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Chicago Book Reviewers Boycott Publisher After Anti-Woman Writer Snags Deal

By Ariel Cheung | December 30, 2016 2:04pm | Updated on January 2, 2017 8:30am
 Right wing writer Milo Yiannopoulos.
Right wing writer Milo Yiannopoulos.
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CHICAGO — An organization of book reviewers in Chicago is refusing to cover books from a major publisher after it signed a book deal with a controversial right-wing writer.

Chicago Review of Books, a year-old independent literary journal, reacted Thursday to news that Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos was offered $250,000 for his autobiography from Threshold Editions, a conservative subsection of Simon & Schuster.

"In response to this disgusting validation of hate, we will not cover a single @simonschuster book in 2017," the review group wrote on Twitter.



A request for comment from the Chicago Review of Books was not returned.

In response to the journal's decision, some praised the group, while others said they were concerned the move would also punish authors who had no control over their publisher's decision.

"Freedom of speech cannot be used as an example to profit off of white supremacists," wrote @QuockerJoe.

Yiannopoulos, a writer decried by critics as a white nationalist, recently made headlines in July after he was banned from Twitter after an onslaught of racist harassment directed toward black comedian Leslie Jones.

Yiannopoulos, who had been briefly suspended from the social media platform previously, panned the  "Ghostbusters" remake Jones appeared in, called her "barely literate" and referred to her as a black man.

Twitter said Yiannopoulos had violated its rules "prohibiting participating in or inciting targeted abuse of individuals."

The Chicago journal is not alone in its criticism of Simon & Schuster for adding Yiannopoulos to its ranks of authors that include such notable figures as Bob Woodward, Hillary Clinton, Glenn Beck, Stephen King and Donald Trump.

Celebrities like Judd Apatow and Sarah Silverman tweeted their displeasure with Simon & Schuster, with Apatow declaring that, "In these times, we cannot let hate mongers get rich off of their cruelty."

Earlier this year, Yiannopoulos was interrupted during a speaking event at DePaul University by Black Lives Matter protesters in a widely publicized clash that divided the student body.