Thursday, 26 June 2008

No Thanks, I'm Just Looking.

One of the true joys of visiting a bookshop is the pleasure of being able to browse, particularly if you're not looking for something specific. Your eyes meander along the shelves, pick out something interesting and before you know it, you've parted with your hard earned cash and added another book to your collection.

Browsing is not a feature that you associate with online stores. Unless you have a specific purchase in mind, looking for something new or different can mean scrolling through lists of books displayed ten at a time until you run out of patience. This is particularly true of "Coming Soon" sections. I like to know what's in the pipeline over the next few months even if I don't have a specific author in mind but quickly tire of these lists.

Now there's Zoomii. This web sites displays books by category as a series of images on a bookshelf. If you see something you like, select it and up pop its details along with a link to Amazon. Want to see what's coming soon, they're all there on the shelves for your perusal.

It's the closest the web has come yet to replicating the browsing experience online. It was founded by Canadian Chris Thiessen who wanted "to bring online as much of the bookstore experience as possible".

I like it a lot. The only drawback from my perspective is that it links to Amazon. Much as I like Amazon, it charges for shipping to Ireland whereas other stores ship for free so I tend to use them a lot more (like The Book Depository who ship free worldwide and just seem that bit more personalised and friendly)

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

It's a Date!

Following on much confusion as a result of The Friday Project's death and subsequent Lazarus-like resurrection when they were taken over by HarperCollins, I was eventually told that The Third Pig Detective Agency would be one of the books taken on by the new (old) company. Woohoo!

Much relief all around as it was a period of uncertainty, wondering if TPDA would be consigned to the also-rans heap.

I've been given a provisional publication date of March 2nd, 2009 and, hopefully, this won't change. Once I have confirmation that the cover has been finalised, I'll put it up here for your delight and delectation.

More news as I get it...