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Authors Angered Over Amazon's Dispute With Publisher Hachette

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Amazon wants better terms for print and e-books and is refusing pre-orders for upcoming Hachette books, and slowing delivery for those already ordered. Authors are complaining on the Internet.


We've reached a moment that probably shouldn't surprise us when it comes to the modern publishing industry. A lot of people are addicted to buying books online using Amazon. But Amazon is now in a pricing dispute with the publisher Hachette. The online giant is refusing to accept orders for upcoming books from Hachette, which has a heavy-hitting roster of authors. NPR's Mandalit del Barco reports.

MANDALIT DEL BARCO, BYLINE: Some authors are furious at Amazon.

NINA LADEN: They don't really care. It's all about money.

DEL BARCO: Children's author and illustrator Nina Laden posted her complaint on Facebook.

LADEN: The part that hurts the most is Amazon using authors and illustrators as collateral.

DEL BARCO: If you're a fan of such authors as Michael Connelly or J.K. Rowling, you can no longer pre-order their newest books on The online retailer is also delaying shipment of the Hachette books it is selling. In a statement, Amazon went so far as to suggest customers could buy the books from one of its competitors. Writer David Sedaris says there are alternatives.

DAVID SEDARIS: There are things called stores.

DEL BARCO: Sedaris' books are published by an Hachette imprint. His latest is called "Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls."

SEDARIS: If you don't want to go to a store, or if you don't want to use some other website to buy the book, then don't buy the book. Don't do it. Get something else you can get on Amazon, like a toaster or thermal socks. I think they sell those. Go ahead. Don't get my book. Get a flashlight instead.

DEL BARCO: David Sedaris says he doesn't shop online anyway. Mandalit del Barco, NPR News.

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