What's a great holiday gift in a recession, yes a good old fashioned book. Random House just got its new Dan Brown bestseller on the shelves.

Pearson's Chief Financial Officer admitted that its consumer publisher Penguin does not have a blockbuster for the holiday season but -- in a rare glimpse of corporate honesty -- said it sure would like to have one.

" I think we've got some good books for Christmas," Pearson's Robin Freestone said at the Reuters Media Summit on the upcoming holiday shopping season.

"We haven't got a blockbuster in the sort of Dan Brown mode or the Stephanie Meyer mode. We sort of pretend we don't really want a blockbuster but that isn't true at all."

"We'd love to have a blockbuster... but we have some suprises," he said.

"The MI5 history, which is a whopping great thick book, is selling extremely well. "