Thursday, August 29, 2013

Peterson Field Guide to Birds of New York by Roger Tory Peterson

Peterson Field Guide to Birds of New York (PagePerfect NOOK Book), Roger Tory Peterson.  New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012.  e-book,  500+ pps.

Roger Tory Peterson is a name that ought to be familiar to any serious birder.  In my early birding days, the Audubon birding books with their glossy color photographs were easier for me to identify most birds with.  The Peterson birding books taught me to look for field marks but the pictures were not as attractive to me since they weren't photographs.

The folks at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt came out with a bunch of e-books for the Barnes and Noble NOOK e-readers last year which were state-specific:  New York, Ohio, California, and Arizona were among them.  I glanced at the one for New York State that a buddy of mine had.

What I found was disappointing.  There is no working index.  An unlinked index in an e-book winds up being a mere dull list.  Not useful at all.  As is, one has to scroll through pages and pages in order to locate a bird.  This would be tedious in any birding setting.  Even knowledge of how birds are grouped together in such a bird book does not relieve the doldrums.

sapphoq reviews says:  The Peterson state-specific e-books require a linked index and delineated chapters in order to live up to the hype of being an "easy-to-use mobile guide".  Take a pass on these until this critical issue is fixed.

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