Barbara Hambly: “I love digital”

Barbara Hambly: “I love digital”

If you take a look on the bookshelf of a science fiction/fantasy fan who was into it in the 1980s, you are likely to find a copy of The Time of the Dark by Barbara Hambly.

That’s just one of several Hambly titles in my library in my home.

It’s also the exact kind of book that people say, “Why can’t I get that for my Kindle?”

After all, it used to be a staple in used bookstores, libraries had it…

What if there aren’t used bookstores and your library has worn out all the copies?

What if you moved one time too many, and your copy didn’t make it?

What if you don’t read paperbooks any more, because the text is too small and it’s just too hard to carry them around?

You could buy a paper copy on Amazon…where new copies are $50 for a trade paperback, $15.99 for  a mass market.  You can get a used copy for one penny plus shipping and handling.

You may not want a used copy, though.  You want it in good shape, where tears and spills don’t take you out of the reading experience.  You are going to a different world, after all.

This is where Open Road Media comes into it.

They obtain the rights to “backlist”* titles like this and publish them as e-books.

It was exciting to see a whole slew of Barbara Hambly books show up in the Kindle store on March 29.

Darwath, Windrose, The Winterlands, Sun Wolf…seventeen titles.

Even more rewarding is that Barbara Hambly herself was clearly involved in the decision.

She’s been doing what makes sense to me…writing new digital short stories in old series, and now, publishing the backlist.

Those “further adventures” have been available on her

Official Website

She has a nice opinion piece on the Tor websits

Going Digital by Barbara Hambly

where she talks about this new phase of publishing.

Let me say, she gets it.  🙂

I love this one:

” I have a couple of dozen books on my reader: ideal for a long trip, or an afternoon waiting at the medical clinic.”

Thinking an afternoon needs a couple of dozen books?  My kind of person.  😉

She also sums up the advantages for readers:

“I’m just extremely pleased that if people want my old Del Rey fantasies, they now know where to get them, easily and without fuss.”

Del Rey, by the way, is a wonderful publisher…but unfortunately for me, is part of Random House at this point.  I think Random House has changed it’s policy on blocking text-to-speech access…but I can’t get them to tell me that.  Until I find out more, I’m not buying books from them…so I was very happy to see these new e-book editions didn’t come from them, but from Open Road (which doesn’t block the access).

These are the Darwath novels (in order) to get you started:

Here are all the

Barbara Hambly Open Road titles

Have comments on Barbara Hambly?  Other authors like this you are waiting to see for the Kindle?  Feel free to let me know.

* A “backlist” title is actually a title that is still in print, but not a brand new title.  I’m using the term a bit loosely here.  Why are they called “back” list?  When I managed a brick and mortar bookstore, we would get catalogues from the publishers.  The front of the catalogue would have a picture of the book, maybe author tour dates, that kind of thing.  The back of the catalogue pretty much just a listing of titles of books…books we already knew that didn’t need that kind of hype to get us to buy them.  I believe that’s why they are called “backlist”, although I’m not positive that’s the origin.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

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