Review of the year: October to December

Review of the year: October to December

In our final review of the year, we look at the big stories from September to December. See our reviews for January to March, April to June, and July to December.


Waterstones launched an industry-wide campaign to raise £1m for Oxfam's Syria Crisis Appeal. Publishers donated titles (left) from authors including Khaled Hosseini, Karen Joy Fowler and Hilary Mantel for Waterstones to sell under the "Buy Books for Syria" banner, with 100% of the retail price going to charity.

The Folio Prize announced it would not run in 2016, following the conclusion of its two-year sponsorship by The Folio Society. The organisers said they intend to return to a "full-scale" prize in 2017.

Scott Pack joined Unbound as associate editor following a year in which the company's revenue grew 33% and gross profit was up 150%.

Goldsboro Books owner David Headley announced he would launch an international online bookseller in spring 2017.

In an interview with The Bookseller, Bonnier Publishing c.e.o. Richard Johnson said the company was the fourth biggest publisher in the UK.

Canongate experienced a "difficult and dispiriting" 2014 in which its turnover dropped 24%, said c.e.o. Jamie Byng.

A foundation was set up in honour of the late literary agent Deborah Rogers, who was chairman of Rogers, Coleridge & White. The foundation launched with a £10,000 Writers' Award.

Waterstones said it was removing Amazon's Kindle devices from store because sales continued "to be pitiful".

UK publishers broadly welcomed the shift to Hall 6 at Frankfurt Book Fair. The fair also kicked off with a raft of big-money deals in Anglophone territories.

Marlon James won the Man Booker Prize 2015 for his novel A Brief History of Seven Killings (Oneworld), becoming the first Jamaican to win the award in its history. Picture: Janie Airey

The European Commission was assessing a complaint about Amazon's dominance of the print market in addition to its investigation into the company's activity in the e-book market.

The New Statesman and Virago teamed up to launch a new literary prize for women writing about economics or politics to address the "under-representation" of female writers in those fields.

Bloomsbury Publishing reported that its sales grew 13% in the first half of the year. The Books Are My Bag campaign also revealed that sales were up by an average of 30% during this year's celebration, making the campaign's most successful year to date.

YA James Dawson revealed he is transitioning to become a woman.


Trade and academy joined for a week of debate and discussion during the first Academic Book Week.

E-book subscription service Blloon closed, citing a lack of support from publishers.

Steve Silberman (above) won the £20,000 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction for Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and How to Think Smarter About People Who Think Differently (Allen & Unwin).

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichi's Half of a Yellow Sun (Harper Perennial) was judged the Baileys Best of the Best, judged from the past decade's winners of the Women's Prize for Fiction.

J K Rowling revealed she is writing a children's book.

Author Kit de Waal announced she was funding a Creative Writing scholarship at Birkbeck, University of London, for a budding writer from a low-income or marginalised background.

Amazon opened its first physical bookshop in Seattle, while in the UK a tech entreprenueur revealed he and his business partner would be opening an "experiential" independent bookshop in London, to be called Libreria.

The first Independent Publishing Report, by the Independent Publishers Guild, found the UK indie publishing industry is strong and flourishing.

Little, Brown launched a new standalone literary fiction and non-fiction imprint called Fleet, led by Ursala Doyle.

The BBC said it would run a year-long Get Reading campaign in 2016, aiming to "ignite a spark" in the nation and encourge people to read.

Martin Ford won the 2015 Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award for The Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of Mass Unemployment (Oneworld).

HarperCollins revealed it had partnered with Sainsbury's on the supermarket's Christmas ad, which featured Mog and her creator Judith Kerr. The supermarket would also sell a new picture book by Kerr, Mog's Christmas Calamity, with all profits going to Save the Children's Read On. Get On campaign.

The Bookseller announced its annual list of the 100 most influential people in publishing, and named Waterstones' m.d. James Daunt as its 101st.

World Book Night released the list of 16 titles it would be giving away in 2016. The list was criticised for its lack of diversity, as it featured no authors from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds.


Fast-tracked copyright changes would "decimate" illustrated publishing, industry figures told The Bookseller.

The Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction struck a five-year sponsorship deal with investment company Baillie Gifford.

The Bookseller held its inaugural Author Day and its annual FutureBook Conference, which focused on mobile, emerging book technologies and new types of content.

A total of 106 libraries closed in the UK in the latest financial yer, according to figures released by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). Meanwhile, Penguin Random House UK made its full catalogue of 23,500 e-books available for libraries to lend.

Bookshops were forced to close due to severe flooding and disruption caused by Storm Desmond.

Penguin Random House said it would close its Rugby distribution centre in early 2019, with all 255 employees at risk of redundancy.

A new nationwide library campaign, My Library My Right, was launched to hold the government to account over its legal responsibilities towards libraries following accusations of "neglect", "short-term thinking" and "failure to carry out its legal duty to the public".

British poet Sarah Howe (above centre with Caroline Michel and Andrew Holgate) was awarded The Sunday Times/Peters Fraser + Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award for her first collection of poems, Loop of Jade (Chatto & Windus).

Penguin Random House announced it would close its consumer book recommendation site My Independent Bookshop ahead of the launch of its new website next year.

It was announed that the winner of the Great British Bake Off 2015, Nadiya Hussain, would be publishing her "dream" debut cookbook with Michael Joseph.

The parts of Harry, Hermione and Ron in the upcoming stage play "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child" were cast, with Jamie Parker, Noma Dumezweni and Paul Thornley (above) playing the characters as adults. Picture: Simon Annand

German trade publisher Bastei Lübbe and book retailer Hugendubel came up with an unusual idea to get rid of unwanted Christmas presents.

The Ladybird Book for Grown-Ups title How it Works: The Husband (Michael Joseph), by Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris, became the Official Christmas number one.