From Paid Content’s Laura Hazard Owen comes this story about Scholastic Books and their upcoming re-release—in e-book form—of the hit 80’s series “The Babysitters Club.” What makes this story interesting is that the first seven books are, in fact, already available as e-books. But what Scholastic is doing with these new releases is marketing to the nostalgia crowd with original cover art and a relatively low ($5.99) price point.

As the article explains:

“Scholastic has printed over 176 million copies of the BSC books worldwide. The ebooks are being released with their original covers by Hodges Soileau — making it clear that Scholastic is hoping to capitalize on the nostalgia factor here. ‘We want it to be comfort food for the older reader, but at the same time really to get to the new fans,’ Scholastic Editorial Director David Levithan told Entertainment Weekly. Scholastic has also launched a Facebook page with the motto ‘there for you then, there for you now’ for ‘longtime fans.'”

I have to admit, this is an interesting tactic. I read these books as a kid and, while I’m not sure they’re worth $5.99 apiece to me to re-read, I can see how if I had a kid to read them with, that might push me into purchase territory. And if the kid liked them and wanted more …

Alas, all the kids in my life are boys right now, so I will have to pass on the BSC (and the Sweet Valley High reissues also mentioned in the article). But I am curious to see how much money the nostalgia factor might be worth … and I’ll be watching this story for further developments.

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  1. I bought the ‘Famous Five’ series by Enid Blyton when they were released as eBooks. I loved these books as a kid. I’d love to see more of my childhood favourites released as eBooks, but understand that books I enjoyed 30+ years ago are not necessarily going to be enjoyed by kids these days.

  2. There are a lot of scholastic titles from the 60’s and 70’s I’d buy as ebooks if they could be had. Hopefully, even if it’s unlikely, this might catch on 🙂 I’d also like to be able to buy all the Newberry Award books in ebook form. It astounds me they are not available. (Also “Bravo!” to you Ms Cabot for your stand on DRM. Vote with your wallet, even if it is a lost cause.)

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