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Instant Book Gratification {Discussion}

Book Discussion

I Miss Instant Book Gratification

You know that feeling when you go in the bookstore to buy the sequel in a series you’ve been looking forward to for months, or you find a new book that you’re really excited about, and you buy it and go home and immediately start reading super excitedly? (Or, even better, you start reading in the car because someone else drove you!) I miss that instant book gratification where I start reading a book the same day that I hear about it or as soon as it is in my hands if it is a sequel I was anticipating.

Why do I miss instant book gratification you ask? It’s really my own fault, I’ll fully admit that, and the fault of my habits changing with book blogging. While it is really exciting to get ARCs or early review copies, of course, these days I rarely let myself read a review copy the day it arrives in the mail. There are always other books that I’m in the middle of or that need to be read first. I would feel way too guilty jumping to a book that is months out since I have review copies that are overdue that I should read instead D:

I’m generally quite okay with my schedule and all of those overdue review copies are books that I’m still genuinely excited to read. There is just some delicious extra bump that you get when cracking open a new book that you literally just purchased and I miss it! I didn’t even realize that I missed that feeling until recently when I thought back and realized that I hadn’t read a recently purchased book in ages.

Maybe it is just nostalgia, but I keep thinking back to the “good ol’ days” when I went to the bookstore with my mom and bought whatever caught my eye, then immediately started reading it in the car. Instant book gratification captures that essential mood reading element, since hopefully you’re still in the mood to read a book that you were excited enough about to actually spend money on ;-). Because of how review copies work, there is generally at least a week or two delay between the moment that I’m excited enough to request a book and the moment that it shows up on my doorstep and I can actually read it. Even if I’m still interested in the book when it shows up, some of that initial rush is gone. Other books have caught my eye in the mean time and now I’m anxiously awaiting them. Or maybe I’ve seen a review or two for the book and now am painfully aware of its potential shortcomings that may or may not actually apply to me.

There is of course a couple of ways for me to recover some of the rush of instant book gratification. I can read an ARC immediately, even if it doesn’t come out for months, and I’ll probably enjoy it more than I would if I waited anyway. There are a couple of big releases that I’m really excited about this year and may not get as review copies, and I’m actually kind of excited about the idea of going into the store on release day to buy the book and start reading it as soon as I get home!

While I’m still behind on review books and will continue to try to catch up/stay ahead of those, I think that I’m going to try to give myself permission to jump ahead if I’m really excited about an ARC or pause the review books schedule to fit in a new release that I’m geeked about. Like I said, it’s not that I’m not enjoying the review books I’m reading, and it’s not that I’m not reading the books I really want to, it’s that I’m not letting myself be spontaneous when new books are particularly awesome (and I’m not really a spontaneous person anyway ;-) ). I’m not sure how well I’ll do, but there are a couple on the review pile for the summer that I’m particularly eyeing, so I think I’ll go practice being spontaneous right now! :D

Have you experienced that extra rush of instant book gratification? Do you find yourself jumping straight into new books or putting them off for others? Book bloggers, how do you balance new review books or purchased books with overdue review books?

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings -Anya

© 2014, Anya. All rights reserved.


  1. I miss this a little bit too. I occasionally go on netgalley or get their recommendation e-mails and wish I could just request a book and read it right away because I don’t know what I’m reading next. On the other hand, the idea of finishing a book and not having something available to start right away terrifies me. I always feel a bit lost when I’m not in the middle of a book, especially if I just finished something really great.
    Katie @ Doing Dewey recently posted…Armchair BEA Beyond the Borders – Ways to Add Diversity To Your ReadingMy Profile

    • I’ve only lately been getting that next book terror, but I completely agree with you now! I feel the need to make a new schedule because I don’t want to have to decide what to read next D:

  2. I know what you mean. You’re right; it is entirely your own fault. ;)

    Even though I’m painfully aware of how I need to keep building NetGalley/Edelweiss/blog stats, I’m with you. I’ve been especially susceptible to reading slumps this spring, so I’m giving myself more leeway in skipping over review copies to read new library books or return to unread titles on my shelf I was extra excited about.

    It’s a balance, right? :)
    Kel recently posted…Six-Month Blogoversary Celebration and GiveawayMy Profile

    • HAHA, well now that we have that sorted out!

      It’s so good to keep up balance if you can from the start. The main reason that I’m stressed these days is because I requested too many books, so don’t feel bad about cutting back on those requests, avoid my mistakes!

  3. I haven’t thought about this for a while – but YES. I very much miss just buying a book and start reading it, without worrying on getting behind on other books that *have to be* read before a certain date. What’s even more is that I miss the thrill of picking a book off the shelves in the library, and take it with me, and start it. The sense of not knowing ANYTHING about the author or the book just made the entire process so much more exciting. Being so caught up in the blogosphere as we are, it’s almost impossible never to have heard about certain books. Not knowing what you’re going to encounter is something I really miss. And to just read, whatever.

    • Definitely, browsing random shelves in the library was so much fun! I do still sometimes get that completely unknown book feeling when I get something for review that no one is talking about yet, I just need to start it asap instead of waiting for everyone to read it first!

  4. You know, I was just thinking about this yesterday. I’ve been trying lately to come up with a balance between reading ARCs on a “schedule” (that’s loosely defined) and reading books when I feel like it. Earlier this week I ended up putting down an overdue ARC (Wolfhound Century, which is fantasy set in a world that kind of resembles Soviet Russia) that I ought to have enjoyed tremendously, but just didn’t have the mental energy for, and instead picking up a lighter YA dystopia that I had just downloaded from NetGalley. I ended up enjoying both books a lot more by acknowledging that I needed to take a break and read the dystopia before going back to the more serious fantasy novel. Right now my general strategy is to alternate between ARCs (particularly if they’ve been on my TBR for a while) and whatever I want to read at any given moment, regardless of release date or whether I’ve promised anyone a review. And I do review all of the books that I read, including my crappy guilty pleasure books, which I think keeps me slightly more accountable about reading too many of them between other books. :P
    Grace recently posted…“Raiders of Gor” by John NormanMy Profile

    • Exactly! My problem is that if I don’t keep on a schedule, I’ll just keep getting more behind on the massive number of ARCs I agreed to review, which makes me feel quite guilty. I just need to get better at switching between, like you do, that sounds like a great way to go about it!

  5. I definitely still get instant book gratification for some books. Some of them can be ARCs that I get because whether its an ARC or not, I am crazy excited to get to read it. And books that I wait for release, also exciting. The ones that are recently released, I do typically dive right in, but sometimes with the ARCs I try to wait a bit (or read the first little bit as a teaser)

  6. Well, I have a totally different reading perspective, because all of the books I read come from the library. I can’t remember the last time I’ve actually stepped foot into a real bookstore, (probably back in my college days, over 10 years ago!). I also don’t participate in the whole ARC thing, and I don’t accept books from authors/publishers to review, so I just read and review what I want, based on what’s on my TBR list, and what my library has available, (very rarely do they not have a book I want-love my library system so much!!). This is pretty unconventional for a book review blog, but it works well for me :)
    Finley Jayne recently posted…Review: Curses! A F***ed Up FairytaleMy Profile

  7. Since backing off ebook galleys, I have gotten a little of that release day fun back. Last week it was Sixth Grave and this week it is Christine Feehan. I love reading with the masses :) It is just so fun!
    Felicia the Geeky Blogger recently posted…Audiobook Review: When We Met by Susan MalleryMy Profile

  8. Still get it. Bookstore or just one I forgot about and happened to see at the library. Just yesterday I bought a book on kindle and jumped right into it. It looked better than the ARC pile, so I went with it. =)
    Nathan (@reviewbarn) recently posted…Fantasy Review: ‘Scourge of the Betrayer’ by Jeff SalyardsMy Profile

  9. I am the same way. I never read a new book right away anymore because it goes into my TBR shelf and sits. I let myself devour three books just the other week that I had just purchased and put ahead of all my other books and it felt amazing. I’ve spent this year getting little to no arcs or requests, but reading what I want when I want and, while it sucks that I purchase most of them vs getting them for review, it has been a lot more fun and less stressful for me.
    Megan recently posted…Review–Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1) by Laini TaylorMy Profile


  1. […] of several other bloggers that scheduled reading for a book blog can reduce the number of books you read as soon as you can get them and the number of books you read because of serendipitous library browsing. There are a few things […]

  2. […] Instant Book Gratification at On Starships and Dragonwings […]

  3. […] it. Review to come of course ;-). Note that this is totally a success towards my goal of reclaiming instant book gratification […]

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