Why Would Anyone EVER Pre-Order a Book?

I am anxiously awaiting the release date of the final book in the Inheritance Cycle (called Inheritance) by Christopher Paolini as a lot of other fans are on November 8.

So, I go online to Amazon to pre-order it.  Well, as most of you know, you have to spend $25 or more to get free shipping so I thought I’d order some other books I’ve had in my queue.

I go through the whole process to the end where it says, “Your books will not be shipped until November.”

What?!

I thought books from Amazon were shipped when they arrived so I’d get separate orders.

I cancel that order and hop over to Barnes and Noble.com and see what they say.  I call a physical store to ask,”If I pre-order this book along with others, will it be shipped separately?”

“Oh, yes,” the employee assures me.  “You’ll get your other books first.”

Once again, I go on-line to order my books along with pre-ordering Inheritance.  Again, same message:  “Your books will not be shipped until the pre-order is available.”

Of course, I don’t believe the young man on the phone and I just cancel my order.

In the end, I don’t order Inheritance (much to my chagrin for I really want the book) and just order the stuff I need now (some are workbooks for homeschool) along with a book my daughters really want (the new book in the Magic Tree House Series called Dogs in the Dead of Night #46 by Mary Pope Osborne) to get myself over the $25 mark.

Why would anyone ever pre-order? I wonder.

Amazon has changed the price on Inheritance THREE times since I’ve put it in my cart.

I decide to just order the book when it comes out.  Easier. Safer.  Less hassle. And confusion.

And if I pay shipping, so be it.  But by November, I’m sure I’ll have something else I need (all books are a need, ya know!).