Amazon and Hachette book feud escalates, even J.K. Rowling disappears

By Daniel S Levine,

Hachette is quickly learning the consequences of getting on Amazon's bad side. Despite being one of the largest publishing houses in the U.S., the company is in an ongoing battle with the largest Internet retailer and it is only getting worse.

Earlier this month, Hachette accused Amazon of deliberately delaying shipment of its books after hearing complaints from readers. Books by authors like Stephen Colbert and James Patterson were listed with delayed shipping wait times, often as long as “2-4 weeks.”

Since then, the situation has gotten worse and there’s still been no word from Amazon. The New York Times reports that J.K. Rowling’s upcoming Robert Galbraith novel, The Silkworm. is not even listed on Amazon. A paperback version of The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone has also been listed as “unavailable.”

Amazon does have a page for The Silkworm, but it requires a customer to sign up for an e-mail to be notified when it will be available. However, you cannot actually pre-order the book, which comes out next month.

Hachette said Friday that it is hoping to “find a solution to this difficult situation,” notes The Associated Press. However, Amazon has not commented.

It has been speculated that the cause of this fight might be over the terms of ebook sales.



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