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|Musings on the Arden Shakespeare|
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 21.0112 Thursday, 11 March 2010
From: Steve Roth <
A propos to this topic, various have questioned the two-volume Arden 3 approach to Hamlet on the grounds that the second volume--F1 and Q1--would be expensive, unavailable, unseen, undercutting the rationale for the whole approach.
The paperback is now "available" for $22, which isn't bad. But:
I ordered a copy of that volume from Amazon for my daughter on February 7. Amazon hoped to deliver it between February 19 and March 1. (The Q2 volume was available immediately, of course.)
On Feb. 26 I received a notice saying: "we are unable to ship the item(s) as soon as we expected...Estimated arrival date: March 09 2010 - March 12 2010."
Then I received another today: "we are unable to ship the item(s) as soon as we expected...Estimated arrival date: March 19 2010 - March 24 2010
A month and a half delay.
Understand: it is extremely easy and inexpensive for a publisher to make titles immediately available on Amazon, using a variety of means.
Meanwhile, I was in the U Chicago Co-op bookstore the other day--one of the best-stocked academic bookstores I know--and they didn't have a copy of this volume.
Having been in the book publishing business for 25 years, I really have to question the competence of a publishing operation that in this day and age can't make its books available through the 1) most important and 2) most perfectly targeted outlets.
Maybe the publisher only cares about course-adoption driven sales through college bookstores. Fine. But I advise any profs thinking of adopting it to make sure the bookstore places your order well in advance.
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