The Sunday Salon: Quarterly Report

The Sunday
Here it is, the end of another month already. Not to mention, the end of the first quarter. So, time for another wrap-up. But first, a bit of a rant.

I had a gift card from Barnes and Noble and bought 3 books online with it (I normally don't shop at big box bookstores). One of my purchases was People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks, a book I've been looking forward to for months. A few weeks after it arrived, I had my must-reads read and was able to dive into it. It was going along swimmingly, I was so into the story and the intrigue. One night I was a hundred pages or so from the end, thinking I might stay up late and finish it. And then -- I noticed that after page 258 - there was page 195 again. Hmmm. I looked ahead and realized that the previous 60 pages were repeated and the 60 pages that should have been there were missing! WTF???

Obviously I wasn't going to finish it that night. I dashed off an email to B and N with my order number, thinking they'd apologize profusely and overnight me a new copy. Instead their reply was something along the lines of 'we're sorry, it's been more than 14 days since you received this order, therefore we cannot accept returns.' OK, number one? How many people examine a new book to make sure all the pages are there when they buy it? And two? this is a defective book and someone needs to take responsibility for supplying me with a good copy of it. B and N suggested I contact the publisher.

Penguin's website states that in order for them to accept a return, the book must have been purchased from them directly. I sent them an email about it. They have not responded.

I sent B and N another email explaining Penguin's policy. They have not responded.

I went into Powell's to buy a new copy (and checked to make sure all the pages were in order); when I told the cashier my tale of woe, she was very sympathetic -- and even gave me a 10% discount on the book!

Which brings me to the point of this rant: buy local. I still hope to resolve this with either B and N or Penguin. I'll keep you posted! Have you ever had a defective book, and if so, what was the outcome?

Favorite reads so far in 2009:

The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent
A Mercy by Toni Morrison
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Oscar and Lucinda by Peter Carey
The Road Home by Rose Tremain
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
O Pioneers! by Willa Cather
People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Update on my reading challenges:

125 books in 2009: 26/125 - not quite at a quarter. I need to make up a few books in the second quarter!
What's in a Name: completed 6/6 DONE!
Decades Challenge: completed 6/10.
The Orange Prize and Booker Prize challenges are perpetual, but I've set a personal goal to read 12 of each this year (some are crossovers). Orange Prize: 5/12; Booker Prize: 3/12.
Dewey's Books: 3/5
Pub Challenge: 4/9
Short Stories: 11/25
Essays: 0/20
Jane Austen: 0/1
Classics (other than Austen): 2/4
These last two are personal challenges. By my definition, Classic is any book older than me that has a high level of notoriety. There are a few exceptions (e.g. To Kill A Mockingbird).

I've made good progress since my last update!

I hope you're enjoying your Sunday.

Join the Sunday Salon!


Amanda said...

That's a really awful situation with the book. I can't believe they wouldn't take it back! Have you taken it to your local B&N and asked them directly?

raidergirl3 said...

Keep on them about that book - that's ridiculous.

I love your definition of a classic; I may swipe that - and then I could count TKaM anyway!

Terri said...

Amanda, I'm going to try that next. The nearest B and N is in a {shudder} big mall. I'll just take my camera with me and turn it into a photo hunt.

Wendy said...

Okay, Terri - that is outrageous! I think if B&N does not make good on the novel I would write to someone high up in the chain of command there and let them know not only will you not purchase another book from them, but you have BLOGGED about their irresponsible selling practices. B&N is struggling financially - you would think they would want to keep customers.

Re: your favorites so far - I see quite a few of MY favorites there as well!

Laura said...

Great post, Terri! I hope B&N comes around -- that's pretty ridiculous. Nice quarterly wrap-up too. You're making excellent progress!

debnance said...

Very odd tale. I would think you could return it to a real life store, perhaps?

kath said...

Terri, I have had a problem with a new book.. one from Amazon, it just fell to pieces on me . They took care of it almost instantly.

I have bought from Amazon for years and they have the berst customer service I have ever encountered. The few times I have ordered from B&N online ( because I had a gift card) I have had several problems and no real satisfaction. The stores are aware of the problem, so Amanda has something there...

awful situation, but at least you got a longer nights sleep??

Dreamybee said...

I keep saying that with the economy getting worse, you would think that businesses would be doing more to keep their existing customers...and I keep seeing that that seems to be some pie-in-the-sky dream. I can understand if you just changed your mind about the book, but come on! The fact that you can't actually read it should bear some weight!

Anonymous said...

Well, B & N should have replaced the copy, it's not like you were lying, it could be crossed checked. And you're right, I don't think many people check to see if all the pages are available.

I once had a couple of pages missing from a readers digest edition. I emailed them and they send me a new copy without any questions. Great service I would say.

Sarah said...

I can't believe B & N didn't exchange the book! Good luck with getting it resolved.

I'm glad to see you enjoyed Purple Hibiscus, I loved Half of a yellow sun and have let PH sit neglected in the TBR pile too long. I must get to it soon.

claire said...

Oh that's awful, Terri. You keep on about that book, you deserve a replacement! I've had that kind of thing happen to me, too. I bought John Irving's Until I Find You at a local used bookshop, and because they had no other copy of it, they gave me back full credit for it. Well done on your challenges!

claire said...

By the way, Bethany has a wonderful post on why she shops at Powell's.

Melissa said...

Wow, I can't believe what B&N did to you, and actually, I'm rather surprised because my experiences with them have always been good. Though the times I've had problems, the book was purchased from a local store, not the web site.

Hope you have better luck with the store, I would be very surprised if they didn't make the problem right.

Good luck!

Rose City Reader said...

The Orange Prize Winners is one of the lists I follow on Rose City Reader. I just posted the lists of winners here.

As with all my Must Read lists, I am happy to add links to progress posts for anyone also working through this list. Just leave a comment on my post with the link address and I will add it.