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The biggest news story across all media this week has undoubtedly been the much-hyped, box-office record-breaking release of Star Wars Episode VII. To capitalise on the franchise, Penguin Random House have published a tie-in novel for The Force Awakens, which became available to buy in e-book format on Friday 18 December, and will be released as a hardback 1 January 2016.

In other book news: 

We began the countdown to Christmas with Mog the cat topping book sales charts, but now, with the 25 December inching ever closer, the Guinness Book of World Records has, yet again, surged ahead in the festive race. The 2016 edition is now leading the list of current top sellers for the end of 2015.

In the U.S., controversy has brewed as a school in Philadelphia has taken the decision to ban teaching the American classic The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Mark Twain’s novel has been removed from the curriculum because it frequently features the word ‘nigger’ (it appears over 200 times in the text), and the school feels that this derogatory term does more harm to students than the literary benefits the novel bestows.

The new Ladybird editions for grown-ups have sold so successfully that they are now out of stock. Pre-Christmas sales of the books for adults – including The Hipster and The Husband, among others – have surpassed even the publisher’s expectations.ladybird-books-for-adultsFans of the Great British Bake Off may have to wait until the end of next summer to see a new series, but in the meantime the recently crowned winner, Nadiya Hussain, will be bringing a cookbook (to include cooking and baking recipes) out. It is due to be released in June 2016.

Quercus Books is publishing The Life-changing Magic of Not Giving a F**k on New Year’s Eve. Written by Sarah Knight, it is a comedic look at ‘caring less and getting more’ for those of us too stressed to care what others think. A self-help book that promotes the ‘NotSorry Method’ for leading a better lifestyle.

Finally, we have an exciting festive competition to announce on behalf of Penguin Random House and beloved children’s book author Jacqueline Wilson. This competition calls to all budding writers to submit their own Christmas story – if you win, you’ll receive an exclusive goody bag and Jacqueline Wilson book bundle (with signed copies!). FullSizeRenderRunners up will receive copies of the author’s newest book: Little Stars, the fifth story in the Hetty Feather series. The competion is open now, and closes at midnight on 31 December.

Just visit the Jacqueline Wilson website to submit your story.

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