First, let me say that I agree that the Kindle pricing is disingenuous; however, is it fair to "punish" the content with a one or two star review solely based on the price of the book? I often search for new books based on customer reviews only to find (David Baldacci and Jennifer Weiner are two examples) that they have very low customer ratings due to the price. Also, does anyone know who sets the price - is it the author, the publisher or Amazon itself? Unless price is directly determined by the author, there should be another way to track customer dissatisfaction with the Kindle pricing policy without impacting the review of the content of the book itself.
I'm pretty sure it's not the author. At least, I haven't had a role in that end of the business and I've written a bunch of books published by Penguin, some of which are available on Kindle. The exception might be those who are self published. I do think it's unfair to penalize authors with low ratings for this. My guess is Jennifer Weiner has no control over what Amazon charges for its Kindle versions. Too bad, because she's so excited about her new book and she put so much effort into it.
I absolutely agree that the ratings should not be affected by the Kindle price, but I guess no one knows where else to go to voice their dissatisfaction with the pricing. The pricing is a shame, because I have thoroughly enjoyed J.W.'s books in the past, and would have happily purchased BFF for my Kindle, but I, too, will not pay the Kindle price. A bummer, cause I was excited to get my Kindle right in time for a "girl" trip to the beach and this would have been the perfect book to enjoy with my toes in the sand and a drink in my hand... Hope someone at Amazon takes notice and adjusts the pricing for these Kindle books - this is the second book I've come across in the 10 days I've owned my Kindle that is above the promised $9.99 price. And the reduced Kindle pricing was my justification to purchase the Kindle in the first place! (That and my dwindling shelf space!!!)
T. Burrow - Thanks so much for sending me this link!!! I read some posts about people using a zip lock plastic bag, but that didn't seem totally safe to me... I've been meaning to check on-line for waterproof cases, but you've saved me the time and trouble. I'm going to order one right now!!! Thanks again!
It's my understanding that the publisher sets the price that they are willing to release on Kindle and that some publishers who would not allow release to Kindle are now permitting it but charging a lot to allow it.
I just got a Kindle a few weeks ago and have been following the boycott anything over 9.99 board (quietly).
I've read many articles about this whole Kindle pricing thing...my sister bought it for me as a gift, thinking that it would save me money because she had read that ebooks were 9.99 or less. We soon realized this was true for many books - but there are many that I would love to have but I could find in the used bookstore down the street or at bookmooch.com.
It IS the publisher that set the list price for the book. Sarah - I've read your Bubbles books! - but I have to say, as a bona-fide author, do you really not know who is setting the price for the eBooks?
Publishers are setting the price, and then Amazon discounts. They are actually LOSING money when, say, Penguin lists an eBook for 24.95 (the same as the hardback!) and then Amazon lists it for 9.99 - they have to pay Penguin based on the 24.95 price and are generally losing 11-14 dollars per book depending on the publishers listing eBook price.
It makes NO SENSE to me. I would think an author would be furious with their publisher for 'shortchanging' them (costing them customers) that might have bought their eBook but are now frustrated - and often take it out on the author.
I was a HUGE Janet Evanovich fan but her eBook was priced around 14 when it FIRST came out (her last two). I wrote to her and she (or her daughter actually) wrote back and said they have nothing to do with the price. She was very kind, but, as a business owner, I exam each contract and if something isn't right or I don't agree with it - I either try to get it changed or walk away. The letter I received from Janet's daughter said they have 'no control.' Well, that's baloney.
I kind of lost my respect and now I am no longer a fan. I borrowed my sisters copy (see, if it had cost 9.99 I would have bought it - now they lost a total sale) and was disappointed in Fingerlickin 15 anyway - so I'm actually glad it worked out the way it did in the long run!
Harlan Coben has lost me as a fan also.
As for Jennifer Weiners book, I will wait till one of my friends picks it up or my sister, and then I'll borrow it. Again - another easy sale that was lost and annoyance with the author that will stick in my mind!
I can somewhat understand a 'bad' review because nothing seems to be changing when it comes to publishers changing their list price. Maybe enough 'bad' reviews based on pricing will put pressure on the author to put pressure on their publisher. OR find a new publisher. ROR.
Though I've never posted a 'bad' review based on price - I see the point of those who do.
Sarah - so glad to see your books are all priced @ 9.99 or below! Good luck, girl!
Also - I've done the Ziploc thing @ the beach/lake and it worked wonderfully. The only thing is - you can't go swimming unless someone is there to watch your stuff! ROR!
Hey, thanks Elly. I'm afraid that I'm not in a position to walk away from my publisher who's been verrrry very good to me. I'm really surprised to hear that Evanovich feels like she has no clout considering how popular she is. As for not firmly stating how the pricing works, if my experience as a reporter has taught me anything it's that I don't know everything.
This is why people worry about, ahem, monopolies. And why independent bookstores have been jumping up and down about where the book business is heading. BTW - I kinda like being a $9.99 girl. That's me...cheap!
Elly, if you get this write me off list at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks,