My first face-to-face encounter has been with a small perfect-bound paperback iUniverse book. Whose cover curls. And not just a little bit - the damn thing stands open like you've put a mid-sized rodent in there as a bookmark. Front and back, from the day it was brand new to its present well-read state. This lead to all sorts of shenanigans as I was reading and reviewing it, because it was just so damn annoying I had to set something on top of it whenever I set it down. My friends would joke about it and poke it when they came over.
The offending cover, compared to a book that's behaving itself rather better
There were other problems, like the gutters were too narrow and the editing was so poor in places (both in the "this story is confusing and has obvious gaps and errors" sense and the "wow, there's another typo" sense) that I can only hope that the author didn't use iUniverse's in-house editing services. But those things are only really evident once you've bought the book and are sitting down to read it, so in a sense they're less immediately important than the cover, which I think has both turned me off of recommending this service to authors and given a number of my friends a poor impression of POD books.
The very nice customer service fellow I talked with at iUniverse tells me that although this does happen, the company hasn't recieved any official complaints about the matter. Well, now I guess they've got one.
Has anyone gone the POD route and seen this problem?