Saturday, June 22, 2013

Why I Bought the Last Three Books on my Kindle #amreading

Have you bought a book lately? How about an ebook? Recently, I wrote about my reading habits in a post on Rebecca Berto's Novel Girl Blog - I Never Met A Free Book I Didn't Download. Today, I'll examine why I would actually buy a book when there are so many free ebooks out there every day.

Here is a snapshot of my recent Amazon Purchase History:

June 21, 2013 - Act Like You Love Me by Cynthia Madsen $2.99 - Ugh, can you believe this was an accidental purchase? I was scrolling down a list of free and bargain books from one of the mailings lists I subscribe to, and their short marketing blurb caught my eye.

What would you do for a second chance at your first crush?

   The perfect summer read if you're a fan of lovable characters, witty observations, charming storylines and adorable relationships...

There was no cover and there was a free book listed right above it and one right below it. So I clicked and clicked down the list downloading. I think I realized my mistake right AFTER I hit the Buy Button. Since I am an author and I don't like returns, I went back and read the description, looked at the cover and decided, yes, well, I might read this book, so I kept it, but haven't started it.

June 20, 2013 - Almost by Anne Eliot $0.99 - I opened up my daily Lendle Insider Newsletter to check out what they have. The voice in the book description was awesome.

At a freshman party she doesn't remember...Jess Jordan was almost raped.

...Almost. Very nearly. Not quite. Three years later, Jess has managed to make everyone believe she's better. Over it. Because she is....Almost. Very nearly. Not quite.

Unfortunately, until Jess proves she's back to normal activities, her parents won't discuss college. So, she lands a summer internship and strikes a deal with hockey jock, Gray Porter: He gets $8,000. She gets a fake boyfriend and a social life.

Jess has no idea Gray signed on for reasons other than money. She also never expects to fall in love. But Gray's amazingly hot, holds her hand all the time, and makes her forget that he's simply doing his job. It's like having a real boyfriend
...Almost. Very nearly. Not quite.

Gray Porter is hiding secrets of his own. About Jess Jordan. About why he's driven to protect her, why he won't cash her checks, or deny her anything she asks.  

The cover? Lacking and I wouldn't have given it a second look. But the repetition of "Almost. Very nearly. Not quite." and the hidden secrets made me pick the book up. Oh, and 99c, impulse. There are a lot of fake boyfriend stories, and most of them are trite and boring. But what sold me was the voice. The voice in the description promised a voice I'd like to spend time with. SOLD. I started reading this book immediately and love the snarky voices of both characters and the geeky environment they're in.

June 20, 2013 - Don't Leave Me, James Scott Bell $0.99 - This book appeared in an email newsletter of free and bargain books. Since I subscribe to them all, I don't know which one. What sold me was that I knew about James Scott Bell and his writing books. I figured it wouldn't hurt to check out what the guru has to say in his own book. I didn't really need the cover or description to hit the buy button. It was 99c, so I bought it and started reading. I would like to say I'm entirely thrilled by it. But the writing style is dry, at least to me, and I'm not connected to the lead character no matter how many bad things happen to him right off the bat. It's too much of a pile-on. But hey, don't argue with the master. He's worked everything in: the initial car crash, the dangerous opponent, the death of wife, mystery caller, the sympathy inducers (pet the dog characters, two of them, a mentally handicapped brother and a little girl who is bullied), the caring career (schoolteacher), the mother with Alzheimers, the heartbreaking backstory, the mental obstacles (PTSD), the hint of a possible romance (another teacher), and a fire at his house within the first 10%, but I'll probably put the book on the backburner because I just didn't feel for the main character. All these things are happening to him out of control, but there wasn't enough of a voice or character connection for me to care. Maybe it's a man's book, of course.

So that's the story of the last three ebook purchases I made. The common thread here is email newsletters. But beyond that, it's the blurb or name recognition. I never glanced at the reviews before buying because I didn't want to be influenced. I usually read reviews after I've finished the book and written my own review and then go through to see who agrees with me.

What about you? Where do you find your books? What makes you buy and ultimately read?

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