The last Harry Potter book, i.e. as of now, is getting launched in the US at 12.01 am i.e. in less than 9 hours. People are queuing up and you know things are serious and global when average book sellers from New Delhi are giving long TV interviews about the prospects of this and related books. Guess the book is launched in New Delhi and points east. And then there is the whole secrecy thing with JK Rowling, the author imploring people not to reveal the ending and be a"spoiler." An account of the global roll-out is here. Amazon.com is teaming up with UPS to deliver 1.3 million copies as their largest ever print run. Forbes painstakingly reports the fortunes of related organizations like the publisher ‘Scholastic" and the various new plans that folks in the hard book business have to come up, now that Harry has grown up. For example, there will be a 7 pack gift set this holiday season for "muggles" who will actually admit to having not read the stuff ! Well there is marketing hope here, as the product will be called a "collectors edition."
On the ground, its interesting to see that the grocer "Stop and Shop" has the book on its weekly flyer and assures patrons that being a 24 hour operation is really going to help-this time. Was at Barnes and Noble a few days ago and they had a rather large tear down calendar with no. of days to go till launch and the University book store sent out a message that the book will be available despite the rather relaxed summer scene. Consider, that we had all thought that books and print will decline with the Internet , online shopping etc. On the contrary the Internet has actually fueled the print industry with more "brick" book stores and book sections at various stores , "spoiler’ videos on the book plot, lots and lots of buzz on community sites ,blogs etc. Best of all, kids worldwide are reading more than ever before.