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Books for Thought is where I post a discussion topic related to books, reading, writing, or something pertaining to one of the three. I hope you’ll join in, and discuss today’s topic of


I don’t know if I have shared this particular tidbit of my life thus far: I have shit luck. The italics are, unfortunately, needed in this circumstance because I really, truly, absolutely have shit luck. I could go into my sordid past and give you examples of said shit luck, but lucky for you, I won’t do that. I will, however, begin my preordering story.

Knowing that my luck is shit, and that I wanted to read The Raven King as quickly as humanly possible once it was released, I thought to myself: I probably need to preorder an ebook copy and a physical copy. Because, as per my shit luck, I knew that if I preordered an ebook copy AS WELL AS a physical copy, there was no doubt that The Raven King would be in my hands on release day.

This was a failsafe. This was a: I want to read a physical copy, but I will make sure that I can at least read a copy as soon as humanly possible.

So, I preordered my Kindle copy on Amazon. And then, I thought: where shall I preorder my physical copy? There’s The Book Depository, which has treated my quite fairly when it comes to preorders in the past. There’s also a certain Australian online bookstore (CAOB for short from now on), which has been both good and bad in terms of preoders in the past. However, being the supportive Australian I am, I went with CAOB.

Publication day came. My Kindle downloaded The Raven King. I had no email from CAOB about my preorder, so I went and checked the status – “more copies arriving soon”. Almost a week later, it says “we are temporarily out of stock. More copies are on order with our supplier”.

f you


Preorders, in my view, are books that are put on order before publication date so they can be sent to you as soon as possible. I know for a fact that both the UK and US versions of The Raven King were published early, and seemingly as I preordered the book from CAOB no one who ordered it from them has received it.

What the hell was the point of preordering, of giving me the option to preorder, when there was no chance that I was going to get it in the week of release? It pisses me off a lot that I don’t even know when I will get my copy, whereas I know that people who ordered through TBD have already received theirs. I suppose this is what I get for being a supportive Australian. I won’t make that mistake next time one of my MOST ANTICIPATED TITLES OF HISTORY is releasing.

And there you have it: an example of my shit luck, and how even though I tried to prevent it from affecting me … it reared its monstrous head and came in full force anyway. And you also have my horrid preordering story, and the villainous background of my current fury at preordering in general and CAOB specifically. Oh, the joy. THE JOY.

What about you? How do you feel about preorders? Have you got any horror stories for me?


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Posted on: May 3, 2016 • By: Chiara

17 Responses to Preordering: Taste My Fury

  1. Oh Chiara, I saw this happened to another blogger about the same book, pretty sure she was Australian and pretty sure it was the same certain Australian bookstore. I feel so sorry for you.
    My only horror story with pre-orders is that I ended up not loving the book so I don’t really pre-order anymore.

    • Chiara says:

      It was definitely a crappy experience :( I wish I had just gone with Book Depository to begin with but oh well.

      Ah, that must be horrible! I have had pretty good luck with pre-orders, thankfully.

  2. Hannah says:

    Oh man, that is the worst! I’m really scared to ask which online store it was, but if it was an Australian one, my guesses are pretty much 50/50. I don’t tend to pre-order books, as I usually move around quite a bit (3 times in less than 3 years!), so I don’t want to end up with a book where it shouldn’t be!

    But I agree – if you pre-order, it’s basically saying “We’re getting 100 copies of XYZ to begin with, which means by pre-ordering you secure your order in the first batch of arrivals.” At least, that’s how I’d anticipate it to work! And I’d think for a book as big as The Raven King, that they would have ordered enough for all the pre-orders AND the release day orders.

    • Chiara says:

      Ah, that makes sense! I am not a HUGE pre-order person, but I definitely wanted The Raven King in my hands as quickly as possible. Which did not happen. :(

      YES. I think that is definitely how it should work! But sadly I think they just let as many people pre-order as they want and then they run out. Which is crappy.

  3. Yeees. We talked about this briefly on twitter. I also don’t pre-order anymore, not unless it’s a series I’m INVESTED in… I used to pre-order things, and when they’d arrive, I wouldn’t like the book at all *sob* BUT when I next pre-order, I’ll be doing it via The Book Depository. They’ve never let me down, and even though we have to wait for it to get here a little bit longer, it’s always worth it :)

    • Chiara says:

      Oh no! I’ve been pretty lucky that I’ve liked almost all the books I’ve pre-ordered. If only Aus retailers got the books as early as Book Depository does! Because that two week shipping delay is painful.

  4. Oh dear, that is a horror story indeed! I have been worried about pre-orders for Half Mystic (WE DID NOT ANTICIPATE SO MANY PHYSICAL PRE-ORDERS OH NO WHAT IS SHIPPING WHAT IS MONEY WHAT IS LIFE) so I can commiserate on a different level, I suppose. ;) Honestly, I rarely pre-order books for this very reason – the few times I’ve tried, I receive the book like three months after I’m supposed to, so I figure it is far more reliable to simply buy it when it’s out!

    • Chiara says:

      I pre-ordered another book recently and even though it’s been out two weeks there has been silence :’) I think buying books once they’re out seems to be the best thing because then the retailer can just ship out it asap.

      I think it’s wonderful that your first issue of Half Mystic had so many pre-orders! I am very proud of you and your journal <3

  5. Cassie says:

    Whoa, that really sucks :(
    Because it was an Aussie online bookstore, would that mean that it isn’t getting The Raven King until July? (since that’s the Aussie publication date)?
    That’s the only explanation I can think of.
    I preordered mine from The Book Depository (I own the first three books in UK paperback, and I wanted The Raven King to match…I do plan on also buying the Aus edtions), and managed to get my copy on the actual release date, which made me very happy.

    It makes me sad that some people didn’t get it on the day, though.

    • Chiara says:

      Yeah, they changed the pub date after the book was actually published in the US, so when I made the pre-order it said it was released in April *eye twitch* I wish I had done that! I ended up reading my Kindle copy as soon as I got it, but I much prefer the experience of reading physical books so that was a bit of a bummer.

  6. I’ve heard a lot of people in the U.S. pre-ordered physical copies from Amazon and they didn’t get theirs the day of either. I don’t know if everyone has gotten them yet or not, but it sounds like it’s not JUST the Australian bookstore at least. All around, it sucks though! I’d have to be so excited for a book enough to pre-order and then NOT get it. That’s good you thought ahead to pre-order the e-book at least.


    • Chiara says:

      I think maybe the publisher didn’t realise how many people were going to pre-order this book? Although I would have thought that the different retailers would send in numbers so that the publisher would make sure there was enough. *sigh* I thank my good thinking for pre-ordering the ebook, haha!

  7. Karen Blue says:

    Oh that just SUCKS! I would be ranting about that and blasting that bookstore. What is the point if they don’t order enough books to even cover the pre-orders. Can you imagine how long the people who didn’t pre-order have to wait to get their hands on it? NO WAY would I wait that long. Doesn’t Amazon delivery there? I always get my amazon pre-orders on the day they come out, except that one time it was a day late. I am so sorry this happened to you, at least you were able to read the ebook right away, right?

    • Chiara says:

      Amazon does deliver here, but because of the cost of international shipping and the crappy exchange rate ordering books from there ends up being SUPER expensive. I ended up ordering this from Book Depository, and it arrived damaged and they couldn’t replace it because they didn’t have enough copies. Worst bookish experience ever! Yeah, I was super thankful for my ebook copy!

  8. Alise says:

    Dude. DUDE. This happened to me too! I was livid. This was the first time I’ve EVER preordered a book and this happens! *rips out hair* I wanted The Raven King ASAP, especially because I have shit luck (but when it comes to spoilers). Of course I get an email not even explaining anything but telling me I’ll get the book May 24th!?!?! That’s almost a MONTH after the release date for a PRE-ORDER. I pre-ordered The Rose and the Dagger and that came to me right on the release date, I don’t know why the issue was different for the Raven King. If you keep track and see how many people are pre-ordering this book you should get your shit together and say “Well by golly gee, a lot of people are going to want this book, we better make sure we have enough copies for the people WHO ALREADY GAVE US THEIR MONEY.”

    “Preorders, in my view, are books that are put on order before publication date so they can be sent to you as soon as possible.” THISSSSSSSSSSS.

    • Chiara says:

      I have no idea why the publishers didn’t order a bigger print run of The Raven King due to all the orders coming in from AROUND THE WORLD. Even when I eventually ordered it from The Book Depository they refunded me because the second run sold out, as well. This was honestly the worst time I’ve ever had regarding a book, and a pre-order.

      Although, the crap going down with TBR and the collector’s edition of The Song Rising is a close second. WHERE IS MY BOOK?

  9. Romi says:

    So I’ve already discussed this with you, but if you thought that meant I wouldn’t comment as well you are sorely mistaken, my dear. So you know that I *rarely* buy myself books, which makes my preorders even fewer… I believe I’ve preordered once, in my book buying career, and that was Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick. And that was some years ago. And I’m pretty sure I got it the day it was actually published, so I was chuffed. And I wouldn’t normally expect *that* with a preorder, because there’s quite a lot of guesswork that goes into receiving your package on the day it’s actually released, but… well I certainly would expect to GET IT. *sighs* I’m so glad you thought to get the ebook, too, because I wouldn’t have (since I don’t read ebooks but ANYWAY) and I would have been furious if I’d missed out this long when it came to reading a book I knew I would love enough to preorder *sighs endlessly* I hope your future preorder endeavours are much more fruitful! x

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