Penguin sues authors for advances on never-written books

Publisher accuses delinquent writers of breach of contract and unjust enrichment

The times are hard on everyone’s pocketbooks, but one company in particular is tired of paying for products it never received, and it wants a refund. Publishing house Penguin Group filed a complaint with the New York State Supreme Court, seeking to recoup the advances it paid to authors who failed to hold up their end of the deal and deliver a book, and accusing them of breach of contract and unjust enrichment.

Included in the suit are Elizabeth Wurtzel, author of “Prozac Nation,” who never delivered a promised book to help teenagers deal with depression and Rebecca Mead, staff writer at The New Yorker, who was supposed to put together a collection of her journalism.

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