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As election season approaches, Random House’s Crown Publishing is teaming up with political website RealClearPolitics to publish a four-book series on the campaign. Three of the books will be published only as e-books; a fourth will be published in both print and digital formats and will be released on Election Day.
The first installment in the series, to be published as an e-book on November 4, 2011, is Election 2012: The Battle Begins, by RCP co-founder Tom Bevan and Washington editor Carl Cannon. It will cost $1.99 and, judging by the Amazon product page, was previously titled The Conservative Comeback.
Politico and Random House Publishing Group announced a similar venture this summer; they will also publish four instant e-books about the 2012 campaign. The first of those, Playbook: The Right Fights Back, will be available November 30 as a $2.99 e-book.
At first glance, it is difficult to tell how these series from separate divisions within the same house will differ from each other. RealClearPolitics is considered to be slightly more conservative than Politico, though both sites would say they aim to be unbiased. Crown Publishing is home to the conservative imprint Crown Forum–but then again, Crown is also the publisher of the Obamas’ books. Success for one series over another could ultimately hinge on the ways that Politico and RealClearPolitics market their respective books–and RealClearPolitics’ first title being a dollar cheaper than Politico’s first title can’t hurt.