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Books Star Wars Prequels Entertainment

Star Wars Books Released As Ebooks 70

Posted by timothy
from the some-of-them-are-truly-awful dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Tomorrow all of the Star Wars books that have not previously been released as ebooks are being released. This includes the Zahn books that started the Star Wars book explosion, as well as older books such as Alan Dean Foster's Splinter of the Mind's Eye, which was written prior to certain revelations in The Empire Strikes Back."
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Star Wars Books Released As Ebooks

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  • They're being SOLD as ebooks - so you can buy them, AGAIN. What would be truly interesting news is if they GAVE AWAY the ebooks.

  • Because it is in fact TODAY that the release happened. At around midnight in the US Amazon released the books to Kindles, and I'd presume other ebook services were similar.

    Note to editors: Edit you lazy bastards. Either get on actually approving things in the Q so they go out when they make sense or take the time to update the language to match the release. That is, after all, the job of an editor. The job is not "Sit around and click "approve sometimes".

  • by Lumpy (12016)

    Will be cracked and on Pirate bay 32 seconds later....

    Here is a question.. What is the difference between me scanning a book I own and turning it into an ebook or instead, downloading a pirate copy of an ebook that I own in paper form?

    I think it's legal, But, I am sure the companies lawyers think I am bin-laden level of evil...

    • You can scan or copy any book you won as long as you don't distribute the scans or copies AND you retain possession of the original book. If you scan the book and then turn around and sell it you no longer have rights to the book and have to delete/destroy the scan or copies.

    • by Carik (205890)

      Legally speaking, scanning it yourself is probably allowed as long as you don't share it. Downloading a pirate copy is illegal.

      Ethically, I personally don't see a difference between the two, since the end result is the same. Neither one costs the author anything, and neither one gains anyone else anything. That said, if there IS a for-purchase ebook version, I'll buy that over scanning my own: I want the authors I like to keep writing, and the only way for that to happen is if they keep making money on

      • Depending on the book, the author may not be making any money; Mike Stackpole [stormwolf.com] was paid a flat fee in lieu of royalties on some of his titles, for example.
        • by vlm (69642)

          Depending on the book, the author may not be making any money; Mike Stackpole [stormwolf.com] was paid a flat fee in lieu of royalties on some of his titles, for example.

          In the ultra-short-term, yes. In the long term, if the publisher doesn't earn the flat fee thru sales, the future opportunity goes away both for that individual and all authors as a group.

          In all honesty, I think book publishing should be flat fee for all, after all, I don't get royalties every time someone clicks a "href" or shoves a packet thru my routers. There is no economic risk of "warehouses full of unsold (e)books"

          • In the ultra-short-term, yes. In the long term, if the publisher doesn't earn the flat fee thru sales, the future opportunity goes away both for that individual and all authors as a group.

            For new titles, sure. But the specific titles in question are a decade old; I can't help but think that it's too long term for the publisher to care about whether or not the book earned out (that would've happened in the first couple of years, I'd think—the same period that was paid for upfront).

            In all honesty, I think book publishing should be flat fee for all, after all, I don't get royalties every time someone clicks a "href" or shoves a packet thru my routers. There is no economic risk of "warehouses full of unsold (e)books"

            That's a terrible analogy, unless by "your routers" you mean ones that you built and sold yourself. You're right that there's no economic risk, which is an argument for cutting down on the royalty portion for

      • by jitterman (987991)
        I have no ethical issues with downloading if I already bought a physical copy. I buy R.R. Martin / S. Donaldson books in hardcover, and then I grab electronic copies from questionable sources. I paid for the text. I'm not giving the physical book to someone else after downloading it. I have no problems in paying the author, editor, publisher, and distributor for the work then putting it in a format that's more convenient for me to use. But I'm not going to scan in 1100 pages just because it's legal to do so
        • by NiteShaed (315799)

          I have no ethical issues with downloading if I already bought a physical copy.

          This seems perfectly reasonable to me. I'm currently getting a novel I wrote ready to go on sale, so I've really given a lot of thought to this from the position of an author (no, I'm not famous, and almost certainly won't get rich from this, but I've thought it through anyway). Personally, what I'd love to do is somehow link the book sale so that if someone purchases a physical copy, they get some kind of coupon or code that en

          • by jitterman (987991)
            It's nice to get honest insight from someone with a personal stake in things. I wonder if a book could offer a digital copy in the way that the "Blu-Ray combo packs" have begun to do with films. I hope you at the very least get a sense of personal accomplishment, if not wealth beyond imagining. Congrats on getting published, certainly. Feel free to shamelessly plug your book, by the way! If it sounds like something I'd enjoy, I'll buy a copy.
      • by cdrguru (88047)

        Most publishers are using a copyright statement that prohibits scanning or any other conversion and storage in an "electronic data system". With this copyright statement I do not believe it would be permissible to scan the book or do anything else that results in the text in any digital form.

        These copyright statements became pretty popular in the 1970s, so don't blame e-readers.

        • by Sabriel (134364)

          Most publishers are using a copyright statement that prohibits scanning or any other conversion and storage in an "electronic data system". With this copyright statement I do not believe it would be permissible to scan the book or do anything else that results in the text in any digital form.

          I believe you mean "statement of claims the publisher happened to place alongside the actual copyright notice"; if the publisher wants to enforce them their lawyer can show up with the contract we signed - oh wait, we

    • "I think it's legal, But, I am sure the companies lawyers think I am bin-laden level of evil..."
      Don't be stupid.......
      I'm sure the companies lawyers find you to be far more evil than Bin Laden. After all Bin Laden may have killed people BUT YOU ARE SCREWING WITH THEIR PROFITS...IP is far more important to the companies lawyers than silly little things like human lives.

    • they have been out on torrent sites for years. There is a ton of stuff out there that has already been scanned in. There is a 24 GB torrent of just e-books.

    • by 1u3hr (530656)

      Here is a question.. What is the difference between me scanning a book I own and turning it into an ebook or instead, downloading a pirate copy of an ebook that I own in paper form?

      The one you make from a scan is likely to be full of typos and crappy formatting, unless you spend quite a while cleaning it up. Noticed the unintelligible text you see in Google's Recaptchas? Half of those are from actual scans of books that they couldn't work out automatically.

      Unfortunately, a lot of pirate e-books are made like that.... Hopefully more will be digital conversions rather than OCR as time goes by.

      Though you probably weren't asking about the quality but the morality. The latter is a perso

  • can anyone explain the last table of TFA? I could understand zero as a marketing event but a negative price seems rather unusual...

    • by Aladrin (926209)

      Parsing mistakes. If you find one of the -1.00 books and go to Amazon for it, it has a positive price. (The one I looked for had $2.99.)

    • by Mashiki (184564)

      Personally I find the $7.99 price, on a $6.99(US)($9.99cdn) paperback to be rather expensive. I already own most of these, simply because I like books and buy stuff I might eventually read. But I think I'll just wait for them to be cracked, and download them out of fucking spite for charging so much.

  • At last we'll have these in the EBook format that George Lucas always intended
  • Yay, I can digitize my Star Wars X-Wing collection... in a couple years when the prices are actually lower then when I first bought the books... um.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    What a guy! He wrote the first book based on a computer game (Shadowkeep), lots of movie 'novelizations' (including Star Trek in 2009), but also a lot of original work. I really loved the Spellsinger series, though I think the Commonwealth books are best known. He seems to have a really relaxed relationship with his work, but at the same time the joy of writing really shines through in his books. In this he reminds me of Neal Stephenson.

  • Are these the ones where Greedo shoots first?
  • I actually own a copy of Splinter of the Mind's Eye that I got for free. Even for Star Wars books it is campy, but that may have been it doesn't fit with the movies. I mostly keep it because I like odd, old, or significant books and this was definitely one of the odder ones I have come across. It is actually in pretty good shape. If you haven't read Splinter of the Mind's Eye it might be worth reading but if you can get a free copy I would suggest it because it doesn't really fit with the rest of the Star W
    • by zegota (1105649) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [citanafgpr]> on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @09:31AM (#36596266)
      It doesn't fit with the movies mainly because it was written before most of them. It was intended to be the sequel to Star Wars in the event that the original movie didn't do well enough to warrant a film sequel. Thus, there are some plot points that seem hilarious to us now, mainly that Luke and Leia have quite a few romantic thoughts about each other. The fact that Lucas allowed this should be pretty good proof that Luke and Leia were not siblings from the beginning.
      • by vlm (69642) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @09:44AM (#36596462)

        Thus, there are some plot points that seem hilarious to us now, mainly that Luke and Leia have quite a few romantic thoughts about each other. The fact that Lucas allowed this should be pretty good proof that Luke and Leia were not siblings from the beginning.

        Well, Tatooine did kind of look like the desert outside Vegas, and what happens in Tatooine stays in Tatooine...

      • I read that book so long ago. I don't remember much, but one thing I really appreciated at the time was that after being tied up all day Halla really needed to use the bathroom. Never before (and maybe never since) had I read a book where a character had this basic human need.

      • by elrous0 (869638) *

        It makes perfect sense when you realize that Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru were also brother and sister, and that Tatooine is a VERY lonely place.

      • by Darinbob (1142669)

        It should be obvious to most that Lucas did not have any grand plan for Star Wars. Like most people he just makes it up as he goes along, and also like most people he lies about it. He takes it further than most though and is a pioneer in revisioning.

    • by sticks_us (150624)

      Yeah!

      Glad to see someone else likes (tolerates?) this book. I remember reading it a looong time ago (~1980) and although it introduces a lot of stuff that wasn't present in the original movies, it seemed to hang together pretty well.

      I'm sure some kind of "leap of faith" is required for any of these books.

      • by Noexit (107629)

        I read and loved the crap out of all three of the Han Solo books when I was a kid. It's been probably, oh, 100 years or so since I last picked one up so I have no idea how I'd like them now, but I sure remember having a lot of fun with them then.

        • I too enjoyed Brian Daley's Han Solo books (Han Solo at Star's End, Han Solo's Revenege, Han Solo and the Lost Legacy) back in the day. They were some of the first Star Wars books and predate Return of the Jedi.

          I re-read, after 10 years or more, through the Han Solo books on a motorcycle trip through Vermont and New York (need something to do in the motel). I thought they held up very well, actually. The stories are not deep, but the books are very easy to get into, what I would call a 'page-turner' or

  • I would actually buy them but they are DRM encumbered. I like the Zahn books, but borrowed them from the library when I read them. It just isn't worth paying for something that I can't use in a convenient way and can be taken away from me at the whims of some execs and lawyers.
  • I've read about 10 or 15 Star Wars books and enjoyed them to varying degrees.

    The first one I read was Allegiance by Timothy Zahn. It was about the "Emperor's Hand" and "Hand of Justice" and I liked it. It takes place just after Episode 4. Some other books I've read that happen around the time of the original trilogy I didn't like as much. For example, Shadows of the Empire by Steve Perry (not the lead singer of Journey) takes place between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi and it was decent. Th

    • by jpmoney (323533)

      I've been reading the Fate of the Jedi series lately and its been enjoyable. Its pretty long-winded though which leads you to wonder how much of a cash-in it is that it is planned at 9 books.

      I also fondly remember reading the Zahn books around when they came out. I was much younger then and I re-read them about a year and a half ago. They're still pretty good and got me back into the rest of the SW books.

  • The first few chapters of the Zahn books were rewritten to include an improbable story about an eight-year old boy building his own robot, racing pods, and seducing a twenty-something queen. Its the vision Lucas always had from the beginning.

  • IF only Lucas had decided to make a bunch of offshoot movies based around this... oh well. They're a great read. Aaron Allston and Timothy Zhan are great writers.
    • Michael Stackpole has also written a whole bunch of great X-wing books as well.
    • At some point someone is going to make more Star Wars flicks. Maybe not Lucas, but he isn't going to last forever and someone will wave heap loads of money in front of his kids' faces and that'll be it. They might even be better films without Lucas's involvement.

  • I hope they don't go down in value because of this!
    • by dadioflex (854298)
      Your original multi-million-selling books are probably going to hold their value just fine. Although the Kindle editions are likely already priced higher.
  • ...as far as I can see. There are only a handful of Zahn book in the UK Kindle store. Hey ho.

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