Checking availability of titles on eBooks
August 5, 2010 11:13 PM   Subscribe

I'm starting to consider getting an e-reader, mainly because the books I'm really keen on are unavailable in my local library system and are hardly available in Australian bookstores (and are too expensive otherwise). However, I'm not sure if the books I'm after are actually available in any eBook format. Is there a way to find this out?

The books I'm after tend to fall into categories of performance art, feminism, gender and queer theory, sexuality, cultural theory, and activism. They run the gamut in terms of release years, though I'd posit that most of them come from the early 90s onwards.

From what I understand, most eBooks tend to be shop-specific, so just because you can find a certain book as an eBook on, say, Amazon doesn't mean you can find it on Sony. But is there a way to find out which titles have eBook versions available, and what format they're in? And perhaps what prices they go for?

Also apparently just because something is an eBook in the USA doesn't mean it's available as one in Australia. How likely is that to happen with the sort of books I mean?
posted by divabat to Technology (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Well, Amazon and Apple are poised as the two giants battling in the e-reader field.
Their websites have catalogs of e-books they have available as well as e-books that are coming soon.

Hope that helps :)
posted by fantodstic at 11:30 PM on August 5, 2010

Amazon Kindle books


Apple iBooks

posted by fantodstic at 11:35 PM on August 5, 2010

if the books aren't available in australia, the ebooks you are looking for might not be available either. you might need a usa-based credit card or gift card to make purchases.
posted by overbo at 11:41 PM on August 5, 2010

You'll probably find that you are limited to whatever is available from an Australian supplier. So if you went with an iPhone or iPad, you'd be limited to the itunes Australian store. Amazon you would have to check on the UK or US site - I don't think they have an Oz version. Maybe google to see if there is an Oz ebook provider?

If you went down the copyright infringing route you'd have more luck but possibly not for what you are looking for. is great but infringing, and sticks to more like a not in public domain modern classics selection. I also print interesting looking websites to pdf and read them on my iphone through ibooks later (you can import pdfs or traditional ebook format straight into itunes now - fabulous!
posted by nunoidia at 11:51 PM on August 5, 2010

Inkmesh is a pretty good source of information about which books are in E format and either free, or to buy from various providers. If the Ebook format is not compatible with your reader then a free program like Calibre can help.
posted by adamvasco at 12:48 AM on August 6, 2010 [4 favorites]

Inkmesh is EXACTLY what I'm after yay! Thank you!
posted by divabat at 1:02 AM on August 6, 2010

divabat : - Credit where credit due. It's all thanks to stbalbach
posted by adamvasco at 1:40 AM on August 6, 2010

If a title isn't available in ebook format, will easily let you compare the shipped price from a number of online resellers (which usually ends up being bookdepsitory).
posted by cwhitfcd at 4:34 AM on August 6, 2010

I wonder if there's a way to combine and Inkmesh. See if the book's available electronically, otherwise what's the cheapest way to get it?
posted by divabat at 2:50 AM on August 9, 2010

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