As founder Adam Hodgkin explained on Medium, the first offering is from a poetry publisher. It costs $65 a year:
The Carcanet Collection has been developed and made available as a resource for libraries and institutions. It will consist initially of 70 books from the Carcanet list, growing in the course of the next year to over 100 titles. These are books of poetry, essays, letters and biography. The Collection will be sold as an annual institutional subscription, allowing universities and colleges to provide campus wide and multi-user access. The Collection is also now available as an annual subscription to individuals.
Q The collection was first conceived as a vehicle for libraries, colleges and so on. But making a collection of 100+ available to individual purchasers is an unusual move. The collection will be an annual subscription, so it is half-way between being a personal library and a kind of book club. Or is it really a shop window for you as a publisher? Which is the best way of seeing your Carcanet Collection?
It’s probably best to see it as half way between a magazine and a library. It’s a resource that readers acquire because they like, perhaps, a few Carcanet titles and want to widen their acquaintance. Here they find a list curated by ourselves which gives them the best new work we are publishing along with some of our key backlist authors whose writing we are re-presenting, re-discovering. After almost fifty years, the scene has changed, and readers need slightly different access routes.
This kind of offering has been around for a while in the form of access to scientific journals.
But Exact Editions' offering is really closer to being a single-publisher Safari subscription, or the monthly plans offered by Sesame Street and other kids publishers.
image by CCAC North Library