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Is it okay to buy books with different ISBN's if they are the same edition and title?

longhorngirl2011longhorngirl2011 Posts: 35Registered User Junior Member
The books that I need for Bio311C and M408C are supposedly brand new. I've searched all over the internet for the specific ISBN numbers, but the only place I've been able to find them (at all) is the CoOp. I've found the exact same book (title, edition, author, publication date, page numbers, everything) on bookholders.com for about $30 less for all of my books. Would it be better to order these and have them available faster, or order the exact ones from the CoOp and have to wait a while before my order is processed? I have a paypal account, and it would be much easier for me to pay on bookholders.com (not to mention that the pickup area is in my dorm)
Post edited by longhorngirl2011 on

Replies to: Is it okay to buy books with different ISBN's if they are the same edition and title?

  • lookingforwardlookingforward Posts: 11,445Registered User Senior Member
    From FAQs at ISBN.org: The purpose of the ISBN is to establish and identify one title or edition of a title from one specific publisher and is unique to that edition, allowing for more efficient marketing of products by booksellers, libraries, universities, wholesalers and distributors.


    But, I've heard softcover can differ from hardcover. Or, the international version. If a new print changes the number of pages, it's possible ISBN can change. I ran into this with my kids books a few years ago, when the numbering system itself changed. Since you don't want o be out the money you "saved," one option is to call the publisher. I found their people (sales dept?) very helpful. Or confirm with your bookstore- I had an issue when one digit was off on the school's list.

    What are the two numbers?
  • longhorngirl2011longhorngirl2011 Posts: 35Registered User Junior Member
    9781133300335 (Biology: The Dynamic Science, 2nd Edition) and 9781133291770 (Calculus: Early Transcendentals, 7th Edition) . The ones that I've found are hard-cover, and look just like the ones that the CoOp sells. (same front cover)
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Posts: 11,445Registered User Senior Member
    That's the ISBN from school? What's from the webstore? There are two numbers for the Reece book- old and new. I'll help, if I can.
  • longhorngirl2011longhorngirl2011 Posts: 35Registered User Junior Member
    The ISBN's from bookholders.com are: 9780538741248 (Biology:The Dynamic Science), and 9780538497909 (Calculus: Early Transcendentals).
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Posts: 11,445Registered User Senior Member
    I saw several ISBNs. Some reflect the diff betweenthe old "978" id's and newer 10 digit numbers.

    Nothing I came across suggests an answer. That's what's so odd. I tht one id could be for a combo (book and study notes, eg,) but no hints of that. If I find something later, will pm you. But, I think you need to call the school bookstore and ask why the confusion. (They may also have used books available.) Good luck.
  • longhorngirl2011longhorngirl2011 Posts: 35Registered User Junior Member
    Thanks so much :) I'm new to the business of buying textbooks and I didn't know if I was missing something. At least now I know that it's not just me :)
  • soadquake981soadquake981 Posts: 1,574Registered User Senior Member
    I could be wrong, but I think that the "Early Transcendentals" books are different from the regular Stewart calculus books. Not entirely sure though.
  • sdradiussdradius Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Both books are by James Stewart, but they are different. You can find the best prices on both editions at Stewart Calculus Price Search
  • m1817m1817 Posts: 369Registered User Member
    You need to think about the cost of ownership rather than just the purchase price, i.e., what you pay for the book less what you can sell it for in the future. You may pay more for the book with the required ISBN but you will probably be able to sell it for more after the course is over.

    People buying a used book with a different ISBN will have the same doubts that you do about whether it contains the same material and won't be willing to pay as much for it as they would for the book with the required ISBN.
  • soadquake981soadquake981 Posts: 1,574Registered User Senior Member
    That's a good point. There's a fine line between buying a really cheap book that probably won't sell, and buying a more expensive book that will sell for a good price.
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