PRH Prices Are Being Adjusted, But . . .

Some RF member libraries are reporting that Penguin Random House is indeed adjusting library e-book prices.

For example:

·Titles in the Cold Fury Hockey series went from $14.97 to $55 to the current $10.  Thank goodness as this series is very popular with our customers.

Crazy Rich Asians went from $48 to $55 to the current $45.  It’s interesting, however, that China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems are now $50, not $45. It will be interesting to see if they eventually normalize at the lower price.

In the Loveswept imprint, all but a handful (that aren’t box sets) are now $10, down from $14.97. That’s a drop on around 650 titles.

The price drop is welcome, but the move to a two-year metered model still poses challenges for libraries. For example, one library buyer points out the following: “Today I have to buy 11 more A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult this week (on top of the 32 we’ve already purchased) to reach our holds ratio. Each copy is $55, but in 24 months we won’t have a single one of them in our collection. Picoult is a perennial favorite, and I will no doubt be purchasing this title for years to come if Metered Access is the only lending model available.”

Adds another, “Our consortium budget can no way absorb having to re-buy this volume of titles.”

Having to repurchase every two years will likely decrease the variety and depth of digital titles that libraries can offer, with either high-demand titles displacing everything else or (and?) librarians facing patrons’ frustrated cry of “what I want is never available.”

PRH, we appreciate you engaging in a conversation with libraries. Please keep the door open. What we need, again, is OPTIONS! Work with us. Pilot at least a perpetual one user/one copy and a metered 52 circ model on all titles. We can talk price options. If we can use PRH efficiently, libraries will buy more from you. Our collections, and your bottom line, will benefit.