Perseus Reorganizes; Carroll & Graf No More

You can read about the big publishing news story over at GalleyCat, but let me spell out what this means for the mystery world. With Carroll & Graf and Thunder’s Mouth closing down effective this fall, a boatload of mystery titles will either be absorbed into other Perseus-owned imprints (unlikely) or acquired by Perseus distributed imprints, aka the 120-odd independent houses formerly distributed by Publishers Group West.

The latter option is possible, but since most of the 120 imprints weren’t devoted to fiction, that leaves them out. And for those left, when their parent distributor sends a signal that fiction is less important, how much enthusiasm will they have for acquiring orphaned titles – especially mystery & suspense titles?

Remember, too, that many of Carroll & Graf’s mystery titles were British imports that sold in small quantities to libraries. The likelihood of most of those getting picked up by other publishing houses is, shall we say, decidedly small.

It’s another crappy day for independent-minded publishing.