Spider-Man and the X-Men — as well as Ron Perelman and Carl Icahn — will be among the heroes and villains discussed in Comic Wars, which was acquired by Broadway Books in a six-figure deal. The book, by Dan Raviv, will give the inside dope on the struggle to keep Marvel Comics alive through years of bankruptcy. ”The story epitomizes the big-finance-overtaking-creative-culture theme that we’re seeing more and more of,” says Broadway exec editor Charlie Conrad, who says the book claims that Perelman and Icahn ”had absolutely no understanding of what made the company succeed in the first place.” Broadway will publish in 2002, in time for Columbia’s Spider-Man movie.
— Matthew Flamm
As if the success of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius weren’t enough (the memoir has 178,000 copies in print), author Dave Eggers will have about 15,000 words of new material and an appendix in the paperback edition, due from Vintage in February. A source says much of the added text will focus on Eggers’ brother, Toph.
— Clarissa Cruz
BETCHA BY DALAI
With all that writing, when does he find time to meditate? The Dalai Lama, who is fast becoming the Deepak Chopra of Tibetan Buddhism, has yet another book in the works. Pocket has agreed to pay at least $1 million for the tentatively titled How to Practice: What Buddhism Says, a handbook that grew out of lectures the religious leader gave in Melbourne, Australia, some years ago. In the meantime, Little, Brown is working on a Dalai Lama book based on talks he gave in New York City in 1999, to be published next fall. Sources say the company paid $800,000 for the book. ”We’ve heard him on happiness,” says Little, Brown senior editor Deborah Baker. ”This will outline the actual practice.”