We’ve posted updates at the end of this post. We’re not entirely sure what’s going on with the lending status of The Hunger Games series, because it appears to be changing from minute to minute. This is where things stood when we first noticed the issue, earlier this morning:
I’ll cut straight to the chase: Amazon’s top holiday seller and Lendle’s top borrow request, The Hunger Games, is no longer lending-enabled on Amazon. Unfortunately, this means it must also appear as “not lendable” on Lendle. (It may take some time for the change to propagate.)
For whatever reason, the second book in the series, Catching Fire, is still lending-enabled.
The third book, Mockingjay, is not.
The collected trilogy seems to retain its status as lending-enabled.
If I had to guess, these changes signal the imminent release of a movie tie-in edition of The Hunger Games. We went through this same hassle when Water for Elephants moved through a series of Kindle editions.
We’ve never really seen a particularly good explanation as to why they have to revoke the lending rights of an existing edition to move in a new edition, but then, we never get much of an explanation about anything having to do with the changes to the books we buy.
My “new edition” theory doesn’t really explain why the first and third books have seen the change, while the second book has not. If the point of lending is to hook new readers on a series, why reserve the ability to lend for the second book in a series? If you’re going to pick and choose, why not at least choose the first book?
It’s especially frustrating to see the lending status (potentially) revoked on a book that Amazon recently touted as it’s top holiday seller. We believe that success was earned (in part) because of Scholastic’s forward thinking views on lending, not in spite of them.
If you have questions, we suggest you contact Scholastic.
I’ve reached out to both Amazon and Scholastic. If we hear anything, we’ll update this post.
Update: As I mention above, the status of this series seems to be in flux. As of right now, all books are listed as lending-enabled — except for Mockingjay. Here’s hoping that all of the titles revert back to lendable before the day is out. (We’re cautiously optimistic.)
Update 2: Scholastic responded to my email.
Thank you for contacting Scholastic Book Clubs. I am happy to respond to your inquiry if it is a permanent change that the Kindle version of “Hunger Games” and “Mockingjay” are no longer lending enable. [sic] I apologize for any inconvenience you have experienced. I confirmed that we don not [sic] offer eBooks on the Kindle and suggest that you contact Amazon. Again, I apologize for your disappointment.
Amazon lists Scholastic Press as the publisher for The Hunger Games. What am I missing, here? (The email I sent in was posted to a general contact form on the Scholastic website.)
Update 3: Amazon responded to my inquiry, but the response doesn’t actually address the issue, so I’m not going to bother posting their response.