Posted on 02/06/2020 at 08:22 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

That didn’t take long.

When The Digital Reader reported on Barnes & Noble’s new Diverse Editions series, which reimagined classics starring white characters, he lambasted the bookstore for not actually finding books by diverse authors to celebrate diversity.

Authors including Roxane Gay (Bad Feminist), Angie Thomas (The Hate U Give), and Nnedi Okorafor (Binti) were quick to join in the criticism, with the latter calling it “fake diversity” and “not sincere or a solution.”

On Tuesday, the bookstore chain unveiled new covers for twelve public domain books that reimagined the main characters as people of color; by Wednesday morning, the project had been canceled.

According to the Guardian, in its apology, Barnes & Noble clarified that the covers were designed by multicultural and multi-ethnic artists.

Its partner in the project, Penguin Random House, has donated $10,000 to the Hurston Wright Foundation, a nonprofit “devoted to increasing black literary representation worldwide,” and will make further donations for tweets with the hashtag #BlackStoriesHavePower.

Read more about the response to the Diverse Editions series in the Guardian and in Nate Hoffelder’s updated post on The Digital Reader.

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Categories: Today in Books