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On the Books: 'Maze Runner' author James Dashner to pen new prequel

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Maze Runner

Young adult author James Dashner will write a new prequel to his bestselling post-apocalyptic trilogy, The Maze Runner, after 20th Century Fox’s film adaptation of the first novel topped the box office with a $32.5 million opening weekend. The Fever Code will be published in 2016 by Delacorte Press (an imprint of Random House Children’s Books). Pre-production on the movie adaptation of the second book in the dystopian series, The Scorch Trials, has already begun, and the film is set for release in Sept. 2015.

The Maze Runner books run in the same vein as Lord of the Flies and The Hunger Games, another successful franchise sprung from a young adult trilogy. A press release explains that the second prequel “delves into the time before the Maze, and will tell the story of how Thomas, Teresa, and the Gladers found themselves in the Maze, and how the Maze itself was created.” [GalleyCat]

The anti-Amazon writers’ coalition Authors United will request an antitrust inquiry into Amazon’s business negotiations, The Financial Times reported Wednesday. Bestselling author Douglas Preston—leader of the group of authors contending that Amazon’s negotiating tactics with publisher Hachette harm book sales—confirmed the news to Publishers Weekly, saying a letter to the DOJ is being drawn up.

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer and the author of bestseller Lean In, will be the subject of a new comic book from Bluewater Productions. The visual biography is the latest installment in Bluewater’s Female Force series, which has already featured women including Tina Fey and Hillary Clinton. Publisher Darren G. Davis said in a press release that telling Sandberg’s story in a visual medium makes it more accessible and relatable. The work will explore the lesser-known events and circumstances “that resulted in Sheryl Sandberg becoming a leading voice in empowering successful businesswomen,” Davis said. [GalleyCat]

Little, Brown will publish the definitive biography of Nick Drake, the musician whose work found success after he died at age 26 of an accidental overdose in 1974. Remembered For A While—the first and only authorized biography of Drake—is a compilation of Drake’s original lyric pages and “contributions from peers, critics, friends and family, including his producer Joe Boyd and fellow singer-songwriter Paul Wheeler,” according to Publishers WeeklyCally Callomon and Drake’s sister Gabrielle co-edited the bio, which hits shelves Dec. 9, coinciding with the approximate 40-year anniversary of Drake’s death.

Karl Miller, founding editor of the London Review of Books, died Thursday at the age of 83. Miller was known for nurturing the careers of successful writers like the late Nobel Prize author Seamus Heaney as well as for his own prize-winning writing and tenure as a professor. “He changed the picture for nearly five decades of writers and readers,” Miller’s former colleague Andrew O’Hagan told The Guardian.

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