Charles Bock's debut novel Beautiful Children hit number fourteen on the New York Times best-seller list this week, but for three days, Random House, which published the book in January, is offering a download of the book for free. Through midnight on Friday, readers can download a PDF version of the full-length novel from Bock's Web site, as well as from the online stores of Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
Beautiful Children chronicles the lives of young people in Las Vegas, where Bock spent his own childhood—his family has operated a pawnshop there for over thirty years. Bock expressed his desire to widen the readership for his book in a statement issued yesterday by Random House. "If that means giving it away for free online, great."
"We love this book and we believe in Charles as a unique and fearless writer, and we want his writing to find the widest possible audience, including many college-age readers who may find the book's hardcover price a bit out of reach," says Jynne Martin, Bock's publicist. "It's a little bit in keeping with his novel's radical and open-hearted ethos."