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Discussions > Would You Buy A Book Based On The First 130 Words In A Description on Goodreads or Amazon?

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

Interesting article in Publishers Weekly on this question. I would say no. Any thoughts.

http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by...


message 2: by E. (new)

E. | 41 comments I wouldn't buy a book based on the description alone, no matter how many words it was. That is to say, unless it was by a tried and true favorite author.
But these days, with so many, many authors out there new on the scene or new to me, the "130 word description" will make me want to investigate further or pass it by.


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

I would look at the reviews on Booklist and Publishers weekly first before looking at a description.


message 4: by Skye (new)

Skye | 307 comments Ron and E, I have mixed ways of buying a book: for instance, I have bought books that were praised on GR's, and I always buy my favorite writers; I have a list, but lately most of my purchases have come from close friends I've met on Good reads, and their personal recommendations.


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

I should say that I'm always looking at recommendations from people on Goodreads as well. In fact, for the group readings that we have had here, all of them have been from recommendations from people in the group or people who have sent me recommendations.
In some cases, I'll still read the preview of the book also.


message 6: by E. (new)

E. | 41 comments The author in the article went to a lot of trouble to change her book descriptions that appeared on Amazon, etc. She gave the result but didn't say what it started with. I'd be curious to see exactly what she did change.
I consider recommendations, and look at lots of reviews-especially the bad ones. If they all have a common complaint, I'll probably have the same one.
That 130 (+\-) description I can see as important because I scan for key words. Even if it's a 4-star across the board, but I see spy WWII France I'm not going any further... or romantic faeries castle it's not gonna happen.
I like 'em dark, funny, bloody, deep, sinister, psycho, spooky, or any combination.


message 7: by Gary (new)

Gary Van Cott | 63 comments This sounds like constantly fiddling with your resume in order to find a job. I don't need 130 words. I am looking for a mystery series, with a main female or male and female (don't have to be a couple) characters. It should be contemporary (I will make allowances for long series and translations) and set outside the US.

I occasionally find things I like outside some of these criteria (the Maisie Dobbs series for example).

I pick most of my books from the recommendations on Goodreads and from comments in the discussions. Occasionally, I will find something wandering around in the library. Most recently Black Rock: An Eddie Dougherty Mystery which probably breaks 2 and 1/2 of my rules (it is supposed to be a series but only this first book has been published).


message 8: by [deleted user] (new)

With some authors that I really like such as Barry Eisler, I just jump in and read it, knowing it will be a great book.

For others, I still look at the description but other things as well.


message 9: by MaryJo (new)

MaryJo Dawson | 121 comments I would, if the author was already known to me.


message 10: by Betty (new)

Betty (bettylouise54) | 123 comments Yes, I would buy a based on a short description book at one time. Today I look at reviews book a 5 star and 2 or lower and decided with that information. I seldom det a book that I don't like. Recently I did not finished one that I like a later .book


message 11: by Betty (new)

Betty (bettylouise54) | 123 comments As a reviewer I find some books harder to review than other without giving away a lot of "spoilers". They don't really bother me.
Recently I had a book I felt was Three stars but couldn't come up with a positive point to start the review. I began to wonder if was rating it too high. I did find a positive thought for it.


message 12: by Craig (last edited Oct 19, 2017 10:32AM) (new)

Craig Monson | 36 comments I start with the title, then flip to the back of the title-page to find the publisher's information: if it's been through more than one printing I'm more likely to believe the cover blurb hype. Then the jacket copy to get a sense of what it's about. Often I try the "page 99 test." (Actually, Marshall Zeringue's PAGE 99 TEST blog can be an interesting and useful way to learn about a variety of books: http://page99test.blogspot.com/)


message 13: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Fraser (melaniefraservoiceuk) Gail wrote: "Yes... I buy a book based on the description and I open the sample and read the first page. If it captures my interest that's it. Sometimes I peruse the reviews and look for keywords that might ind..."

I do the same as you Gail although I rarely read reviews before reading a book. If I dislike it, then I will read reviews afterwards!


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