Tuesday, February 01, 2005

bamboozled at borders

This weekend I went book-browsing at Borders. With some books, I can sit there and dither for a half-hour about whether it is really something I want to pay for. With others, the book seems so obviously the sort of book I'm a sucker for that I take it off the shelf and up to the counter without even really looking at it. An example of the latter category would be this new biography of the great swindler Ponzi, which partly seemed a sure-thing because of its snazzy cover:

When I get the book home, however, I realize that I've been hoodwinked. It's not a new book at all. It's a reprint edition of a book that was originally published in 1975!

Granted, nothing about the life of Ponzi has exactly changed since 1975, but, if I had known it was a reprint edition, I still probably wouldn't have bought it. And so I feel swindled. Ponzi would have been proud.


Jennifer said...

I have a similar problem. Not really similar, but it has to do with book stores at least.

I'll run into barnes and noble or borders, intending to get one particular thing. I'll come out with three or four other books that look like they're obviously going to be interesting. I always start them enthusiastically, only to be either drawn away by something else or to find out a few chapters in that it's not at all what I thought it was. My bookshelf is teeming with these impulse buys with bookmarks about a quarter of the way through them.

Tim said...

NPR had a segment on Ponzi with Dunn a few weeks ago: