Today in books and publishing: Rielle Hunter's memoir promotion begins in full; The Rock Bottom Remainders author band will break up after a final tour; Winston Churchill e-books; Fifty Shades of Etsy.
Rielle Hunter's memoir is out on June 26. In preparation, she's doing the expected news promotion circuit, appearing in an episode of 20/20 airing this Friday with Chris Cuomo to talk about her affair with John Edwards and, of course, her book, What Really Happened: John Edwards, Our Daughter, and Me. The question on everyone's lips is..."What really happened?" Some answers, or at least clues: In the book, Hunter talks about her "mixed views" on "Johnny" Edwards' parenting style, "outbursts" from Elizabeth Edwards, sneaking into and out of hotel rooms during the affair, paparazzi chases, and more. In the end, she "says she still has romantic feelings for Edwards but doesn't know how their relationship will turn out." There's also this tidbit about how Edwards felt about going to jail (of course, he was ultimately acquitted):
Days before his indictment Hunter asked: "So if you went to jail, what kind of jail would it be? One of those country clubs?"
"He said, 'Yeah.'"
"'Where?'" she asked.
"So Quinn and I will move to Virginia. Virginia is a great state."
One of the more interesting details on the book publishing side of things is that New York publishers passed on the book because of her image. It's being released through BenBella Books, a publisher in Dallas. [AP via MSNBC]
An The author rock band splits. The Rock Bottom Remainders—Bruce Springsteen once said they were "almost as good as a lousy garage band," and at times included writers Amy Tan, Stephen King, Scott Turow, Mitch Albom, Roy Blount Jr., Matt Groening, James McBride, Ridley Pearson, Greg Iles, and Dave Barry—is calling it quits. Barry said, "We're up to almost four chords now, and the Beatles quit at that point, I'm pretty sure." (They rarely rehearsed and only played a couple times a year.) The split was precipitated by the death of the group's founder, Kathi Goldmark, who was also the lead singer. Currently in their final tour, the "Past Our Bedtime Tour," they have a public performance planned on June 22 in Los Angeles and a private show at the ALA convention the next day. [AP via Huffington Post]
More on Apple and the big publishers versus Amazon. Ken Auletta talks about a possible collusion against Amazon by Apple and five publishing houses in a piece in The New Yorker: "Publishers were concerned that customers would come to believe that $9.99 [what Amazon was charging generally for e-books] was what books were worth, and they were desperate to have greater influence on prices. Steve Jobs, of Apple, was pressing publishers to agree to a new way of selling books: an arrangement called the agency model." [New Yorker]
Winston Churchill e-books are on the way. In a deal between Rosetta Books and Churchill's estate, "nearly all of the legendary British prime minister's writings, including his speeches," will be made available digitally, most of them for the first time. [Wall Street Journal]
Fifty Shades of Etsy. Before there was a huge licensing agreement for the trilogy that must not be named, there was Etsy, where fans of the books have been selling apparel, accessories, and jewelry, and other accoutrement for some time, now. Especially popular are items that say "Laters, Baby," an expression used in the book. [New York Daily News]
The final days of a local bookstore. Here's sweetly nostalgic piece about Betty's Books, a mom & pop bookshop in rural Jefferson County, Missouri, that has closed its doors. [STLToday.com]