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War, what is it good for?

We mentioned this a while ago, but Ecco and Knopf are at it again over their competing editions of War & Peace. Things appear to have taken a nasty turn. According to Ecco’s publisher, Dan Halpern:

“Knopf was evidently so concerned about our competing translation that they had their translators write a response to our edition, which was circulated to reviewers, long before either book came out. Unfortunately, in preparing that response, they failed to consider the American edition and marketing campaign, and actually attacked the British edition of the ‘Original Version’ (which appeared earlier than the American edition). Not surprisingly, Mr. Pevear does not address the Ecco translation in any substantive or meaningful way, but instead concerns himself with how the British publicized their edition. Perhaps this is due to the fact that Mr. Pevear doesn’t actually read the original Russian.”

I wonder if this controversy is going to drive any sales?



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