If you're hoping Santa drops a Kindle or Nook under your tree, be forewarned: e-book bestsellers don't cost $9.99 anymore. These days, electronic tomes can cost as much or more than their print counterparts, the Wall Street Journal reports, thanks to a move from the six top publishers to set their own e-book prices. A digital copy of Ken Follett's Fall of Giants, for example, will cost you $18.99, while a paperback copy from Amazon is just $16.50.
You can blame Steve Jobs for the change. Before the iPad, publishers sold e-books in a traditional wholesale model, allowing retailers like Amazon to discount them. But Jobs convinced them to switch to setting their own prices. Ironically, they're making less money this way; Amazon used to pay them full hardcover wholesale price on each book, and take a loss to sell them at $9.99. And the last year has also seen a boom in e-book piracy, a possible result of the price hikes.