The one advantage of my iPad over my e-reader is the ability to download sample chapters of a book before I buy. Sometimes the samples lead me on to buy the book in question, eg Love in the Sun by Leo Walmsley or Angel of the Revolution by George Chetwynd Griffith (which I was alerted to by this post on Catherine Pope’s Victorian Geek blog). Like Catherine, I’m not a science fiction fan but Catherine’s description of the plot sounded more like futuristic fiction (it’s a 19th century novel about the invention of an airplane & Nihilist plots to end the world as we know it – or should I say, as they knew it then!). So, I downloaded the sample chapters, enjoyed them & bought the book.

I also have a sample of C P Snow’s The Search because it provides a vital clue in one of my favourite detective novels, Gaudy Night by Dorothy L Sayers – but I haven’t read it yet. Sometimes I read about a book on a blog & think I’ll just pop over to Amazon & see if there’s a sample of it available – & there often is.

However, I have many more samples than whole books, most of which I haven’t even cracked open yet. If you click on the pictures, you should be able to see them more clearly. My plan is to read the samples then see if I can buy the books, if I want to read them, for my e-reader which is so much lighter & more convenient for reading. Of course, I have nearly 200 books on the e-reader & I haven’t read most of those either. You may have noticed a pattern here, especially after my recent post about my library – my mother would have said that my eyes are bigger than my stomach. At least the samples are free and non-fattening.

Here are just a few of the samples I have waiting to be read. Any suggestions for moving one of them to the top (front?) of the iPad gratefully received.

The History Room by Eliza Graham
The Valorous Years by A J Cronin
The Dead Man’s Message by Florence Marryat
Just Send Me Word by Orlando Figes
John Clare By Jonathan Bate
Ukridge by P G Wodehouse
Tour de Force by Christianna Brand
The Faded Map by Alistair Moffat
The Woman Reader by Belinda Jack
The Free Fishers & Midwinter by John Buchan

Am I the only one who does this? Please reasssure me that I’m not alone.

12 thoughts on “Samplemania

  1. No you are not the only one who does this, I go through stages of downloading samples in the promise I will try them out because I have heard about them on a blog. Some how never get round to it and then get distracted by another book.

    I have to admit though it is a very good idea and I can always tell about a book in the first few pages whether it's for me or not. Not a guaranteed success but a cheap way of trying them out.


  2. You're not alone. I love the download a sample chapter option and have far too many I haven't read–but part of the reason is that my buy to not buy ratio is about 1-3 so I end up reading the whole book pretty often.
    Susan E


  3. No, I do not do this but only b/c I have never thought of it!! I just bought a Kindle Touch and need to stop downloading books from free sources and elsewhere. I will certainly have a look at the free sample chapters and can easily download them onto my netbook. Oh NO! another obsessive habit being born!! haha Pam


  4. Oh good! It's a nice way to shop & not spend any money. My trouble is that I tend to download samples of books I'm almost guaranteed to like, then I have to buy them after reading the sample!


  5. I have the same problem. At least I don't have a lot of time to read the samples so I'm not spending money while they're just sitting there waiting for me to get to them.


  6. Pam, you'll find almost everything in the Kindle Store has a free sample, it's become my new addiction. Maybe you could download a few samples for your trip??


  7. Being an absolute Brand addict, I vote that you immediately download and read every book she wrote, which unfortunately for me is far too few. My first time commenting but I've been lurking for some time. I really enjoy your blog.


  8. Hello Carol, I'm glad you've delurked & that you enjoy the blog. I've read some CB but it was a long time ago. Green for Danger is one of my favourite detective novels & the movie was excellent as well. I'm looking forward to reading more now that they're available as e-books.


  9. The Nook allows sample downloads, too. I go a little crazy with them sometimes–but it's such a temptation. I like my Nook but I still would rather read a paper book then digital one. Maybe reading on an ipad is better?


  10. No, reading on the iPad is my least preferred option but my Sony reader doesn't have the sample option (maybe it will if the Sony Store ever opens in Australia). I'm just addicted to downloading samples!


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