Advanced Readers Copy – Then & Now

Book bloggers who interact with authors and hang around Netgalley will know what an ARC is. For the rest of the world who´s always asked themselves what the abbreviation means… I´m here to help!

You´re welcome.

 

arc banner

 

And now you´re thinking: “WOW! Those book bloggers get free books from publishers / authors directly? That´s awesome!”

You´re right. It is AWESOME.

Us book blog folks can´t really complain when it comes to receiving books before they hit the bookshelves.

But receiving ARCs comes with a price. It´s not just about getting free, yet to be published, books.

 

Granted. The price we pay isn´t necessarily high. But it´s tiresome and even taxing over time. But sometimes reading those ARCs can be rewarding.

I think it´s fair to add that there is a difference between traditional published and self published ARCs. And then there´s Netgalley, which is a whole different level of giving out unpublished free copies to readers.

Traditional published advanced copies are usually reserved for journalists, celebrities, major blogs. Of course, any every-day-book-blogger can receive a traditional published ARC, as well. It just involves a little more work and luck.

Self published ARCs are much easier to get our hands on. We either wait for an open opportunity to add ourselves to a list or an author may ask us directly if we´re interested in reading an ARC.

Or, we hop over to Netgalley and include ourselves to a list there and then hope for the best.

Either way – ARCs come with a set of rules. These rules may vary but they core of rules is always the same.

  1. Do not forward the book to a third party
  2. Must leave a review ( either before or after or directly on publication date )
  3. Include publisher / authors name
  4. Meet the deadline
  5. Don´t publish a review with less than a 3 star rating. ( not a mandatory rule, but it still pops up once in a while )

 

So, basically you get to read for free if you promise not to let anyone else read the unpublished book and if you include the publisher / author in your review by thanking them for letting you read the free copy then everyone´s happy.

 

Many book bloggers will mention that the book they´ve read was an ARC in their reviews. Sometimes it´s even asked of us book bloggers to add a small recognition line in our reviews. That might look something like this:

 

I received an Avanced Readers Copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review”

 

A simple line, right? That can always be easily worked into a review before it´s published. That line might raise some questions to normal reader who´s only looking for his/her next read, though.

 

No matter how a book blogger receives an ARC the rules stay the same.

 

Don´t do shit you promised not to do! Do shit you promised you´d do!

 

 

The price we pay is truly small compared to what we´d normally spend after the ARC hits the bookshelves.

Are Advanced Readers Copies worth it?

I´d say yes and no. Yes, because it´s a fabulous way to get our hands on new books and ARCs are kind to our wallets.

No, because book bloggers tend to agree to read more ARCs than they´re able to fit into their schedule

.
Let´s do simple math that displays what I´m talking about:

2 ARCs a week = 8 ARCs a month = better have a calendar or else you´re screwed.

 

 

And then there´s that issue when you want to DNF the ARC. You have to contact the publisher or author and give details as to why you can´t continue to read.

Meeting a deadline is also sometimes exhausting.

Life is often not nice to us book bloggers. Sometimes we have to hop back to reality and can´t meet a deadline. You have to contact the publisher or author and explain why.

 

So, are ARCs truly worth it?

Sort of. Kind of. Depends on what type of person / book blogger you are.

 

ARCs Then & Now

Nowadays, 98% of all ARCs come in e-book format. Why? Because it´s much easier and quicker. There´s no hassle with printed ARCs and no shipping issues. ARCs flow from one device to another within seconds or a few hours. ARCs these days look like this:

 

arc 2
Taken from my unloved Kindle

 

Or, dare I share this little gem from Netgalley:

 

arc 3
Another shot from my unloved Kindle

 

A few years back, though, there were still publishers and authors who made a point of giving out printed advanced copies to readers.

 

arc
ARC taken from my personal bookshelf.

 

Weird, right? Hardly imaginable in the day of modern technology yet they existed. Printed ARCs were a thing and I miss them dearly.

 

 

These days, authors love to give out e-book arcs because they´re efficient. Low cost and no wasted effort.

And many authors have misunderstood the meaning of an ARC. The roots of ARCs.

What was once an uncorrected proof read turned into a nearly finished – finished project ready to hit sales.

Let´s do a quick listing of things that made ARCs different from the past and now.

ARCs Back Then

  • Uncorrected proof reads
  • No final cover image
  • Story wasn´t final
  • Paperback format came as a naked product

 

Readers gave feedback on the proof read and THEN the whole book was combed through again before it would be published, 3 – 6 months later with a cover image.

ARCS NOW

  • handed out in exchange for an honest review
  • often final product
  • often comes with a finished cover image

 

In short: readers receive a copy for review purposes and then the book gets published within 1-3 months ( or less ).
So, the idea of an ARC has changed over the years. And then there´s the time issue. We live in a fast living world. If authors / publishers don´t get said book out yesterday then the genre might go out of style tomorrow.

There´s hardly any time to send out a paperback ARC across oceans to the opposite side of the world when the same thing can be sent via technology within a blink of an eye.

Makes sense, right?

It still doesn´t change the fact that I don´t like ARCs, no matter what form they come in.

They´re added work. The story has to sound freaking special before I accept an advanced copy.

Do you like to read Advanced Readers Copies? How often do you accept ARCs?

Let me hear your thoughts! I´m dying to discuss this topic with you.

 

Hope you all have a lovely day!

Much Love,

Morgana ❤ ❤

 

 

 

 

It´s Time To Tackle The TBR List

A book lover has 3 enemies.

  1. Time
  2. Money
  3.  The blasted TBR List

While some of you might see only 2 out of the 3 as a true problem.. I consider all 3 points a pain in my spring chicken bum.

Time is always working against me. There´s never enough money at the right moment for the newest release / newly discovered book. And that good for nothing, ever-growing TBR list keeps getting longer by the day / week / month.

 

The Struggle is real.

It´s like a vicious cycle that never ends.

If I do, by some miracle, have money for books, then I usually don´t have time to read.

The end result: I buy the books I want and they land on the TBR pile. And since I avoid ebooks I literally have a pile of unread paperbacks, neatly stacked somewhere safe, with the false promise that I´ll one day read those books. ( I have more unread ebooks but since I´m avoiding my Kindle… those may never meet my eyes )

book stack pile

It´s the same crap every month.

But it´s time to break the never-ending cycle. It´s time to be the breaker of TBR lists.

I am so done. Fed up. Tired of looking at all the pretty paperbacks and thinking I´ll get to those one day.

The brutal truth is- I bought all those books for a reason. TO READ THEM. At some point in my life, they all sounded awesome. Why I haven´t read them?

Because something always got in my way. New releases, social life, the latest fb gossip, a hot bubble bath session, dinner… There was always something that kept me from diving into the books on my dusty TBR list.

Not anymore.

My grande idea: To tackle the TBR list.

Now, hold on a minute.

I know there´s no way I will EVER be able to get rid of the mile long TBR list. I´m doomed for life. All book lovers are. Even the occasional readers who have miniature TBR lists are doomed. There´s no escaping. We´ll all die with a TBR list one day. ( What an awful thought. Bah. )

But wouldn´t it be fab if our lists weren´t a mile long?

Think of all the money we could save if we touched the books we already possess instead of buying new ones or accepting new advanced reader copies!

 

So, the idea of tackling the TBR list is there. Now on to the next step.

 

How Does One Tackle The TBR List?

I can´t speak for others but my idea looks like this:

  • Avoid social media
  • Avoid bookstores
  • Avoid Amazon

And while avoiding the internet altogether I´ll do the unthinkable.

  • Pick a book from my TBR pile and start reading.
  • Pick another book after I´ve finished the last.
  • Pick another one until the TBR list looks somewhat presentable.

Sounds pretty simple, right? Well, it is simple in theory but it won´t be an easy task. I can already smell the sweet scent of failure in my near future. That doesn´t mean I can´t try, right? RIGHT?

 

So, let´s raise our drinks ( Mugs, cups, flutes, bottles ) and make a toast!

HERE`S TO TRIMMING THE EVIL TBR LIST!

How long is your TBR list and have you ever attempted to downsize it? If you have then tell me your secrets! I´m dying to know how you did the unthinkable.

If this post has inspired you to tackle your own TBR list then feel free to join in on the fun! Shared pain is half the pain! Let´s create a miracle together. If not then I´ll be sure to give you updates on how I´m suffering from not buying the awesome new releases. But be warned- I´ll be moaning and nagging a lot while reducing the TBR list.

I hope everyone has a great day!

 

Many hugs,

Morgana ❤ ❤

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bookish Problem #143

Happy Wednesday!

Something happened Monday. Something rather confusing and a bit scary.

Since I´m currently suffering from a cold I can´t really be bothered to read or do some much-needed book shopping ( as if I hadn´t already done that a few days ago * sigh * )

So, I used my Monday to sort out my bookshelves and the treasures I found there….you won´t believe it.

At first, I stumbled upon a book I absolutely love. `Easy` by author Tammara Webber. It´s an older book but still…. It´s a Young Adult classic I absolutely adore.

After swooning over that book I saw the same book in the same row, just a few paperbacks away.

Confusing? You bet!

I thought I had finally lost my marbles. I mean- having the flu can cause you to see double. I thought I was seeing double. But then I noticed the differences in the books.

bookish

The covers…. they were slightly different. Same book only one with the original cover and the other one with an updated image.

Seriously? I had the same book twice on my bookshelf. How in all that´s pink and fluffy was that even possible? I don´t buy double paperbacks. Not even if I love a book as much as I love `Easy`.

Is this what it´s like when you get old? You become so forgetful and buy stuff double? If that´s case then I´ll stop right here and focus on ebooks only.

This has never happened to me before!

Scary is- I have no clue why I have the same book twice. I remember buying the first paperback. But the second copy? When did that happen? WHEN?!

It´s not signed by the author, so I didn´t get it from a book signing event. The only logical explanation I can come up with is that I lend my original copy to a friend and never got it back so I bought another copy. Since I don´t lend books anymore ( I´m a burnt child ) that can´t be the case, either. This leads me to believe that I´ve finally lost it ( and by “it” I mean my  wits).

Who know´s what´ll happen next. All I know is that I´m not prepared for more surprises like this.

 

 

REVIEW- After Series (book #1-#5) by Anna Todd

Collective Review

After ( After #1 )
After We Collided ( After #2 )
After We Fell ( After #3 )
After Ever Happy ( After #4 )
Before ( After #5 )

 

It´s taken me years to come up with reasonable words that sum up my feelings towards the `After` series by Anna Todd. Because, the ugly truth is – I couldn´t come up with anything better than swear words to describe my emotions.

Now, before I begin with my actual review I´d like to mention that before I started this series I was oblivious to everything that was associated with this story. All I knew was that the story was originally published on the online writing platform, Wattpad.

That was it. I never heard of Anna Todd nor have I heard of the sensation this story was supposed to be. It was by accident that I found the „After“ series.

Later on ( after finishing the fourth book ) I was informed that `After` is a fan fiction romance and that Harry Styles, from the band 1 Direction, was the inspiration for the male protagonist.

I didn´t know who Harry Style was and I had absolutely no clue who 1 Direction ( or 1D) were. After a quick google check I wasn´t any smarter. I figured it didn´t matter. Nothing could have changed my opinion towards the story, or should I say – nothing could have made me think better or worse of what I forced myself to finish.

 

Staring with book #1, After… I have to admit that I liked it alot. I´m not a huge fan of college romances but I liked how the story started and how it ended.

A well protected wallflower falls for rude, mysterious bad boy. after

What´s unique about this story is that the main characters, Tessa and Hardin, are polar opposites who shouldn´t even be near each other. Two extreme youngsters who can´t seem to stay away from one another. The story has mean – as – shit college students, lots of pre-adult drama and a bet that could break whatever the hell these 2 characters have for each other. The key word is: could. There wouldn´t be more books if the bet had ripped the characters apart for good. There´s alot going on and there´s tension. An entertaining story with so much potential.

Like I said- I liked book #1. I just wish I could say the same for the rest of the books.

 

With `After We Collided`, book #2, Tessa and Hardins story continues. After a relationship hiccup the couple tries to sort themselves and have a steady relationship. Little do they know how hard it is to be together, especially when one is a complete harm to society.

I self diagnosed the Hero, Hardin, in this book. In book one I truly bought the bad boy act but since his behavior didn´t really improve I began to think he had more than just a few screws missing.After 2

A few things come to my mind when I think of Hardin: alcoholic, abusive, antisocial personality disorder and bastard. Because he is all those things covered by a pretty face of a college student. It´s plain to see that he has / had issues. In book #1 a reader gets to accompany the main characters and live the ups and downs, back and forth with them. In book #2…. nothing changes. Tessa and Hardin are two „kids“ stuck in an awkward nightmare relationship where both have no bloody clue as to how things work. A reader does get to meet the sub characters a little more, which is good. But the rest? Screw ups after screw ups, heartbreak and tears…. it was time to see some happiness happen for these characters. 671 pages full of „Why the hell isn´t she leaving him??“

My final thoughts on `After We Collided`: After reading such an intense story with such intense characters in book #1 I hoped there would be some character development in book #2. There was none. But… there was more emotional abuse. So much that I felt the need to open a bottle of wine afterwards just so I could digest the catastrophe I read.

`After We Fell`, book #3. An 834 page long book. The book is just as thick as the bricks we used to build our house with. 834 pages of repetitive emotional abuse. After 3 Tessa and Hardin continue their abusive / back and forth relationship. But this time it´s painful for a reader to witness the mind fucking going on between the main characters and how they pulled other family members into their world of fuck ups. Family and friends of Tessa and Hardin also suffer under the hands of Hardin. He´s a ticking time bomb. He has anger issues. He´s afraid of losing the one thing he can emotionally torture. Hardin claims he loves Tessa but still breaks a piece of her every time he fucks up.

I couldn´t believe I sat through another book that had NO character development, what-so-ever. I got the picture: Hardin wasn´t healthy in any way, on any level. Hardin´s behavior took it´s toll on Tessa and I was so waiting for her to wake up and smell the roses. She needed to get rid of him. Actually, that needed to happen during book #1. After I finished book #3 I opened another bottle of wine.

The new relationship status from Hardin and Tessa: An apocalyptic catastrophe.

`After Ever Happy`, book #4, was the book that finally cracked my calm. I was fuming. I shook my head through 512 pages because there was nothing else I was able to do. Tessa and Hardin- they had ANOTHER life/relationship challenge. Another one. Or, let´s say… they had a few more and those challenges were such a waste of my time because 80% of those challenges were recaps of the ones from the previous books. After 4

My hopes for a character development were shot to the moon after book #3 but I still had a tiny bit of hope that there would be some sort of a happy ever after ( because the title does hint it ). A reader does get a sloppy version of a happy ever after. You get approximately 450 pages of emotional disaster with the main characters and then it´s fast forward from then on.

BAM –  you see the characters do this.

BAM – you see the characters do that.

BAM – BAM – BAM – BAM – BAM.

There´s no time for a reader to process all the info shoved in our faces.

The pace of the ending can be compared to the recent season 7 of Game of Thrones. We got 6 seasons of drawn out info and a super speedy season 7.

(NOTE: I love Game of Thrones and would normally never compare the genius of a story to the After series, except when referring to the pace. I´m probably going to go to hell for even mentioning GoT in this review. )

Anyways- the finale ending of the After series… A full-blown disappointment. So disappointed that I returned book #4. I don´t want to have a book like that on my kindle.

My overall feelings towards this series: A big fat NOPE.

It´s unnecessarily complicated, the Hero is abusive, the relationship Hardin and Tessa have is over the top unhealthy. What they have is a twisted sense of reality. There´s nothing remotely romantic about 2 young adults acting the way they did. The story was a train wreck I should have looked away from.

 

But wait… there´s one more. Yupp. I kid you not. There´s a 5th book in the series.

`Before` ( After #5 ) and it´s the story of Hardin´s life before he permanently ruined Tessa´s life.After 5

I didn´t even try to read it. Why would I? A reader can make their own picture of Hardin´s past and readers definitely find out the true reason behind his abusive behavior in book 3 & 4. I´m really not interested in further details. My guess is that the author wrote this book for her dedicated fans, which is fine. Only I´m not interested in spending another dime on this story and I´m not interested in spending more hours on reading about a glorified prick.

 

So, there we have it. Not everything with the words `sensation`printed on it is actually a sensation. The only thing sensational about the After series is that so many people loved it.

 

Would I reread this series? Nope. Not now. Not ever again.

Would I recommend this series? No.

The Covers – 4 stars ( The covers have nothing to do with the story. They´re all actually pretty to look at )

The Story – 1 star ( No. Either I´m too old to appreciate the kind of twisted romance After is or I´m a different kind of romance reader. Either way- No. )

The Characters – 1 star ( The world doesn´t have enough wine to help me get over these kids)

My emotional state after finishing this read – I feel like I need to upgrade from wine to vodka.

 

I´m giving the whole `After`series by Anna Todd 1 out of 5 stars. 

Latest Instagram Features from Morgana´s Book Box

It´s time for a few honorable Instagram Book Box Feature mentions!

I proudly present my recent works. Lots of love, sweat, energy, yelling at the dog, telling my kids not to run on the road, fighting with wind, rain and heat were invested in creating these pics. Have a look…. 🙂

Happy Saturday, everyone!🌸 My neighbor caught me examining her flowers today from my kitchen window and invited me to pick a few, even offered me the whole bush as it annoys her😂. So- a purple 💜BOOK BOX FEATURE💜 it is today. Let's give it up for one of my favorite books by @pccastauthor – 'Devine By Mistake' (Partholon #1). Such a beautiful story worth losing yourself in. Okay, chichas… gotta run. Hope you all have a lovely day. Don't forget to share the 📖💜! . . . . #bookstagram #libraryofinstagram #love #fantasy #paranormal #read #book #paperback #series #pccast #partholon #bookworm #bookpic #bookphotography #purple #flowers #bookishfeatures #feature #saturdaynight #germany #bookjunkie #ilovebooksmorethanpeople #bookstagrammer #bookblogger #instablog #instablog #readingissexy #magical #📚

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*waves enthusiastically* Hey all you lovely people! How's it going? Enjoying the heat?☉ I've been hiding in the shade reading one 📖 after another and contemplated on buying a sombrero ( I burn poorly while tanning. Life's such a bitch) Anyways… while hiding i managed to get a ☆☆BOOK BOX FEATURE☆☆ done. ' Verführt' (Colours of Love) by Kathryn Taylor. All in all a nice read. Keeo sharing the 📚💓 . . . . #romance #lovestory #love #books #bücher #lesen #read #leseratte #bücherwurm #suckerforromance #igreads #libraryofinstagram #ilovebooks #bookstagram #bookworm #booknerd #bookwhore #bookjunkie #bookninja #bookcover #📚 #liebe #androidphotography #s7 #bookphotography #bookpic #bookfeature #germany #read

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Happy Monday! 🤓What to do with your kids and their friend when they're bored as hell? You force all 3 to sit and pose for a book box pic😂 Yes. I was deeply hated before/during/after this pic. Was it worth it? Definitely! I'm in love. ( btw- left and center are mine ) Hope you all enjoy your day and don't forget to share the 📚💜! . . . . . #instakids #childrensbooks #kidsandbooks #mygirls #bookbuddies #bookstagram #bookbesties #bookfriends #readingbooks #androidphotography #bookworm #books #booklove #paperback #bookstagrammers #instabooks #igreads #bookphotography #fortheloveofreading #outdoors #kinder #mädchen #lesenmachtglücklich #buchliebe #bookgram #lesenmachtschlau #germany #📚 #lesen #monday

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What do you think?

Feel free to find and stalk me on Instagram under Morgana´s Book Box and leave a like and comment! If not, then I might cry a round or two then I´ll get over it.

Hope you all have a lovely day! Don´t forget to share the book love!