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Old 07-28-2007, 01:35 PM   #1
glop glop
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eBook resources

Hi all, Just joined!

Apologies if this is the wrong forum for this query it seemed the right one from the title.

I recently bought a Sony PRS500 Reader and I'm really pleased with it, an excellent bit of hardware.

The problem is I am having real trouble finding eBooks to put on the bloody thing. Now I have been through the usual resources which I've found through this site :
  • Open Library, Internet Archive's book scanning project
  • The Open Library
  • Gutenberg
  • Scribd
  • Textbook Revolution
  • FullBooks.com
  • www.freetechbooks.com
  • manybooks.net
  • ebookee.com
  • ebookshare.net
  • dbeBooks.com
  • World eBook Library Consortia
  • eBooksBay
  • The Burgomeister's Books
  • etc... etc... etc...

But am unable to find a decent source of ebooks.

Specifically I have a number of books here in paper form that have been sitting on my "to read" list for a while, since I now have the reader I'm wanting to get/obtain/rebuy or whatever in eBook form but it seems next to impossible to find them :
  • Deep Survival - Laurence Gonzales
  • The Weirdstone of Brisgamen - Alan Garner
  • Bollocks to Alton Towers
  • Papillon - Henri de Charriere
  • Jonathan Livingston Seagull - Richard Bach

Does anyone know of any good eBook resources that I might not have come across (unlikely) that could stock these or are there any "secret" scanning groups for the frustrated reader owner who scan these things in and share among themselves?

It is looking like my next step is to buy a HP 5590, hack my paper books to bits and scan these things in myself which to be honest seems a bit rubbish since really I might as well just read the actual book instead!

So much potential wasted. I just want to be able to buy any book that takes my fancy in eBook form and read the damn thing, is that too much to ask.

Yours disappointed in his reader.
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Old 07-28-2007, 10:11 PM   #2
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I have no idea if the books you've listed are available for purchase as ebooks. That said, it's not the fault of your reader if they are not. It's the fault of the publishers.

Have you checked out the ebook database here for LOTS of good ebooks to read?

If you purchase LIT format ebooks, you can remove the DRM with CLIT and use lit2lrf or Book Designer to convert them into LRF format for your Reader. You can also purchase books at Sony's Connect store if you are in the USA. For your $50 book credit, just register saying that you are in the USA and you'll get your credit once you authorize your reader and thee Computer Connect is installed on.

All that said, if you still need any help, please ask. And please check out the stickies in the Sony Reader Content forum where I've just moved this thread since that is the appropriate place for it to live.

P.S. You won't find anyone helping you get those book illegally. Just legally if they exist in ebook form for purchase.

P.P.S. I've just checked and the books you've listed are not available for purchase as ebooks.
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Old 07-29-2007, 04:16 AM   #3
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Thanks for the suggestions, yes I've signed up to Connect with false credentials, (isn't it crazy we have to do this?), I've also seen that there is a helpful member here who will buy vouchers. I've also seen the book conversion tools. But I have to say the range of books available to purchase even using these methods is woeful.

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P.P.S. I've just checked and the books you've listed are not available for purchase as ebooks.
Yeah, 100% of the books I currently want to buy are not available, that says it all, what a sad state of affairs.

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P.S. You won't find anyone helping you get those book illegally. Just legally if they exist in ebook form for purchase.
Well I don't really want to get into an argument about what is stealing and what is not but I am just trying to get books I already own, they are sitting here right on my shelf, additionally they are books that are not being made available in ebook form. I am faced with 3 options :
  • Read the book in paper form (what did I buy a reader again for!)
  • Laboriously scan the book in myself, this seems pointless as I might as well just read the book itself and save destroying the book (again what did I buy a reader for)
  • Download it via a torrent site or such, given I already own the book in question I see this as fair, if I can find it paid I will buy it there and "support the format"

I am not blaming the eReader as such, as I say I think it is a great bit of hardware, it is the supply of eBooks that are at fault.

It's like buying an mp3 player but only being able to listen to music made over 90 years ago or a very limited subset of anything recent. For example can we buy the new Harry Potter eBook? Can we buggery. As I say it is a sad state of affairs and I have to say that to me it seems an eBook reader is not really a good purchase for an avid "reader".
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Old 07-29-2007, 04:44 AM   #4
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Thanks for the suggestions, yes I've signed up to Connect with false credentials, (isn't it crazy we have to do this?)
No, it's a matter of book distribution rights. Just like iTunes, for its first couple of years of existance, was US only. When the Reader is released in the UK (which I'm guessing is where you are from your use of language) Connect will open up to UK customers.

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  • Download it via a torrent site or such, given I already own the book in question I see this as fair, if I can find it paid I will buy it there and "support the format"
The problem is the thieving scum who download it who have not bought it. You may consider it "fair" but don't kid yourself that it's legal.

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It's like buying an mp3 player but only being able to listen to music made over 90 years ago or a very limited subset of anything recent. For example can we buy the new Harry Potter eBook? Can we buggery. As I say it is a sad state of affairs and I have to say that to me it seems an eBook reader is not really a good purchase for an avid "reader".
It depends what it is that one avidly reads. Personally I have a reading list of out-of-copyright classics that's long enough to last me several lifetimes, topped up with the DRM-free SF/Fantasy books I buy each month from Baen.
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Old 07-29-2007, 07:29 AM   #5
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No, it's a matter of book distribution rights. Just like iTunes, for its first couple of years of existance, was US only. When the Reader is released in the UK (which I'm guessing is where you are from your use of language) Connect will open up to UK customers.
Well the Connect comment was just a reply to JSWolf's helpful suggestion, just like every other UK PRS500 reader here I can "illegally" obtain books through Connect if I want. The real problem is the poor range of choice available on Connect (and other eBook stores).


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The problem is the thieving scum who download it who have not bought it. You may consider it "fair" but don't kid yourself that it's legal.
I'm not sure where you are going with this but I don't think the act of downloading is illegal per se is it? AINAL!

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It depends what it is that one avidly reads. Personally I have a reading list of out-of-copyright classics that's long enough to last me several lifetimes, topped up with the DRM-free SF/Fantasy books I buy each month from Baen.
Yes absolutely, I think you are in the minority though. I think the majority of people get a recommendation of a book from a friend or spot something interesting in the bestseller list, in these cases the vast majority of the time the book in question will not be available in an eBook form.

Last edited by glop glop; 07-29-2007 at 07:39 AM.
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Old 07-29-2007, 07:48 AM   #6
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I'm not sure where you are going with this but I don't think the act of downloading is illegal per se is it? AINAL!
Certainly it's illegal to download copyrighted material. Whether it's a civil or a criminal offence depends on the circumstances, but it's unquestionably illegal. Both the RIAA in the US and the British equivalent, the BPI, have prosecuted downloaders of music, and downloading books is no less illegal.
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:01 AM   #7
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The real problem is the poor range of choice available on Connect (and other eBook stores).
That may be the real problem, but it's definitely not the root of the problem. Just as it was in the early days of digital music, it's the content providers that are the holdup. Sony put a great deal of effort into getting the publishers on board. Considering the glacial pace of evolution in the publishing industry, I'm surprised Sony has accomplished as much as it has.
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:04 AM   #8
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That may be the real problem, but it's definitely not the root of the problem. Just as it was in the early days of digital music, it's the content providers that are the holdup. Sony put a great deal of effort into getting the publishers on board. Considering the glacial pace of evolution in the publishing industry, I'm surprised Sony has accomplished as much as it has.
One difference, though, is that in a sense it's less important for music, because one can easily convert one's own CDs to a digital format. I have a very large collection of classical and opera CDs, and that's what I do - I've never bought anything from the iTunes store. There's no easy way of converting one's paper books to an electronic format (not to mention the fact that, at least in the UK, it is not legal to do so).
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:28 AM   #9
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There are a lot of bestsellers available as ebooks.

1. The Quickie - James Patterson, Michael Ledwidge
2. The Judas Strain - James Rollins
3. Robert Ludlum's (TM) the Bourne Betrayal - Eric Van Lustbader
4. A Thousand Splendid Suns - Khaled Hosseini
5. Angels Flight - Michael Connelly
6. Up Close and Dangerous - Linda Howard
7. Einstein - Walter Isaacson
8. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
9. High Noon - Nora Roberts
10. The Overlook - Michael Connelly

That is the current list of top ten sellers from Connect as of July 29, 2007.

I know you are not happy abou the selection of ebooks available vs. dead tree editions. But did you bother to do your homework into what's available as ebooks before you bought your Sony Reader?
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:32 AM   #10
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One difference, though, is that in a sense it's less important for music, because one can easily convert one's own CDs to a digital format. I have a very large collection of classical and opera CDs, and that's what I do - I've never bought anything from the iTunes store. There's no easy way of converting one's paper books to an electronic format (not to mention the fact that, at least in the UK, it is not legal to do so).
True. Which makes it all the more puzzling that the publishing industry has been so reluctant to enter the 20th century, not to mention the 21st. The Reader and its ilk should be the biggest boon to both the backlist and the current midlist. OOP books and the huge list of press-to-remainder-bin books could easily have a long, happy life in the digital distribution channel. I have a ton of books on my shelf that I would happily pay $4-$5 to have in digital form.

Since most of their pre-press has been digital for a long time, conversion wouldn't even be a big deal. They could pay for it just by cutting down on the number of ARCs they send out. At work, we get something like fifty review copies a week from every publisher and small press. If they gave people the option of receiving digital ARCs, they'd save a ton.
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:44 AM   #11
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Certainly it's illegal to download copyrighted material.
Now let me stop you right there, such an unqualified statement is obviously false. When talking about what is legal and what is not you cannot make such a general and blanket statement saying that all downloading of copyrighted material is illegal since we all here as eReader owners know that is simply not the case.

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Whether it's a civil or a criminal offence depends on the circumstances, but it's unquestionably illegal.
There are circumstances that make it legal, such as when you've paid for the content!!

Last edited by glop glop; 07-29-2007 at 08:57 AM.
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Old 07-29-2007, 09:02 AM   #12
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I know you are not happy abou the selection of ebooks available vs. dead tree editions. But did you bother to do your homework into what's available as ebooks before you bought your Sony Reader?
I totally agree. Although I'd love to be able to buy any and every book I want in electronic format, I know this just isn't possible yet. Before I bought the reader I knew I was an early (pffffft) adopter and that supply of books wouldn't be ideal. Still, I lurve my reader as there's plenty available out there.

E-book reader owners of the world unite! Perhaps we can show the publishing industry there *is* a viable market for e-books!
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Old 07-29-2007, 09:04 AM   #13
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Now let me stop you right there, such an unqualified statement is obviously false. When talking about what is legal and what is not you cannot make such a general and blanket statement saying that all downloading of copyrighted material is illegal since we all here as eReader owners know that is simply not the case.
I (mistakenly) assumed that you would realise that I was referring to illegal material, such as that which is available on BitTorrent sites, Usenet newsgroups, etc. Clearly it is legal to download copyrighted material with the permission of the copyright holder, such as an item one has just bought from a web site, the books one can download from Baen's free library, etc etc.

Let me rephrase it. It is illegal to download copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright holder, whether that permission is implied or explicit.

It is absolutely illegal to download material such as, for example, "Harry Potter" books from Usenet, etc, regardless of whether or not one has bought the paper book.
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Old 07-29-2007, 09:14 AM   #14
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I (mistakenly) assumed that you would realise that I was referring to illegal material, such as that which is available on BitTorrent sites, Usenet newsgroups, etc. Clearly it is legal to download copyrighted material with the permission of the copyright holder, such as an item one has just bought from a web site, the books one can download from Baen's free library, etc etc.

Let me rephrase it. It is illegal to download copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright holder, whether that permission is implied or explicit.

It is absolutely illegal to download material such as, for example, "Harry Potter" books from Usenet, etc, regardless of whether or not one has bought the paper book.
That makes more sense.

Though I have to say I'd find it hard to imagine any company prosecuting someone for downloading a music album he/she already owns.
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Old 07-29-2007, 09:17 AM   #15
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There are a lot of bestsellers available as ebooks.

1. The Quickie - James Patterson, Michael Ledwidge
2. The Judas Strain - James Rollins
3. Robert Ludlum's (TM) the Bourne Betrayal - Eric Van Lustbader
4. A Thousand Splendid Suns - Khaled Hosseini
5. Angels Flight - Michael Connelly
6. Up Close and Dangerous - Linda Howard
7. Einstein - Walter Isaacson
8. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
9. High Noon - Nora Roberts
10. The Overlook - Michael Connelly

That is the current list of top ten sellers from Connect as of July 29, 2007.
Yeah, unfortunately it has little in common with the top 50 paperback bestsellers.

With the notable exception of the two books by Khaled Hosseini, an enlightened author presumably.

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I know you are not happy abou the selection of ebooks available vs. dead tree editions. But did you bother to do your homework into what's available as ebooks before you bought your Sony Reader?
I just researched the various models and made the mistake of assuming the content would be there, I don't think I'm unusual in this regard.
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