OR Books is a New York-based independent publishing house founded by John Oakes and Colin Robinson in 2009. The company sells digital and print-on-demand books directly to the customer and focuses on creative promotion through traditional media and the Internet. On its site, OR Books states that it "embraces progressive change in politics, culture and the way we do business."
|Founder||John Oakes and Colin Robinson|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Headquarters location||New York City, New York|
Not long after its founding in 2009, OR Books became known for publishing Going Rouge: Sarah Palin, An American Nightmare, a parody of the Sarah Palin biography, which went on to become a New York Times Best Seller. Since then the company has published books by Julian Assange, Moustafa Bayoumi, Medea Benjamin, Patrick Cockburn, Sue Coe, Simon Critchley, Lisa Dierbeck, Ariel Dorfman, Norman Finkelstein, Laura Flanders, Chris Lehmann, Gordon Lish, Bill McKibben, Eileen Myles, Yoko Ono, Barney Rosset, Douglas Rushkoff, Elissa Shevinsky, Burhan Sönmez, Jeanne Thornton, and others.
According to OR's website, John Oakes co-founded the publishing company Four Walls Eight Windows and was subsequently publisher of Thunder's Mouth Press and co-publisher of Nation Books. He is publisher of the Evergreen Review. Colin Robinson, a former senior editor at Scribner, was previously managing director of Verso Books and publisher of The New Press.
In what the industry newsblog Shelf Awareness termed a "very significant...move," St. Mark’s Bookshop and OR Books announced a joint venture to enable the store’s customers to buy select books on OR’s list from the bookstore’s website.
In April 2016, OR Books acquired UK publishing company Serif, following the death in 2015 of its founder Stephen Hayward, a former associate of Robinson's.
In May 2016, OR Books and Counterpoint Press announced a partnership whereby Counterpoint would put a number of OR's titles into stores.
- "For Booksellers". OR Books. Retrieved 2018-01-06.
- Crain's New York Business on the founding of OR Books
- "Oakes ’83 connects readers directly to a publisher", Princeton Alumni Weekly, March 2, 2011.
- Leon Neyfakh, "Dale Peck, Choire Sicha and Friends Start a Book Publishing Collective; First Title Out Next Month", New York Observer, September 10, 2010.
- "St. Mark's/OR Alliance", Shelf Awareness.
- Teicher, Craig Morgan (December 7, 2010). "OR Books Partners with St. Mark's Bookshop for E-Book Distribution". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved July 14, 2014.
- "Press Release: New York-Based OR Books Acquires Serif Books", BookBusiness, April 11, 2016.
- "Welcome to OR Books".
- Calvin Reid, "OR Books Acquires U.K.'s Serif Books", Publishers Weekly, April 14, 2016.
- "OR Books Acquires Serif Books", Shelf Awareness, April 15, 2016.
- "Counterpoint, OR Books Partner on New Fall List", Publishers Weekly, May 5, 2016.
- Company site
- OR Books on Facebook.
- John Oakes, "Disintermediating Amazon", Publishers Weekly, May 18, 2012.
- Colin Robinson, "The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Reader", The New York Times, January 4, 2014.
- Mischief + Mayhem
- Kat Meyer, "TOC Evolvers: OR Books", August 7, 2010. Interview with John Oakes on O'Reilly Media's TOC (Tools of Change for Publishing).
- Publishers Weekly discusses OR Books in its 2010 roundup, January 3, 2011.
- Jim Barnes, "Indie Groundbreaking Publisher: OR Books — A Brave New Publishing Model", Independent Publisher article about the success of Going Rouge.
- Interview with Colin Robinson on NPR's On the Media
- Chad W. Post, "OR Books Preaches Elegant Direct Model", Publishing Perspectives, October 6, 2010.
- "Words & Music Festival 2011 featured fireworks, and a little sadness", Nola.com, November 15, 2011 (showdown between OR co-publisher John Oakes and Random House editor).
- Dennis Sweeney, "Interview with Colin Robinson, Co-Founder, OR Books", Entropy Magazine, January 2014.