This week I want to ask you all if you’ve been to Amazon to take a look at the debut of Matchbook. In case you don’t know, Matchbook is the Amazon program that works like this:

1. At some time in the past, you bought a print book from Amazon.

2. At some point between then and now, the publisher/rights owner of that book put out a digital edition.

3. The publisher/rights owner has enrolled the book you bought in MatchBook and set a discounted price for the digital book. The discount can be Free!

Result: you are entitled to buy the digital edition at the discounted price.

If you go to Amazon and click on the MatchBook link, you will be presented with a list of digital books you can get at the discounted price.

I looked at my list and here’s what I thought.

Near Real Time Carolyn Reaction Blog

I remember that book! Free? Click. Click Click Click

Judith Ivory’s Black Silk? $2.99? Hell yeah. I refused to buy that in digital because, as I recall, it was priced HIGHER than the print version. Click.

Oh, hey! I LOST the print version of that. Or maybe I threw it away because space is dear around here. $2.99? You betcha! Click.

Oohh. There are some of my Dorchester Books, where YES, I bought the print version way back. (No, I did not click because I MADE the eBook version, and so don’t need it again.)

There’s that diet book I was totally going to use, only the cat chewed on it and now it’s somewhere under my bed. I think. Maybe. $2.99. Click.

Why aren’t there MORE books? I’m confident my print purchases from Amazon number in the hundreds.

Why are there so many missing?

WHY ARE PUBLISHERS SO AFRAID of me re-buying books I already bought from them?

Additional Thoughts

If more of my print purchases had been there, I would have bought a lot more. I would totally re-buy books I remember fondly and either no longer have, or have in paperback but they’re fragile now. I’m actually worried about re-reading Loving Julia, for example, because the pages are yellowing and starting to feel a little brittle. What’s that old saw about the permanence of paper? B-effin-S. (Beffins. It’s a word now. Deal with it.)

I did not click on every book that was there. Some of them I hadn’t enjoyed enough to want in digital. Some of them I hated, but not enough for a hate re-read. And at one point, I thought, I can’t just keep clicking on everything! I’ll run out of money for food!

The oldest of the purchases on my list was from 2000. I was buying a lot of historical romance. (click click click) Avon, you have your head on straight!

No surprise, technical publishers were heavily represented in my list. I think that’s because O’Reilly has had these sorts of discounts in place for years, so all the other tech-publishers do the same. But it was nice to pick up an eBook for some of my recent tech book purchases. They were all free, by the way.


MatchBook Love?

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Have You Bought a MatchBook Book yet?

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So, what do you think?

Let me know in the comments.