Not really very complicated. The Ace paperback incident had nothing to do
with the way that Houghton Mifflin and HarperCollins divide up the world.
The controversy there was merely over Houghton Mifflin's importation of
UK-printed sheets for their edition, and had no direct relationship to the
question of who had the right to sell which edition where. The HM edition
is still the HM edition, and the only question was: who printed it where?
HarperCollins (and its predecessor firms before it) are Tolkien's
publisher. Houghton Mifflin is their US licensee to publish their own
editions. I'm sure there's a long-standing provision in the contract
saying that if HM declines to publish any particular book, HarperCollins
retains the right (if they choose) to sell their own edition in the US.
And that provision must have been triggered here. No "special
arrangement," no failure to observe "usually pretty careful" provisions,
At 10:07 AM 3/22/2006 -0600, Oberhelman, D wrote:
>Interesting. Amazon.com is selling the imported HarperCollins edition of
>Flieger's Smith (apparently since Houghton Mifflin decided not to publish it
>in the States). Houghton Mifflin is usually pretty careful in dividing up
>the globe between the US and the UK/Commonwealth for Tolkien publishing
>after the Ace paperback debacle. I remember Amazon.ca erroneously listed
>the Houghton Mifflin 50th Anniversary edition of LotR, and then it was
>pulled and the HaperCollins version finally listed in its place. Some
>special arrangement must have been made in this case to make it available in