Thursday, August 8, 2013

Viz Slashes Prices for Summer Manga Sale


Viz’s summer sale has become an annual event, and it’s a good one: From now through September 5, all the manga on their digital service (web, iOS, Android) and on the Nook are on sale, up to 20% off the standard price (which starts at $4.99). That means there are a lot of manga you can read right now for $3.99 to $5.99.

Bakuman: The ultimate manga about manga, Bakuman follows two would-be manga creators as they work their way up the ladder. They start out in high school, and it’s a bit manic, but this series really provides an interesting glimpse at the manga biz (some characters are supposedly based on real Shonen Jump editors) and the clean-lined art is a perfect fit with the subject matter. This book is by the team of Takeshi Obata and Tsugumi Ohba, who are also responsible for Death Note—another manga well worth checking out.

Children of the Sea: A haunting and beautiful story of two boys who were raised at the bottom of the sea, and the ways that the sea and humans interact. Parts are like an adventure story, and parts are like folklore. The art is absolutely stunning. At $5.99 per volume, this one is a little pricey, but the volumes are 300 pages long and the series is only five volumes.

Saturn Apartments: Splendidly drawn and cleverly thought out, this is a story about a ring-shaped apartment building that orbits the earth. The class structure of the apartments is defined by the physical space: Rich people live in the top level, and they are the healthiest because they have the greatest exposure to sunlight, while the poor and working classes live in darkness in the bottom level. The lead character, Mitsu, is a window washer who is one of the few who can travel between levels, and he and his compatriots see all sides of life in the complex. (The link is to a free preview.)

Vampire Knight: We have to have a good shoujo manga in the mix, and Vampire Knight is a dark romance that really delivers the goods. It’s set in a special school that has a night class for vampires, and Yuki Cross is the only point of contact between the day and the night classes. There’s plenty of romance, melodrama, and angst in this splendid potboiler of a manga.

Oishinbo: The ultimate Japanese foodie manga, Oishinbo is the story of a reporter on assignment to assemble a meal composed of Japan’s greatest foods. He takes his own sweet time about it, and each volume of this series is based on a specific type of food (except the first, which is a mix). Although there is a bit of a narrative thread—the reporter is the estranged son of a famous gourmet—each volume is a collection of self-contained short stories and can be read on its own.

Viz Slashes Prices for Summer Manga Sale is a post from: E-Reader News

Congratulations 2013 Digital Library Champions Contest Winners!



The time has come to publicly congratulate our winners for the 2013 Digital Library Champions contest! Dozens of entries were submitted from library and school partners all over the world and 12 great semi-finalists were selected. The final winners were handpicked by members of the editorial staff at Library Journal, who graciously partnered with us to find the best of the best for this year's contest. Thank you Library Journal for your involvement!


As announced on stage during this year's Digipalooza, our winners are:



Oregon Digital Library Consortium – Jackson County Library Services (OR)



JCLS created a fun video to promote the Next Generation website design changes! Check it out on YouTube.


Inside the Library

Hennepin County Library (MN)



With custom eBook handouts for patrons and several eReader Kits prepared for staff use during training classes, Hennepin has seen growing success with their digital collection. Their eReader Kits each include at least 6 popular tablets and eReaders; a laptop loaded with appropriate software and library card information; a practice guide for staff who need additional help; and adapters that allow the iPads to be used with a projector.


Outside the Library

North Carolina Digital Library – High Point Public Library (NC)



To promote the library’s eBooks to new eReader and tablet owners, High Point Public Library provided complimentary gift boxes (with tissue paper, ribbon and gift tag included) that were perfect for wrapping up new devices. In the gift box, they included information on how to use the library’s digital resources and customized the information in the box based on the type of device being given. This popular campaign ran during the winter holidays and again around Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and graduation.


Test Drive

Rapid City Public Library (SD)



In addition to eReader classes and displaying and loaning devices within the library, the Rapid City Public Libraries offers a homebound delivery service where patrons that are unable to travel to the library can have library materials delivered to their homes, including Sony eReaders through the Test Drive program.


Excellent eBook Educator (K-12 Schools/Colleges)

Frisco ISD (TX)



Frisco Independent School District  did a big month long push to promote OverDrive in a district-wide effort during February 2012. A wide variety of displays, promotional videos, community events, contests, and classroom presentations boosted checkouts by 375% for the month. Each school tailored promotion efforts to their campus featuring different mascots, school specific incentives and more.


OverDrive Allstar Award (Grand Prize)

Kenton County Public Library (KY)



The grand prize winner, Kenton County Public Library, introduced a new mascot that represented their digital resources. Their mascot KC was used across multiple platforms to promote their eBooks. Some examples of where KC popped up include their OverDrive website logo, Pinterest, Twitter, screens and displays inside of the library and on cards handed out in the community with information about their eBook collection.


All of the winners of this year's Digital Library Champions contest will receive content credit to build their digital collection; an Android tablet, including a protective case or cover; and a plaque, to display in their library or school to celebrate their win.


We're proud to honor these creative and effective marketing campaigns and look forward to sharing their ideas in future Librarian's Share blog posts. Congratulations again to our winners!


Melissa Marin is a Marketing Specialist at OverDrive.


Good e-Reader Radio Show – DOJ Apple News, Washington Post Sold and Sony eBook Changes


Welcome to another edition of the Good e-Reader Radio Show! Today we have Good e-Reader editor in chief Michael Kozlowski talking to Jeremy Greenfield of Digital Book World! They discuss the proposed Justice Department terms that would see Apple losing 30% royalties on eBooks and everything else. Initially, when the publishers settled with the courts, as part of the disbanded agency pricing model, they were told it would be two years before they could revisit this sales model. The DOJ is proposing that it be extended to five years, which is ruffling feathers.

In other news, Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon has purchased the Washington Post.  Obviously, the newspaper industry is sagging right now and a fresh new direction could be in store very soon. The Washington Post is considered one of the most valued newspapers in America. Finally, Sony has launched pre-orders for eBooks and a bunch of new discovery engines, is it just a gimmick?

The Good e-Reader Radio Show is a weekly broadcast that focuses on the trends and major news items of the digital publishing, eBook and e-Reader industry!

Good e-Reader Radio Show – DOJ Apple News, Washington Post Sold and Sony eBook Changes is a post from: E-Reader News

Final Chapters of Prizoner of Azkaban Released on Pottermore


Pottermore, the free interactive website that invites Harry Potter fans to more fully explore the in-depth world of the boy wizard, announced recently that the final chapters of book three, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, are available for users to explore. Registered users get a street’s eye view of Harry’s world, including the prestigious Hogwarts school and Diagon Alley.

But more than just the chapters are new on the fan site. The Pottermore designers unveiled a host of new features on the site to make the experience more engaging and fulfilling. Features like a status bar help users know if they have completed all of the possible explorations, fully-illustrated Moments give fans a whole new perspective on Harry’s life, and even a fully updated home page where users sign in creates a brand-new experience.

Other features include previously unpublished background information on some of the author’s  favorite characters, an interactive map to help users navigate the sections of the site that have already been discovered, a new top and side bar with user data, and more. fe

One new feature that will potentially enhance the experience for a variety of users is the ability to comment on individual pages of the site. This level of sharing brings the experience to a whole new level, as users are able to interact with one another and discuss insights gleaned from their explorations.

This update marks the first time since the departure of CEO Charlie Redmayne for a return to HarperCollins that Pottermore has unveiled this much new content. A more complete explanation of the new upgrades can be found on the Pottermore Insider blog.

Final Chapters of Prizoner of Azkaban Released on Pottermore is a post from: E-Reader News

Overdrive Media Console Update to be Released August 20th


Overdrive is putting the finishing touches on the largest singular update they have ever released for their Media Console. The entirely redesigned user experience focuses around taps and swipes. It also syncs bookmarks and reading progress across multiple devices using a free, opt-in registration service called OverDrive One. If you are a fan of audiobooks, there is a new veritable speed controller now, that will allow you to increase the speed in which a book is being read aloud. Finally, there is lots of new social media integration with GoodReads and other networks.

Overdrive Media Console Update to be Released August 20th is a post from: E-Reader News

Flipkart Launches e-Platform For Aspiring Authors in India

Flipkart logo

Online retailer Flipkart is out to woo debutant authors in India by announcing the launch of a new e-platform which will serve as a launch pad for authors in the country. This should be seen as a boon to the author community, and particularly the aspiring and to-be authors which in any case contribute about 30 percent of the entire publishing task undertaken in India. However, the benefits of such an effort are both ways as it's not only the authors who get to enjoy a worldwide launch of their literary works, but the portal too has much to earn (along with the authors too) from the sale of the ebooks.

Also, such a development on part of Flipkart does make a lot of sense considering the steep popularity curve that ebooks have hit upon in India. Such a trend is attributed to the growing popularity of smart connected devices such as smartphones and tablet devices together with the ease that these devices provide for towards ebook reading. Interestingly, Flipkart holds a sway over 40 – 45 percent of the printed books market, something that could come under strain once ebook sales pick up. Printed books have been witnessing a decrease in its appeal with the emergence of ebooks and the same could be seen getting repeated in India as well in the long run. Publishers though have stated they are witnessing a rise in demand for printed books which they have attributed to the increasing popularity of ebooks in the country.

However, the immediate focus for Flipkart seems to be on ebooks and have stated they intend to increase their ebook count to a million from the current 2.5 lakhs. The retailer now has an app for iOS, Android and Windows platform and is keen to ramp up its efforts against piracy and security. Worth noting, Flipkart had started retailing books in India in Dec 2012.

Flipkart Launches e-Platform For Aspiring Authors in India is a post from: E-Reader News

Guest post #5: Raspberry Pi tutorials for complete beginners

When Henry asked us for a camera module to write a beginners’ tutorial we knew that he would put it to good use. We weren’t disappointed — keep up the good work Henry, we look forward to seeing more tutorials in future.

My Name is Henry Budden and I am a 13 year old Pi enthusiast. Since the Raspberry Pi came out, I have been very busy programming, tinkering and teaching in all of my spare time. I am the owner of the site This site is designed to teach computing beginners how to use the raspberry pi to the max! On this site I have tutorials on gaming, printing, and lots more!

Raspberry Pi stuff in the post — happy days!

I set up my site about half a year ago, and I have been very successful, as I have 255 followers at this moment, and about 100 people visit my site each day.

Recently, I received an email from a computing teacher from Jersey. He told me that he was running an after-school club and that he has put a link to my site on the school's page. This will be used in all of the after-school sessions. I felt pretty proud of myself when I read this!

I have also made a holder / case for my camera module (very kindly donated by the foundation) which you can view on my twitter account [and above], and judge my woodwork skills!

If you wish to contact me for any reason at all, then please do not hesitate. I have a Facebook page  and a Twitter account. I also have a separate email address:

Thank you very much for taking your time to read my short blog post.


What tutorial would you like to see offer next?

Take our latest poll to offer feedback about what tutorials you'd most like to see.

Podcast: New and Featured Content for August


Head over to OverDrive's Learning Center to listen to our brand-new collection highlights podcast for the month of August. We'll give you the low-down on the newest publishers in OverDrive Marketplace, and we'll also highlight this month's featured publishers and share news about publishers who'll be joining us soon.


This month's publishers include purveyors of genre romance, career development titles, educational eBook series for kids and teens, award-winning eBooks and audiobooks, indie films, and much more.


You can access this month's podcast all month on our Learning Center, where you can also find additional training about collection development and placing orders in OverDrive Marketplace. Happy listening!


Carrie Smith is a Technical Writer at OverDrive.

Review: Asus Travel Cover for 2nd Gen Nexus 7 (Video)

Last week I posted an article with a list of 10 covers and cases for the 2nd gen Google Nexus 7 tablet. Before posting the article I had already ordered the official travel cover for the Nexus 7 that is made by Asus. At the time there weren’t any reviews for it so it was […]

Publishers Displeased with DOJ Terms against Apple

Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

The first stage in the Department of Justice anti-trust lawsuit against Apple and five of the Big Six publishers was to secure settlements from the publishers involved. The publishers, who at the time were Penguin, Macmillan, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, and Hachette but who only now include Random House due to its merger with Penguin (Random House took no part in the price fixing allegations), settled for around $166 million without admitting to any wrongdoing, only agreeing to the settlement terms because it would have been far more expensive to go to trial to defend themselves.

Following the recent ruling that found Apple guilty of the allegations, in which Apple is believed to be responsible for as much as $500 million in damages, the publishers have now had to come forward to voice their complaint against some of the terms in the ruling. A brief submitted on behalf of those publishers contends that the terms set forth by the Department of Justice will prevent Apple from entering into agency-model pricing for five years, thereby eliminating any chance of discounting ebooks.

And who still gets to discount ebooks? Amazon.

Part of the publishers’ settlement terms included allowing retailers like Amazon to discount new releases for certain time periods, but the DOJ’s terms have severed Apple’s contracts on agency pricing for five years. Apple also isn’t allowed to enter into new agreements during that time period.

Given that the terms also included requiring Apple to hire its own inside person to oversee anti-trust behaviors, as well as hire a “court appointed” outside person to look over their shoulder, this portion of the terms might actually have merit. Is the DOJ really looking out for the consumers with this section of the ruling, or is it looking to make an example of Apple by being overly punitive? And isn’t it really the publishers who will be affected by a major retailer’s inability to sell ebooks at comparable prices, effectively hurting the authors as well?

According to the publishers, they’ve paid their dues. They agreed to their settlement terms and the amount, yet they feel this measure will punish them all over again.

Publishers Displeased with DOJ Terms against Apple is a post from: E-Reader News