and Digital Publishing in 2013.

The thing is, while I think these are solid predictions and will probably be more accurate than our predictions from last year(which have turned out to be really accurate — but more on that in the new year), it doesn’t really scratch my personal itch for making predictions. These, of course, are the predictions of experts that I merely filtered and compiled. When do I get to make predictions?

Read More (Forbes)