Excerpts – good, bad, indifferent

Over on Three Dollar Bill Reviews Friday ramblings, I’m asking if readers actually read excerpts or if they pass them by. Check out the post HERE and feel free to comment. I don’t read excerpts but perhaps you do?

For those that can’t be bothered to comment *cough* you can fill out this quick and easy poll! Because I’m just that curious … 

Happy Friday!



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11 thoughts on “Excerpts – good, bad, indifferent

  1. I said yes, all the time, though it’s true only about 95% of the time. I nearly always read excerpts before buying a book (when they’re provided by the publisher, I don’t seek them out and I don’t read promo posts by authors because I just don’t have the time). It’s another way of me increasing the odds it’s something I’ll like to read. The only time I don’t is if it’s part of a series I’m already reading, or if it’s an author I’ve read before and trust. I spend too much money on books as it is. If I bought every book that had an interesting blurb, I’d buy five times as many.

    • Thanks for commenting and voting! The answers and reasons have been really very interesting. Some readers do read excerpts like you, but surprisingly it’s mostly authors that are more interested in excerpts than readers.
      I agree I spend too much on books. I suppose I *should* read excerpts but really they just don’t interest me. I go for blurbs and hope for the best. Kind of like a shot in the dark 😀 .. I guess thats why I don’t always like the books I read, perhaps I should get into excerpt reading.

  2. I nearly ticked “always” – but that’s only true if I’m already thinking of buying the book. If the blurb hasn’t grabbed me, and it’s not an author I’m already interested in, I won’t bother .
    The only times I’ve bought a book without reading the excerpt (if there is one, and I will root about a bit to try and find one if the publisher doesn’t provide it) is when it’s part of a series, or the author is an insta-buy (and those can be counted on the fingers of one hand). I think it’s vital to get a sample of an author’s writing – blurbs can only tell you so much.

    • Oh I agree. I think excerpts are an excellent, excellent source of information. For example if you read some publishers’ excerpts, they are filled with spelling mistakes and poor grammar so right away you can tell – ok perhaps not for me. Unfortunately I just never seem to be interested in excerpts.
      Its like pulling teeth to sit down and read those.. I always mentally whine, click away, tell myself to just make a choice. I’m not sure where I got this weird association but I just can’t get interested.

  3. I’d leaf through a paper book at the bookstore, and reading the excerpt is the only comparable action for an ebook. Except for the auto-buy authors, and even then, I get anxious and don’t want to wait.

    • I agree! Unfortunately I never really leafed through physical books either. I’d check out the cover, see the genre, read the back … make a decision based on that. If I saw another book that interested me more based on that criteria, pitch the old in with the new. I wonder if my short attention span just can’t get into it.
      So funny that writers are always excerpt readers. No doubt you’re all too busy to waste time on a potential bad read.

  4. For me excerpts are the most important factor when choosing a novel to buy. I don’t really trust blurbs because sometimes they’re not very representative of the story and covers tend to be bare chests or something similarly eye-catching. I’m the type who grabs random books to check out the first chapter in a bookstore and I get super frustrated if the books are wrapped in plastic. Titles, blurbs, and reviews hook me but the excerpt is what decides whether or not I buy something especially if it’s from a new author. I think it’s because I’m more drawn to certain styles of writing as opposed to certain topics.

    • Oooo that’s a fabulous point. Style of writing vs say the genre of story.
      I’m a bit more of a magpie “oh look! shiny!” and pick up the book. I’ll only start reading it if I’m hanging out in the bookstore for a while (because who doesn’t do that!).
      I have been known to open the plastic on things if I wanted to see into it. I think plastic wrapped is just rude.

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