Monday, April 14, 2008

Books and Planes  

Books: One of my latest book-related pet peeves: when an author has a series or multiple books in print and doesn't make the relationship (if any) between the books as clear and obvious as possible.

Since the wife and I have been on a book-buying binge lately, I've noticed that it's sometimes almost impossible to figure out which book in a series comes first, if the books in said series are actually intended to be read in any certain order, or if the books are even related besides having the same author.

I can think of at least three separate occasions lately that we've gotten home thinking we have a stand-alone story or the first in a series, only to find that it's actually the fourteenth out of twenty-three. Two other times, I thought I was getting a sequel only to find that the book in question was not at all related to what I thought it was.

If you haven't been checking out series fiction lately, my rant may not make any sense, but trust me... I'm starting to think that this muddled way of listing an author's other works is a new sales strategy. Trick them into buying #7 on accident, and they'll be forced to buy # 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.

Random: Frequent readers of this blog may know that my son lives in Hawaii. Since spending time with him is one of the most important things in my entire life, my wife and I have to pony up for multiple plane tickets every year -- and if you've ever priced such a trip, then you know it ain't cheap.

With all the trouble US airlines have been having lately between gas prices and lack of mechanical maintenance, there's been much talk of buyouts and mergers. If these rumors pan out, the word is that the number of competitors would shrink and fares, of course, would rise. I may not be capitalism's biggest fan, but I do like the way the system brings prices down in a fair market...

Fewer competitors? Higher prices? My son still 4000 miles away? How's a couple supposed to put anything away for retirement?

Le sigh...

What next?

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