{NASHVILLE, August 13th, 2012} Howard Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, announced today that on September 11th it will publish Planned Bullyhood, the up close story of the battle between Susan G. Komen and Planned Parenthood from the woman at the center of the explosive firestorm – Karen Handel.

The announcement comes on the heels of Susan G. Komen CEO Nancy Brinker and President Liz Thompson’s resignations, made public last week.

For at least a decade, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world’s leading breast cancer organization, has been dealing with the backlash from pro-life conservatives because of its breast health grants with Planned Parenthood, the world’s largest abortion provider. In 2011, the criticism intensified with damaging consequences. Komen Founder and CEO Nancy Brinker, a former Planned Parenthood Board Member and honoree, along with Komen President Liz Thompson and others, were weary of the “pink” being tarnished by PPH’s controversies and wanted Komen out of the middle of the pro-life/abortion debate. Komen made what it thought was a rational, reasonable decision: seek neutral ground in the culture war by severing ties with Planned Parenthood— and in turn, eliminate a major headache while opening a new, robust fundraising channel.

Karen Handel, who joined as the organization’s Senior Vice President of Public Policy in April 2011, was tasked with identifying options to disengage from PPH. In November, the Komen management and board decided to move forward. In mid-December, Komen and PPH made a “gentle ladies” pact, agreeing to part ways amicably. Both organizations acknowledged that a media firestorm was in no one’s best interest. Yet, six weeks later, PPH unleashed an attack so vicious and so elegantly executed that one can only conclude that it was premeditated and precisely timed. Waiving the banner of women’s health as a shield for its underlying political agenda, PPH attacked Komen. After just three days, following hysterical cries that “Komen was abandoning women”—fueled by a ferocious social media campaign —Komen capitulated and reversed course. Handel, a lifelong pro-life Republican who was raised Catholic, was immediately made the target. She resigned within days of Komen’s reversal. Liberals called her a right-wing Trojan horse. The pro-life community hailed her as a hero. She insists she is neither.

Why did PPH break its word? Was Komen simply a pawn in something bigger? In daring to walk away from PPH, Komen unwittingly ignited a battle in which it became collateral damage in a larger election-year war between liberals and conservatives for the souls (and votes!) of women and the nation’s conscience— with abortion and contraception linked as ultimate wedge issues

Howard Books Publisher, Jonathan Merkh along with Philis Boultinghouse, Senior Editor at Howard Books, who edited the book, negotiated the deal with Frank Breeden, Managing Partner with Premiere Authors.


Karen Handel is a former Secretary of State and candidate for Governor in Georgia. She was the top vote-getter in a 7-way primary. She subsequently lost her primary run-off by just 2,500 votes—ironically, because her pro-life stance was viewed as not being strong enough. She has a significant following of supporters who remain tremendously loyal to her. Her personal Facebook page gained nearly 2,000 adds in just 2 days.

Howard Books is an imprint of Simon and Schuster. Based in Nashville, the imprint is home to numerous New York Times bestselling books. Simon & Schuster is a part of CBS Corporation, a global leader in the field of general interest publishing, dedicated to providing the best in fiction and nonfiction for consumers of all ages, across all printed, electronic, and audio formats. Its divisions include Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing, Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, Simon & Schuster Audio, Simon & Schuster Digital, and international companies in Australia, Canada, India, and the United Kingdom. For more information visit our website www.simonandschuster.com