Samhain has been in business for almost a year (if I’m reading their “about us” section correctly). They publish ebooks and print books ranging from short stories to plus novels ($2.50-$6.50 ebook prices). Samhain has two yahoo groups, Samhain News (announcements) and Samhain Cafe (chat). They state that their policy is to sell ebooks for less than print books (yeah, rah!) and when I looked up buying a print book, the cart stated that there is no shipping charge for books sold in the US. At least some of Samhain’s titles are also sold at Fictionwise.
The website is laid out with links for the Home Page, newest releases, coming soon, submissions, publication calender, about us, about ebooks, employment, and contact sections across every page. The About Ebooks section has links to download free Adobe, Microsoft Lit, and Mobipocket readers. Submissions are encouraged and information can be found by clicking the link found at the top of all pages. The author link will take you to individual author pages which have links to each author’s own webpage.
The Book Store (My Bookstore, and More) lists specials, bestsellers, books purchased by other readers who bought the one you’re about to buy, gift vouchers, newest products by the author of the book you’re about to buy and a way to be notified of updates to the book you’re about to buy. You can set up an account for future purchases. If you forget your password, a new one will be emailed to you. You can change your password at any time.
The lengths of the novels are explained as follows:
- Word Count-Short Stories: $2.50 12,000 to 18,000 words
- Novellas: $3.50 18,001 to 35,000 words
- Category: $4.50 35,001 to 60,000 words
- Novel: $5.50 60,001 to 100,000 words
- Plus Novel: $6.50 over 100,000 words
Clicking on a book cover will bring up that title and show you: a link to the author page, the ISBN number, length, price, genre, and publication date. The cover artist is listed. Notations about degree of sexuality, violence, language and in one case, sex toys, are listed.
- Navigation-By author, genre (seems like there are some sections that are either planned or which have no entries yet), romance sublisting or books in print. The only sensuality ratings I could see is one romance sublisting of Red Hots.
- Excerpts-Page long
- Reviews-Some books have short reviews. The bookcart lists a way to write a review.
- Series-Books are listed as being an a series but the whole series doesn’t appear to be listed.
- Wishlist-Available through the bookcart.
- Bookshelf-Available through the bookcart.
- Payments-Paypal, Visa, Mastercard, Discover. Once you’ve set up an account, you don’t have to reenter your information for each purchase.
Downloads-Immediate. As soon as a purchase is made, you are given a download link. Back up your book immediately as you only have a limited number of downloads good for only 10 days.
- Confirmation-Immediate by email. There is no dl link in the email.
- Formats-Adobe, ebookwise, Microsoft Lit, HTML, Mobipocket, Rocketbook (chosen when book is added to cart)
- Irks-When I bought a book for this review, I’m not sure if I just picked a busy time or what but the cart function took FOREVER to load and switch from page to page. Once you purchase a book, you have 10 downloads but they are only available for ten days.
Jane’s note: Samhain is one of my favorite ebook publishers but I am puzzled at each visit by the fact that it sells more than books. Maybe someone from Samhain can explain that for us.