HarperCollins Releases E-book Ahead of Hardcover Edition

For the first time, HarperCollins will release an e-book before the print edition, The New York Times reported. “Muhammad,” a fictionalized biography of the Prophet Muhammed by Deepak Chopra, was made available for purchase in e-book form Sept. 8, weeks prior to the hardcover release on Sept. 21.

According to The Times, HarperCollins authorized e-book retailers to begin selling the book in order to meet demand for it in light of the current national debate around a planned Islamic community center and mosque near Ground Zero, the site of the Sept. 11 World Trade Center attacks in New York City.

“Books spark conversations, and in this case a national conversation has erupted,” Michael Morrison, the president and publisher of HarperCollins’s general books division for the United States and Canada, said in a statement that was quoted in The New York Times article. “As the publisher, we want our titles to be available in a timely manner to meet consumer demand and increase readership for our authors; digital publishing allows us to react quickly to achieve these goals.”

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