Online superstore Amazon will sell Christian books under a new imprint, Waterfall Press, NPR reports. Although Amazon got its start selling books, it has been getting into the publishing business as well, with imprints for genres like science fiction, romance, mystery, and now, Christian books.
In an interview with NPR, Win Bassett, writer and seminarian at the Yale Divinity School, says that Christian publishing is a $1.4 billion market, with many major publishing companies having Christian imprints.
According to Bassett, up until now, there has been more independent Christian publishers based on denominations (Christian bookstore Lifeway, for example, is a Southern Baptist publisher) or academic publishers like Yale University Press. Amazon has been an online storefront for consumers who may not be able to find Christian books in brick-and-mortar stores like Barnes-and-Nobel. Now, Amazon is set to publish their own.
However, whether or not Christians will buy books published by Amazon is being debated. According to U.S. News, one Christian consumer organization, Faith Driven Consumer, gives Amazon a low rating of 1.5 out of 5 stars for adherence to Christian values. “That doesn’t mean you can’t do business with them,” Chris Stone, founder of Faith Driven Consumer, notes. “[B]ut given a choice between two equals you may form a preference for someone who is more like yourself.”
Publication Date: February 4, 2014.