Finally, Some eBook Common Sense

I LOVE books. I love to hold them, flip through them, lend them, and read them during take-off. While reading a book, rare is it that I don’t decide that I need to flip back several chapters to validate a detail that is triggered by a new development. In an eBook, that is very hard.

On the other hand, the bigger the book, the more I enjoy the electronic version. When I reread Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, I did so electronically. Let’s face it, nobody enjoys hauling a 800 page book on an airplane. It is also easier to carry multiple books to cover the eventual moment when I finish my previous book.

Well, today, Amazon made an announcement that solves one of my biggest problems with eBooks. This takes the music digital download and almost extends it to books. Amazon says it best:

For thousands of qualifying books, your past, present, and future print-edition purchases will soon allow you to buy the Kindle edition for $2.99, $1.99, $0.99, or free.

This is AWESOME, or will be in mid-October. I still reread books and I would rather do that on my tablet. I have lent a couple of books out and not gotten them back* and this would also solve that problem. While I would prefer a zero to $1 cost for all books, this is a great first step.

I will admit that this is going to have a limited impact on my personal collection. I have bought very few books through Amazon as I prefer to browse and shop offline. I may buy a new book in a series or from a favorite author on Amazon, but I discover books in bookstores. While I am there, I tend to grab other books from authors I know.

Still, this is a great first step. If other stores, or publishers, would start doing this, that would be even better.

*NOTE: This only happens once as lending privileges are permanently revoked. You want to get on my bad side, lose or damage a book when I lend it to you. I shall think less of you for the rest of your life unless there was a disaster that was clearly beyond your control.

2 thoughts on “Finally, Some eBook Common Sense

  1. I’ll grant you that this is a step in the right direction, but it won’t help me for the reason you mentioned near the end – I’ve bought very few print books from Amazon, The good news is that buying an e-version of a print book that I own isn’t as frustrating yet as buying the most recent e-version of the music I have purchased multiple times to date. Vinyl, 8-track (yes I’m that old) cassette, CD and now the iTunes version (because sometimes $0.99 is better than taking the time to rip a CD).

    Do my ebook purchases still disappear with me, or can I pass my eLibrary down to my children? Have they solved the “I can’t lend an ebook” problem (I thought I read that they did).


    • You can lend, but only for 14 days. It can be limited if the book is long or your reading time is impacted. You definitely don’t want to lend until you are ready to read. On the plus side, lending doesn’t require face-to-face meetings, so lending 1 book at a time in a series is possible.

      As for handing books off to new users permanently, that is still not allowed.


Comments are closed.