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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

In The Beginning ...

I'm an impatient reader with very little time. I won't waste that "little time" on a book that doesn't grab me right off the bat. You'll get a page or two and then I'm done.

Many people are like that... even when they're browsing to buy. Think about how many pages Amazon lets you see when you "look inside".

I thought I'd check out some books, randomly pulled from the shelf near my computer and see how they start.

"Please, Janie honey, I'm desperate here. I have nobody else," Molly said, following her cousin into the small private office, the one with the child-proof plastic cover over the doorknob. -- "This Must Be Love" by Kasey Michaels.

Are you hooked? I think it does a decent job -- WHY is she desperate? WHAT does she need from her cousin? WHY doesn't her cousin want to help? I'd read on.

Murder harbored no bigotry, no bias. It subscribed to no class system. In its gleeful, deadly, and terminally judicious way, murder turned a blind eye on race, creed, gender and social stratum. -- "Strangers In Death" by J. D. Robb

I don't think this is a bad start, but if it were the only book I'd read in this series, I may or may not read on. It has a bit of a "literary" feel, and I'll admit I don't do literary. I'm all about genre fiction: romance, mystery, fantasy. Still, this isn't the only book I've read in the series, so I'd keep reading because I know what the book's going to be like.

"Bronwyn, someone's going to see us."

"Just keep watch." Bronwyn Edana worked frantically at the keyhole. "I've almost got it."
-- "Priceless" by Christina Dodd

Oh yeah ... I'd keep reading.

What about you? Are you a patient reader? Will you give a book time to grow into its own, read through a few chapters, let it grow? Or are you like me, impatient and needing a hook right away?

Marianne Arkins
No Matter the Decade, Always Happy Every After


  1. I'd definitely read the last one. Maybe the first. For some reason, though I love Nora R, I'm not a fan of her alter-ego JD Robb so I wouldn't even look.

  2. I've been known to buy a book by the opening hook alone (mostly at the airport when I realized I forgot to bring a book).

  3. I guess I am a little more of a patient reader. While I do believe in using something to hook readers as soon as possible, I don't think it's always bad to let things simmer for a few pages first. Depends on the author and the writing style. I have read several books that took a while to really get going, but once they did, WOW!

  4. Ceri, I love her JD Robb books -- probably becaue Roarke is my all time fave romance hero.

    Maria, me too! When I'm book browsing, I look at the cover, the blurb and then the first page. If those don't grab me, no sale.

    Debbie, I've probably missed out on some good books because I don't wait very long to get grabbed, but I just can't hang on if the author doesn't give me a really good reason.

    Thanks for stopping by!

  5. I would read the first and the last. Very good post.

    Joan K. Maze

  6. I'm impatient by nature, but I have to say there have been a few books, especially recently, that were slow starters yet turned out to be new favorites.


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