The Paperback Revolution

Sponsored by Blinkist. The first 100 people who go to are going to get unlimited access for one week to try it out. You'll also get 25% off if you want the full membership.
Today, the most popular book format in the world is not a traditional hardcover book, nor an ebook, but a paperback- a format that changed the what, how, when and how much the world reads. It is history that deserves to be remembered.
This is original content based on research by The History Guy. Images in the Public Domain are carefully selected and provide illustration. As very few images of the actual event are available in the Public Domain, images of similar objects and events are used for illustration.
You can purchase the bow tie worn in this episode at The Tie Bar:
All events are portrayed in historical context and for educational purposes. No images or content are primarily intended to shock and disgust. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Non censuram.
Find The History Guy at:
Facebook: TheHistoryGuyYT/
Please send suggestions for future episodes:
The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered is the place to find short snippets of forgotten history from five to fifteen minutes long. If you like history too, this is the channel for you.
Subscribe for more forgotten history:
Awesome The History Guy merchandise is available at:
Script by THG
#history #thehistoryguy #Books

Татаж авах

Үзсэн тоо


  • Thank you THG For reminding us about something we simply take for granted.

    Christine ReedChristine Reed2 цагийн өмнө
  • Paperback versus e-Books comes down to price. I don't know how many times I've seen the e-Book be the same price or more expensive than the paperback. The selling point that e-Books weigh less is not a selling point to me if they cost more.

    DeltaDemon1DeltaDemon17 өдрийн өмнө
  • (15:28) Radio commentator H.V. Kaltenborn (born in Merrill Wisconsin) was famed for his greeting, "Good evening mister and missus America and all the ships at sea - FLASH!"

    Paul GriegerPaul Grieger9 өдрийн өмнө
  • 16:05 Not any more.

    Lili Von ShtupLili Von Shtup12 өдрийн өмнө
  • I have been almost exclusively reading ebooks for a decade now. The reason is simple, adjustable font. My eyesight has been getting worse for more than 10 years now. I used to never wear glasses. Then I started wearing reading glasses. Now I wear bifocals everywhere but in the shower and in bed. But even with glasses it's still easier to read larger fonts. I prefer reading on an iPad to an e-ink reader like a Kindle.

    Michael McChesneyMichael McChesney15 өдрийн өмнө
  • This episode could easily be translated into the history of technology in the ability of anyone to access music. From “you had to be there” was in fact the only way you could get at good music, to today when you don't. Yet there is an unsatisfactory aspect. People crave real people making real music LIVE. Yeah..I'm a frustrated musician this year. Well done Mr. (Lance) Guy and Co.

    Fred HerfstFred Herfst16 өдрийн өмнө
  • 17:47 - If there's a subject remembered from another book or two, I might have all three blocked open to the relevant pages on the table, referring back and forth. And then, the shelves are arranged so European history is on these shelves, Asian over here, American (N. and S.) there; dunno how to do either with E-books.

    Current BatchesCurrent Batches16 өдрийн өмнө
  • I'm not sure e-book readers will persist in the long term, as distinct devices. Eventually it may just be that you have access to your e-book, by whatever arrangement, and can read it on whatever device is most convenient. It might be stored on a tiny chip you possess, or might just be in the Cloud. But the display device could be almost anything-including a bound paperback, printed on demand, if you simply must have one.

    Ronald GarrisonRonald Garrison17 өдрийн өмнө
  • 3:55 EWWWWW!!

    Ronald GarrisonRonald Garrison17 өдрийн өмнө
  • FANTASTIC doc ❤️

    Behind the SpotlightBehind the Spotlight17 өдрийн өмнө
  • I was in London when the 50th aniversary (1985) of Penguin. 2020 was the year of 3 long Alexander Dumas novels.

    Lorenzo BeckmannLorenzo Beckmann17 өдрийн өмнө
  • @History Guy - Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a paperback charger? Not even _Amazon_ carries them! In all seriousness, my kids like reading real books more than e-books.

    MrLes BergMrLes Berg17 өдрийн өмнө
  • Love your video. I remember learning some of this from a book called Book Business: Publishing: Past, Present, and Future by Jason Epstein, but definitely learned a lot of new things from your video. :) Thanks for sharing. Just subscribed.

    Daniel de la FéDaniel de la Fé18 өдрийн өмнө
  • I always bought the books for the contents and not the cover; of course as you mature and your tastes refine over time like wine, you start to appreciate the hardback. Softcover books are versatile and portable. Hardcover books are premium and will stand the test of time, on the shelf or atop the coffee table.

    lifelessperson1993lifelessperson199318 өдрийн өмнө
  • The price differential is not great enough for readers to move largely to ebooks. Given the current pricing model, as a consumer I had much rather spend slightly more and have a physical product to hold.

    Ken FKen F18 өдрийн өмнө
  • In the '70s I visited London and picked up a paperback in the train station. That evening in my room I tried to open the book. The pages needed to be cut. I had heard of this kind of paperback but I didn't think that they were still being produced. I didn't have a knife so I had to tear the pages.

    Make Racists Afraid AgainMake Racists Afraid Again18 өдрийн өмнө
  • Been a month and already listened to 200 blinks definitely worth it

    Now WayNamenitNow WayNamenit19 өдрийн өмнө
  • Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book? It took me years to write, will you take a look? It's based on a novel by a man named Lear And I need a job, so I want to be a paperback writer Paperback writer

    ChappyChappy19 өдрийн өмнө
  • I prefer physical books over ebooks, but you just can't beat the convenience of downloading an ebook and reading it immediately.

    Dreaming DreamerDreaming Dreamer19 өдрийн өмнө
  • Great piece about a great subject. Thank you.

    Frank GullaFrank Gulla20 өдрийн өмнө
  • While paperbacks still sell, much of the information on book sales come from traditional publishers, not indie authors who tend to sell a lot more ebooks. I would've liked to have seen THG comment on the pricing wars between the Big 5 publishers and Amazon and how that affects print sales. For example, there was that whole feud between Amazon and Hatchette a few years ago, where Hatchette set their ebooks at $10+ and Amazon then made their print books less expensive. When the Big 5 set their print books at the same price as ebooks, of course ebooks won't sell as well. But for indie authors who set their ebooks a lot lower, they unsurprisingly sell more ebooks.

    E.D. MartinE.D. Martin20 өдрийн өмнө
  • I really love reading books. A change in my life required me to leave almost all my hardbound and paperback books behind--hundreds of them. It wasn't long after I discovered ebooks, bought a reader, and found I could carry all the books I had relinquished in my hand. As capacities of ebook readers grew, so did my library. I now own nearly 8000 books, and have managed to read nearly all of them, some multiple times. With that said, if I could, I would rather have all those 8000 books as real, printed books, either paperback or hardbound.

    tmh462tmh46221 өдрийн өмнө
  • 8:16 ... because don't all good stories involve pirating? I can't believe you missed that one.

    Andy KenchAndy Kench22 өдрийн өмнө
  • I used to love reading paperbacks but now have a problem with them. Either a. The text has gotten smaller or b. I can’t see as well because I’m getting older. One thing about an ebook is that you can increase the size of the font. Also people used to always tell me I had way too many books lol

    Kelly KerrKelly Kerr24 өдрийн өмнө
  • The Renaissance got started around 1300 and Gutenberg press came out in 1440 but not perfected until around 1450, almost a century and a half AFTER the start of the Renaissance. What really kicked the Renaissance into high gear was the fall of Constantinople in 1453, which resulted in large numbers of scholars fleeing from the city--with their books. Now Europe had something to print.

    lensman67lensman6725 өдрийн өмнө
  • Love/hate thing with paperbacks. "War and Remembrance" is too thick and the printing is too close to the gutter, making the holding and reading of it just too much of a chore, ergo Kindle. OTOH smallish sci-fi books like the original "Foundation" trilogy are perfect.

    D. JensenD. Jensen26 өдрийн өмнө
  • A really well written piece, suitably about writing and books. Great job. Awesome B-Roll, good illustrations, with the addresses of the early publishing houses right in my neighborhood: Nassau and William Streets. One of your best.

    IATSE Channel 52IATSE Channel 5226 өдрийн өмнө
  • You should do an episode on the first steam boat in Fort Dodge Iowa. Info can be found in the history of Fort Dodge. There is also a very good story of the Spirit Lake Massacre which I think you could present very well.

    Mark BradleyMark Bradley26 өдрийн өмнө
  • I only buy hardcover used and for very much the same reason I buy paperbacks: sharing the book. One good thing about a PB is if they don’t return it, a trip to Amazon buried in the pile of other Amazon charges and its on you porch in a few - not a big problem. I have several unused Kindles and a cancelled audible account. The reason is the IPad, and your channel and many like it have slowed my reading. First, I have a kindle app, second I can often MNthe a summary to see if I want the full book. Of course, that doesn’t mean I don’t still buy books, I think any educational/edutainment media promotes book sales. I think a MNthe channels that read books might work. You can only pack and charge so many devises. For many of my interests video is better as they involve technique and context like wood working, playing musical instruments, geology, trails and geography. So my reading has moved to the IPad because of device fatigue.

    Steven HeinjeSteven Heinje27 өдрийн өмнө
  • Blinkits sounds like Cliffs notes.

    James HauryJames Haury27 өдрийн өмнө
  • 8:13 : Because don't all good stories attract pirates?

    Toby BartelsToby Bartels28 өдрийн өмнө
  • Spring Heeled Jack is supposed to have been real.

    Colonel KColonel K29 өдрийн өмнө
  • Oh you had me at Panzer.

    Colonel KColonel K29 өдрийн өмнө
  • It's amazing how many people have really learned to read by reading cheap reads. I can read really fast, and I attribute it to my love of comic books.

    Jason KingJason King29 өдрийн өмнө
  • Can you do a video on just Armed Services Edtions of paperbacks?

    TheMr77469TheMr7746929 өдрийн өмнө
  • I read a variety of books hard backs, soft back, and ebooks. I also read a variety genres so I like learning more about the publishing of books.

    Diane BrewerDiane Brewer29 өдрийн өмнө
  • How much the New York Times has changed... They are now what they attacked the Nazis for..

    Mark WilkoMark WilkoСарын өмнө
  • Ayn Rand as an example of the benefits of book? Thumbs down, unsubscribe.

    John NunnJohn NunnСарын өмнө
  • How telling us about the history of the gothic novel, Mac & cheese, chocolate cookie, cereal, and vaccine?

    altarushaltarushСарын өмнө
  • This video would get a lot more shares if it didn’t have the two minute Blinkist commercial at the beginning... SOOOOOO fucking lame!!!

    Edward WagemannEdward WagemannСарын өмнө
  • I bought a kindle and struggled through one book before giving up on the thing. Having to scroll or tap to a new page was a distraction. I realized I prefer the physical act of turning a paper page as it allowed for a brief moment to ponder what I had just read before continuing. Old Fashioned, yes. A minority? Seems I am in good company! :)

    J SullivanJ SullivanСарын өмнө
  • I have transitioned to my kindle. I still have 5,000 books in my house, but there's something I like about a self illuminating book so I can read while my wife sleeps.

    Mark AndreasenMark AndreasenСарын өмнө
  • Unless I missed it, still waiting for Alfred Eli Beach, and his pneumatic subway of 1870. 😉

    QuasiTractionQuasiTractionСарын өмнө
  • Codexes?! Codices.

    Montana HoserMontana HoserСарын өмнө
  • I have never consumed a book. I don't like the taste or texture of paper. Nonetheless, I have read many books. I eagerly consumed, err, watched this installment.

    Thomas CizauskasThomas CizauskasСарын өмнө
  • Wonderful as always!

    tm502010tm502010Сарын өмнө
  • I wouldn't use Guderians massively dull tomb to attempt to suggest mass readership unless you refer only to supply chain/logistics geeks with a high dullness threshold, Panzer Commander is the dullest mememe "memoir" I have ever failed to complete - the forward where Basil Lyddle_ Hart claims he invented Blitzkreig warfare but only Germany noticed his genius means you do get two egomaniacs for the price of one - I suppose the epitomy of value for money that the paperback offer was why you chose it - I store mine next to my copy of Clausewitz - the Godfather of quartermasterly dullness. As usual, wonderful vid

    CheeseatingjunglistaCheeseatingjunglistaСарын өмнө
  • Now a bestselling author in my late 50s, pocket books inspired me in my early years. I digested thousands of books by Asimov, Niven, Pournelle, and my hero Robert A. Heinlein. Without those inexpensive pocket sized paperbacks, I doubt I would have become an author. My mother lamented how quickly I wore out my jeans back pockets; because I always had a paperback stuffed there, regardless of how big the book was.

    Mark WandreyMark WandreyСарын өмнө
  • Great story. As with many children growing up, I usually had a novel on my bed stand. Most of the time it was a paperback. Now I have a e-book or audio recording.

    Christian DegnChristian DegnСарын өмнө
  • Yeah!!! Panzer Commander!!! I got that book (in paperback) many years ago...

    Random VariableRandom VariableСарын өмнө
  • BMG. from the 80s and 90. Because of their cheap books I collected thousands since my first purchase in November of 1986 The Divine Comedy at the age of 12. I have read every book I ever purchased. I'm still reading at least 2 books a week. All paperback.

    Donovan PockrandtDonovan PockrandtСарын өмнө
  • You know cheap books that predated modern toilet paper became toilet paper.

    David ScottDavid ScottСарын өмнө
  • A great and interesting video! I think ebooks for sure have their place in history, and can help a lot of smaller new authors/genres have a chance to get their foot in the door. But I’m so glad that physical books aren’t dying out like a lot of people thought would happen when ebooks started to trend. I think most electronic devices for reading just have way too many other distractions we associate with them to be able to focus on a full novel. Sometimes it’s nice unplug and just, have a book that’s nothing but a book

    Joshua RastiaJoshua RastiaСарын өмнө
  • The Alton Library system has kept us sane during the last year. The History Guy should also get a thumbs up for his work too. Thanks for another peek into the past . Keep up the good work .

    bobm549bobm549Сарын өмнө
  • wrote 25K words a week? That sounds like modern webnovel authors. Like i remember reading that Chinese web novel authors need to write 3000 to 10 000 words a day, every day. To make a living. And there are a tons of Chinese web novel authors. as for printed books vs ebooks? I prefer ebooks cause i can use text to speech program to listen to them (i have dyslexia, so normally im a reeeally slow reader)

    Mursku XenosMursku XenosСарын өмнө
  • Minor nitpick - That's H. V. Kaltenborn. You can hear him pronounce his own name by watching the original (1951) version of "The Day the Earth Stood Still". The film used actual newscasters and pundits to add versimilitude (a first, or near-first).

    Nate LeeNate LeeСарын өмнө
  • I was definitely surprised to see Ayn Rand so early in this video. I read "The Fountainhead" as a teenager from a paperback left around the house by my mother. I devoured Edgar Rice Burroughs, Heinlein, Niven, Pournelle, etc, all from paperbacks.

    Rich DobbsRich DobbsСарын өмнө
    • There was no specific intent. That book jacket happens to be in the Public Domain in that the copyright was not renewed.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedСарын өмнө
  • E-books are being held hostage by companies in control of publishing and distribution. E-books cost more to "buy" than paperbacks. And you don't really buy them, you just license them. Who wants to get involved with that?

    MattMexor2MattMexor2Сарын өмнө
  • Business idea: paperback book that comes with a free copy of the ebook. I like the idea of physical books but with a tiny toddler running through the house it pays to be selective what is kept out and hid away. Seeing as a digital copy is close to free to create then it makes sense to add it in to the deal so to speak.

    Thomas RogersThomas RogersСарын өмнө
  • One advantage ebooks have over print books is dynamic font size. For people with diminishing eyesight due to age or disease and those with dyslexia, being able to change the font size can mean the difference between actually reading and either having to listen to and audio book or other person read to them ir simoly not reading at all. But despite my own (mild) dyslexia, most of the time I prefer a printed paper book, whether hard or soft cover.

    Kristin RousomKristin RousomСарын өмнө
  • When I was in the jungle of Vietnam some one sent large boxes of paper back books to us. Some of them classics and some of them pornographic all of them appreciated by soldiers in times of boredom

    1murder991murder99Сарын өмнө
  • Affordable. Portable. Common dimensions. Nice cover art. Paperbacks rule!

    Karen SteinKaren SteinСарын өмнө
  • Fake news, undoing what paperbacks helped create, People thinking for themselves

    Alfred WarembourgAlfred WarembourgСарын өмнө
  • I am always alert for DISCARD SALES held by libraries in suburban Chicago. I love going to them and never know what treasures I might find. I have bought major works for $1.00 or LESS.. For only a few bucks, my girl friend bought an entire 1978 edition of the World Book encyclopedia, because she wanted an information reference work for that period. I even bought antique sheet music for $1.00 a song. Marvelous fun.

    William FongWilliam FongСарын өмнө
  • I'm disappointed, you didn't mention 'bodice rippers'

    Alan JamesAlan JamesСарын өмнө
    • Ok, indirectly

      Alan JamesAlan JamesСарын өмнө
  • You don't have to have a WiFi connection for a paperback. It doesn't have to be plugged in. It's battery never runs out. And on a bright day, it is still easy to see the pages. And it is a lot easier to find my place if I close it. Heck, sometimes when I close an e-book and can't find the book!

    Alan WattsAlan WattsСарын өмнө
  • As long as ebooks are priced as high or higher than paperbacks, they will have a smaller market share.

    Gary WisemanGary WisemanСарын өмнө
  • I have _Panzer Commander,_ darn good read.

    S DefielS DefielСарын өмнө
    • It is.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedСарын өмнө
  • I enjoy all of your episodes but this one was particularly interesting to me. Thanks, and I’ll look at Blinkist

    Joel BordenJoel BordenСарын өмнө
  • Very interesting, thanks...

    markymark3075markymark3075Сарын өмнө
    • Glad you enjoyed it

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedСарын өмнө
  • "Consume" a book? I'll stick to reading.

    Neal TomblinNeal TomblinСарын өмнө
  • PAPER BACK WRITER.! I remember in grade school, Book Club allowed us to buy 10 for a DOLLAR.!

    Paul SilvaPaul SilvaСарын өмнө
  • I like a book that doesn't need to be charged, and can be read anywhere, even when the power goes out.

    Nachbo1234Nachbo1234Сарын өмнө
  • I am quite pleased to see you hold Guy Gavriel Kay's "A Song for Arbonne" near the end. (I recognized it immediately, before noticing the printed name a few seconds later.) Kay is possibly my favorite active author of works published as 'fantasy'. He gets too little attention on MNthe.

    Decrepit ProductionsDecrepit ProductionsСарын өмнө
    • Wow! That was not easy to see. Both Ms History Guy and I love that book.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedСарын өмнө
  • It's so surreal seeing The History Guy with a smartphone in his hand.

    Daniel FedericoDaniel FedericoСарын өмнө
  • 17:45 “ more than 2/3 of Americans read a book in 2017”. That is laughable!

    Debi TaylorDebi TaylorСарын өмнө
  • Nothing really wrong with salacious pulp stories.

    utubecustomer0099805utubecustomer0099805Сарын өмнө
  • 2021 burn dr seuss!!!!

    Chief SlinginBeefChief SlinginBeefСарын өмнө
  • who invented the first book in history?

    L0L0Сарын өмнө
  • Thanks for the props to Ayn Rand.

    Bruce KarenBruce KarenСарын өмнө
    • The book jacket happens to be in the Public Domain.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedСарын өмнө
  • You can leave a paper back open and it is still readable in the sun , never requires charging and if you drop it it still is readable

    James OckerJames OckerСарын өмнө
  • Enjoyed

    Randidly1Randidly1Сарын өмнө
  • As a kid I enjoyed adventures of Perry Rhodan in paperback. In the 80s there was a book of the month club that I joined and there was 2 hard cover books I didn't mail back the No thanks card for. Thank goodness because I discovered Terry Pratchett and enjoyed many dozens of paperbacks all set in his discworld. Hadn't bought a hardcover in many years until recently and I bought two gilded hardcover books for the history they hold, but it didn't hurt that both authors are very knowledgeable.

    John AnonJohn AnonСарын өмнө
  • E-books are very difficult to share.

    TheVetbirdTheVetbirdСарын өмнө
  • “… one of the most remarkable cultural dispensations in the country's history, the paperback book.” - T. E. Cooney From Merriam-Webster’s definition of dispensation.

    Scott HicksScott HicksСарын өмнө
  • If the History Guy's enthusiasm could be hooked up to the National Grid, he could power an entire country.

    Euan SmithEuan SmithСарын өмнө
  • You are the Bill Nye of history. Thank you! While I do enjoy paperbacks, I am willing to pay more for hardback books and I only buy ebooks when I dont have another option.

    Paul CottierPaul CottierСарын өмнө
  • Paperback books allowed me to mass consume books by Clive Cussler, Louis L' Amore, and Tom Clancy. I really love to read books!

    TAP001TAP001Сарын өмнө
  • EBook sales by legacy publishers have peaked but not by professional indie authors.

    Edward SmithEdward SmithСарын өмнө
  • I have an episode suggestion for you. Do a bio of Anson Burlingame. He was a diplomat. He was also the guy who ended Preston Brooks political career in the coolest way.

    james Leggettjames LeggettСарын өмнө
  • Consider doing an episode on the history of USA Today. Interesting "rise and fall' story inside the newspaper industry.

    Robert SPENCERobert SPENCEСарын өмнө
  • FOR FUTURE EPISODE: 14 March 1970, two sailors aboard the SS Columbia Eagle, carrying 10,000 tons of napalm for the US military in Vietnam, mutinied in protest at the war.

  • ebooks are way overpriced

    Randal DavisRandal DavisСарын өмнө
  • Who is John Galt?

    Bruce ParrBruce ParrСарын өмнө
    • Interesting that that jacket cover was in the Public Domain.

      The History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedThe History Guy: History Deserves to Be RememberedСарын өмнө
  • I'm in the group that enjoys holding a book.

    GrandmaGayeGrandmaGayeСарын өмнө
  • I like to buy a book to read. ONE OWNS THE BOOK AND THE IDEAS.

    patrick cpatrick cСарын өмнө
    • Soeey for the caps (wrong button)

      patrick cpatrick cСарын өмнө
  • Men once read books? Much like quiche, real men don't read books; newspapers, magazines, and Facebook maybe, but not books. Like the Groucho Marx joke, "I was the only serious one in the family because I was the only one who ever read a book. I remember that book well--it was green."

    earlmarneyearlmarneyСарын өмнө
  • Lots of old people in the comments are saying, "ink and paper, forever!" That's fine if you own a house and never move. I am old, and a big reader. AFter the third time I moved my book collection- I said never again. Am on my third Kindle in about15 years. Love to pull up old books from my digital collection: anytime, anywhere. (and yes, I do go to places without wifi and without electricity)

    Redmenace96Redmenace96Сарын өмнө
  • Paperbacks are more convenient and friendly and durable. My kindle broke in a month and a half. I’ve had paperbacks for fifty years.

    Conrad NelsonConrad NelsonСарын өмнө
  • Talk about good timing! I recently rediscovered an old paperback that I read when I was a kid, The Hardy Boys Casefiles #79: Danger Unlimited. Ordered a used copy and I'll be sure to read and appreciate it even more now that I know the history of paperbacks.

    StereoBravoStereoBravoСарын өмнө