At last, Sunborn has appeared in most of the major ebook stores as an official Tor ebook. It’s in the Kindle store, the Sony store, Barnes and Noble, and BooksonBoard. Probably others stores, as well. I don’t mean to snub anyone; I just haven’t done a complete survey. It’s not available at Fictionwise, at least not yet. Nor at Webscription.[EDIT: As of today, it is on Fictionwise, with a rebate. That seems to be the best price at the moment.] [EDIT OF EDIT: It disappeared from Fictionwise, along with a few thousand other books, on the day of the pricing switch to the so-called Agency Model. No word on when, or if, these books will return to FW.]
Prices range from $7.99 at Kindle to $9.99 at Barnes & Noble, $11.90 at BooksonBoard, and $12.60 at Sony. I hope to see those prices come down to no higher than the paperback price–and they should, according to pricing statements from Macmillan USA’s CEO (Tor is owned by Macmillan). But I have no direct control over that.[EDIT OF PRICE INFO: Macmillan did indeed lower the price to equal the paperback price. It is now $7.99 everywhere. Everywhere that it’s sold, anyway–Fictionwise is still out of the game.]
Sorry about the DRM, by the way. I was assured before that efforts were being made to get DRM-free Tor books up–but now I’m told that it was too hard, with all of the distributors geared for DRM. I don’t have the complete story on that yet. If you buy it and strip the DRM for your own personal use, such as to put it on your favored reading device, you’ll get no argument from me. (It might be slightly illegal, though, under the DMCA. I would never encourage anyone to violate even such a stupid law. Let that be on the record.)
BTW, for some reason B&N is currently selling my other ebooks for $3.21 each, which is the best deal I’ve seen. I don’t know for how long, so if that’s a format you use, it’s a good time to grab the books.
Excuse the anonymous post, but have been threatened not to reveal this information yet, but at least 3 of the major publishers and allegedly MacMillan have colluded to deploy agency (aka fixed pricing) pricing scheme in April. Effect will be to raise eBook prices by quite a bit for consumers, insure the profits of the publishers and very large resellers in the billion-dollar asset club, and pave the way for Apple. Further concentrates control of publishing in the hands of the large conglomerates, while driving their profits and consumer prices up. People will have to judge for themselves if that's a good thing or a bad thing.
Jeffrey A. Carver
"Threatened not to reveal this information"? By whom? It's been a matter of wide public discussion for weeks.
For the record: there's no evidence of "collusion," but it's widely reported that Macmillan was the first of several major publishers to switch to the agency model, and that's what triggered the war with Amazon. The CEO of Macmillan has published several statements on the issue. For a good summary of the situation, read down the entries at ereads.com, written by an agent and ebook publisher.
As for the effect on prices and profits, that remains to be seen. Some sbooks will be more expensive for a while, and some will be cheaper. Certainly the landscape will change, and Amazon will lose their Walmart-like advantage.
I'm not convinced that the agency model is a good thing, but there's no reason to think that it's a massive conspiracy as you've made it out to be, either.
Time will tell.
I actually picked Sunborn up for even cheaper than your lowest price listed—between the "first day of release" rebate, my club member discount, and the other rebates at the moment (which are probably only good this week), it came out to $6.07 for the ePub from Fictionwise. Non-club members who are willing to pay the rebate game can still get it for $7.73 for the rest of the week—and they get it in a superior format to Amazon, to boot.
As for the DRM… I find that "distributors" excuse hard to reconcile with the reasons given for pulling Tor titles from Webscriptions. Not that it's not true, on the face of it—I recall Arnold Bailey saying that the reason Baen's titles aren't available for Kindle is because they refuse to sell them without DRM. But if they're placing the onus on the distributors, why aren't Tor titles back on Webscriptions, when the lack of DRM was the initial reason for pulling them?
*shrug* Oh well. As you allude to, I can easily roll my own DRM-free version, if I like the formatting better than the ePub you supply here on your site. 🙂
Jeffrey A. Carver
Wait a minute. Are you saying you found Sunborn on Fictionwise? I've searched there every couple of days and haven't found it.
Whoa! There it is! I guess it just took a little longer, is all.
As for Tor and Webscription, I have asked that very question. Getting answers seems to take a long time, though. I've never heard any explanation for Tor books disappearing from Webscription.
I'm wondering if something came down from Macmillan corporate, insisting on DRM. I'm not saying that's the case, but it could explain a lot.
Thanks for letting me know about Fictionwise. Oh–and for buying it, too. 🙂
Glad to be of service. 😉
If you were seeing Sunborn show up last week at other retailers, that's probably why you couldn't find it at Fictionwise yet—as far as I can tell, they only put up new titles on Mondays, around noon ET.
But if you saw it at other stores more than a week ago, so much for that explanation!
Jeffrey A. Carver
You probably have the right explanation. It went up at the first places last Wednesday, then Sony a few days later, then Fictionwise today.
If you have a Kindle, or use Mobipocket on another device, but the eBook you want isn't available in Kindle format, get the freeware program AutoKindle.
That takes in several different formats and churns out a Kindle sympatico Mobipocket file, which is also readable with Mobipocket reader on anything it runs on.
Bog standard Mobipocket files aren't compatible with the Kindle. It's a relatively minor difference and AutoKindle will fix it for you, and they're still compatible with Mobipocket Reader. (So there's no need for different Kindle and Mobi versions of the same book!)
Another plus is AutoKindle is light years easier to use than Calibre or Mobi's own software, and megabytes smaller.
Jeffrey A. Carver
I haven't seen AutoKindle (don't have a Kindle, so haven't had a reason), but as far as I know, based on what others have told me, the Kindle can read ordinary mobipocket files just fine. I know that people have read my .prc files on their Kindles.
Hard to imagine an easier program to use for conversion than Calibre. (It can get techie if you're trying to tweak formatting and mess with the CSS and whatnot, but for most purposes you don't need to touch any of that.) Not discounting the other as a single-purpose converter, mind you. But what I like about Calibre is that it can let you format for just about any reader yet developed.
Hi Mr. Carver,
I want to first say THANKS! for all the free e-books in the Chaos Series. I hope to purchase all of them as ebooks if and when they are no longer higher than the paperbook price.
Just a quick question. Any ideas when book 5 of the series will be released? I see that books 1 – 3 of the series was released almost on an annual basis but there was a HUGE gap between book 3 and 4. I fell in love with the characters and honestly, I just can't wait to see how it all turns out!
Sorry if I'm commenting again. First time I'm trying to leave a comment and not sure if it's going through.
Jeffrey A. Carver
Most welcome, Anon. With the new pricing scheme, the price of the Sunborn ebook is now the same everywhere, as far as I know–$7.99, same as the paperback. The first three books continue to be free, though Paypal donations are always welcome.
I'm working on Book 5, but I can't give you a prediction. (Believe me, this bothers me more than it does you.) Book 4, Sunborn, took so long because I wrote Eternity's End in between, and that took me about 5 years. (Not by design.) Then Sunborn proved really difficult to write, and life kept getting in the way–so that took another 5 or 6 years. I'm sorry to say that The Reefs of Time is also making me a little crazy–and life continues to get in the way. But as soon as I can get it to you, I will!
I'll be heading off to Sony to pick up Sunborn.
Even though I really can't wait for book 5 to come out, do take your time on it. I hate series that start off great but run out of steam towards the end or just rushed out the door.
Even though I'm not a writer, I'm sure coming up with a 6 book series is quite the creative challenge. I appreciate all your hard work!
Again, really thanks for the free ebooks, which I found through the mobileread forums. Thanks to ebooks, I'm reading books from authors I never would have. Fell in love with your series and can't wait to find out what happens to the characters as Sunborn leaves off with an interesting twist.=)