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April 20, 2007


patti abbott

This is what happened with the Detroit Free Press and the single page itself is almost impossible to find, stuck at the end of a section you wouldn't think to look in and no entry in the index on the front page.

Tim Maleeny

The mass exodus from newspapers to getting news, reviews and information online is no longer isolated to young readers because the newspapers themselves are culpable in their own demise, giving people less original content, fewer new voices, and moving perversely into the business of "linking" to someone else's story.

Roddy Reta

It's easy to focus on the negative, but let's not forget the virtual explosion of quality websites, blogs, and podcasts devoted to fiction.

In my opinion, these web-based resources are far superior to any book review section I ever remember reading in my youth.

David J. Montgomery

I think you're talking about two different things, Roddy. Sure, it's good that there is coverage devoted to books on the internet. But that doesn't mean it's not bad that the print coverage is drying up. I don't think the two are substitute goods.

There are significant differences in both quality and readership between web-based reviews and what you'd find in a good newspaper section.

The readership of a site like this one (which admittedly isn't particularly popular) is only a tiny fraction of what I get when I write for a newspaper.

There's also that fact that most internet writing doesn't pay, which brings in several additional considerations.

I just don't see any positive aspects to newspapers cutting their book coverage.

karen terry

I live in Albany GA and I would buy the Atlanta Const. every Sunday. We are no longer getting the paper, because the journal says that they weren't making enough money here. I guess we do not read in South GA. It is sad that they are getting rid of their book review section. I use to read it all the time because I am a reader.

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David J. Montgomery is a writer and critic specializing in books and publishing. He is an emeritus columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and The Daily Beast, and has also written for USA Today, the Washington Post, and other fine publications. A former professor of History, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and two daughters.

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