Is it just me or are ‘booksellers’ get lazier/more incompetent relying on databases too much? For a long time I’ve realised a lot of sellers on eBay don’t really know what they are actually selling, just type in the title and the database will fill in the rest regardless of edition, date etc. On Abebooks I wouldn’t buy books with ‘stock photos’ without double checking but thought I was safe with ‘booksellers photo’ until the day I got what I wasn’t expecting. On contacting the seller he told me he hadn’t put up a scan so it must have been Abebooks automatically adding them and incorrectly in this case. On Amazon it seems to be the exception if the correct date and edition are even mentioned let alone the image being right.
What brought on this moan? Well I recieved a book in the post from the States yesterday, excitedly opened it to find it certainly was not what I was expecting ie a very hard to find title in the Piccolo Picture Bafflers series. The label on the back was for the book I wanted as was the full description on Abebooks but I certainly do NOT want what I received – see below. To their credit the seller has given me a full refund of all costs but that is not really any consolation for not having the book. There must be something about Bafflers as I ordered two titles from another seller but they never arrived. When I asked where they were the seller said that all the books mailed that day ‘had gone missing’ and gave me a refund but again that is not consolation.