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Posts tagged Waterstones

Are e-book prices too low? No, but they used to be too high
July 25, 2015 | 5:51 pm

pound_signI missed participating in yesterday’s Futurechat Twitter hashtag chat fest, but the article that formed the basis of the discussion is interesting enough by itself. Porter Anderson poses the question that has been on many publishers’ lips ever since Amazon first started selling e-books: “Are we pricing books too low?” The article does have more of a basis than the Amazon-is-devaluing-our-books nattering we usually get. Anderson looks (via a Philip Jones piece) at the opening sales of the new Harper Lee book, Go Set a Watchman. It hit record sales in its first week, including in e-book form. Jones observes that...

Daunt Books runs flyer promo for Recommendations
January 30, 2015 | 2:25 pm

IMG_20150129_084130 Daunt Books, the highly regarded UK bookstore chain which began with a travel focus and has since branched out into general book selling - as well as producing the savior of Waterstones, James Daunt - has a rather attractive version of the Amazon Recommendations engine: In print, naturally, for print books. Themed printed flyers. The flyers, keyed to a particular highly popular/visible title, take up the same theme or category and show other recommendations. The examples on show are for young adult readers, but there are plenty of others for different age groups from kids' literature to adult fiction. And of...

Tesco bails on Blinkbox, bids bye to Blinkbox Books
January 27, 2015 | 6:25 pm

blinkboxTesco has followed through on widespread predictions, and followed the sale of its Blinkbox video service and telecoms provider platform with the disposal of its other Blinkbox-branded online media ventures, including Blinkbox books. Tesco has sold its streaming music service, Blinkbox Music, to Australian streaming platform Guvera, as detailed in an announcement, which states that: "The acquisition of blinkbox Music will help significantly accelerate the growth of Guvera’s business.  Leveraging blinkbox Music’s deep technical, product, marketing and content expertise will allow Guvera to expand into Western Europe faster." The Bookseller, meanwhile, quoted a Tesco spokesperson saying that the Blinkbox Books service would...

Did Waterstones really see a shift back to print?
January 12, 2015 | 12:25 pm

WaterstonesThere's been quite a bit of pickup of the recent Financial Times story on Waterstone's, which supposedly supports a shift in UK reader appetite back towards printed books, where James Daunt, Waterstones CEO, said sales of which “disappeared to all intents and purposes”, according to James Daunt, chief executive. There are just a few flaws in the narrative, though. For one thing, Daunt also disclosed a 5 per cent physical book sales rise in December - yes, the height of the Christmas buying season. That's hardly a massive resurgence of interest in the printed book. And although further reporting in the FT...

Edinburgh International Book Festival holds autumn event for Marilynne Robinson
October 10, 2014 | 2:25 pm

The Edinburgh International Book Festival, more familiar as an August fixture, is hosting an exceptional out-of-season event on the occasion of a visit by American author Marilynne Robinson, recipient of many awards including the 2005 Pulitzer Prize, the 2009 Orange Prize for Fiction, the 2008 LA Times Book Prize and the 2004 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction, as well as the 2012 National Humanities Medal. Marilynne Robinson is best known for her three novels Housekeeping (1980), Gilead (2004) and Home (2008), as well as numerous essays and works of non-fiction. Her National Humanities Medal citation hailed: "her grace and intelligence in writing. With moral strength and lyrical clarity, Dr....

Waterstones has an unusual customer
June 3, 2014 | 5:46 pm

Origin 632014 54248 PM.bmpSay what you will about Waterstones, they’ve got a sense of humor. First it was their plan to counter Amazon’ drones with a trained owl delivery service. Now a friend just directed me to this Storify tale about what happens when a customer reads aloud from the wrong book. (Granted, the tale is about 8 months old, but it’s still funny.) I have to admit, the Elder God probably wouldn’t have been able to get as personalized service from Amazon. That’s what gives these bookstores their competitive advantage right now....

Nick Harkaway calls time on print vs. ebook debate
April 3, 2014 | 10:25 am

Tim Waterstone's anti-ebook statements at the Oxford Literary Festival seem to have attracted quite a bit of backlash, and one common thread to the lashes backlashing seems to be that this debate is so over. The whole Us vs. Them faceoff appears to be inducing a welcome sense of fatigue in many readers, and commentators. Typical of this is the response by author Nick Harkaway in The Guardian, entitled: "Paper vs digital reading is an exhausted debate." "There are fewer and fewer venues where digital technology has made no impact – and where there's a digital device, there are ebooks, at...

Tim Waterstone says it’s all over, you can go home now
April 1, 2014 | 10:25 am

Read PetiteYes, the ebook revolution is officially over. Sez who? Sez Tim Waterstone, that's who. Who he? A major bookstore chain founder. So it must be twoo... As reported in the UK Telegraph newspaper under the shout line "e-book revolution will soon go into decline," the Waterstone's founder said, during a panel on the future of publishing at the Oxford Literary Festival, that he'd encountered "more garbage about the strength of the e-book revolution than anything else I’ve known," but that in fact "the e-books have developed a share of the market, of course they have, but every indication – certainly from America...

Waterstones LEGO literature: Probably the best promotional wheeze for literature ever – maybe
February 18, 2014 | 12:07 pm

UK bookstore chain Waterstones has come up with one of the most visually delightful promotional ideas for literature in a long while. "To celebrate the launch of The LEGO Movie tomorrow, we’re playing with plastic bricks," the Waterstones blog declares. "And we want your help recreating your favourite booky moments in brick form." The iconic picture that everyone's sharing for this competition is The Red Wedding, from George R.R. Martin's A Storm of Swords. And it's worth it:   Make no mistake, this jape has cultural cred. Here's the climatic battle between Arthur and Mordred from Sir Thomas Malory's  Le Morte d’Arthur.   Waterstones is inviting readers...

Waterstones announces plan to counter Amazon drones with trained owls
December 2, 2013 | 12:08 pm

wildlife_barn_owlThe Internet has been abuzz ever since Amazon announced it was looking into the use of drones to deliver lightweight packages to customers near its distribution centers. Personally, it sounds like another one of those things that is more about the publicity than the service. Amazon’s storage lockers are still unavailable to the vast majority of Amazon customers, two years after they were first introduced. Likewise, Amazon doesn’t have that many distribution centers, so almost nobody would be able to take advantage of this service if it existed. (Gizmodo would tend to agree.) That being said, British chain Waterstones...

Waterstones has charitable pound covered with limited-edition Terry Pratchett Kindle cases
August 27, 2013 | 9:26 am

Waterstones in the UK is doing more to explore the intersection of the physical and the digital, as well as capitalizing on its high-profile relationship with Amazon, by running two limited edition Kindle cases from star author and Alzheimer's sufferer Terry Pratchett , including a special signed edition with all its sales profits going to Alzheimer's Research UK. The signed edition comes in a run of only 150 numbered copies, each at £100 ($156). "The linen cover featuring Josh Kirby's artwork from the Discworld novel Mort, originally published in 1987, has genuine leather lining and trimming, with Sir Terry's signature mounted on...

UK’s Waterstones tweets “first ever paperback books” — well, not quite
August 1, 2013 | 10:28 am

Leading UK retail book chain Waterstones has proudly tweeted a picture of early Penguins via its official Twitter account, declaring: "On this day, 1935. The first ever paperback books, from @PenguinUKBooks, were published." Only, were they? As you might expect of such an obvious and sensible idea, Allen Lane's line of Penguin Books, launched in England in 1935, were not the first paper-covered mass-market publications. In fact, they date back more than 150 years, to the days of "yellowback" publications, introduced in the 1850s to provide cheap literature to the railway-going public. Venerable publishing houses like Routledge & Sons and Ward...

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