Big e-book news today, though a little too late for the many, many trees that were claimed by J.K. Rowling’s best-selling series (450 million copies!). Harry Potter’s coming to an e-reader near you. And in a move that’s sure spark breathless analysis of the book publishing industry, Rowling is publishing the e-books herself.
The buzz surrounding Pottermore, a new site based on the books’ wizarding universe, has yielded some interesting revelations, but the one that’s most likely to excite fans that are sick of carrying around those thick tomes is the upcoming availability of the books in e-book form. Though it’s hard to believe, you can’t currently (and legally) get e-book versions of Rowling’s books. Go ahead, check Amazon. I’ll wait…
Pricing will be announced in October, coinciding with Pottermore’s launch and presumably close to the e-books’ release. And don’t worry, plans call for support for all the popular e-book readers, including Amazon’s Kindle and Apple’s iPad.
Overall, it’s a smart move. Now that the book series is over and the final movie hits theaters soon, Harry Potter universe is entering a quieter stage of its lifecycle. Making the books easier to acquire on e-readers and mobile devices, and in light of the e-book sales explosion at both Amazon and Barnes & Noble, the switch to digital could add some low-overhead, highly profitable longevity to the Potter universe.