Now, however, the DVD set “Gossip Girl: The Complete First Season,” which goes on sale this week, includes a free electronic version of the original novel by Cecily von Ziegesar on which the show is based. But — OMG! — it is totally not a book that you read! It is, rather, an audio book narrated by Christina Ricci, with other bonus material like scenes that were not broadcast and “LOL: Gag Reel.” The three-hour abridgement of the novel, which Hachette Audio first released in CD format in 2003, can be transferred to an iPod. This collaboration, by Hachette Audio and Warner Home Video, which made the DVD, is an unprecedented twist on how publishers hitch their wagons to Hollywood projects. With films, publishers typically reprint a paperback with movie-poster artwork, and audio divisions similarly repackage audio books.
The article goes on to briefly discuss why audio books don't appeal to youngsters which would have been a far more interesting analysis than suggesting publisher's product development is dependent on ride-alongs with Hollywood.