Silly parents, iPads are for kids (and their books)

Are parents with iPads really going to let their kids use them for reading? The answer seems to be yes.

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    Will your kids want to read on your iPad – or play games?
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Every parent wants his child to read – but on a $499 device? Yes, it seems – if the device is an iPad.

According to Publishers Weekly, "Parents immediately started snapping up picture book apps from Apple's online store. In fact, children's stories held 6 of the top 10 paid iPad book-app sales spots as of press time."

PW goes on to catalog an impressive list of children's book offerings available for the iPad, including some titles being offered for free. Top selling children's lit iPad apps, they note, include "The Cat in the Hat," "Dr. Seuss's ABC," "Toy Story 2 Read-Along," "How to Train Your Dragon," "Miss Spider's Tea Party," and "The Goose that Laid the Golden Egg." In the iBookstore, the bestselling children and teens' titles were "Eclipse," "The Lightning Thief," "Twilight," "Breaking Dawn," and "The Berenstain Bears Go to Sunday School."

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Typical prices for children's book apps range anywhere from $2.99 to $9.99, PW reports.

What does this enthusiastic embrace of digital books for young readers mean for sales of paper-and-ink children's books? Bookstore owners will have to hope that they've got it right over at Disney Publishing Worldwide. Jeanne Mosure, Disney senior vice president and group publisher, told PW that the experience of reading on the iPad "just makes children more excited about the prospect of reading more and buying more books."

Marjorie Kehe is the Monitor's book editor.

Would you encourage your child to read on an iPad? Join the Monitor's book discussion on Facebook and Twitter.

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