New York Public Library Launches New Series of Free eBooks

The NYPL is one of the oldest and largest public libraries in the US, and the nice thing about their size and age is that they have an extensive archive of old and rare books, images, and more. Yesterday they announced plans to digitize selections from their image gallery archives and make them available via iBooks. The first title has already been released.

The inaugural issue, Kenn Duncan's Male Photography, features the photographer's stunning portraits of male actors of the late 1960s – 1980s, such as Christopher Walken, William Hurt, and Sal Mineo, and is a perfect complement to the Library's 2008 collaboration on Divas!, which highlighted Duncan's images of actresses such as Bette Midler, Angela Landsbury, and others.

If you don't have iBooks, you can also view the gallery on the NYPL website. I definitely think it's worth a look, if only for the photos of a very young Christopher Walken.

The ebook can only be had via iBooks 2, which means it was likely made with iBooks Author. It's a shame that the NYPL choose to unnecessarily limit their audience in this way. This ebook is only a photo gallery, so virtually any Epub app would have been adequate. And I have flipped through the ebook, so I can confidently state that it would have had a much larger readership if only it were made available to the world beyond Apple's clutches.

A pox upon all who settle on a single proprietary format and ignore the rest of us.




About Nate Hoffelder (11463 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

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