European Commission reportedly accepts ebook pricing agreement

Reuters cites two unidentified sources who says that the European Commission has accepted Apple and four publishers’ proposed ebook pricing settlement. As we previously reported, the EU settlement includes Apple, Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, Hachette and Macmillan parent company Holtzbrinck. Macmillan and Apple are not settling in the U.S.

Penguin and Random House in merger talks

In response to a report that publishers Penguin and Random House are merging, Penguin parent company Pearson said that the two companies are indeed discussing a merger but “there is no certainty that the discussions will lead to a transaction.”

Bowker: Number of self-published books up 287% since 2006

New statistics from Bowker show that the self-publishing industry in the United States is growing rapidly, with four companies dominating the space. Amazon’s CreateSpace accounts for the most self-published print books, while Smashwords accounts for the most ebooks.

Penguin brings ebooks back to libraries with distributor 3M

Penguin is working with digital distributor 3M to make ebooks available to some libraries again — first through a previously announced pilot program with the New York and Brooklyn Public Libraries, and then through about 70 other libraries nationwide by the end of the year.

Willy Wonka, James and other Roald Dahl faves come to ebooks

In celebration of what would have been Roald Dahl’s 96th birthday, eight of his children’s books, including “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and “James and the Giant Peach,” are available as ebooks in the U.S. for the first time. (Still no digital “Matilda” or “BFG,” though.)

Ebook Bestsellers Breakdown: Flappers and chaperones

This weekly feature examines certain ebooks’ paths to bestseller-dom, and highlights bestselling titles that are selling more copies in digital than in print. This week: Flappers, chaperones and the power of the Kindle Daily Deal.

Penguin buys self-publishing service Author Solutions for $116m

Book publisher Penguin is embracing self-publishing with its acquisition of Author Solutions for $116 million. The acquisition lets Penguin “gain skills in customer acquisition and data analytics that will be vital to our future,” said Penguin CEO John Makinson in a statement.

Women’s writing site She Writes launches book publishing division

Women’s online writing network She Writes, which has about 20,000 members including well-known authors like Roxana Robinson and Francine Prose, is now a book publisher, too. The company has launched She Writes Press, which it calls a hybrid between self-publishing and traditional publishing models.

Penguin, Macmillan respond to DOJ in e-book price fixing suit

Penguin and Macmillan, the two publishers fighting the Department of Justice’s e-book price fixing lawsuit in court, have both filed responses to the DOJ suit. Macmillan’s response is shorter and more fiery; Penguin’s is longer, with more colorful details and explainers.

Amazon will publish the James Bond books in the U.S.

When the Ian Fleming estate gave up the digital rights to the James Bond backlist last month, Random House UK’s Vintage grabbed the English-language print and e-book rights everywhere outside the U.S. and Canada. Well, guess who’s getting those North American digital rights? Amazon.