It depends! On whether I’m picking them out at the library, or buying them online. Some things are the same, but some things are different.
Part 1 – Picking Library Books: If you take a look at my newest picks, I bet you can figure out why they called me. They said take us home. Take a guess what they said . . . then check to see if you’re right!
When I go to the library, I wander through the shelves, but I only look at the new picture books. They’re displayed at each end of a row of shelves. I might pick a book or two on that first lap, but I might not.
What do I look at? The titles and the covers! They invite me to pick them up, or ignore them. Occasionally I look at the back, or the inside flap to see what they’re about, but mostly I use that front cover to make my decision.
I picked Don’t Hug Doug because I like Carrie Finison. I’ve read a couple of her books, and I like the way she thinks. I picked Bright Star because I’ve met the author Yuyi Morales on a zoom class or two. I’ve also read a few of her books, and I liked them.
I also loved their covers. Daniel Wiseman made the title big and bold. He added Doug beside his name. It’s nice and simple, and it tells me what it will be about. Yuyi’s cover intrigued me with its deer and cactus. I know it will focus on them, and I’m willing to pick it up to find out what’s at stake for them.
With my other two picks, the title and the cover made me pick them up and take them home. For Henry at Home, I liked the two kids on the cover, and I wondered what was going on between them. I must have been missing home because I picked another book about it. The title, A Home Again, and the tiny red house made me curious. Curiosity is a good thing when it comes to book covers.
PS – when I finish reading each book, I add the title and author to my reading journal. I record what I liked and what I didn’t. They may/may not appear on My Reads. The best way to get a review is by matching up with the subject of my blog posts. There are books I read years ago that I loved, but never got to put on My Reads. If I sort of like a book/didn’t like it, I will never ever put it up. A bad review is devastating to the ego, but, it can also destroy a book’s chance to succeed and find readers like you.
Part 2 – Picking Books Online: I can’t look at real books online so I shop at Amazon. These came up when I clicked Kindle titles. They’re based on my browsing and purchasing history.
These books popped up first. I’ve read all three authors, but the one that’s calling me is the third one, The Jane Seymour Conspiracy. I’ve already read the other 3 books in the series.
The second book is from Alison Weir. I have her series on the six wives of Henry the VIII, except for his last one, Catherine Parr. She’s calling me back. I’ll pass on Jeff Wheeler for now, but his Druid is tempting. I love historical fiction!
Here’s the next row from Amazon. It’s Young Adult fantasy. I’ve had Harry Potter, the ‘real’ books for years.
I don’t know K.M. Shea, but the cover isn’t calling me. I am curious about the books by Emily R. King. She has 2 series that came out after The Hundredth Queen. I’ll look at the titles, descriptions, and ratings to see if I want to check them out.
Shanna Swendson came up, big time on my search list! She has more titles on my kindle than any other author. I found 5 here, plus 2 more! Before I pick any of them, I’ll check the titles, descriptions, and ratings to decide.
This also came up on my search. I’ve never heard of Gaslamp Fantasy before, but here’s the Wikipedia definition – it’s a subgenre of both fantasy and historical fiction. It’s usually set in Victorian or Edwardian England. It fits – I love fantasy and historical fiction.
If I don’t see what I’m looking for, I keep searching. I check my favorite categories, my favorite authors, but I only buy, if I like the description and ratings. I want to know what other readers think about that story.
When I write, I can only have one voice in my head, mine. A little noise is fine. But too much, or worse yet, WORDS, and I must change rooms or pull out headphones. Then I can write on!