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Vintage Books to Publish Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet in Paperback

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Originally published in the U.S. in 1923, Vintage will release the paperback to coincide with the release of the movie “Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet.”

Vintage Books announced today that it would release the first paperback edition of Kahlil Gibran’s perennial bestseller, The Prophet, in the U.S. after 92 years in hardcover.  The Prophet, composed of 26 poetic essays, was first published in hardcover by Alfred A. Knopf the U.S. in 1923. The book was an instant success when published, selling out its first printing in the first month of publication, and often selling 5,000 a week. Since its publication, The Prophet has sold more than nine million hardcover copies in its American edition alone, has been translated into more than forty languages, and has never been out of print.  The paperback will be released on July 21, 2015, with a first printing of 50,000 copies.

The Prophet is a collection of poetic essays that are philosophical, spiritual, and, above all, inspirational. Gibran’s musings are divided into twenty-eight chapters covering such sprawling topics as love, marriage, children, giving, eating and drinking, work, joy and sorrow, housing, clothes, buying and selling, crime and punishment, laws, freedom, reason and passion, pain, self-knowledge, teaching, friendship, talking, time, good and evil, prayer, pleasure, beauty, religion, and death. Each essay reveals deep insights into the impulses of the human heart and mind. The Chicago Post said of The Prophet: “Cadenced and vibrant with feeling, the words of Kahlil Gibran bring to one’s ears the majestic rhythm of Ecclesiastes… If there is a man or woman who can read this book without a quiet acceptance of a great man’s philosophy and a singing in the heart as of music born within, that man or woman is indeed dead to life and truth.”

The movie KAHLIL GIBRAN’S THE PROPHET will be released on August 7, 2015, by GKids Films.  An animated movie based on the book by Kahlil Gibran, the movie features the voices of Liam Neeson, Salma Hayek, John Krasinski, and Alfred Molina.  Each of chapters was directed by a different award-winning filmmaker, with Oscar-nominated Lion King director Roger Allers coordinating the process.

Still recited frequently at weddings and funerals, The Prophet continues to sell briskly, and is one of most successful and beloved collections of poetry ever published.

Kahlil Gibran was born in 1883 in Lebanon and died in New York in 1931. His family immigrated to the United States in 1895. In his early teens, the artistry of Gibran’s drawings caught the eye of his teachers and he was introduced to the avant-garde Boston artist, photographer, and publisher Fred Holland Day, who encouraged and supported Gibran in his creative endeavors. A publisher used some of Gibran’s drawings for book covers in 1898, and Gibran held his first art exhibition in 1904 in Boston. In 1908, Gibran went to study art with Auguste Rodin in Paris for two years, and he later studied art in Boston. While most of Gibran’s early writing was in Arabic, most of his work published after 1918 was in English.

ABOUT VINTAGE/ANCHOR BOOKS: Vintage Anchor Books is a division of the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Penguin Random House, LLC. Known as an industry-leading paperback publisher, its roster of authors includes Margaret Atwood, Dan Brown, Alice Munro, Richard Russo, Jon Krakauer, Jhumpa Lahiri, Paulo Coelho, Toni Morrison, Cormac McCarthy, Haruki Murakami, Raymond Chandler, and Dave Eggers, among others.