Books & Books plans to open its eighth location--the Newsstand Café by Books & Books--at the redesigned plaza of the Wachovia Financial Center in downtown Miami sometime between mid-February and early March. The Miami Herald reported that the store "will have 800 square feet inside, plus outdoor seating in the plaza. The opening will fill a long-awaited need for a bookstore in Miami's urban core."
Books & Books has expanded steadily in the last few years, opening bookshops in the Cayman Islands and Westhampton Beach, N.Y. More recently, plans were announced for its first Broward County location, in Fort Lauderdale.
Apple responded to claims it is altering the App Store's policy in ways that could affect Kindle, Nook and Sony Reader apps (Shelf Awareness, February 1, 2011) by contending "it has not changed any of its guidelines given to developers, but it indirectly confirms that accessing content purchased elsewhere could be a no-no if that content isn’t also available to be purchased through Apple’s own system," Ars Technica reported.
"We have not changed our developer terms or guidelines," said Apple spokesperson Trudy Muller. "We are now requiring that if an app offers customers the ability to purchase books outside of the app, that the same option is also available to customers from within the app with in-app purchase."
Ars Technica noted, however, that while the company's policy isn't new--"Apple doesn't allow apps to sell content to users unless that content passes through the official Apple ecosystem, where Apple gets a 30% cut"--Muller's statement indicates the interpretation may have changed significantly: "If an app lets users access content that they purchased via Amazon's website, for example, then that same app must also let users buy the same book via Apple's own in-app purchase system. If the app developer doesn't want to use Apple's in-app purchases to sell content, then the app can't access content purchased elsewhere either. This is notable because it will require Amazon and Barnes & Noble (as well as Sony, whose iOS app is not yet available) to change how their offerings work. Apple wants its 30% share of content sales whenever possible."
While he admits that deciding "which of two closed platforms is more 'evil' is a mug's game," Slate's Farhad Manjoo hopes Amazon "responds to Apple's restriction by voluntarily pulling the Kindle app from the App Store. In its place, Amazon should create a Kindle reader for the mobile Web--a fully functional e-book app that Apple couldn't meddle with.... Building this app shouldn't be too hard; Amazon has already created a Kindle reader for full Web browsers. What's more, because the mobile Web is pretty consistent across all kinds of devices, the mobile Web edition of the Kindle would work not just on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, but also on Android, Palm, BlackBerry, and Windows phones and tablets."
The Independent Book Publishers Association
and Ingram Content Group have launched a program under which IBPA's
more than 3,000 members have options to list titles on Ingram's iPage
and to have books printed on demand through Lightning Source and
delivered to Ingram's worldwide customer network.
Florrie Binford Kichler commented: "This agreement will allow all of our
publishers to take advantage of Ingram's distribution and marketing
reach, giving small and independent publishers options to access Ingram
Content Group's U.S. retail, international, and library customers.
Having books available through Ingram significantly levels the playing
field for our publishers."
Publishing Trends explored the various processes currently being employed by the New York Times, the Bookseller and others to create e-book bestseller lists in response to the rapid growth of this market, and compiled "a rudimentary e-book bestseller list" of its own: "The bestseller lists we looked at (from Kindle, Nook, Apple’s iBookstore, Sony Reader, and Kobo) were quite varied, and estimating market share was difficult. For now, though, we’re proud to say we beat the New York Times in publishing an e-book bestseller list."
Microcosm Publishing has been running a swap-your-Kindle-for-our-books campaign recently at its Portland, Ore., retail store. "There's a little bit of pressure to buy these devices," store manager Rio Sasari told International Business Times. "It's pushed very well, and people feel the need to conform a bit and keep up with trends. There are people that feel that pressure, but they just want books."
Thus far, three people have opted for the trade-in offer. Sasari added that the idea was not hatched as an anti-e-book promotion: "We don't have anything against the technology. We're just trying to make a positive statement for books. We're just pushing books as something cool, hip and new.... Print as empowering medium. It's just nice to get people talking about it."
Bad weather update of the day: In an e-mail to customers yesterday morning, Brookline Booksmith, Brookline, Mass., wrote: "This quick message is to confirm that tonight's reading with Caroline Leavitt is still scheduled. No snow day for literature!"
After 26 years, Chuck Erion and Tricia Siemens (at right), co-owners of Canadian indie Words Worth Books (Waterloo, Ontario), are retiring and have sold their business to long-time employees David Worsley and Mary Brouse, Quill & Quire reported.
"It’s so exciting that this venture is a succession," said Brouse, adding, "We have a great framework and a good business model right now, so a lot of it will be very similar. Any newness will come along slowly."
Georgetown Used Books, Washington, D.C., was profiled by the Georgetown Patch, which noted that the "well-stocked bookstore in upper Georgetown is definitely worth stopping by" and cited Rahm Emanuel, President Obama's former Chief of Staff, and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright as examples of the shop's often high-profile customers.
"We can't compete with the comfort of the Internet... but I think it's a good culture to have," said owner Hamid Afshar. "With the bookstore, people can come in and read a few pages and talk with each other. It's a community you can't find on Amazon."
From the "it's always something" department: Cnet's David Carnoy wrote that how Kindle pages are numbered has been the subject of an ongoing debate: "[W]hen the original Kindle launched a few years back, Amazon decided to go with a new form of page numbering that breaks the book down into the aforementioned locations. At location 771-76 in the Kindle user Guide, locations are described as 'the digital answer to page numbers.' For the Kindle, 'locations' were designed to alleviate the problem of font-size selection changing the number of pages in a book."
Carnoy observed that Amazon "could just give consumers a choice between actual page numbers and locations, font size be damned. But I have a feeling it knows that consumers would opt for the more familiar page number standard they're used to."
Flavorwire celebrated authorial alter egos by featuring "Fictional Novels Starring Non-Fictional Authors" and noted that sometimes authors "infiltrate their own stories as characters named for themselves. Whether purely narcissistic or a tool of artistic commentary, the author-as-character literary technique lends an element of surrealism to the reading experience and draws attention to both the act of narration and the act of creation--as well as their shared unreliability."
This week's literary mixtape from Flavorwire was made for Lewis Carroll's Alice, who is "not that old yet, so her taste is probably all over the place. Here are the songs we think Alice would explore, drink tea, and defy the Red Queen to." Complaints about the absence of Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit" can be directed to Flavorwire.
Book trailer of the day: the reissue of The Journey Is the Destination (Chronicle), about Dan Eldon, the artist, adventurer and activist who died in 1993. This August, Chronicle is also publishing Safari as a Way of Life, an illustrated YA biography of Eldon. A movie about Eldon's life, produced by Julia Roberts's Red Om Films, is in the works.
By the way, the editor of The Journey Is the Destination, which first appeared in 1997, was Annie Barrows, co-author of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and author of the Ivy and Bean series. Talk about a journey!