Julia -- yes, that's a major problem (no returns). Scrivenery accepts returns, but I don't think many other POD publishers do.
Bob -- what you're thinking of is the Thor Power Tools ruling. For years Thor kept old useless machinery around to list as inventory, until the IRS got a court ruling saying inventories were no longer deductible. That meant all inventories in all businesses, including books in warehouses awaiting shipping, remaindering, or trashing. Thor immediately broke up its old machinery and listed the bits and pieces as deductible spare parts...which are not considered inventory. The publishing industry followed suit and started storing books and covers separately -- "spare parts" that are assembled before shipping. The Thor Power Tools ruling punished everybody for one company's abuses.
Pete, you'd said you didn't know anything about POD, so Rita was showing you how it worked. Lightning Source (not "Press"; I got that wrong) is the printer that POD publishers use, not a publisher itself. You order books through bookstores, either online or off, or directly from the publisher. Andrew directed you to Amazon; upstream I posted the publisher's URL for ordering Good King Sauerkraut. The price listed at both places is the same, $16.95 for a trade paperback. The difference is that Scrivenery's price includes shipping; Amazon will slap another five bucks on top of the list price.
And bless S. Berner, whoever he or she may be.