Sunday, November 8, 2020

Buy the Book

One of my first posts was on why you should always carry a book with you. I still abide by this philosophy. After all, you never know when you’re going to have five minutes to get in a couple pages or if somebody’s going to end up at an appointment, only to drag you along with them, and now you’re bored. Always bring a book.

What I haven’t talked about directly, though I’ve certainly put a lot of thought into and hinted at here and there is book buying. Now, I come from a military brat family. That means for my whole childhood, I’ve had to move around a lot. As a result, I’ve had to keep my books to a minimum. While I may have more than the average person, I don’t own as many books as your avid readers. Over the past couple of years, I’ve been trying to change that, honing my personal library. Here are just some of my motivations.



Have you ever heard the phrase: I have enough books to survive the zombie apocalypse? For me, it’s true. Owning a bunch of books that I’d previously enjoyed helped when during the COVID shutdown I ran out of library books. I’d been preparing for this my whole life! Ultimately, though I probably wouldn’t be satisfied reading the same material over and over. And over. I’m like my dragon. I like shiny, new things.

All the same, I love revisiting my favorites. It’s like talking to an old friend. People who think rereading is ridiculous have obviously never watched the same movie twice. Or listened to a song again. Or told their favorite story more than once. That would just be ridiculous and repetitive. Why would you want to do that?

I actually don’t buy books I’ve never read before, with a few exceptions, because I’ve been disappointed all too often. That and I read far too much. But, if I happen to read a book and thoroughly enjoy it… If I give it 4-5 stars… If I like the author’s previous work… If I know there will be more in the series that I must read, I’ll go out and buy the book even if I just returned the library copy.


The Aesthetic

If this one sounds a little vain, that’s because it is. I know you shouldn’t always judge a book by its cover, but sometimes the covers are just pretty (see my post Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover). Thank you, cover designers! Even if you can’t afford to buy all hardcovers and all you own is a bunch of used paperbacks with loved spines, it’s still delightful to see them sitting up on a shelf all cozy together.

Why do I have books 1-7, then 9? (bottom left) Book 9 is the second series. 
I have the rest in e-books and am working on obtaining the collection in print.

Supporting Authors and Bookstores

Did you know that buying books supports authors? Of course, there’s also leaving book reviews and checking out their books from the library, but sales in publishing can help with an author’s career. Every now and then, I’ll branch out and buy a debut book that I’ve never read before. The books don’t always suit my taste, but at least I know I supported the authors.

Not only does buying books support the authors, but it also supports bookstores. I like shopping at indie bookstores, but when they’re not available to me, I’ll shop at your good ol’ brick and mortar Barnes & Noble (or Waterstones in the UK). I’m not a huge fan of Amazon, though I do like its subsidiary Book Depository. I’ll only buy books from them for three main reasons. 1) The book is only available on Amazon/Book Depository. 2) I’m living overseas and shipping from a specific bookstore is difficult/impossible. 3) I have a gift card, and I want to support indie authors.

There you have it! Just a few of the reasons I like buying books. I realize other readers may have different motivations, but those are mine.

Let’s chat! What are some of the reasons you’ll buy books? Do we share any in common?



Similar posts: Are Book Dragons a Dying Breed?; Pre-ordering, Boarding the Hype Train, & Letting it Pass; and Bring the Book

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