f all the "lame" ideas, said Laura Miller in Salon. Simon & Schuster has teamed up with a multimedia partner to release four "vooks"—video-book hybrids. "Injecting a bit of video into a mediocre story is not going to suddenly make it compelling." And "for $7.99 I can buy a paperback romance novel and in my mind's eye cast Clive Owen as the lead, while a vook is only able to deliver a struggling unknown from the dinner-theater circuit."
"Vooks take the idea of e-books and expand it," said Carolyn Yates in The McGill Tribune, creating "a whole new user experience" by adding video to the act of reading. "For fiction, video advances the story as well as enhancing it, while for nonfiction, the dual-media integration allows for greater clarity and more in-depth information."
"I'm a purist when it comes to the reading experience," said Dave Rosenthal in The Baltimore Sun, but I think Simon & Schuster "is moving in the right direction" with vooks. "Just as the Internet opened up sound and video for newspapers, vooks (or whatever else they get called) can broaden the dimensions of the printed page." And "this is just the start of the book's evolution, so let's see where the technology can take us."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why are so many elderly Asians killing themselves?
- Why I'm sick and tired of seeing naked women on HBO
- Why ABC threw its Bachelor under the bus
- Why Ted Cruz is the real-life Frank Underwood
- Driverless cars may be an environmental disaster
- 22 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Here's how Iran is covering Russia's invasion of Crimea
- Here's proof that Justin Bieber is just as spoiled as you always thought
- Watch Zach Galifianakis get annoyed at President Obama on Between Two Ferns
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
Subscribe to the Week