These are uncertain times for the book industry, which is one reason former Virgin Books Publisher Ken Siman is trying out a new model. He's launching a line of lavish, full-color illustrated books, each of which will be published simultaneously with a mobile application that he's trademarked EbookExtreme.
“We only publish if the book is suitable as both a book and an app,” said Mr. Siman, who previewed Siman Media Works at the Frankfurt Book Fair last week. “What I've learned is that if you're going to do a book, make it a beautiful book. And the app must blow you away.”
The Manhattan-based imprint will launch March 1 with XCIA's Street Art Project: The First Four Decades a collection of four decades of photos by CIA agent-turned-photographer Hank O'Neal, who specializes in pictures of street art. The book sells for $39.95; the iPad app, which includes a slide show, an animated short and videos, for $12.95. An iPhone app will go for $4.95.
The privately backed imprint will put out six books next year and a dozen in 2013.