the complete Montague Portal redux, in hardcover

I posted yesterday about Amazon putting the complete Montague Portal for Kindle on sale for $5.85. They still pay me $7 a sale, so each time you buy one Bezos adds his own dollar to my payment. It’s pretty clear that they’ll clear a profit if you buy this book and one other ebook. Okay, that makes sense.

But now they’ve put the hardcover on sale for $5.85, at least in the US and UK. (Reports in other countries are mixed. I have no clue what’s happening.)

At first, I thought this was to clear out unsold copies. Amazon predicts how many hardcovers of a new title they’ll need, which is fine. They buy ahead, which is also fine. Their prediction algorithm lumps my fiction and nonfiction together, which is completely inaccurate but I’m okay with it.

But no. They are ordering new hardcovers from IngramSpark, at full retail price, to fill these purchases.

Amazon loses about $15 for every hardcover you buy.

I do not understand their business model. Risking a buck, sure, I can see that. I am torn between “they are playing 4d chess” and “their algorithm is drunk.” (“Both” is a valid answer.) What I do know is that if this bright future SF exploration crime series has ever tempted you, you should grab this deal. No idea how long it will last, if it will spread to other countries, or if Jeff will send legbreakers out to collect his $15 from each of you.

Note that while Amazon only lets each account buy an ebook once, you can buy as many hardcovers as you like. Each purchase costs Amazon $15 plus fulfillment. Just saying.

Oh, and if you use my affiliate links above? They throw a few extra pennies in my pocket. The phrase “guilding the lily” comes to mind, but it turns out I’m okay with that.

6 Replies to “the complete Montague Portal redux, in hardcover”

  1. Err… I am one hardback richer! I am so used to purchasing paperbacks that I tripped over my keyboard. 🙂

  2. I’ve purchased them all on Kobo, but a hardcopy would be nice, and I could read them in the correct order this time….

    …£7.97 delivery charge in the UK, even for Prime 🙁 The eBay model for selling, obviously.

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