As web sites like Netflix and Spotify continue to expand, so do e-book streaming sites.
According to Entertainment Weekly, two e-book streaming start-ups, Scribd and Oyster, have struck up a partnership with publishing company Macmillan. Considering Macmillan is one of the largest publishing companies out there, this is great news for the start-ups. It means many, many more e-books and audiobooks are now available to Scribd and Oyster.
Both Scribd and Oyster offer hundreds of thousands of books for a $9 or $10 monthly fee, similar to Netflix.
Unless you’ve checked out J.K. Rowling’s Pottermore web site, it’s been impossible to download e-book versions of the Harry Potter series….until now.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the Harry Potter e-books are now available via Oyster, a site considered to be a type of Netflix for books.
In addition to the seven books in the series, fans will also be able to download HP counterparts, including Rowling’s Quidditch Through the Ages, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and The Tales of Beedle the Bard.
The best part? Readers can pick their house before reading — each house has its own color settings and typography in the e-book!
Good news for those who like not to read their books, but to listen to them.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the streaming subscription service Scribd is adding thousands of audiobooks to its catalog — 30,000, to be exact. The new books will include old and new releases from some of the more well-known publishers and authors, including Scholastic and HarperCollins and Haruki Murakami and Suzanne Collins.
Before the addition, Scribd’s catalog included more than half a million titles.
But according to The Verge, that catalog was only made up of e-books, not audiobooks. The hope is that the company will be able to compete now with Audible.
As it turns out, the more power you have, the more money you have, the more influence you have — even on readers.
According to Entertainment Weekly, a business book from 1969 flew to the top of the bestsellers list after Microsoft CEO Bill Gates mentioned it as his favorite book in an essay he wrote for The Wall Street Journal earlier this month.
Bill Gates’ mention of John Brooks’ Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street in The Wall Street Journal sent the book to the No. 5 spot on the Amazon Kindle bestseller list. The book was published in 1969 and is no longer in print. But the book’s publisher, Open Road, quickly made it available in e-book format, and a paperback re-issue is now slated for September. In the essay, Gates wrote “Today, more than two decades after Warren [Buffett] lent it to me—and more than four decades after it was first published—Business Adventures remains the best business book I’ve ever read.”
Will you be buying the book?
Get Business Adventures in paperback for $10.34. — starting August 12, 2014!
It’s one of the biggest book brawls since the 2012 fight over e-book pricing. Once again, Amazon and Hachette are involved.
This time, according to The New York Times, it’s believed that Amazon wants to offer discounts on Hachette e-books, and apparently negotiations aren’t going well. In fact, they’re going so poorly that Amazon is now supposedly delaying shipment of some Hachette books and preventing preorders of some Hachette books.
It would seem that this is a battle strictly between Amazon and Hachette, but rather, it appears to be the start of a war between Amazon and many publishing companies, as Jonathan Mahler explains.
As part of Hachette’s antitrust settlement with the government, the company agreed to allow Amazon to continue to discount the price of e-books for two years. That agreement has expired, and for some reason — no one is sure why — Hachette is the first publisher to find itself in the position of negotiating a new one.
Other publishers are holding their breath. It is in their interests for [Hachette Book Group’s chief executive] Mr. Pietsch to drive a hard bargain, and they are cheering him on, but silently. They have their own relationships with Amazon to protect […]
So is the squabble close to being resolved? Doesn’t seem that way, but with many of the details of the negotiations being kept under wraps, it’s hard to know exactly what’s going on and when it may finally end.
It’s been more than 50 years since To Kill a Mockingbird was published, but the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of the classic novel has finally decided to let it be published digitally as an e-book.
According to The New York Times, Harper Lee has approved the e-book version of her novel, which will be available July 8th. Mockingbird and another classic, The Catcher in the Rye, are two of just a few classic novels left that had not yet been converted to a digital format. Mockingbird continues to sell one million copies each year and is read in schools across the country.
A digital audio version of the novel will also be available. It was be voiced by actress Sissy Spacek. HarperCollins has the North American rights; Random House has the rights in Britain.
Just because more and more people are reading e-books doesn’t mean they’ve stopped reading physical books. That’s according to the latest post-holiday study done by the Pew Research Center.
According to Publishers Weekly, most people who read e-books read print books as well. Only 4% of readers consider themselves to be “e-book only.” The study also found that people are reading more in general. American adults are averaging about 5 books per year, a slight increase from the study done at the end of 2012.
The study found that about half of Americans now own either a tablet or e-reader. This is a likely explanation for why there are also more people reading across multiple formats — like print, digital and audio, as Andrew Albanese explains.
87% of e-book readers also read a print book in the past 12 months, and 29% listened to an audiobook.
84% of audiobook listeners also read a print book in the past year, and 56% also read an e-book.
A majority of print readers read only in that format, although 35% of print book readers also read an e-book and 17% listened to an audiobook.
Overall, about half (52%) of readers only read a print book, while just 4% said they only read an e-book, and just 2% only listened to an audiobook. Some 9% of readers said they read books in all three formats.
As an avid reader, I certainly read across all platforms. I read physical books, Nook books, and listen to audiobooks. I have some friends who prefer reading through the Kindle app on their phone, others who use their tablets. Reading books takes all different forms these days. But hey — at least we’re reading.
Imagine if there were a subscription program like Netflix, but for e-books. Well, luckily there is.
According to The New York Times, publisher HarperCollins has recently struck a deal with the web site, Scribd, which is already used for sharing documents and books. Consumers can pay a flat fee each month to the site to access a large number of e-books.
The site, Oysterbooks.com, already has a similar program, offering access to more than 100,000 e-books for $9.95 a month, but it hasn’t gained much popularity.
The owners of Scribd hope the site will have more success, but so far, HarperCollins is the only major publisher that signed up. Smaller publishers like Rosetta Books, Workman and Sourcebooks have also signed up.
So readers still have more options for books when they go to Amazon or Barnes and Noble’s web site. However, a Netflix-life program for e-books seems like a pretty simple, but brilliant idea. But I only see it becoming successful with readers that consume many, many books each month. Otherwise, it doesn’t seem worth it to me.