Kodansha’s Morning magazine is one of the most interesting manga magazines in the Japanese marketplace. It’s pitched at young adults, and the stories tend to be somewhat more sophisticated than the genre magazines aimed at young teens and pre-teens (Shonen Jump, Ribon, etc.) Many of the Morning series that have been licensed in English have been critically acclaimed, if not top sellers: Planetes, the story of junk collectors in outer space; What’s Michael? a crazy cat manga that won the Kodansha Manga Award; and Masashi Tanaka’s wordless dinosaur manga Gon, which has been picked up by three different publishers in the U.S. at different times.
So it’s big news that Morning is getting its own digital edition, D Morning. It would be bigger news if the app was available in the U.S., but sadly, it is not; it is only available via the Japanese iTunes store (and the only language seems to be Japanese). What’s more, the two really outstanding series, Naoki Urasawa’s Billy Bat and Takehiko Inoue’s Vagabond, won’t be in the digital edition.
Urasawa is on record as not liking digital media; in an interview last year, he remarked, “None of my works are [legally] available digitally. I prefer physical books.” Apparently his stance hasn’t changed on that.
Inoue isn’t quite as doctrinaire; his Smile, a collection of drawings that he did on an iPad and first shared via Twitter, is available as an app for iOS or Android. Still, none of his manga are available digitally, at least in English.
Despite the many omissions, the app is an important step forward for Japanese manga. Each new issue of D Morning comes out the same day as print, at a very reasonable price of 5,000 yen (about $5) per month; since it’s a weekly, there are four issues per month, for a total of about 1,200 pages. This is the first real attempt by a major Japanese publisher to do same-day print and digital releases; while Americans are enjoying their digital copies of Shonen Jump, their Japanese counterparts are reading the exact same material on paper. It works because Japan, unlike the U.S., still has newsstand distribution of comics on a mass scale, so there hasn’t been much of an incentive to go digital. But digital is still more convenient than print (comments on the app mention how much easier it is to read digitally on the train), and if Kodansha were to open up the D Morning app to markets outside Japan, they would probably find plenty of readers.
Friday, May 17, 2013
There is some big news that just happened in the publishing industry today. Cary Goldstein has joined Simon & Schuster as the new Vice President, Executive Director of Publicity and Senior Editor. In his new role, Goldstein will supervise the Simon & Schuster publicity department and acquire a select number of fiction and nonfiction titles.
Goldstein was previously publisher of Twelve at the Hachette Book Group where he oversaw publicity campaigns for God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens, War by Sebastian Junger, Columbine by Dave Cullen, The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner, Losing Mum and Pup by Christopher Buckley, and True Compass by Edward M. Kennedy.
Deb Futter will be taking Cary Goldsteins former position at Twelve, she arrived from Grand Central by way of Doubleday in 2007. "For the past 5 years, Deb Futter has done a brilliant job as Vice President, Editor in Chief of GCP, and now she will add to her responsibilities the role of Publisher of Twelve," Jaime Raab, the president and publisher of Grand Central Publishing, wrote. "Now, I can't wait to see what's ahead for Twelve, and feel confident that Deb will take the imprint in bold and successful new directions."
The New York Times started to include eBooks in their print and online editions back in 2011. The company announced today that they are suspending the inclusion of eBook titles in their newspaper and only posting them on their website. The prices of the eBooks will also not be included going forward, due to the shifting economic landscape of online sellers.
Pamela Paul is the current editor of the Book Review section of the New York Times, a post she only attained in April. She said in a statement “The e-book list has migrated online, the digital world being its natural habitat. Given the fluid variety of pricing in today's marketplace, we have also stopped including cover prices on the lists.”
The online version of the Book Review is undergoing a bit of revision and is starting to use a blogging template. Obviously, with any new look, many users are voicing their disdain. There is also a new column called Open Book, which focuses on panels of experts at various book publishing events and quotes from notable books.
Many readers are not quite sure what to make about the Times suspending the eBook bestseller list from the print edition. Some industry experts surmise that this may be a gambit to garner more money via online subscriptions for their Paywall.
The Blackberry Q10 is the first Blackberry 10 smartphone with a physical keyboard. One of the things that makes it unique is the Android emulator that allows you to run Android Apps. It is not as cut and dry as loading an APK file on your device, but first you have to convert it to a BAR file. The Good e-Reader APP Store has a new online converter that you can use yourself, or you can download one one the 3500 Playbook and BB10 BAR files we have on our site.
This video tutorial shows you everything you need to do on your phone and then on your PC to facilitate the transfer of Apps to your phone. If you have any comments, please leave them on our Video, via YOUTUBE and we will endeavor to help you.
The Amazon Kindle Keyboard has received a number of new firmware updates over the course of the last two years, most notably parental controls. The e-Reader is getting fairly long in the tooth, when compared to the Kindle Touch and Kindle Paperwhite. With a product refresh coming at the end of the summer, this device is getting harder to find. Amazon, Best Buy, Target and many other retailers are now showing this reader as sold out.
The Kindle Keyboard was a fairly popular model when it came out in 2011, when it was known as the Kindle Graphite. At the time, competition in the e-Reader space was fairly poor and customers loved the ability to type notes on the physical keyboard. These days, people want touchscreens or virtual screens. The Kindle 4, Paperwhite and Kindle Touch are the three devices Amazon is marketing and it really looks like the Keyboard model is officially discontinued.
Microsoft is all set to officially launch the next iteration of Windows, version 8.1, in October. Towards this, volume production of notebook devices based on Windows Blue is set to kick off in September. However, it remains to be seen is whether a new version of Windows will be enough to spur demand in the notebook segment that is finding increasing competition from tablet devices. The fact that Microsoft isn’t extending any incentive to the notebook manufacturers, such as reduced licensing fees, isn’t helping things either. As of now, Microsoft is offering licensing subsidies for devices with a display size smaller than 11.6 inches.
Meanwhile, in another related development, Microsoft is all set to enter the budget tablet segment with a new Surface RT variant that will have a display of 8 inches and is set for a June launch. The tablet is likely to sport a price tag of around $249 – $299 and is being put together by Pegatron Technology. The 8 inch touch panels are being sourced from Samsung and will be built around a Tegra chip. A bigger 10.x inch Surface RT is also in the pipeline, which will be launched during Q3 this year. However, analysts are skeptical about the success of the smaller Surface RT device, considering the less than enthusiastic response the bigger cousin managed to evoke. Further, competition is set to become even more fierce in the smaller tablet segment with Apple and Google set to launch follow up devices to their successful devices, the iPad Mini and Nexus 7. Samsung also has a few offerings lined up in the budget tablet segment, as well. Microsoft is expecting sales of the two Surface RT variants to reach a million units a month.
There is no word though what the successor to the Surface Pro will be like. Microsoft’s tablet sales in the first quarter of 2013 have stood at 900,000 units, with Surface Pro being the majority contributor to that figure.
If you’re wondering about introducing your kids to Scratch, but aren’t quite sure where to start, here’s a handy resource for you. Sean McManus, one of the authors of Raspberry Pi for Dummies, has sent me a link to a couple of sample chapters of the book, including the first chapter on Scratch. You’re welcome to download it to find out whether the book’s for you.
|For the past two years I’ve been saying that Google needs to add the option to upload ebooks to Google Play Books, and this past week Google finally did just that. Those with a Google account can now upload ePub and PDF documents and ebooks and read them through the Google Play Books app for [...]|
Are you an armchair traveler? While I do enjoy traveling to a new city or exploring a new place, I cannot always find the time or the budget to fulfill my every whim. Instead of feeling gloomy, I choose to put a positive spin on things and become an armchair traveler. When I am an armchair traveler, I hike to exotic locales and hob nob with fascinating people. When I am an armchair traveler, I am invited to be a member of prestigious social circles and hear the latest gossip. When I am an armchair traveler, I can experience a time and a place that is no longer.
For those who can explore Ireland in person, a Lonely Planet travel guide eBook can help lead the way. For my fellow armchair travelers, here are five of my favorite titles which will whisk you away to the Emerald Isle from the comfort of your home. If you have dreamed of visiting Ireland or enjoy reminiscing about your Irish experience then consider these titles as the ultimate tour of Ireland's history and people.
"Dubliners" by James Joyce
"Ah, there's no friends like the old friends" wrote James Joyce in Dubliners. This classic features fifteen short stories told through the eyes of common Irish citizens in beloved Dublin. A must read for anyone who enjoys stories with about Ireland and its' people in the early 20th century.
"Winterwood" by Patrick McCabe
This book earned the distinguished title "Irish Novel of the Year" in 2007. McCabe's suspense novel is an original work which immerses the folklore of Ireland with the story of Redmond Hatch and his family's new life in Winterwood. If you like fiction titles with suspense than give this one a try.
"Just Mary: A Memoir" by Mary O'Rourke
This political memoir written by Mary O'Rourke earned the prestigious Irish Book Award "Listener's Choice" in 2012. As the description says, "The book is like the woman herself: open, warm, and frank."
"The Last Storyteller: A Novel of Ireland" by Frank Delaney
The Last Storyteller is the latest addition (2012) to Frank Delaney's Novels of Ireland Series. Each historical fiction novel explores the beauty and intrigue of Ireland. This latest installment describes "Ireland of the 1950's, its fully realized inhabitants, and the dynamic political and personal relationships that make for a remarkable story."
"The Year of the French" by Thomas Flanagan
The National Book Critics Circle named it "the most distinguished work of fiction" in 1979. A work of historical fiction The Year of the French describes the efforts of the Irish patriots and the French troops who in 1798, triumphed against English rule and inspired peasants and landlords to unite and believe in freedom.
*Please note that title availability may vary by geographic region.
Renee Lienhard is an Analyst on the Collection Development team at OverDrive.
Sony and E Ink announced this week that they have developed a new 13 inch e-reader. This new device uses a screen called Mobius, which is making the rounds in Japan and SID in Vancouver next week. At a recent event in Japan, Diginfo filmed a brief hands-on of the device, which should give you a sense on how it handles PDF files and making highlights/annotations.
The Sony E Ink Slate will feature a capacitive touchscreen with a resolution of 1,200 x 1,600 pixels and 150 DPI. This new slate will be aimed at people who need to read technical PDF documents and edit them on the fly with the accompanied stylus. It will also have bundled WIFI and the ability to increase the memory via the Micro SD card from the 4 GB of internal memory.
The one important thing to bear in mind is that this is not the finalized product. It is a prototype that should be available this summer, and by then there will be firmware tweaks and other features will be greatly enhanced. Still, large screen e-readers have the ability to gain some strong traction for people enamored with technical PDF documents.