“The sense of entitlement of the American consumer is absolutely astonishing,” said Douglas Preston, whose novel Impact reached as high as No. 4 on The New York Times’s hardcover fiction best-seller list earlier this month. “It’s the Wal-Mart mentality, which in my view is very unhealthy for our country. It’s this notion of not wanting to pay the real price of something.”Not surprisingly, Preston has tried to dull his comments by posting this piece on his website:
An open letter to our readers:Unfortunately, Preston's attempt at damage control is not working. Just read some of these comments posted on Amazon in the review section for Preston’s new novel:
We have watched, with interest and no small amount of alarm, the recent struggles between publishers and eBook retailers. We thought it might help if we explained our position. We, as writers, have no real say in the matter, and no real influence on either side of the issue. We, like you, are caught in the middle. What we want is simple. We want to write the best books we can for you to enjoy; for our publishers to make available to you in the format in which you prefer to read them; and at a fair price that enables us to write future novels while keeping the publishers and the Amazons, Apples, Barnes & Nobles and WalMarts of this world in business. From our perspective, the most important element in all this is you, the reader. Without you, the Preston-Child books would not exist, and it is to you that we owe our first and greatest allegiance -- on this issue and, in fact, all related issues.
• "Dear Mr. Preston, I was so looking forward to reading your new book, Impact but couldn't have been more disappointed to learn that the kindle release has been delayed... so that you can sell more hardcover books. Then I read your comments on the American consumer."Keep up the good work, Hoss!
• "This is just another mediocre novel written by a production author with more interest in padding his pocket book then producing a quality product. Truly a waste of time and money... delete this book from your list."
• "This is a substandard product done by a greedy man. It reminds me of the greedy bankers that pay themselves bonuses after someone bails them out of the mess they made. This is the greed factor. The fiction produced by the bankers was actually superior to Mr. Preston's."
• "I agree there is a sense of entitlement in this country, but there is also a sense of greed from writers and publishers. I won't be buying your books again."
• "This author has no sense of how mass consumer mentality can make or break a product. I have been an avid e-book reader but i only purchased books which cost 9.99 or less. I either buy a book at this price or totally opt out. Authors should evolve into this new model or will soon become extinct. Power to the Readers !!!!"