Early success for Sunday Herald publishing foray

THE Sunday Herald has not only made a foray into book publishing, its debut title is proving a sales success.

Earlier this month, the newspaper’s name was lent to the publication of a book on the conflict in Iraq, ‘The War on Truth’, by its investigations editor, Neil Mackay. A second Sunday Herald book – ‘Intifada – The Long Day Of Rage’, by the paper’s foreign editor, David Pratt – was published last week.

Two more titles are in the pipeline: one, ‘Collateral Damage’, on the impact of war on civilians; the other, ‘Good Bad Guys’, about dictators “we have loved”.

While the newspaper is lending its name to the publishing venture, it is doing none of the publishing itself. That is being undertaken by independent publishing company, Books Noir Ltd, run by Bob Smith.

Says Smith: “Early sales statistics for Neil’s book, so far are very impressive. I’d say his book has been one of the best sellers in Scottish book stores this last fortnight. The figures for David’s book have yet to come in, it having been published a week later, but I expect his book to be performing just as well.”

Smith splits time between working for Edinburgh publisher, Birlinn Ltd, which specialises in publishing books on Scottish interest, and Books Noir Ltd, publisher of Sunday Herald Books.

‘The War on Truth’ was launched in Glasgow a fortnight ago in Glasgow, hosted by Sunday Herald columnist and political pundit, Iain Macwhirter, and the book provides succour to those who believe the war in Iraq is illegal.

Adds Smith: “The authors for the third and fourth books in the Sunday Herald series have yet to be decided, though hopefully they will be Herald writers too. In terms of the arrangement Books Noir has with the Sunday Herald, the paper incurs no cost at all, aside from helping with website development; instead, Books Noir Ltd pays a licence fee to use the Sunday Herald brand.”

It was Smith who took the idea to the Sunday Herald – that it should lend its name to “a publishing house specialising in topics of international news interests which directly affect UK citizens”.

The books can be bought at all good bookshops or online, at www.sundayheraldbooks.com