In a press email to Digital Book World, a representative of Amazon said, “You can see HarperCollins is participating, and Amazon Publishing and KDP are also participating. We expect to add many more over time.”
Kindle Matchbook was introduced as a new benefit from Amazon that provides customers the option to buy – for $2.99, $1.99, $0.99, or free – the Kindle edition of print books they have purchased new from Amazon. Amazon will honor print purchases all the way back to when it first opened its online bookstore, 1995, once a publisher enrolls a title in Kindle Matchbook.
When Kindle MatchBook launches in October, over 10,000 books will already be available, including best sellers like A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving, I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb, The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough, The Hangman’s Daughter by Oliver Pötzsch and The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. Other authors include Ray Bradbury, Michael Crichton, Blake Crouch, Neil Gaiman, J.A. Jance, Jo Nesbo, Jodi Picoult, James Rollins, and Neal Stephenson, among many others.
“If you logged onto your CompuServe account during the Clinton administration and bought a book like Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus from Amazon, Kindle Matchbook now makes it possible for that purchase – 18 years later – to be added to your Kindle library at a very low cost,” said Russ Grandinetti, Vice President of Kindle Content. “In addition to being a great new benefit for customers, this is an easy choice for publishers and authors who will now be able to earn more from each book they publish.”
Bundling print and digital fulfills one of the most requested features from Amazon customers. With Kindle Matchbook, customers can keep their favorite book on their shelf, and have a digital library for reading, perhaps rereading it with features like X-Ray and Popular Highlights.
“I love this idea. It’s simple, brilliant, and good for everybody,” said best-selling author Marcus Sakey. “I love to have print books on my shelf, but I love reading my Kindle on the go, and there are plenty of titles I’d like both ways. It’s ridiculous to ask readers to pay full retail twice for the same book.”
How are readers supposed to remember where they bought a book 18 years ago? Readers will be able to easily look up their entire print book order history to discover which of their past purchases are enrolled in Kindle MatchBook.
As some of us age, being able to convert some of our favorite books with that smaller font to a digital format where we can set our own font size at an affordable price is a wonderful benefit.