This is a rant post. I know I have to accept some of the responsibility, but I’m
a little quite annoyed, so I’m putting a warning out there before you read on, that this Book Geek ain’t happy.
You grab your coffee, you have your little piece of plastic heaven (aka your debit card) at the ready, you spot bargains and discount codes for a few bookish websites and think, “Oh go on then, just a couple”, and before you know it you have a lovely little basket of reasonably priced goods just waiting to be yours…
You wait patiently for delivery of said goods, which comes in no less than three separate parcels. But that’s OK, you were warned that this might happen at the checkout. What you weren’t warned of is that one of the boxes would be so badly damaged, battered and ripped open upon arrival that one of your books will have been lost in transit. But that’s not all, ohhh no.
You excitedly tear open your parcels and packages to get your hands on the goodies within, knowing exactly what you’ve ordered (including some of the books listed in your Classics Club) only to find that two of your purchases are very much not what you were expecting. One of the books, The Collected Works of F Scott Fitzgerald, is so large it could be mistaken for a larger-than-average sized brick, and it is roughly equal in weight. Reading this will be more than a challenge, it will be practically impossible and you will suffer repetitive strain injury in your wrist from simply trying to hold the thing up! Yes, granted “The Collected Works…” part in the title could have given you a clue that this would not be a small book, but 1456 pages is surely a little extreme??
But the trauma continues. You peruse your other new purchases and are startled by a teeny tiny book at the bottom of the box that you don’t remember ordering. Why would anyone need such a teeny tiny book? You know people who have read Cloud Atlas and not one of them mentioned it being so small. Probably because it usually isn’t. This is a “flipback” book, it is 8cm by 11cm and the text is… well, see for yourself –
Yes, no wonder you look so confused, the text goes the wrong way and the pages are super thin! OK, so the Flipback book is quite cute, and would be handy to throw in your bag or pocket to read if you commute (which I don’t), but the cover of Cloud Atlas is really nice and I would prefer it to be a “normal” book that will fit on my bookshelf, like the one I thought I was ordering. The description on the website really didn’t make it clear that this book was a special edition, and the image didn’t provide a size reference as it was so enlarged. This is the danger of assumption when ordering online! The company in question have kindly offered to send me a replacement for the book that was lost (The Lies We Told by Diane Chamberlain, in case anyone was wondering) and I guess I’m just going to have to try my first ever Flipback Book!
Have you had disastrous experiences with on-line book shopping? Or even in-store book shopping? Let me know I’m not alone!