Peter Mayer

(London, England, 1936)

Peter Mayer emigrated to the United States and obtained US nationality in 1945. He graduated in English Literature from the University of Columbia (1956) and gained his master's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Indiana (1958). He was an editor and the Vice President of Avon Books (1962-1975) and President of Pocket Books (1976-1978). Until 1996 he was President and Executive Manager of Penguin Group Companies. Disenchanted with the functioning of large editorial groups, in 1971 he set up The Overlook Press with his father.

The publishing house has a catalogue of in the region of a thousand titles and publishes about a hundred books a year. It is a highly eclectic catalogue, with the outstanding areas of news fiction, history, biography, theatre and design. The company has recently acquired two English publishing companies: Ardis, which publishes Russian classics, and Duckworth, founded 106 years ago.

He was elected the most important figure in the literary world and most distinguished editor in 1995, in New York. In 1996, he was knighted Officier des Arts et Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture, and the Foundation of Publishers and Booksellers of India paid tribute to him for his contribution to the international world of publishing.

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