Bookish is liveish.
The long-delayed consumer-oriented book website, which is currently on its third CEO, made its debut last night. A joint project of Hachette Book Group, Penguin Group and Simon & Schuster, the site promotes books from nearly 20 publishers and aims to improve book discovery by readers and to sell books.
Bookish features publicity material from publishers; its own editorial material about books, authors and reading; and a recommendation section. Bookish reportedly has a database of more than one million titles and includes some 400,000 author profile pages. The site emphasizes that it is "editorially independent." There are 18 "genre pages," as well book lists and other book-related articles. Users apparently can add reviews.
Highlighted inaugural editorial material includes a joint interview with authors Michael Connelly and Michael Koryta; an essay by Elizabeth Gilbert in which she "takes on" Philip Roth for a discouraging comment about writing; an excerpt from Harlan Coben's upcoming thriller, as well as several Onion book reviews. Bookish is also sharing material with USA Today.
It's easy to purchase directly from Bookish (sales fulfillment is courtesy of Baker & Taylor), often at a discount, in a range of formats. An ancillary button allows users to go to "online stores," including IndieBound, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million, iBookstore and Kobo. Bookish also has an Android app available and one for iPhones on the way.
One of the most important parts of the site, the recommendation section, is still in beta, with slightly more than 250,000 titles. For now, the section either doesn't recognize many titles or has no suggestions for further reading. It remains a work in progresh.