Very few new e-book editions warrant their own press releases. But just one novel about the end of printed books has sold ten million copies in print alone.
Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is now officially available as an e-book. Simon & Schuster are publishing both the hardcover and digital editions in the United States for a deal reportedly worth millions of dollars, according to the Associated Press.
Bradbury has been vocal about his dislike for e-books and the internet, calling it “a big distraction.” In order to get him to relent, the publisher had to both pay a premium price and play a little hardball.
Bradbury’s agent Michael Congdon told the AP that renewing the book’s hardcover rights, whether with Simon & Schuster or any other publisher, had to include digital rights as well.
“We explained the situation to him (Bradbury) that a new contract wouldn’t be possible without e-book rights,” said Congdon. “He understood and gave us the right to go ahead.”
Unfortunately for hard-core Bradbury fans, according to Simon & Schuster’s press release [PDF], only Fahrenheit 451 is currently being released as an e-book. The deal includes the mass-market rights to The Martian Chronicles and The Illustrated Man, but not their digital rights.
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