Australian publishers who have already signed with Booki.sh can make advance reader copies available to reviewers and booksellers. Allen & Unwin will be making digital proofs available in June, joining Black Inc., Scribe and Affirm Press, all of whom are using it now.
This caught my eye because of comments I’ve heard from a couple small publishers. They would like to release digital proofs through NetGalley, but they feel that NetGalley is simply too expensive for the handful of titles they release each year. Booki.sh, on the other hand, offers this service for free (if the publisher signs up for Booki.sh to distribute its eBooks).
Booki.sh can afford to offer this as a free service because it’s not your ordinary eBook distributor. It doesn’t distribute copies of an eBook; all of its stock is based in the cloud. If a publisher wants to let someone read an eBook, all it has to do is pass along a link.
There is a downside; the eBooks are cloud based, so you won’t be able to load them on to a device. But you should be able to read them on any browser, which means smartphones, tablets, and the iPad are still possible.