Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Book worm

Dear Mr/Mrs Borders,

I love book stores. The smell, the feel, the soul of the place. I can spend hours in there, and as such I buy most of my books in one of your shops.

And that is despite the fact that I could get them online for literally 1/4 of the price. You MUST know that. Despite your Buy 1 Get 1 Free offers, I could save myself a large wad of cash by visiting Amazon or Ebay or any of the many, many online stores which sell second hand books,

So I will lay my receipt out for you now, just so you get the picture - and put in brackets what I could buy a new copy for online (and it hurts me to look this up, and find out what i could save).

The Book of Dave by Will Self = £7.99 (Amazon £4.34) saving approx. £3.50
The Qur'an, a translation by M.A.S Abdel Haleem = £7.99 (Amazon £4.79) saving approx £3.30
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood = £7.99 (Amazon £2.00) saving approx £5.99
Ghostwritten by David Mitchell = £7.99 (Amazon £2.90) saving approx £5.09
My Mum by Anthony Browne = £3.00 (Amazon £1.44) saving approx. £1.50

So my bill came to a grand total of £36.65, and that was before I ran back down the street to flag up the fact your shop had charged me £5 extra for one book and, with my Buy 1 get 1 half price offer, I walked away paying a grand total of £31.65.

The lady at the till tells me this happens often, the wrong prices flag up all the time and throw in the fact you didn't have one book I wanted (Backwards in high heels by Tania Kindersley and Sarah Vine, as you ask) and most copies of the Qur'an were over £12...well it wasn't a great experience.

Next time I will probably go online. I will save myself about 40% per book after P&P and I am guaranteed to get what I want. But I want your shop to survive, so I write this letter to ask you to think more cannily, discount more effectively, get stock in (I was in the Oxford St store - your HQ!) and get a till system that works.

Thanks ever so,
A book shop lover

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