eBooks (and eReaders) have been getting a ton of press over the past couple months, and I have a feeling that they will continue to do so throughout the year. The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is happening in Vegas right now, and a lot of the buzz coming out is about ebooks and readers. In case you haven’t been paying attention, though, I’d like to highlight some of my favorite articles and thoughts on ebooks to date and for the coming year.
First, and you’ve probably read parts of this, Sherman Alexie was interviewed for Mother Jones, and he has some particular remarks about a particular ebook reader that are quite risqué. I won’t reprint them here, but the entire interview is worthwhile and available at motherjones.com.
Robert Darnton gives his case for books at Publisher’s Weekly, and says the following about ebooks:
“I want to write an electronic book. Here is how my fantasy takes shape. An “e-book,” unlike a printed codex, can contain many layers arranged in the shape of a pyramid. Readers can download the text and skim the topmost layer, which will be written like an ordinary monograph. If it satisfies them, they can print it out, bind it (binding machines can now be attached to computers and printers), and study it at their convenience in the form of a custom-made paperback. If they come upon something that especially interests them, they can click down a layer to a supplementary essay or appendix. They can continue deeper through the book, through bodies of documents, bibliography, historiography, iconography, background music, everything I can provide to give the fullest possible understanding of my subject. In the end, they will make the subject theirs, because they will find their own paths through it, reading horizontally, vertically, or diagonally, wherever the electronic links may lead.”