I’ve been let down by Amazon for the first time. (We have had our ups and downs previously, but nothing like this.) Last weekend I ordered a book for Jenny — the second of a pair on "100 Greek myths". The local bookshops could run only to part 1 (1-50) which Jenny read in a day and a half. Although we are not talking obscurity here, this is a mainstream children’s book from a major publisher and in print, I am used to this in our local bookshops with their focus on the top/fashionable sellers and almost zero interest in the children’s classics. Amazon will sort this, I thought.
Sure enough, on geting home, Amazon was showing a 24 hour delivery. I therefore placed my order, adding in a couple of paperbacks from ‘that’ list, and opting for first-class delivery rather than the free service, as Jenny didn’t want to wait the extra days for 51-100. Autoconfirm, delivery anticipated on Monday.
Then nothing happened. I checked back a couple of times during the week, and the order was still unprocessed, all three books still 24 hour delivery, but estimated delivery date in the past. On Thursday I sent an email status request (quite a challenge given their strenuous attempts to force customers to stick to their FAQ lists, but I got there and clicked all the correct buttons for their email report form). No answer! On previous occasions when I’ve had to go this far, I have at least received an immediate response acknoweldging receipt of the enquiry. Checked again this evening — the order was still showing unprocessed, estimated delivery date last Monday, and the books still on 24 hour delivery.
So I cancelled the order and have just dashed round three Borderstones — the book still is not in stock but they have ordered it (they swear) for arrival Tuesday. While there, Jenny picked up a book of Greek gods and goddesses and is sitting next to me reading that as I type. I don’t think it will last until Tuesday at the rate she is going, but I hope it will stem the desire for long enough.
(Jenny started studying Ancient Greece at school when her Sats finished at the end of last week, by the way, hence this current deep interest in the topic.)
As for Amazon, I am not impressed. They’re on a warning.
Update: 1950. Jenny has finished the book. She’s now reading "A guide to the names in Greek mythology". Roll on Tuesday.