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Hundreds of authors join Amazon book dispute

Hundreds of authors join Amazon book dispute

BOOK BATTLE: Hundreds of writers, also including blockbuster novelists Lee Child, Philip Pullman and Suzanne Collins, have signed an open letter informing readers about the row and urging Amazon to bring the dispute to an end. Photo: Reuters

Stephen King, John Grisham, and James Patterson are among 900 of the world’s most famous authors who have waded into an ongoing publishing dispute with bosses at book retailer Amazon.

Hundreds of writers, also including blockbuster novelists Lee Child, Philip Pullman and Suzanne Collins, have signed an open letter informing readers about the row and urging Amazon to bring the dispute to an end.

In the letter, the group accuses Amazon executives of using “unusual tactics” in a bid to push through a deal with publishing house Hachette, alleging they have been boycotting the company’s authors, refusing to apply discounts to their books and slowing delivery of works by Hachette’s writers to customers.

The letter reads, “As writers – most of us not published by Hachette – we feel strongly that no bookseller should block the sale of books or otherwise prevent or discourage customers from ordering or receiving the books they want. It is not right for Amazon to single out a group of authors, who are not involved in the dispute, for selective retaliation… Many of us have supported Amazon since it was a struggling start-up… We have made Amazon many millions of dollars and over the years… This is no way to treat a business partner. Nor is it the right way to treat your friends…

“We call on Amazon to resolve its dispute with Hachette without further hurting authors and without blocking or otherwise delaying the sale of books to its customers.”

Hachette boasts some of the publishing industry’s biggest names on its roster, including “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling and Stephenie Meyer, the writer behind the “Twilight” franchise.

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