Benny & Shrimp (Short Books UK v. Penguin USA)

Just when you thought I was through with Scandinavian-themed posts, I’ve stumbled upon another reason why I usually can’t stand American cover design, nor the fact that we live under the thumb of their publishing industry. Benny and Shrimp is a Swedish novel by Katarina Mazetti, published by Short Books of London with an attractive British cover design, and distributed in Canada by Penguin Books. So far, so good. Except that now it would seem that Penguin Canada wants to shove the forthcoming ugly American edition down our throats, even though they hold distribution rights for the attractive British edition. Why? According to Short Books, Penguin USA have bought the Canadian market rights along with their American publication rights, and are blocking the sale of the British edition in Canada. Makes me sick…

British Edition (March 2008)

British Edition (February 2009)

American Edition (July 2009)

Why do American publishers do this?

  1. To paraphrase Pink Floyd, Leave us Canadians alone!
  2. If you really do have to intrude in our affairs, please, please, please, just buy the British cover design along with the publication rights rather than try to come up with something on your own. As we’ve seen on this blog, when American publishers go it alone on the cover design, the result is rarely a good thing.

More on this scandal here as it continues to unfold…


~ by Thomas on 2009-Jan-20.

One Response to “Benny & Shrimp (Short Books UK v. Penguin USA)”

  1. […] 74-75), the American edition of Benny and Shrimp mentioned above (complete with an absolutely horrid cover design, as usual) is listed as ‘NCR’ which, in bookseller lingo, means not for sale in Canada. So […]

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