Hell is empty, and all the devils are here.
– The Tempest
I haven't yet read All the Devils are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis, which gives a detailed review of the fingerprints all over the subprime-driven meltdown, but I have noticed a tempest going on over at Amazon related to the book.
When the authors appeared on The Daily Show and in other media to promote the book's launch, readers went to Amazon.com to buy it.
Kindle readers were shocked to find the eBook edition priced almost the same as the hardcover.
That stimulated a discussion "How is it that kindle version is just 85 cents less than hardcover?" as well as a 1-Star review protest directed against the pricing, not the book's content.
Readers argue that a digital-rights-managed edition should be priced substantially lower than the discounted hardcover price of $17.50. The e-readers seem to expect a price point of $9.99.
When I checked the site to grab these links, I noticed the Kindle price had dropped to $14.99, still closer to the hardcover price than to the $9.99 magic number.
Is this Amazon and the publisher simply trying demand pricing during the media blitz, intending all along to drop it? Or did they price it higher thinking the audience (techno-driven financial types?) would not resist the higher price point?
More than one commenter noted the irony of a book about financial misdeeds carrying a higher price.
Whatever was behind the pricing decision, the authors have to be peeved that their Amazon rating has been downgraded by something outside their control. And future authors could also see the same thing befall them until the market settles the question for everyone.