In an interview, Mr. King said that he wanted to delay the e-book edition in hopes of helping independent bookstores and the national bookstore chains sell the hardcover edition.Well, it didn’t work. Wal-Mart, Target and Amazon are still going to slash the hardcover price, using it, along with the other best-sellers they’ve targeted, to act as loss leaders to get shoppers to buy online.
Walmart.com, for example, is taking preorders for "Under the Dome" for $8.98, a 74% discount off the cover price, while Target.com is charging $8.99 and Amazon.com has priced the hardcover at $9.These prices even beat what will probably be the e-book price.
The e-book edition of "Under the Dome," which has a list price of $35, will probably retail for $9.99. Mr. King said that those who receive e-book readers for Christmas gifts will be able to download the book on Christmas day.While King admits that the price cuts will probably sell more books, there is this:
[King] expressed concern for the impact the sharp discounting may have on other writers--established authors as well as up-and-comers--saying, "Who is going to buy a book for $25 when you can preorder a best seller for $9?" He noted that at $9, a new hardcover will be cheaper than the later fancy paperback edition.
"All the guys in ties want to talk about is whether a new delivery system is going to work," he added. "Nobody seems to care about the book.