HarperCollins has entered the enhanced e-book market, putting three titles into the iBookstore last week and has plans to do at least five more in the coming months. Ana Maria Allessi, v-p, publisher, HarperMedia, said it is quite possible HC will do additional titles before the end of the year. “We want to do as much experimentation as possible between now and the new year," Allessi said. The three titles now available are Getting the Pretty Back, God is Not One and Louder than Words. Louder, by Joe Navarro, is one of four enhanced e-books that will be reviewed in Monday’s PW, and it features 22 in line videos that illustrate how to read, and use, nonverbal signals in business. To capture the material, HC wrote a shooting script, hired an actor and shot on a number of locations. “Louder is indicative of the type of detail we aspire to,” Allessi said. HC was able to keep costs reasonable by using the production studio it built two years ago, Allessi noted.
She said HC is prepared to include as much material to enhanced e-books as its retail partners can support. Getting the Pretty Back, by Molly Ringwald, has eight author promo videos and 15 clips of Ringwald reading from the book. God is Not One includes an exclusive essay from author Stephen Prothero, a quiz, course guide and author video. Allessi said HC is talking to different retailers this week about what enhancements they would like to see, and what they can support, before adding additional material to titles. “What we are doing is being driven by what can be presented” by retailers, Allessi said.
The first three books have already had print editions released, but HC’s strategy going forward is to release print editions, regular e-books and enhanced e-books simultaneously. Price of the enhanced e-book is $14.99. Allessi sees enhanced e-books as a way to find new readers. “Our job is to entice additional readers to our books by using the functionality of the new devices to provide additional content,” Allessi said. While she acknowledged she has no idea how many copies enhanced e-books might sell Allessi added, “We’re happy to give them a try.”