Pop! Goes the E-book

Photo: wjenningsphotography/Getty Images. All montaged elements: Getty Images (various artists).

Since we began working remotely, e-books have become a major part of our lives. They’re convenient in some ways, and necessary to our current situation, but there’s nothing like the “real” thing, especially when a book has tactile elements like gatefolds or die-cuts — anything besides text and illustrations sitting flat on a page.

Enter Boing Books. “If you can’t make a trip to the library or bookstore, or if you’re a book professional with no office to put books in, that shouldn’t mean you need to give up on pop-up books,” says CEO and artist Bob Adubas. “You can still have all the excitement of a book that comes to three-dimensional life…on a screen. Our innovative technology will physically expand the screen of your laptop, tablet, or any other device. Turn the page, and your screen will shrink back to normal, and then re-expand in a whole new set of shapes for the next spread.”

Reception has been positive so far, but Adubas has one caution. “We advise that readers don’t sit too close to the screen to avoid being struck in the face, particularly with our, ahem, pop-ular title How Popcorn Pops. The answer is at great velocity, which you don’t want to learn firsthand.”

For that reason, Boing Books are not recommended for children under six.

See below for more details...















...APRIL FOOL! While the concept of pop-up e-books doesn't seem that far-fetched in this day and age, we're sadly not quite at that point yet with hologram technology. Thanks to our designer Mark Tuchman for envisioning how this might look someday. Wouldn't it be cool to watch popcorn pop right out of your screen? And imagine if it was edible? AND gave off that buttery smell? Mmm...popcorn perfection.

Bob Adubas doesn’t exist, either…but he’s a tribute to a pop-up book master. (Hint: read his last name backward). For more on traditional paper pop-up books, which hopefully we'll see more of again once we're back in the office, click on our pop-up books tag below.

Shoshana Flax

Shoshana Flax, associate editor of The Horn Book, Inc., is a former bookseller and holds an MFA in writing for children from Simmons University. She has served on the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award and Sydney Taylor Book Award committees, and is serving on the 2025 Walter Dean Myers Award committee.

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