I've written before about the power of a truly interactive multimedia eBook reader, but two iPad apps have really taken the idea and run with it. The Pedlar Lady of Gushing Cross is a unique children's book with a hauntingly stark design.
I just recently made the switch to iBooks (from Stanza) on my 2G iPod touch. Not a permanent switch, but at least to give iBooks a go. There is a great selection of free material available, and finding it is a cinch. Kaplan has teamed up with Apple to make a bunch of study and reference ebooks available gratis for the back-to-school season. Go here on your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch (which links directly into iBooks library) to get these free titles... Promotion dates and more info below...
(Note that a cleaned up and extended, easy-to-digest version of this article – without the lengthy section on the chart – will be published in the iPhone / iPad Buyer's Guide. Go buy it ;-) ).
The iPad offers an excellent way of reading PDF files. While you can do this right in Safari (with web based PDF's) or can freely download Apple's own iBooks, it may be still worth checking out how almost all (!) the currently available PDF reader solutions. Knowing what the alternative PDF readers are capable of is essential as reading online PDF's with Safari lacks any kind of features like in-document searching. In addition, iBooks lacks some essential features too.
Great idea this, especially for the iPad... iStoryTime has created a first in book app publication for iPad. A hearing-impaired friendly childrens book. The book format features an option to display an animated sign-language interpreter on the right side of the screen as the content is displayed.
I've always felt that it was shortsighted for eBook readers to merely try to emulate the traditional book experience. Sure, it's fun to see the page curl as you swipe the screen, etc., but for eReaders to really take off, they need to leverage their technology and offer advantages that a traditional book cannot. vBookz, $4.99 from Mindex International, is an attempt to do just that, with an eBook reader that reads out loud, using Text-to-Speech.
According to the Atlantic Monthly, on Monday, a bible app cracked the top 10 highest grossing iPad book apps of all time. The NIV Bible Reader is currently getting 3,000 downloads a day. The app is also ranked number 2 on the iPhone just behind Green Eggs and Ham.
Are you part of a book club or simply like to share what you are reading with others? If so, you’ll want to try the Book Lover app.
From a Mystery Writer's Perspective
My husband, Aaron Elkins, and I have been involved in the mystery publishing world for almost 30 years, and somewhere along the way, it's lost the romance it once had. The book became a unit.
I actually got an iPhone 4, yesterday, a day early due to some lucky mail fluke. Today I tried FaceTime with blogger Todd Bernhard. Todd will probably write about it here and/or in our next issue. I also used the flash in the camera. I liked both features, although both have a ways to go. However, what I was most impressed with based on what I will get the most use of is the ebook reading experience.
"iStoryTime, a company dedicated to bringing children’s stories to the iPhone and iPad, just released their 31st children’s book today – “Shrek Forever After”. The new book, which is available on iTunes for $1.99, times with the nationwide release of the movie tomorrow." Read on for a video preview, and full press release...