Back when I started book blogging I had no idea what an ARC was. I soon came to know that it was an ‘advanced reader copy’, or a copy of an as yet unpublished book sent out by publishers to bloggers to review.
Now this all sounds very exciting, and is widely considered to be one of the greatest perks of book blogging, but personally, I find that they hold little interest for me. That’s right: free books that haven’t even been released yet hold little interest to me. Yes, I strongly suspect I’m crazy too!
Whilst I love the sense of community in the book blogging world, this is one way in which I feel like I’m kind of a misfit. Things like ARC reviews, blog tours, book blitzes, memes, cover reveals and accepting review request seem like such vital aspects of the book blogging world, yet I have never yet participated in any of them. The question is, why? Well…
- There are so many old books I want to read I don’t feel I need to look for new books.
Most of the books I review on here are at least a year or so old, and some of them are even classics (so very old!). I think this is probably because my TBR list has been growing and growing for years, and there’s so many old books I want to read that I don’t really keep up to date with new releases unless they are new books in a series I’m already reading (for example, I am on the edge of my seat waiting for George R.R. Martin to release the latest A Song of Ice and Fire book!) or if there has been such a huge buzz about it it’s impossible to not know about it (eg. Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass series). All the books I review on here are all books I’ve bought (mostly for 99p off Ebay admittedly!) or borrowed that have either been on my TBR list for ages, or simply caught my eye in a bookshop (and that always messes up my TBR list!).
- I don’t keep up to date with new releases (yes, it’s pretty shocking for a book blogger!) so would have never heard of most of the ARCs anyway.
As aforementioned, I don’t really keep up to date with new releases. When I do read newer books it’s usually because I have stumbled across them in a bookshop and liked the look of them. However, usually if they haven’t even been released yet then I won’t have any idea of what they are about, and probably won’t even read the reviews unless they are by an author I already know and love.
- I don’t need my TBR pile getting any bigger.
I already have such a huge list of books I want to read that I really don’t go out of my way to find more, so browsing sites like NetGalley and Edelweiss would only increase my already incredibly daunting list.
- I don’t like reading ebooks.
From what I hear, a lot of ARCs are e-copys of the book, and for some reason I have just never got into reading ebooks. I have had a Kindle for years, but sadly it rarely sees the light of day!
- I don’t want to feel under pressure.
From what I’ve seen in discussion posts on other blogs, there can be some dilemmas surrounding reviewing ARCs such as getting round to reading and reviewing them all, and what to do if you didn’t like them etc.. Therefore, I know that as a mood reader and extreme procrastinator, I would probably just end up slowly gathering a collection of unread ARCs and feeling horrible that I hadn’t read or reviewed them yet. Plus there seems to be a whole competitive side to ARCs, where only certain bloggers get certain ones, and people feel jealous etc., and I really can’t be bothered with all that!
- I rarely read reviews of them on other blogs, so why post them on mine?
I think the only ARC review I have ever read on another blog was for one of the very few new releases I knew about before it came out: A Court of Thorns and Roses, and I was only aware of that book because I was already a fan of the author. Because I don’t keep up with upcoming releases I never recognise any ARCs, and seen as I don’t tend to read reviews of books that I haven’t either read or are intending to read I never really read ARC reviews. Therefore it kind of doesn’t make sense for me to write ARC reviews when I don’t read them (although I might be more in the loop about new releases if I did request ARCs), and this is the same reason I don’t post book blitz, book tours, cover reveals or memes on my blog – I just don’t read them.
In some ways this lack of involvement in such a huge area of book blogging makes me feel like I’m missing out and less in touch with the blogging world than I would like to be, but at the same time my reasons make sense to me. So I’m interested to know, why do you or don’t you request ARCs, and in what ways do you think it positively or negatively impacts your blogging experience?