paper trail

Jonathan Karp named president and CEO of Simon & Schuster; American Academy of Poets announces Poets Laureate Fellowships

Mary Ruefle. Photo: Matt Valentine

Longtime Simon & Schuster publisher Jonathan Karp has been selected as the company’s president and CEO. Karp, who was previously the publisher and editor of Hachette imprint Twelve, succeeds Carolyn Reidy, who died earlier this month. “For 96 years, Simon & Schuster has been the gold standard for publishing books that satisfy and illuminate readers, and I am grateful for the opportunity to inherit this great legacy,” Karp said in a statement. “We will continue to build on the strong foundation that Carolyn Reidy and the leadership team have in place to publish books we believe in and love.”

The Academy of American Poets announced the recipients of this year’s Poets Laureate Fellowships yesterday. Honorees include Mary Ruefle, Tina Chang, and Laura Tohe.

The National Book Festival will now be held online this September.

“There’s nothing heroic about people just telling stuff that happens,” writes Popula’s Maria Bustillos. “But gather those conversations up and it’s a societal bulwark against totalitarianism, an institution of incalculable value, and one that’s in danger.”

David Attenborough is publishing a new book on the environment. A Life on Our Planet will detail “his firsthand observations of the decline of the planet’s environment and biodiversity, as well as possible solutions.” The book will be published by Penguin Random House in October alongside a Netflix documentary of the same name.

At Literary Hub, writers reflect on what life could be like after the COVID-19 pandemic. In his piece for the series, Bill McKibben envisions a future where the fight against climate change is used to create jobs and spur economic recovery. “The other day, I was kind of remembering that Reagan’s main laugh line was, ‘The nine scariest words in the English language are, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”’ But those aren’t. The scariest words are ‘Sorry, no more ventilators,’ or ‘The hill behind your house is on fire now,’” he said. “Those are not things that yield to those kind of solutions, to everybody just doing their own thing. Those require joint action. If we came out of this pandemic a little stronger in that sense of solidarity with each other, that would be a good thing.”

For the New York Times, Dana Rubinstein looks at the new trend for homebound politicians, journalists, and others to have Robert Caro’s The Power Broker prominently displayed during their on-screen interviews. “Reading the book is a rite of passage for New York’s political class, a pledge to learn the art of politics as it is practiced in big cities, not textbooks,” she explains. “To display the book prominently is to signal that you, too, understand how politics works, in both its pitfalls and its promise.” The book’s prominence has not gone unnoticed by its author. “Watching television during the last few weeks has been quite a stunning and humbling experience for me,” Caro told the paper.