Ep. 2. Sue Me: Books Involved in Lawsuits

Books need writers (evidently), editors, publishers, booksellers... but sometimes, they also need lawyers. The list here tells of many famous titles that have required legal services. If you are ready, let's lawyer up!

Photo by Bill Oxford

📗 Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne       

The cute little bear was involved in a dispute with Disney for 18 years. The Salinger family, owners of the rights to Pooh had licensed them to Disney, but they sued the company claiming Disney had cheated them out of the "honey"
If you would like to visit the place that inspired Hundred Acre Wood, you can visit the Ashdown Forest in Uckfield, less than 2 hours south of London. If you feel so inclined, there is a GPS guided Pooh walk departing from Gills Lap Car Park.

Ashdown Forest, Milne memorial, Gill's Lap 01
Milne and Shepherd Memorial, Ashdown Forest

Lee sued her previous agent, Samuel Pinkus, to regain the rights to her novel after he deceived her into signing the copyright of the novel to him while she recovered from a stroke.
If you would like to visit Lee's hometown, which she used as as the basis for Maycomb in the book, you could take a walking tour Monroeville, Alabama. Visit Monroeville County Chamber of Commerce to download a tour map as well as some very informative PDF that would please book and history lovers alike. For Harper Lee fans, some highlights include a monument to Atticus Finch, and the Old Courthouse, where you can sit in the same balcony Scout sits during the trial. One of the courtrooms in the Old Courthouse was exactly replicated for the set of the 1962 movie adaptation of the book, starring Gregory Peck. If you plan your visit to Monroeville during April or May, you can watch the annual staging of the book by the Mockingbird Players.

Fragment of Literary Map of Monroeville, AL

To Kill a Mockingbird has also inspired Tim Federle to name his book Tequila Mockingbird. Get the book and follow his recipe for a shot involving tequila, hot sauce, and a pickle to enjoy while reading.
Or maybe bake the famous Lane Cake, made famous in the 1960s for being featured in To Kill A Mockingbird. The recipe for this cake involves bourbon and peach schnapps and can be found at Southern Living. We must warn you, this recipe involves some preparation and effort, but the cake is so decadent and flavorful that it is worth the effort. 

The author was sued by Ablene Cooper, Stockett's older brother's maid, claiming her name and image had been appropriated for the character Aibileen Clark. A judge later dismissed the case under statute of limitations.

To Kill A Mockingbird and The Help, set in the segregated 1930s and 1960s, respectively, and both with movie adaptations are our two contenders this week in Book vs. Book.

📗 The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger

Salinger sued the author of Sixty Years Later: Coming Through the Rye, a book that imagines an old Holden Caulfield escaping from a retiring home. Salinger claimed the book did not really made any relevant reference to The Catcher in the Rye to be called a sequel; consequently, Sixty Years Later could not be sold in the US until The Catcher in the Rye enters public domain.
Also in Tequila Mockingbird, Federle gives us The Rye in the Catcher, a cocktail made with rye whiskey, pineapple juice, lemon juice, and ginger beer. Maybe you can drink the cocktail sporting fashion inspired by The Catcher in the Rye. Muldoon's Men Wear, and Gisdanchz have items that resemble Holden's iconic red hat. 

Hat from Muldoon's Men Wear

A lawsuit that was later dismissed was presented against Mortenson claiming the charitable work described by Mortenson were not real. Mortenson built the first school in Korphe, Pakistan. His perseverance despite opposition and economic hardship is the reason there are now more than 50 schools in Central Asia. Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson is great bibliotherapy if you are looking for some inspirational read.

SONY was sued by Faulkner's state for the unauthorized use of a quote from Requiem for a Nun in the movie Midnight in Paris. For your consideration, the quote from the book is: "The past is never dead. It's not even past.", while the quote in the movie is: "The past is not dead! Actually, is not even past. You know who said that? Faulkner."
Requiem for a Nun is a sequel to Faulkner's earlier work, Sanctuary. Here is our Six-Word Book Review: Temple Drake's fate in three acts. We would like to read yours in our page.

📗 A Million Little Pieces by James Frey

Written as a memoir about rehabilitation from drug and alcohol addiction. A settlement refunded readers part of their money if they offered prove that they purchased the book before the author's admission of some fictionalization of the accounts. 
The cover for the 2005 paperback edition of A Million Little Pieces is our selection for the Cover Gallery this week. Rodrigo Corral is the creator of the cover for this addiction memoir. His idea was for the candy sprinkles to resemble pharmaceutical drugs, and to place them over a hand to reference their course through the human body.

2005 Paperback edition. Cover designed by Rodrigo Corral

Another author was sued by an ex-boyfriend for appropriation of his persona for one of the characters in the book we are featuring this week in GuessWork. Can you guess the title?

If you know of any other instance of books needing a lawyer, let us know in the comments, we want to know. 

To buy books covered in this episode, visit our TBR Bundles 


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