The December holidays have passed and there’s no doubt – given the lines at the Nook counter at Barnes and Noble – that book reading has changed immensely in the last 5 years or so. Indeed, the era of the e-book is here to stay and more and more individuals find e-reading the way to go when it comes to reading convenience.

That said, many of us are still owners of vast libraries of traditional paper books that perhaps we’d like to own in some other, more convenient format. That’s where companies like Bound Book Scanning enter the picture. This New York-based company, established in 2010, offers options for transferring any traditional book (novels, text books, rare editions, manuscripts, etc.) to an editable Word doc or searchable PDF file, eBook format, or MP3 audio book.

Intriguing! I could think of a number of uses for these services. For example, authors like me could use book scanning to republish out-of-print books and students would find it convenient for instant search and indexing. However, being the recent recipient of an e-reader, I wanted to check it out purely for the purpose of converting some favorite old paper books – both hard- and soft-bound – to a format that could come along with me on the train or wherever I take advantage of this new, convenient way to consume books.

The process seemed simple enough. I would choose the book I wanted scanned, send to off to Bound Book in Airmont, New York (a small village in Rockland County near the NJ border), and – in just three days after it landed in their offices – I’d receive the files in the format which I selected. Definitely worth a try!

One of the first choices I had to make was whether to choose their “destructive” or “non-destructive” services. For the former, the spine of the book is removed and the pages are cut at the margins. Obviously, the book is not returned with this option. As my choice of book to be scanned was a favorite biography that is no longer published but not rare, I chose the destructive method, which is less expensive.

Had I been considering having a rare book scanned, I obviously would have chosen the non-destructive option. Not yet being familiar with Bound Book and their services, however, I didn’t want to take my chances on relinquishing a treasured book. Don’t think I had a problem with Bound Book potentially destroying it; it was more an issue of not trusting the U.S. Postal Service to get it there and back.

Anyway, I looked at the parameters for destructive scanning, saw that my book qualified (maximum page size: 8.5″W x 12″H), and decided to give it a try. After all, if this worked, it would be a wonderful way to quickly and inexpensively allow me to have a number of favorite old books at my fingertips and in my Nook.

Bound Book promised a 3-day turnaround from the date of receipt of my book and – in this case – they were able to deliver. The company does note that from time to time they get backed up and the 3-day turnaround turns into 5 or 6 days. They do, however, offer a rush service, which allows you to get the files you need in a mere 24 hours when necessary. Of course, that costs extra, though I didn’t price it since I didn’t need it.

So, out went my book via Media Mail (the USPS offers excellent prices for this form of mail – i.e. $3.23 for 3 lbs.), and 3 days after they received it, I had the eBook files I wanted. And I was certainly pleased! The quality was good and the company had obviously used excellent equipment that produced a more-than-suitable end product. Furthermore, the cost was affordable at $13.95 plus $.05 per page, bringing my total to less than $25. Payment was easy to make and there was little hassle involved.

Would I do this with all my books? Probably not. Would I trust Bound Book with my rare collectibles (of which I only own precious few)? I’m not sure yet. The jury is still out though the quality and efficiency associated with my first experience leads me to believe they’d take good care of them.

My one concern, primarily because I am an author myself, is the whole copyright issue. On their website, Bound Book states that it is “the customer’s responsibility to insure compliance with all copyright laws, as Bound Book Scanning cannot be held liable for any copyright infringement.” That concerns me a little, though I know that copyright infringement happens every day on the copy machines at Staples and there’s nothing I can do about it.

Overall, however, this first experience with Bound Book Scanning was a positive one. I’d use them again and am intrigued by some of their other services. For example, as a writer who does lots of research, I was drawn to an item which noted that they have access to large libraries in NYC where they can find a particular out-of-print book and scan it for you for an extra fee. In many instances, I’d find that to be an invaluable service.


  1. It has been 8 days since I’ve sent out my 6 books to them.
    I’ve got one confirmation e-mail and a response to my emailed question.
    I’ve received no notice since then.

    I visited their webpage and notice that their webpage’s gone too.
    This’s making me nervous, I’ve paid over $400 for a destructive scanning and it’ll cause a great headache to me if I don’t get what they’ve promised.

    I will be back with updates if I get any notice from them.

  2. tracked my usps shipping to them, they received my 6 books on March 12, 2012, at 2:25pm. I sent ’em a follow-up e-mail asking what’s going on and they said that I’ll be receiving my scanned book links soon on March 17th.

    It is March 23rd and there has not been any updates.

    I’m just having my fingers cross that I’ll eventually get my $419 worth of service as soon as possible.

  3. I sent my valuable books to them for conversion in several different formats.

    Service was lightening fast, and quality of scan was top notch. Pages were crystal clear!
    Price was more reasonable than others.
    Highly recommend to all and would use their service again.

  4. Absolutely terrible! Its been 6 weeks and I still don’t have the scans. They haven’t kept a single promise they gave throughout our email exchange. I will have to call my credit card company to investigate.

  5. gotten all scanning work as pdf links on April 10, 2012. so it’s taken me for about one month.
    6 Law books pages totalling around 7000 pages, ordered total destruction method because it was a bit cheaper.

    waiting for the doc files.
    There’d been a looooooooooooong wait time, but the jobs were eventually done.
    There were few mis-scanned pages, scrambled letterings, etc…
    They responded and corrected those mis-scans and gotten back to me after a few days’ wait.

    My only complaint would be the loooooooong delay that I had not expected.
    But price they charge was cheaper than competitors.

  6. I am surprised to read some of the negative comments posted.

    As an author republishing my backlist titles of science fiction works, I have used this company’s service three times over the last few months and am about to send out my fourth shipment.
    The way I work with them is they send me the word doc which needs minor editing due to occasional OCR mistakes, then I make the corrections which I send back for them to convert to Kindle format.

    I have found their staff to be professional and responsive. Perhaps the reason I didn’t see any turn-time delay like some of these other posters was that I sent only two or three books at a time.

    I have recommended this company to several of my freinds and haven’t heard any complaints back either.  

  7. To those of our valued clients who’ve been frustrated by our prolonged turn times:
    We want to apologize and let you know we hear you and acknowledge that over the last couple of months, due to overwhelming demand, our service times were delayed beyond our standard 3-day policy. As such we have recognized our need to acquire additional staff and we have upgraded from manual non-destructive scanning to advanced robotic non-destructive book scanning. We are working hard to re-establish our capacity to adhere to our revised stated turn times of 4-6 days.
    If you have a deadline please notate accordingly in the comments field in the order form.
    About Andrew’s comment, we had notified him that his books needed special handing due to the ultra-thin (Phone-book like) pages and very narrow inner margins, making it necessary to re-scan and post-scan process his books several times, total almost 6000 pages. That caused the long delay, and we have finally delivered all his book scans. We apologize for the frustration.

  8. Hey Marc, I appreciate that you’ve posted your comment in response to some of our complaints,

    I wasn’t trying to vent my anger-
    All I’ve wanted was to find ONE Good book scanner that I could trust and rely on for a long time because I do believe in establishing and maintaining a lasting professional relationship.

    I’m happy that all my book scanning was eventually done, and I will send more books to be scanned in the future because I’m planning to organize my home library and digitize the majority of my legal references.

    Thanks for the response-
    I look forward to work with you guys again-

  9. Excellent. I’m an author and sent them three of my published novels for destructive scanning (lower price and since I have multiple copies I didn’t need them back) I am in the process of uploading the Kindle files to Amazon and so far so good….this company offers a great service at a great price and I’d highly recommend to any authors who have the copyright to their works and considering e-publishing.

  10. Scanned On Demand is a reliable New York City based document management company with the ability to scan, organize, and enable search in books, textbooks, and documents.

    Give us a call at 646-556-7343 to discuss your scanning needs.

    Ryan B. W.

  11. My experience with Bound Books is, unfortunately, more like Aaron’s.

    I arranged for an Amazon bookseller to send them one of my old paperback editions and put through the order and payment on July 16th. I took the 3-6 days turnaround at face value and was planning on putting the book in the Amazon shop at the beginning of August.

    Still hadn’t received anything by the end of July so I called the company from England. The guy I spoke to promised to ‘send the link’ before closing that day. Needless to say I haven’t heard a thing since and an email asking for an update has gone unanswered.

    At least there was some excuse with Aaron’s 7000 pages of legal text. I can see that could take time to process. But I only sent in one book, a 148 page paperback. How long can that take to deal with?

    It’s nearly a month since I put in my order. If it wasn’t for the more positive experiences reported here, by now I’d probably be thinking I was the victim of an internet scam!

  12. I’m glad to report that within a few hours of posting the above, I did receive the long-anticipated download links from Mark at Bound Books! Apparently the copy of the paperback I had sent via Amazon had aged badly and the browning pages caused unexpected clean-up delays. The work received was of a high standard and I would happily use Bound Book’s services again, though for anyone working to a tight deadline I would suggest making use of their ‘priority’ facility to ensure keeping to schedule.
    As with Aaron’s experience, it was a bit of a wait, but worth it in the end.

  13. My experience is also similar to Michel’s at this point. It’s been over 11 business days since my books were delivered (2 law books, 2000 pages) and I haven’t received any notice from them or any answers to my e-mails. When I call, I’m told they’ve been scanned and are being cleaned up and OCR’d and that I’ll receive them the morning of the next business day. Then I wait 2 business days, call back, and am told the same thing.

    I’ve heard awesome reviews about this service’s quality, and I’d be less frustrated if I was told why there’s a delay and given a real delivery date. Sadly, my deadline for having them is today or I may have to repurchase the books. This is apparently not a service if your deadline is within a month, regardless of their stated 4-6 business day timeframe.

  14. Having the same issues on the slow turnaround times… Could anyone help me get in contact with someone from the business? I tried calling “Mark Honig” but was unable to make contact. As with others on this thread, I’ve reached out multiple times as I sent the catalogs well over a month ago.

    The root of the frustration is that when customer service is lacking, people fee vulnerable. If I could just make contact, I’d feel a lot better about the whole thing and would also not be posting here today.

    Thanks in advance for helping me track someone down.

  15. I’m happy to report that my scans finally arrived on August 18th. Even though it took far longer than their 4-6 business day timeframe, the quality is simply fantastic. They even linked the table of contents to the sections in the PDF so I can simply click on them to jump to that section. In the future I’ll have to order rush processing or order a month in advance, but I couldn’t be more impressed with the quality of the scans. I’ll definitely be using them again and would recommend them.

  16. This morning I heard back from Bound Book Scanning and also received the first of several digitized catalogs. I am very impressed at the quality considering I chose to preserve the catalogs after the scanning process as opposed to the “destruction” method which would obviously produce the best result.

    It is unfortunate that it does take a considerable amount of time BUT for the quality and the price, I can see why they’re overwhelmed with business. I would recommend their services and will likely continue to use their services in the future. Thanks for the great work!

  17. WAIT!…. Spoke too soon. After receiving only 5 of the 7 books, I’m now unable… yet again, to get in touch with anyone within the last 2 weeks, regarding the remainder of the books or to find out when they will be returned. It’s sad that I have to do this but upon first writing on this forum, I received a response. Lets see if I get a call tomorrow with answers to these questions.

  18. Wow this has not been my experience at all! I found this thread while trying to place my second order. I sent them 3 manuals last week on behalf of my employer, for internal company reference, for non-destructive scanning. We chose them for their low price. We were pleased to receive our scans two days after our package arrived, without  choosing the rush option. That was our test order, we’re sending several more now. Perhaps they’ve reorganized.

  19. Thanks, Lauren, for the endorsement, it’s been our pleasure working with you. Yes indeed, our company has added superb staff and we’re proud that our customer service and turn times are now usually exceeding expectations. Our Hurricane Sandy power outage is over and we’re back to business full-swing. All readers of this forum are welcome to use discount code D10 for 10% off our book scanning fees.

  20. Bound Book Scanning did a superb job scanning our school’s old yearbooks for our alumni relations department. We are thrilled with the product and look forward to adding the images to our school’s website. The price was amazingly low for the high-quality scans provided.

  21. Thank you Mark and Shevy for the wonderful job you’ve done converting my personal library. What a thrill to have all my books at my fingertips on my kindle!
    Great price, quick turnaround, excellent customer service. Highly recommended!

  22. Great potential but the service is terrible. Appear not to be able to follow directions, tell you that they are looking into things and don’t and rarely get back to you. I have been using them for over a year. They are so frustrating to work with.

  23. Thanks for providing such great service. Thank you Adele for attending to my concerns. Because I discovered BSS I have been successful in saving the writings and books of Peter Bloch, art critic, musicologist and advocate of the Puerto Rican & Hispanic culture.Bound Book Scanning has made my work easier.

  24. I placed an order with Bound Book Scanning on 27DEC13 after speaking with Mark Honig, the Operations Manager. Mark assured me that my 5 books(1774 pages) would be ready by 07JAN14.
    So, I ordered the books through Amazon and had them directly shipped to the address listed in the order confirmation:
    Bound Book Scanning
    2 Perlman Drive Suite 309
    Spring Valley, NY 10977

    Unfortunately, the address was not the current address for Bound Book Scanning and USPS determined that they would have to be returned to the origin, Amazon. The books were returned to Amazon and I called Mark to inquire what happened. Mark apologized and promised that if I reshipped the books to their “new address” that they would be ready by the weekend.

    I did, and even arranged overnight shipping to ensure that they would arrive on Thursday 09JAN to help Bound Book Scanning meet their deadline. I received an email the next day from a internet hosting site, “hightail”, with download links to 4/5 of my books, but I couldn’t download them. So, I then called Mark again. He didn’t answer his phone, nor did he respond to my voicemails. I then sent him and email and he responded a short while later:
    ———- Forwarded message ———-
    From: Bound Book Scanning
    Date: Fri, Jan 10, 2014 at 2:55 PM
    Subject: Re: Boundbookscanning.com Order Confirmation!
    To: Will R***

    I’ll have those off to you via Dropbox on Saturday night.
    Bound Book Scanning
    2 Perlman Drive Suite 309
    Spring Valley, NY 10977
    (845) 598-0467

    From: Will R***
    Date: Fri, 10 Jan 2014 14:37:07 -0500
    Subject: Re: Boundbookscanning.com Order Confirmation!


    I can’t download the books from hightail. Also, I really need the **** ****** book. You said it would be ready today, but I’ve only received **** ****, ***** *** ******, and *** **** *******. Please call me ASAP, ***-***-****.

    Will R***

    Well, it’s Saturday, 11JAN, and I still have no books. Marc hasn’t responded to my emails. I will keep this thread updated to hopefully keep others from being utterly frustrated with Bound Book Scanning’s total and utter incompetence. The fact remains that the ONLY reason my books were not delivered on time is that Mark Honig FAILED to update his business address on HIS website.

    I will be opening a formal complaint with Paypal if the issue is not resolved within the next day. It has now become ridiculous.

    Will R.

  25. Hi Will,

    I just want to apologize for the frustrating experience you had during our recent move. We consulted with the USPS re how best to handle the move and mail forwarding, and yet despite following their instructions, it was a bit of a disaster (UPS and FedEx were a lot more efficient….of course) but we finally recovered and are back to normal production. Our new address is now clearly updated on our site as:

    Bound Book Scanning
    200 Bates Drive
    Monsey, NY 10952

    We apologize for missing your calls as we don’t work or return calls on Saturdays, but we are available on Sundays. Thank you for your business and we hope you are satisfied with the scans we sent you.

  26. I chose Bound Book Scanning because of their recommendation by http://Bookbaby.com
    I just received my files…good job….sharpcolors and clear reproduction of an old painting-instruction book. This is going to be a gift for my daughter’s birthday. They even cleaned up some of the fraying and made it look like it was scanned from a new print, I was impressed
    Although I don’t like “Hightail” which seems to be a third party file-sharing service…..I found complicating to figure out how to download my files….but I called the company and he walked me thru it.
    All in all a satisfactory transaction at a great price. The whole thing costed me $47.92, not bad…

  27. I have researched other scanning companies and collected samples. I use Book Bound Scanning because of their willingness to help me meet my needs and finances. I have sent them many different books new, old, used, abused, color, black and white, large and small prints, Greek and Hebrew, destructive and non destructive scanning, classic books and comic books. I have been pleased with their professionalism, communication, quality, cost and competence. All of which are hard to find in this world.

  28. After my mom passed on, my siblings and I were all eager to possess copies of her beautifully handwritten journals and scrapbooks which chronicled her wonderful life. Many of them were worn and frail and needed delicate handling.  After shopping around and comparing rates for other non-destructive scanning companies, we chose Bound Book Scanning. The books came back in the same condition we sent them.  The final pdf results are clear, sharp, and a pleasure to read, and we’re all thrilled with the results of this project. Highly recommended.

  29. In December of 2013 we paid to have 25 or so books scanned and edited. After they lost two books we finally had all of the scans complete in October 2014. In December 2014 they said they could not complete my project unless we sent them more money. They cannot provide accurate editing scans as well. They also have issues following directions. If you go with Bound Book Scanning do not trust their work.
    What a scam. It will be in your best interest to move on. It seems like a bait and switch scam to me.

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