Da Vinci Courtroom Battle Spills Into the Bookstores

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They've battled in a British courtroom, and now Dan Brown and Michael Baigent are going to tangle again, Publishers Weekly reports. This time the arena is the bookstore, where the mass-market paperback version of Mr. Brown's best-selling novel "The Da Vinci Code" will make its debut on Tuesday. That happens to be the day when "The Jesus Papers," Mr. Baigent's examination of the life and crucifixion of Jesus, goes on sale.

That book's publisher, Harper San Francisco, said the date was chosen more than a year ago for its proximity to Easter, a favorable time for sales of books on religion. Anchor announced the publication date for "The Da Vinci Code" two months ago. In London, a judge is weighing a decision in a case brought against Random House U.K., the novel's British publisher, by Mr. Baigent and Richard Leigh, two of the three authors of the nonfiction book "The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail" (published as "Holy Blood, Holy Grail" in the United States).

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