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Book News: Evidence 'Overwhelming' In Apple Price-Fixing Case

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

  • U.S. District Judge Denise Cote delivered a stinging assessment of Apple on Wednesday when she ruled that the company knowingly "participated in and facilitated a horizontal price-fixing conspiracy." In her opinion, she wrote, "The evidence is overwhelming that Apple knew of the unlawful aims of the conspiracy," adding that in order to believe Apple's version of events, "a fact-finder would be confronted with the herculean task of explaining away reams of documents and blinking at the obvious." The five major publishers that were accused of colluding with one another and Apple — Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Penguin and Simon & Schuster — had all settled. But Cotes still took the publishers to task, saying that consumers "suffered in a variety of ways from this scheme" and criticizing Macmillan CEO John Sargent and Apple Senior Vice President Eddy Cue as "unreliable" witnesses. Cote has not yet set a date for a damages trial. Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr said in a statement, "We've done nothing wrong and we will appeal the judge's decision."
  • Judy Blume talks to Rookie Magazine about banned books, adolescent relationships and why Margaret will be "an A cup for life." She says, "There are so many kinds of longing. The longing to fit in, the longing to figure it out, the emotional longing for friendship and being accepted — these are all as important as physical longing."
  • For The Rumpus, Suzanne Koven speaks to Oliver Sacks about hallucinations. Koven asked, "[W]ould you say hallucinations sometimes come from a part of the brain that isn't part of the 'self?' " Sacks responded, "Yes, well that's what the muse is. Or the devil!"
  • Penguin asks street artists to make over the covers of 10 of their "Modern Classics" books, including Don DeLillo's Americana and The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid.
  • At The Millions, Matthew Seidel gives a history of silly walks in literature, from Aristophanes to Samuel Beckett: "To add one final example to our menagerie of walkers, we lurch into an H.P. Lovecraft horror tale and find a stride so inhumanly macabre that it becomes almost comic (as most B-movie adaptations of the Dagon or Cthulhu mythos make clear)."
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