Edited: Et tu, PRH? Maybe not. Let’s find out more

Is this the other shoe dropping? Update: maybe not. It looks as if Penguin Random House is going to drop prices on some “top tier” authors from $65 to $55, but raise prices on many others.

OverDrive sent out this notice to its clients.

RF will post more as we learn about this possible unwelcome change. For now, we don’t know if many prices will in fact be raised. Expect a follow-up post if we find out.

Update: This matter is more complicated than it might seem at first sight. A closer look at some upcoming PRH pricing suggests that while adjustments are going on, a majority of titles are not going up in price. Some titles are being increased but they are not necessarily titles (omnibus titles, some classics like those in Everyman’s Library) that libraries buy much of. Other adjustments are being made based on BISAC subject headings, with some titles moving from a children’s or young adult or adult classification to a different one. Overall, some percentage of titles will increase, but a far larger percentage is going to decrease. Many titles of primary interest to libraries are being adjusted down since the initial list was released. PRH is also planning to offer a pricing sale with discounts on library e-books soon, though apparently not every library vendor always offers discounts when they appear. ReadersFirst suggests a “wait and see” before reacting strongly to get a better idea of exactly what all the price changes are going to be and what PRH will do in response to any library concerns. An immediate purchase of titles that “are expected” to increase may not be in a library’s best interest, in spite of some recommendations.

 Dear Partner,

We received additional information about the price changes that will take effect October 1, 2018 for the Penguin Random House ebook catalog. In general, the pricing for ebooks will be as follows:

  • Adult titles: $55.00/$57.00 USD

  • Young Adult titles: $45.00/$47.00 USD

  • Children's titles: $35.00/$37.00 USD

There are exceptions to these price points that may vary by audience level. Please note, the new pricing results in both price decreases as well as increases from the current pricing across the catalog, which vary on a title by title basis.

We reviewed the upcoming price changes and created a list for you in OverDrive Marketplace that include ebooks we expect will have a price increase after October 1, 2018. We recommend you take advantage of the cost savings by purchasing now, as prices will be increasing on these titles on October 1. The pricing is subject to change.

If you have any questions, please contact your Account Manager.

Thank you,