Apologies if this seems frivolous but I've been trying to find the LaTeX Companion 2ed by Mittelbach et al. in ebook form.

Other than illegal rip-offs there doesn't seem to be anywhere I can buy it in electronic form despite multiple Google searches. I'm not sure if I'm missing something, it seems strange that a book about Latex would only be available in paper form, hence the question.

Does anyone know if its being sold as an ebook and where?

1 Answer 1


Final Status October 2013 --- eBook is now available with a special promotion price until the end of the year

I'm happy to announce that there is finally an eBook version of "The LaTeX Companion, 2ed" available. It was a rather challenging exercise due to the many examples in the book and the need to reproduce the example output faithfully on that media. Originally we thought that anything other than plain PDF is not going to be possible; however as it turned out both ePub and mobi (Kindle) came out surprisingly well.

The eBook will be sold through various channels, however, the best deal is probably going to be through InformIT, as the publisher is selling the eBook as a bundle with all three formats included (PDF, ePub, mobi) and no DRM applied (!) only watermarked to kindly remind readers that this is not a work given away for free.

In addition there will be a special promotion price for the bundle valid until December 31, 2013 where it is offered at $14.99.

To make use of this special offer, you have to buy it from the publisher at InformIT and apply the following promotion code during checkout processing:

LATEXT2013 (Case sensitive! and notice that it is "LATEXT" not "LATEX" for some reason)

In 2014 the official price will be $23.99 at InformIT which I still think is a good price for all three formats. Be careful if you see the book from other resellers, they may apply their own DRM which, in my opinion, makes an eBook nearly unusable.

Enjoy -- Frank

Older info (kept for historians :-)

Status in June 2013

Beside the fact that TLC2 is indeed available on Safari (subscription) as mentioned by Joseph in his answer both as pdf and as html (urg, but in fact it could be worse, so after seeing that we decided to let this be) there are news on this front:

I worked with the publisher to make a properly cross-linked pdf (the safari one was just a simple pdf, searchable but without cross-refs) and we are currently looking at whether or not providing epub would be possible too (if the quality is not too bad we may ok this too). The pdf version (no DRM, only watermarked) is already available at InformIT and if the epub works out it will soon be added too. It may also be available from some resellers but be careful there you may end up with Adobe DRM or similar nasties.

I would like to make it available cheap for those who already have a hard-copy of the book, but given that there is not a good scheme how to arrange for this we will probably run a limited promotion (with a bargaining price) at some point in the near future which we will announce in the TeX world, so stay tuned.

However, if I may say so, an awful lot of work went into this book and its 1200 pages and I believe its normal price is actually worth it whether as hardcover or ebook so if you can afford it and you want to give something back to the authors ...

Status in August 2012

The second edition of the LaTeX Companion is not available as an ebook (at least not legally, give or take some scanned copies that float around on the internet). For this edition this status is very unlikely to change. (I'm the author, so I'm not just guessing).

  • Thanks for the update @Frank. If it isn't confidential I'd love to understand why? I've bought a physical version and will duly be scan-snapping into a pdf myself but I'm really curious as to why authors don't automatically make their works available as ebooks as a matter of course. Commented Aug 17, 2012 at 15:27
  • @TahnoonPasha it is not confidential. It is simply that in 2005 it wasn't considered as being a suitable publishing path. It is not (just) the authors who make such decisions, the copyright is with the publisher even if the authors do have a say. These days many books are being published in both formats and for a future edition that will probably the case too. Whether there is anything that could be done for the existing edition remains to be seen. Commented Aug 21, 2012 at 6:43
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    @MartinSchröder Not sure we'll have to see. One has to understand that to get to this kind of pdf it is not possible to simply add hyperref to the sources and recompile, because of the complexity of the book this just fails. So the cross-linked pdf was actually done as a post-processing step on the final book pdfs for printing and that is a lot of work and thus costly. The epub/mobi version will even be worse in this respect (with the advantage that it will (partially) reflow). So we'll have to see. Commented Jun 4, 2013 at 17:40
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    @FrankMittelbach: You generated XHTML? How? Can I get the production notes as a TUGboat article, please? :-) Commented Jun 4, 2013 at 17:42
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    @MartinSchröder my role in this particular ebook production was only as a critic :-) the actual production was done by the publisher (or rather by a third party commisioned by the publisher). So what I did was to comment on the result, reject and asked for improvements until I felt satisfied with the result (and that was one of the reasons why it took so long from the initial attempt). So unfortunately, there will be no article on this. Commented Nov 1, 2013 at 21:28

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