Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Choose your format

Per Publisher's Weekly yesterday, Bantam Dell is starting a new imprint, Bantam Discovery, that will release novels in trade pb and mass-market pb simultaneously. "Whether to publish a book in mass market or trade paperback is one of the toughest decisions in the editorial boardroom, according to Bantam Dell’s senior v-p and executive director of publicity, Barb Burg," PW reports.

The new line seems geared towards women's fiction initially, but Bantam Dell publishes a fair number of historicals, so I wonder if we'll be seeing some of them here too.

Simultaneous publication in both formats is common in the UK, but not in the US.

Given the choice, and given identical content, would you purchase a $13.99(ish) trade paperback over a $7.99 mass market one? Remember, also, that Amazon discounts most trade paperbacks to $10-something, while mass markets usually get no discount at all.

I admit I'd probably pony up the extra $2ish for the trade size...


  1. For a longer book I'd go for trade--easier to hold and read than a big thick mass-market paperback. Otherwise, I'd probably be cheap, unless the trade version had interior type that was easier to read than the mass-market version.

  2. I'd probably buy the trade if I had a choice. I agree with Susan -they are easier to hold. Plus, I just think they look nicer.

  3. I also find that mass market pbs get lost on my shelves, since most of my collection is hardcover or trade.

  4. I'd choose the mass market paperback - I do most of my reading on the tram going to and from work, and a small paperback is easier to slip into my bag. ;)

  5. Anonymous1:08 AM

    As a writer who's recently been re-issued in trade, I find this very interesting :-). I think I'd go for the trade version as well, given the choice. They hold up better (most important for me, as I tend to keep books) and they do fit better on shelves with hardcovers.