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I have done some online searching for text books for my son. He starts college in less than a week, which evokes paradoxical feelings of happiness and sadness. Some of the sadness really hits when I look at textbook prices.

Many are near $100. The one thing that I found during my search that was really  interesting and surprising is the evolution of digital textbook rentals. I expected that eventually textbooks would enter the digital realm so that students could carry eReaders instead of tons of books.

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Rent Textbooks

What I found was that B & N is allowing eBook textbook rentals for the nook application. There was only one title on my list that was available for digital rental, and the cost was about half of the regular price. The problem is that my son doesn’t have an eReader and I wouldn’t buy one for just one book. I’ll be watching this trend to see how it shifts in the coming months.

Audio TextbooksBetty White

Betty White has seen a huge jump in popularity since her hilarious turn in the Snickers commercial aired during the Super Bowl. She has guest starred in tons of television shows and has even hosted Saturday Night Live. It comes as no surprise that she has signed a two book deal with Putnam. My only question is this: Will she narrate the audiobook?

White plans to write about love, sex, and aging in Listen Up! due in spring of 2011. The second book, to be released in 2012, will be titled, The Zoo and I: Betty and Her Friends. This will be filled with photos and stories from White, an avid animal welfare advocate. I do hope she will be narrating her own work. Her delivery is a big part of what makes her wonderful!

How do you feel about this?

Ads into eBooks

Amazon has applied for patents to insert ads into eBooks. With the rise of eBook reader sales and digital works outselling print editions, advertising seems to be the next step. eBook prices are generally much less than their hardcover counterparts, so inserting ads would presumably offset the difference. How do you feel about this? Personally, as long as they aren’t intrusive, I suppose it makes no difference, but if they are abundant and interfere with the reading experience, I won’t buy the digital books.

In the meantime, I have to go continue searching for Logic: Art of Defining and Reason. Have a great weekend!

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