A new publishing house is going to take current French books, translate them and present them in English in digital form.  Here is the press release:

France’s publishers are announcing 311 new French novels for the January/February 2012 Rentrée littéraire alone! That’s a lot of books, far too many of which will never reach readers outside of France. Le French Book, an independent, digital-first publisher specialized in good reads from France, was founded in December 2011 to bring more of these authors to English-language readers around the world.

“If we love it, we’ll translate it”

The company’s founder and CEO, translator and editor Anne Trager, explains her motivation, “I couldn’t stand it anymore. There are just too many good books not reaching a broader audience. There is a very vibrant, creative culture in France, and the recent explosion in e-reader ownership provides a perfect medium to introduce readers to some of these French authors.”

Le French Book has a straightforward motto: “If we love it, we’ll translate it.” They are starting with a crime fiction collection, because, as Anne Trager says, “That’s what I love most.” They also have some health and personal development books in the works, and an exciting series of short stories they are currently negotiating.

Le French Book is based in New York, with a solid foothold in France. Its CEO has lived and worked in France for over twenty-six years and has a solid network and understanding of the country. “We started negotiating rights in December, and I’m happy to say that already in early January we are almost ready to announce two deals, with three more in the pipeline. We’re in contact with some major French publishers, including Albin Michel, Fayard, Payot-Rivages, and Seuil, and the concept has been very well received.”

Why digital first?

“Our goal is to expand a book’s reach, not to choose between digital or paper,” says Fabrice Neuman, the company’s Chief Technology Officer. “Publishing is changing and digital-first publishing enables a faster time-to-market. In our model, ebooks pave the way to all the other formats”

Le French Book emphasizes quality translation and top-notch publishing standards above all. Anne Trager specifies, “We are building close working relationships with the authors in order to produce the best possible translations.” Le French Book is also looking into new ways to work with translators, such as revenue sharing, because, as Anne Trager says, “There are just so many good books to translate.”


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About Le French Book

Le French Book, Inc. was founded in December 2011 by Anne Trager, an American who has lived in France more than half of her life, has 25 years of experience in the translation business and 15 in publishing. Co-founder Fabrice Neuman is French and the company’s tech consultant. He is one of France’s foremost proponents of e-books and one of the first French journalists to write about them in the mid-1990s. The core team also includes the American translation editor Amy Richards, who is based in Ohio and has a long, award- winning career in writing and editing.


  1. One of the exciting advantages of digital publishing is it’s ability to bring the talent of writers in one language to the readers of the world. Too often this is thought of solely as applying to english language writers.

    I wonder, however, if Le French Book will also bring the over-pricing culture of French publishing to the rest of the world as well.

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