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The inside scoop on the book world

Steve Wynn, Gary Indiana, and Michael Eisner made news this week

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GOING BUST? Gadfly publisher Lyle Stuart — whose Barricade Books has brought out the bomb manual The Anarchist’s Cookbook and The Turner Diaries, the book found on Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh at the time of his arrest — says he is not shutting down his publishing house despite having lost a legal battle that may force the company into bankruptcy. A Las Vegas court recently awarded a reported $3 million to Steve Wynn, who had sued Stuart over a line in Barricade’s spring ’95 catalog for Running Scared: The Dangerous Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn: ”This book details why a Scotland Yard report calls Wynn a front man for the Genovese family.” Stuart’s lawyers are seeking a retrial. Wynn, who hasn’t yet tried to collect on his winnings, isn’t finished with Stuart: The gambling baron has also filed suit over the actual book.

SIGNS OF LIFE It’s not all gloom and doom at HarperCollins: The company has just started a new imprint, Cliff Street Books, headed by the house’s former editor in chief Diane Reverand. Reverand, whose list launches this month, has already paid $250,000 for Gary Indiana’s Three Month Fever, a nonfiction novel in the tradition of In Cold Blood, about spree killer Andrew Cunanan.

KATZ AND MOUSE The spat between DreamWorks SKG’s Jeffrey Katzenberg and his former boss at Disney, CEO Michael Eisner, appears to have cost Random House a major title, at least for now. The publisher, which had planned to bring out Eisner’s autobiography this fall, recently announced that the book would be indefinitely postponed. Insiders speculate that the decision was sparked by Katzenberg’s $250 million suit against Disney and his expected attempt to use the transcripts Eisner made for the book against him. Disney spokesman John Dreyer insists that’s not so: ”The book is still a work in progress. The lawsuit is totally and completely unrelated.” As an aside: Random House has also just lost the two top executives from its hot imprint Villard, publisher of the recent best-sellers Into Thin Air and The Unlikely Spy. Villard publisher David Rosenthal will become publisher of the Simon & Schuster imprint, and Annik LaFarge will move with him as associate publisher.

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