Random House books might not be available for Apple’s iPad when it is released next month. The Financial Times
(via the Bookseller.com
) reported the publisher "fears the effects of the tablet device on the pricing of electronic books."
Markus Dohle, Random House CEO, isn't ruling out the possibility of reaching a deal before then, "but said he was treading carefully, as Apple’s pricing regime could erode established publishing practices," the Financial Times
wrote. Dohle added that the iPad and iBookstore signified "changes, in particular for our stakeholders," which required Random House to consult further with its authors and their agents.
Dan Gilbert has joined Barnes & Noble as executive v-p, operations
and customer service. He was formerly v-p of customer operations at
Cisco Systems and earlier was v-p, customer service and quality, at
Palm, Inc., and was director of delivery operations for the Webvan
Group. He was also served as a consultant with A.T. Kearney, Andersen
Consulting and McKinsey & Company.
William Lynch, who was
named CEO less than a week ago, commented: "Dan is a perfect fit for
Barnes & Noble as we leverage our world class brick and mortar
stores to scale as a major e-commerce retailer and digital media
company with multi-channel capabilities."
In its ongoing negotiations regarding e-book pricing, Amazon might benefit from letting publishers win, suggested the Motley Fool
's Eric Jhonsa, who wrote that Amazon's acceptance of the agency model could ultimately benefit the company: "Under the wholesale model, the company actually loses money on the sale of many best-sellers, which it often sells to Kindle users below cost in order to stimulate e-book demand. While under the agency model, Amazon is guaranteed to make a healthy gross profit on every e-book sale. And with a recent Cowen & Co. report estimating that Kindle content sales will grow from $160 million in 2009 to nearly $3 billion in 2015, those profits could quickly add up."
Jhonsa also contended that Amazon's "squabbles with book publishers highlight the flawed nature of the Kindle's current business model.... Amazon's strategy has the effect of not only alienating publishers who think that getting consumers accustomed to artificially low book prices will hurt their business long term, but also inflating Kindle prices to a point where many readers deem them to be too expensive."
Another sign of the e-times we live in? GalleyCat
was tracking critical response of a different kind to The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine
by Michael Lewis. By late yesterday afternoon, more than 70 Kindle owners had given the book a 1-star review, with many expressing their disappointment that a Kindle edition is not yet available.
Reviewer Cristiano Pierry
even quoted Lewis talking about the Kindle in 2007: "The coolest thing, by far, is that you think of a book you'd like to read, someone tells you about a book you'd like to read, and in 30 seconds, it's on your screen, all of it."
--- Crazy Wisdom
Bookstore and Tea Room, Ann Arbor, Mich., is a "downtown favorite" and "remains a strong presence" in the city, according to AnnArbor.com
"We have a variety of things going on organized by a variety of people," said manager Rachel Pastiva. "We are more than a book store; I see Crazy Wisdom as a community resource, and a lot of people see us that way."
I Said "Read Me!" book store and coffee shop, Tamaqua, Pa., opened this week, the Republican Herald
reported. Although the shop is owned by Sarah Fucci, assistant manager Allison Sanders came up with the unusual name.
"It just kind of popped out one day when Sarah was trying to decide what to name it," she said. "We are both a little sarcastic in nature and it just seemed to fit."
"I wanted to do this for a while but when I heard Waldenbooks was closing, it finally gave me the push I needed," Fucci added. "I was on my lunch break at work and I turned to my friend and said, 'I'm giving my two-week notice,' and that's what I did."
Planting the seeds of an idea takes on a whole new meaning at Mother Nature Network
, which featured recycled book pots: "The concept--old books with holes carved into the middle to accommodate soil and a small houseplant--is simple enough (perhaps even enough for a DIY job) and quite beautiful."
Book trailer of the day: The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott
by Kelly O'Connor McNees (Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam). (Be sure to watch until the very end!)
NPR's What We're Reading list this week includes Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War by Karl Marlantes, Known to Evil by Walter Mosley, Dog Boy by Eva Hornung and The Heights by Peter Hedges.
If you've been anxiously waiting for "the next big book," watch this video review by the Guardian's art critic Adrian Searle of "The History of the Saatchi Gallery--all 35kg of it--to find out whether it's a tome for discerning art lovers or just an oversize paperweight."
Is the Get London Reading iPhone app posing a new threat to the city's citizens? Guardian books blogger Shirley Dent observed that she's "become one of those people who traipse down the street attached to their smartphone, thumbs a-go-go. Truth is, I've become hooked on this free Get London Reading app, which brings the locale you are in at any given moment to literary life."
Andy Hunter of Electic Literature showcased "5 Wonderfully Weird Book Videos" on the Huffington Post and noted that "we find video generally works best when it isn't tethered too tightly to the text. At Electric Literature, we simply give an artist or animator a sentence to riff on, often leading to something strange, beautiful and unforeseen. We love it when a book video gets weird."
This summer National Book Network's U.K. subsidiary, NBN International, is moving to a new 80,000-sq.-ft. facility that offers more operations space. The building is less than a mile from its existing facility, in Plymouth, England.
NBNi managing director Chip Franzak, who is also CFO of the Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, NBN's parent company, said that "the consolidating distribution market, increasing use of Print-on-Demand and digital publishing channels do not mean the end of customer services or print book distribution. Our U.K. business is growing healthily and we need more space to accommodate inherent sales growth and the new publisher clients moving to us." In fact, NBNi's total publisher sales were more than $46 million, compared to $18 million six years ago.
In related NBNi news, Sheila Bounford has been promoted to deputy managing director, and Ian Wordsworth, the longtime IT manager, becomes operations manager.
Liz Querio has joined Sourcebooks as marketing manager. She was formerly a senior marketing specialist with OfficeMax.