Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Sound transformed movies in the 1920s and sparked a golden age for Hollywood. Now it’s putting the ‘SO’ of SISOMO (Sight, Sound, Motion) into e-books, mashing together the joy of reading with the emotional pulling power of sound. This is thanks to a new venture called Booktrack, the brainchild of New Zealand brothers Mark and Paul Cameron, which adds soundtracks to stories, intensifying the reading experience by multiplying imagination and emotion. Booktrack supplies both moving music and ambient sound, artfully introduced and shifting mood at the right time based on your reading speed.

Great books are already irresistible; this feels like it could take reading to another place, with the right balance of suggestive sound and the power of the mind. I’m interested in the creative response – will authors work more “aural imagery” into their writing? Will favorite e-book composers emerge? Will consumers create their own soundtracks for titles close to their hearts and share them with their friends? Let’s hope Booktrack turns a new leaf for e-books.