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Monday, April 25, 2011

Buying Habits & Mini-Review

I just finished reading Warprize by Elizabeth Vaughan, courtesy of the very wonderful Suzanne Johnson. I'd been wanting to read this book forever, but I don't live near a bookstore and I never order books online--other than ebooks. (My Nook is getting very fat with books.)

But this brings me to the subject of buying habits and my big secret.

I am not a jumper-of-bandwagons. 

I'll wait for the collective gasp. LOL.

You can bet your bottom dollar that if some big book, movie, gadget, trend, or the Second Coming rolls around, I will very nearly be the LAST person to come on board. I don't know what that says about me other than I simply lack the gene to scratch the 'instant gratification' itch.

I have to wait and see. Listen to other people's opinions. Weigh my options. Do my nails. Wash my hair. You get the idea.

Generally, by the time I read a blockbuster book, it's been history for at least a couple of years. Now if you happen to have a book that is NOT on the NYT bestseller list, your chances are very good that I'll read your book before the blockbuster. Call me a rogue because I prefer to support writers who don't get all the fanfare and accolades. The megastars will always be there, but a lesser known writer might get lost in the constantly moving parade of new stories.

Do you think that's weird? Greg doesn't hesitate to buy what's new and hot. Me...I'm patient. 

'Warprize' really tested my patience though. I wanted this book badly. Every time I was in a town that had a bookstore, I'd check for it. The clerks always offered to order it for me, but when's the next time I'd be in that town? I couldn't say, so I'd pass. It's not as if I was suffering for lack of reading material. I have lots to keep me busy.

And then Suzanne Johnson happened to mention it on a giveaway on her blog and I dropped in a comment, and won the book!

Once 'Warprize' arrived, I dove in and even skipped a few chores to finish this book. I'd already read the third book in the series 'Warlord' (because that was in the bookstore).

I have to admit, even though I enjoyed the book, it was a little disappointing. After years of hearing people rave about it, there were aspects that really bugged me.

Lara, the Warprize is a bit of a simpleton, and she seemed to defy common sense at the most inappropriate times. I also never understood why the hero was attracted to her. But Vaughan outdid herself in painting the Firelanders and their customs. Keir, Marcus, and Simus were remarkable characters. I wanted to know more about them.

I still like this book, but not for the reasons I thought I would. The third book lacked a lot of the characterization of the first book--obviously since I'm sure the author was counting on people reading them in order, though I still liked it overall.

I might skip the second book in the series (Warsworn). I read Angela James's thoughts on 'Warsworn' and she mentioned Lara was not nearly as likable.  Since I didn't care much for her in the first book, I didn't want to be further disappointed. (Although the heroine did vindicate herself in book 3.)

In book 1, Lara just didn't seem worthy of a man like Keir. There was no fire in her like there was in Keir. That's important to me. Both people have to bring something to the table for me to love them.

I feel fulfilled though. I finally read a long awaited for book. And Elizabeth Vaughan has intrigued me enough that I'm willing to try her 'Star' series. I really do like her story telling.

What are your buying habits like? Will you drop everything to buy a much anticipated book, or can you wait for the hoopla to die down?

24 comments:

DRC said...

I'm like you. I usually wait - as you say - for the hoopla to die down. At present I'm reading the Bourne Identity trilogy which were published in 1980, and god knows how many years ago the films came out.

The only book that I couldn't wait to come out was the last in the Dark Tower series by Stephen King. Yep, I rushed out and bought that big ol' hardback at full price. And it was worth it.

Joanne said...

I'm like you, and wait for the hoopla to die down. Sometimes the hoopla puts me off a little, I want the writing to speak for itself. I'll definitely read reviews, and samples of the book before deciding to commit to it.

Maria Zannini said...

DRC: Sometimes the wait is unbearable. The last time that happened to me was for one of McCaffrey's Dragonrider books. I was young then--and not so patient. :)


Joanne: That's it! That's what I wanted to say. Once the fanfare quiets down I can read more objectively.

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

i buy based on what i want, first and foremost. If that means i'm buying what everyone else is too, then so be it.

Marianne Arkins said...

I'm a "borrower" of the big name books -- because the library always has them. That way I can decide if I want to buy it after (yes, I'm a big fan of re-reading).

It's the small press stuff I'll buy right off -- plus buying eBooks is just easier. :-)

lbdiamond said...

Yeah, I wait for the hooplah to die down. Unless it's Harry Potter, LOL!

Cathy in AK said...

Another hooplah avoider here :) I rarely buy stuff the day, week or month it's released. There are a few exceptions, but if I do buy them right away I won't actually read them for a week or month : P

RE: Warprize. I read the first one and had the same reaction you did. Haven't felt the need/desire to continue on.

Rula Sinara said...

I tend to wait, unless the book is by an author I already know and love, or it's part of a series that I'm already hooked on. Otherwise, I'll stew. The problem is that sometimes all the hoopla makes the read a bit anti-climactic.

Maria Zannini said...

Sarah: That's my hubby. He doesn't care if it's the hottest thing or totally unknown. If he wants it, he gets it.

Marianne: That is so smart. I don't have a library close to me either, but the next time I think of a book I really want to read, I'm going to check out Nook's lending library.

lbdiamond: I can't blame you. :) We all have our priorities. LOL.

Sherri said...

It depends on the book, LOL

I have a handful of authors I pre-order or buy release day. I have a larger list of "pick it up when I see it" authors.

I won't buy something based on reviews alone, so in that sense I guess I'm a hooplah avoider. On the other hand, if someone I know is recommending the book (and reviews or whatnot support that recommendation) then I'll jump into the hooplah.

Maria Zannini said...

Cathy: I'm so glad you said that! I was beginning to feel I might bring down the fans' wrath on me. I really liked Keir, but Lara--not so much.

Rula: Yup. The fanfare becomes so excessive it raises my expectations too high.

Maria Zannini said...

Sherri: So true. I will ignore reviews entirely if a friend I trust recommends a book.

But that's not to say I won't cave to peer pressure on occasion. When everyone was going gaga over Private Arrangements with Sherry Thomas, I did buy that book and it was definitely worth it.

Ellie said...

On the whole I'd say I'm like you - it was years before I read Harry Potter. I don't what it is about me but I like to swim against the tide. When my parents wanted me to wear pink dresses and play with Barbie, I made mud pies and built spaceships. Most girls wanted to be an air hostess and get married; I wanted to be an astronaut and never marry. You get the picture.

There is nothing wrong with not wanting to follow the tide!

Ellie Garratt

Maria Zannini said...

Ellie: Are you and I related? LOL. That is too spooky.

I was the same way about clothes and careers. I didn't want the easy way out. I wanted the road with a view. :)

Barbara Ann Wright said...

I'll drop everything to buy a new book by one of my favorite authors, but I usually wait years to get on a bandwagon.

Maria Zannini said...

Barbara: This makes sense to me. The authors you love have stood the test of time and proven themselves to you.

Mike Keyton said...

I'm looking forward to the new G.R.R. Martin book coming out in July, but that's exceptional. I like my books with a few years behind them, and am prone to sudden passions for dated pulp. eg Edgar Wallace. I'll never read all the books I want to read, so random retrospective rather than the latest thing suits me fine

Can't believe the word verification here phoar!

Dru said...

I buy what I want and/or like, especially if the books are by my favorite authors.

Meghan Schuessler said...

I'm the same way. In fact, sometimes it actually turns me OFF if a book/series whatever is too hyped up. I get bored quickly and if I hear about something too often, I end up not wanting anything to do with it. It took a lot of convincing for me to finally give in and read the Harry Potter books. Same with Twilight. I'm always a little late to catch on to trends, but I like it that way :)

Shelley Munro said...

My to-read pile is huge so I tend to wait. Not as long as you though, Maria. I read Warprize a few years ago. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Mike: The nice thing about Pulp is that you usually find those in the sale bins. :)

Dru: You're such a voracious reader I think you'd have to buy more than the rest of us. My jaw drops every time I think about how many books you read in a year.

Meghan: When it comes right down to it, it's the show-offiness that makes me look the other way.

Shelley: Slow, I know. LOL. In my defense, I hadn't heard of Elizabeth Vaughan until a couple of years ago. When I read the excerpts, I had to look for her books. That's when I discovered she was a big deal on the NYT list. (my bad)

Angela Felsted said...

My buying habits match my reading habits. They're sporadic and hinge on my moods.

I know, that's terribly unpredictable, isn't it?

Miss Good on Paper said...

I usually wait, too. Sometimes I think I wait or never read that popular book because I'm stubborn. Or maybe I'm skeptical. I still haven't read Harry Potter, for example.

Thanks for sharing this. I like to hear how others make these kinds of choices in their reading (and buying). -Miss GOP

Maria Zannini said...

Angela: When I was younger, I was much the same way. Even then I didn't like being dictated to.

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Miss GOP: Welcome! I saw your avatar on the follower list, but there was no active link so I couldn't follow you back. I've since remedied the situation. :)