So I’d searched the Kindle store for a free version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea – and I couldn’t find one. Amazon showed me six pages of search results, all offering different versions of Jules Verne’s classic adventure story – with each one costing at least 95 cents. But since the book was published in 1869, why couldn’t I find a free version?
And then I figured it out. I’d typed in “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” — using a comma in the number 20,000. Strangely, if you type Verne’s title without the comma, you pull up an entirely different set of results. (There’s 36 versions if you spell the title with the comma, but you’ll get what appear to be 35 more versions if you spell the title without the comma.) And yes, I finally located the free version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
It’s currently #66 on Amazon’s list of the the top 100 free eBooks, so obviously there are lots of people who are finding it. But in my case, I’d had to drag myself out of my beloved armchair, and use a desktop PC to access the Kindle store, so I could sort those results by price.
But then it felt like I’d finally located Captain Nemo’s elusive submarine…