Because I had a tough time reading last year, I noticed I hardly bought any books as well. I only bought 18, and normally I buy a lot more books than that. It got me thinking about all the ways I get my hands on books and for any newbie book bloggers or other book enthusiasts out there, I wanted to share the ways I get my eager little hands on books:
ARCs (Advanced Reading Copies) are not essential to being a book blogger, but they sure are cool. I’m signed up to Netgalley and Edelweiss, and I regularly received books from publishers in exchange for an honest review. Other ARC sites include First To Read by Penguin Random House, and I can’t remember others.
Some people define galleys as the physical pre-final version of a book sent to reviewers and media etc to create buzz and excitement for books before publication. I get books from most of the big Australian publishers and it’s a mix of whether I get a final copy or a galley.
Purchase new from a dedicated physical bookstore.
There are two bookstores in my tiny little town where I go to buy new books. Normally I leave having bought at least one or two.
Purchase new from a department store.
I try not to do this too often because I know that department stores send their excess stock back, so I don’t want to create more demand and then not buy the supply, but if the book I want isn’t available at one of the dedicated bookstores sometimes I will buy it from a department store.
Purchase second hand.
To be honest, all the good second hand bookstores in my tiny city have closed, probably due to the fact that you can buy new books for only slightly more, and they can’t order in books you want, but my favourite second hand bookstore was a wonderful place for me to find out of print books.
I’ve been to a few book sales, but the rule is that you have to get there early or the vultures will snap up anything good to resell. I’ve learned that I don’t really love anything I get at book sales, so I’ve stopped going, but they’re always being held every month locally, and it’s a good place to find out of print or decent editions of older books for a cheaper price.
Purchase physical books online.
I had a red hot go at buying cheaper hardcovers from Book Outlet, which is a wonderful resource for Americans, but it takes FOREVER for the books to get to Australia so I kind of gave up on that. I also buy from The Book Depository.
Two great websites for downloading ebooks are Smashwords and Amazon. With Smashwords I simply email the mobi file to my dedicated kindle email address. With Amazon I purchase the book from Amazon and it loads straight onto my kindle. Amazon has a deal called Kindle Unlimited where you can read as many books as you like for $10 a month, whereas Smashwords will often have indie books that Amazon won’t publish for whatever reason (subject matter, or the author is protesting Amazon’s ebook monopoly, etc).
Free or cheaper ebooks.
I get a lot of free or cheaper ebooks signed up to Bookbub, which leads me to Amazon (or a choice or retailers), where I can download for free, or cheaper, for a limited time, books on sale. I get a mix of indie and traditionally published books this way. There are other ways to find free kindle books, but I’m not listing them here or I’ll be here forever.
Books are always being given away in competitions on other books blogs, and I’ve held my own share on the Moonlight Library. I have also ‘won’ a few giveaway books from Goodreads, and I believe Librarything also does giveaways. However, Goodreads recently changed their giveaway terms so that only people/publishers who pay a huge fee can list, and as such, I’m boycotting them because it’s not fair to indie authors.
Physical books from the library
I love my library. It has a dedicated YA section, friendly staff, and loads of room to sit down and relax.
Ebooks from the library
It also has a pretty decent ebook section which means I don’t even have to leave the house to get a new book, I can simply download them onto my phone.
Digital audiobooks from the library
I also made a habit of downloading audiobooks through Overdrive linked to my library and listening to these while I was working at my old job.
Physical audiobooks from the library
I’ve even gone so far as to borrow audiobooks on physical tapes and CDs from the library, which I can then listen to in my (old) car or, in the case of CDs, rip them and play them on my iPod. I know, I’m showing my age now!
Borrowed from friends
I have had some bad instances of lending books that I never got back, so I’ve stopped doing this, but in the past I have borrowed books from friends and lent them mine.
This past Christmas all I asked my husband for was a book. I also got a book voucher from my parents, which I used to get a book normally out of my price range (the illustrated Chamber of Secrets). Tell your friends and family you love books. Tell them you want gift cards. ALL THE BOOKS!