Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Try Downloading Select Bookseller Favorites from Indie Publisher Unbridled from Our Website for Only 25 Cents, Plus I Grudgingly Buy My First Ebook

Addendum: the glitch with the tax rate being on the original price of the ebooks ($9.95) has been fixed.  We've gotten a successful order with the correct tax.  We will be reimbursing the folks who were overcharged by 55 cents per ebook on their credit cards today (Thursday 6/9).


Ebooks are certainly not the first piece of technology that I have not come to terms with. In music, I had a lot of trouble migrating from vinyl to the cd, and was particularly upset that the 45 actually pooped out at the flimsy and unattractive cassingle. My friend A. once said to me (and I paraphrase, but the gist is correct) that he bought an Ipod because he didn't want to wind up like me, alienated from music, partly because of not wanting to make the digital shift. (Not the only reason, but still...)

I have so far resisted offers of free downloads of galleys.  And we were not one of the stores that was offered free e-readers by one of the big publishers.  But now that Boswell has sold three ebooks, it felt like it was time for me to try my hand at reading one myself. 

As you may know, most publishers are on the agency model, in that they are selling directly to you and we are the agent.  The good news is that this selling price is the same, whether you work with an outside ebook store or us.  I know it's hard to believe, but Amazon is the same price.  On the negative side, we also can't offer discounts off the price, and that includes an employee discount.

No matter! So I decided I was going to read Paula McLain's The Paris Wife on my cell phone.  After some maneuvering, I set up all my accounts and bought the book. I can read the book not just on my cell phone, but on my laptop.  That's freaking me out. Not that I want to read a book on my laptop...

I'm pretty sure that's not the way I want to read most* of my books.  But everyone makes different decisions about these things and many of you have said to us that you want to read at least some of your books on wireless devices.  So here's what you need to do:

1. Make sure you're device has a Google Ebooks Reader.  As long as you are not using a Kindle, it's likely that you can get this app.
2. Go to our website and start an account.
3. Look for titles that have ebook options. 
4. Make a purchase.  The book should show up as an option in your app, of if you are using a laptop, it should show up in your ebook account.
5. If you are using a Nook or a Sony, you have to purchase the books on a computer and transfer them to your device.  Here are the directions for Nook. As I've yet to talk to someone with a Sony reader, I won't bother with the link.

Want to try this out for 25 cents?  We are participating in the Unbridled Books "25 Books for 25 cents promotion."  How easy is that?  Unbridled is a fine independent publisher of literary fiction (and a few essays and memoirs).  We've recently hosted events with Peter Geye and Elise Blackwell. And hey, Peter Geye is appearing at the Southeast Wisconsin Festival of Books in Waukesha next week.  Get more info here.

Here are the books being offered, with links to our website where you can read more about them, or yes, purchase them for a cool quarter (plus tax of a purposeless penny). Remember, this is only good June 9, 10 and 11. Yes, I linked 'em all to the ebook purchase button on our website.  And each one has a solid description of the book as well.

Conscience Point, by Erica Abeel
Panopticon, by David Bajo
Shimmer, by Eric Barnes
The Unnatural History of Cypress Parish, by Elise Blackwell (Daniel's pick!)
Green Age of Asher Witherow, by M. Allen Cunningham
Breath and Bones, by Susann Cokal
Wolf Point, by Edward Falco
The Distance between Us, by Masha Hamilton
Stranger Here Below, by Joyce Hinnefeld
Vanishing, by Candida Lawrence
Song of the Crow, Layne Maheu
The Evolution of Shadows, by Jason Quinn Malott
The Singer’s Gun, by Emily St. John Mandel
The Pirate’s Daughter, by Margaret Cezair-Thompson
Captivity, by Deborah Noyes
Hick, by Andrea Portes
The Wonder Singer, by George Rabasa
Taroko Gorge, by Jacob Ritari
Phantom Limbs of the Rollow Sisters by Timothy Schaffert
Rain Village, by Carolyn Turgeon,
Sometimes We’re Always Real Same-Same, by Mattox Roesch

Let's just talk up at least one book here. One of the most recent titles on this list is David Bajo's Panopticon, a novel that was released in hardcover last fall. It turns out that he is married to Elise Blackwell, who recently visited Boswell for her latest novel. Who doesn't love a literary couple? If you are a fan of New Orleans fiction, why not use your Washington** on The Unnatrual History of Cybpress Parish.

From the Toronto Globe and Mail, here is Joe Queenan's take on Panopticon, "An eerie mystery about the illicit thrill of grassroots surveillance. It, too, concerns a woman who has disappeared. In the traditional surveillance novel, Big Brother – the government, multinational corporation – is watching us on multiple platforms in an X-Files kind of way: We know where you live and we know what you just downloaded onto your PC.

But in Panopticon, inspired by Michel Foucault’s warning about a society where nothing goes unrecorded, everyone is watching everyone, because images from surveillance cameras can be intercepted by anyone and re-edited for their own purposes."

Enjoy your selections.  Even after the promotion, these books are all a very reasonable $9.99 per download. Now I'm not saying here that  "Ebooks are the bees knees and print books are going the way of the porcupine hairbrush and the turtle clothes iron." I want to be clear about this. By the way, can you tell I'm looking forward to Seth MacFarlane's Flintstones reboot?

I'll let you know how reading TheParis Wife on my cellphone goes. 

*I think "most" is being generous.



Kathy Robinson said...

Tax for the purchase of all 25 books calculates up to $14 total, not a penny each. What gives?

Daniel Goldin said...

My apologies. There was some sort of glitch with our ecommerce provider. The ABA has promised they will be reimbursing credit cards of all the folks who bought from us this morning.
Sorry, sorry, sorry!