International Textbooks

I just got my Organic Chemistry textbook (international edition) in the mail today – Essential Organic Chemistry, 2nd Edition, by Paula Yurkanis Bruice. Anyone taking BMB 221 at UMaine will have to have it. UMaine only has new editions, selling at $160. I paid a total of $44, which includes S&H, and my book is identical to the American edition and brand new. The only difference is the front cover has a different illustration and it’s softcover, though I don’t think a hardcover is worth paying FOUR TIMES as much for the book. There is a “warning” on the back of the book that I thought was comical:

“This is a special edition of an established title widely used by colleges and universities throughout the world. Pearson published this exclusive edition for the benefit of students outside the United States and Canada. If you purchased this book within the United States or Canada you should be aware that it has been wrongfully imported without the approval of the Publisher or the Author.”

I had to laugh when I read this disclaimer – nothing but American greed. As far as I’m concerned, international editions are the secret to saving lots of money on textbooks. I have compared the book to the American edition and the content is identical, printed in color on glossy sheets. If you’re fed up with high textbook prices, international editions are the way to go! You can many titles on eBay and lots of other sites, and despite several lawsuits from American textbook companies and the scary-looking warnings on these books, the Supreme Court already ruled that it’s perfectly legal to buy and sell international editions in the United States. See Quality King Distributors Inc., v. L’anza Research International Inc. (1998).

Comments are closed.