A Slice of Book Buying Blindness

This is a slice of extreme stupidity. A lot of moments could fit this description, but this one is undeniably one of my worst.

I buy books. A lot of books. I feel guilty about it especially when the charges from Amazon come in. But something happened last night that took my breath away.

“What is this charge for $1,750?” my husband asked. “From Amazon Market Place.”

I had no idea. No one item I’ve ever purchase cost that much.

On the phone with Amazon, looking up my purchases, oh, my go…

If you’re familiar with Amazon, there are often many options, ways to buy. New and used books. When I purchased this book, I thought I was choosing the new product labeled $19.95. That’s what was in the box right below the title. It was a bit pricey, but so many had recommended it, I clicked.  I had no idea.

Turns out in the right-hand corner, there’s another box. Same book. Same quality. Different price. $1,750. That was the one I ordered.


Heart stopping.

Impossible. Unbelievable. Undoable?

The woman on the phone from Amazon heard my reaction once I realized what had happened (just imagine) as my husband continued the conversation as to how to rectify my horrific one-click.

I heard her voice, “I assume your wife wants to return the item.”

At this point, I feel like “that person” who buys ridiculous things on late night infomercials.

Ahhh, yes, please!

She tells my husband, an email has been sent from Amazon to the seller, requesting a return label.

Does that mean I can return it?

It’s a beautiful book. But oh my. How could a book be so expensive?  It seemed so innocent, sitting on my bedside table. Especially when it was available for a mere $19.95.

Right now I’m praying to the bookselling gods: please send the return label.

And to my husband: I promise to never one-click again.

Thank you, Two Writing Teachers and all who slice for Tuesday Slice of Life. A place to write and share everything from the sublime to the stupid moments of our lives. Read more slices here.



23 thoughts on “A Slice of Book Buying Blindness

  1. Oh my, I don’t have one-click anymore. Somehow it disappeared, maybe when I changed computers. Now I know I’ll never choose it. I’m glad that it seems to be turning out okay. I’m sure you’re not the first to return an item because of the wrong click, Julieanne. You’re great to share!

  2. I turned Amazon one click off several months ago because some book I almost ordered in a must have it mode was well over $100 in the “Used” price list. So crazy especially on small devices.

    I absolutely love your title “Book Buying Blindness”. I live that “have to have it” craving for a book.

  3. I use one click all the time. I’ve never noticed such disparity, obviously because I one click . I am now checking all previous purchases. That really stinks. Thanks for the public service announcement 📢!!!!

  4. I could have done this very thing. I will be much more cautious now. I have seen those ridiculously high prices before. The return label better come. I’m so sorry this happened. I can totally relate to how dumb you feel. And the fear. Like Bonnie, I am taking the pledge. No more one click!

  5. Yikes!!!! I one click all the time. Thanks for the warning. But how on earth could the same book be available for $19.95 and $1,750? That is just crazy unless it is a signed limited edition.

  6. Yikes! That is so crazy and I can totally see how I could fall into the same situation, especially when I’m in a frenzy of book-buying blindness! I am so hoping this all works out for you. Crazy!!!

  7. A) How is that even possible to charge that much?
    B) How did you not share this on Voxer? It would have made my insanity feel so much better.
    C) I love you for this story.
    D) Please dear God, say you have the return label now.

  8. I’m sure there are legions of people out there who’ve made a similar mistake. We take so much for granted in this hyper-speed techno world…until something goes wrong…really wrong. We all need to slooooooooow down. I’m sure things will work out. Amazon must deal with this kind of mistake on a daily basis!

  9. SO funny!! I once spent $50 for a book on Amazon but it was so expensive because it was out of print (The Girl With the Watering Can) and I really wanted to own it. It is based on art found in the National Gallery of Art. I felt like that was a lot and never even told my husband! Who knew a book could cost $1000plus? That label will come!! You need that $ to buy many more books!!

  10. We can all learn from this. From my point of view it was a honest (hopefully not pricy and you get your money back) mistake not stupidity. When you do get the money back, you can put it in the future book buying reserve.

  11. “Heart-stopping” is the only way to describe this. I could easily have done the same thing. In fact, I once paid my mortgage twice in one month! Fingers crossed that the return label arrives!

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