Even as the publishing industry converges in Frankfurt, Germany, for the world’s largest annual book fair, the news keeps breaking elsewhere. This week, in Stockholm, the Nobel committee awarded the Prize in Literature to Mo Yan of China. And in a New York courtroom, the Authors Guild heard the bare facts on fair use from Judge Harold Baer.
“Federal judge Harold Baer tossed the Authors Guild copyright infringement case against the HathiTrust,” Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly features editor, tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally from the floor of the Frankfurt Book Fair. “In granting the HathiTrust’s motion for summary judgment, Baer ruled that the scan program was a clear fair use and dealt a potentially fatal blow to the Authors Guild’s other long-running lawsuit filed against Google over its book scanning program.”
Among the week’s review of reviews, Samuel Slaton, PW reviews editor, finds Iowa Writers Workshop student Ayana Mathis’s remarkable debut novel, The Twelve Tribes of Hattie. The novelist “traces the life of Hattie Shepherd through the eyes of her offspring, and also traces much of the 20th century, especially as it relates to the struggles of an African-American family,” Slaton notes. “As Hattie’s children age, they come to terms with their intense need for and resentment of the mother who kept them alive but starved their hearts. Mathis weaves this story with confidence and grace.”