• Reagan Lee Ray

What influences your choice of book?

When there are so many books to choose from, how do you pick up the right one?

Welcome to my blog .

People have been telling me for a long time that I need one.

Considering how I would rather bring back carrier pigeons than learn about new technology, and the fact that social media confuses me, starting a blog is a pretty big deal for me.

Books are art, and art is incredibly subjective. A Monet to one man is another man's load of old Pollocks.

For my first post, I want to look a little into what makes a reader pick up a book.

Do we judge a book by its cover?

So, what makes a reader choose a certain book? Several factors come into play. Obviously, the genre is a big part of the decision making process. If you're not a romance fan, you're hardly likely to pick up a Mills and Boon.

The author is another piece of the equation. Some authors are lucky enough to gain a following of die-hard fans, who eagerly await every new release. There's a great sense of comfort that comes from knowing you're very likely to enjoy the new book you're buying.

For me, I always take the cover and blurb into consideration. I read a wide range of genres, so a lot of the time I don't know what I'm looking for until I find it. If the cover grabs me, and I flip it over to read a blurb that leaves me wanting more, then it's pretty much a done deal that I'll be buying it. A good title can be important, too. It needs to tell you enough to give you an idea of the feel of the book, but also be interesting enough that you want to find out more. A too-busy cover can be distracting. A plain one can be overlooked. It's a delicate balance to create one that's eye-catching to the right degree. We've all been there - browsing in a bookshop, almost unconsciously making snap decisions on whether to pick up a book based solely on a cover.

Now we come on to a factor which can be rather contentious. The infamous review. Would knowing your most loved book had an average of a 1-star review change how you felt about it? Would knowing other people didn't like it spoil your own enjoyment? Reviews can be great, as long as they are unbiased and truthful. I use them myself, to share the books I have truly loved. Then again, they can also be the bane of a new authors life. Personally, I have never let a review decide for me. In fact, some of the books I have most enjoyed came with not so great reviews. Books are art, and art is incredibly subjective. A Monet to one man is another man's load of old Pollocks.

To an author such as myself, trying desperately to make a name in a very difficult marketplace, we try to do everything we can to make you click on our book as you scroll through a million options on Amazon or the like. Sometimes we succeed. Sometimes we fail. But every book we put out there holds a little piece of us within it. Whether you download the kindle version, of shop in a real bookstore, you can be assured that each book you choose to sit down and read comes with the blood, sweat and tears of the person who wrote it.

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