The Updike Prize

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Awarded to the person in the publishing world who has most successfully denied the change of both the financial and cultural landscape of the industry since its debaucherous, rich, white, male midcentury heyday:

May I present Luke Janklow, of Janklow and Nesbit, in The New York Times:

Luke Janklow…was trying to recall what he had been up to the last month. “I don’t go out that much,” he said, opening the calendar on his computer in his 13th-floor office overlooking Park Avenue.

He began May at the Carolina Nitsch Project Room on West 22nd Street, where he attended a Thursday-night opening for the artist Richard Dupont. A few days later, Mr. Janklow and his girlfriend, Stella Schnabel, a daughter of the artist Julian Schnabel, attended “Macbeth” to see Alan Cumming, Mr. Janklow’s client and the star of the play.

“That was a long night,” Mr. Janklow said with a shudder of what now seemed like recognition. There had been drinks in Mr. Cumming’s dressing room after the show and a dinner for eight at Carbone that lasted past 1 a.m. Three days later Mr. Janklow had lunch at Lafayette with two more clients: the members of the Beastie Boys, Michael Diamond and Adam Horovitz, to discuss their biography with Spiegel & Grau, scheduled for 2015.

He also showed up at the ArtsConnection benefit at the behest of his mother, Linda, the charity’s founding chairman and a descendant of the Warner Bros. movie dynasty, before heading to Montauk, where he spent Memorial Day weekend at the cottage of Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch, designers of the Boom Boom Room and the Ace Hotel.

For a man who doesn’t go out much, Mr. Janklow certainly gets around. Indeed — weaving through Manhattan traffic on a motorcycle in a pair of worn bluejeans or at the racetrack practicing his stunt driving skills — he may be the last man having fun in book publishing, an industry that has gone from late nights at Elaine’s to hand-wringing about the Kindle.

Mr. Janklow… has also acquired a reputation as something of a Casanova, mostly because of the attractive women he has courted since he was separated in 2009 from Julie Daniels, his wife at the time and a former musician.. These include Ms. Schnabel, the philanthropist and London socialite Jemima Khan, Meredith Melling Burke of Vogue — and most tantalizingly to the tabloids, the married former creative director of Domino, Sara Ruffin Costello.

Let us raise our seventh Gibson of the night to Luke, in hearty congratulations. Not since Quixote has the world known such a paradoxical hero.

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3 comments

  1. Berkman

    I’m sorry, did you just throw an ellipsis over the best part of the entire article? “…Mr. Janklow — 6-foot-6, dark-haired and with eyes the color of cornflowers — has also acquired a reputation as something of a Casanova…”

    If my eyes were the color of cornflowers I could rule the world.

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