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View Poll Results: What percentage of us read bestsellers?
Yes, I read New York Times Bestsellers 27 39.13%
Nope 42 60.87%
Voters: 69. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-31-2012, 12:27 PM   #46
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I need a third option: I don't know! Don't check out the list, so I truly don't know, but I'm guessing once in a while one of them happen to get to my TBR because of recommendations from elewhere..
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:24 PM   #47
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Before I bought an ereader and came to this forum, I am sure that I have read some on the list. I have never used the list as any form of recommendation. After I got my ereader, and came to this forum, my eyes were opened to so many new authors and genres. Before ereaders, I would go into the local Waldens, Borders, or B&N to see what was out there. Because the books by authors on the list were so prominent, I would buy those. But now I have so many other places to go and so many others to provide reviews and recommendations, I have not bought a book by an author on the bestseller's list in a very long time. Would I in the future? Not until the prices of their books come down in price. There are too many other and cheaper alternatives available to me now.
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Old 11-01-2012, 07:54 PM   #48
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I check out the list from time to time - not on a regular basis, though. I've actually read quite a few 'bestsellers' -- books that made the list. These days, I get most recommendations from this forum.
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Old 11-01-2012, 10:13 PM   #49
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If I've read anything that happened to be on the NYT bestsellers list it was probably entirely coincidental or was a case of just once upon a time on the list. Maybe I'm just one of those people who wouldn't want to join any club that would have them.

I'm also reasonably convinced that sales do not necessarily equal reads. Too many people buy books to throw on coffee tables or line bookshelves without ever so much as creasing the spine in order to project a certain esthetic...
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Old 11-02-2012, 10:32 PM   #50
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I

I'm also reasonably convinced that sales do not necessarily equal reads. Too many people buy books to throw on coffee tables or line bookshelves without ever so much as creasing the spine in order to project a certain esthetic...
Probably, but I don't think they do this with NY Times bestsellers, which lean heavily towards crime fiction.

I haven't paid too much attention in the post-internet era, but when I used to browse bookstores looking for something new, if I ran across two paperbacks I liked and could only buy one, I'd get the NY Times bestseller.
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:43 PM   #51
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Probably, but I don't think they do this with NY Times bestsellers, which lean heavily towards crime fiction.
Regardless of the genre, Bestsellers are only bestsellers because they draw in casual readers, not just heavy readers. And casual readers, as a rule, don't buy books if they're not going to read them immediately.
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Old 11-03-2012, 10:57 AM   #52
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Regardless of the genre, Bestsellers are only bestsellers because they draw in casual readers, not just heavy readers. And casual readers, as a rule, don't buy books if they're not going to read them immediately.
Really? As a rule? I know quite a few casual readers (because I talk to a lot of people when they find out I'm a writer.) The vast majority of them say they buy this and that, but haven't read it yet (they are typically the best sellers.) It comes about because I'll ask what they like to read. Inevitably the casual reader will say, "I just bought...but haven't read it yet." I think a lot of those get bought and never read. But yes, if they are going to read anything, they tend to read "what everyone is talking about."

Just because I'm a writer/avid reader I get asked ALL THE STINKING TIME if I have read Twilight, 50 shades--whatever the current "book of the moment" is. At least I had read Harry Potter so when a relative began attacking it because it had been banned by her church, I could reassure her that it was all just another fantasy and there wasn't any satan references. Okay, I only read the first 4, so it's possible that satan entered in there, but it's still just a fantasy book and nothing to do with trying to pass off fiction as fact.

My MOTHER even called to ask what the 50 shades thing was all about. "Well mom, I haven't read it. And no, I'm not going to be reading it just so I can tell you if it is garbage. Let's just assume and move on." Eye roll.

But it made the nightly news so some of her friends read it (none are casual readers. Her three best buds fall under pretty avid readers.) The one is definitely going to read most of the stuff that makes the best seller list. She buys the hardbacks of many of them as soon as they come out. I can't think of any casual reader friends she has at the moment...

FWIW. Bunch of rambling there, sorry.
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Old 11-03-2012, 07:38 PM   #53
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Really? As a rule? I know quite a few casual readers (because I talk to a lot of people when they find out I'm a writer.) The vast majority of them say they buy this and that, but haven't read it yet (they are typically the best sellers.) It comes about because I'll ask what they like to read. Inevitably the casual reader will say, "I just bought...but haven't read it yet." I think a lot of those get bought and never read. But yes, if they are going to read anything, they tend to read "what everyone is talking about."

Just because I'm a writer/avid reader I get asked ALL THE STINKING TIME if I have read Twilight, 50 shades--whatever the current "book of the moment" is. At least I had read Harry Potter so when a relative began attacking it because it had been banned by her church, I could reassure her that it was all just another fantasy and there wasn't any satan references. Okay, I only read the first 4, so it's possible that satan entered in there, but it's still just a fantasy book and nothing to do with trying to pass off fiction as fact.

My MOTHER even called to ask what the 50 shades thing was all about. "Well mom, I haven't read it. And no, I'm not going to be reading it just so I can tell you if it is garbage. Let's just assume and move on." Eye roll.

But it made the nightly news so some of her friends read it (none are casual readers. Her three best buds fall under pretty avid readers.) The one is definitely going to read most of the stuff that makes the best seller list. She buys the hardbacks of many of them as soon as they come out. I can't think of any casual reader friends she has at the moment...

FWIW. Bunch of rambling there, sorry.
I agree with most of your points, but not the first. Most casual readers I know, even those with ereaders don't stockpile books. They buy a book they want to read and either read it or abandon it before buying another.

Not doubting that they tell you they have bought every or most books you mention, just think maybe they are trying to appear more of an avid reader than they are.

Helen
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Old 11-03-2012, 07:48 PM   #54
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I agree with most of your points, but not the first. Most casual readers I know, even those with ereaders don't stockpile books. They buy a book they want to read and either read it or abandon it before buying another.

Not doubting that they tell you they have bought every or most books you mention, just think maybe they are trying to appear more of an avid reader than they are.

Helen
I dunno. I have one friend and she bought Da Vinci Code. She finally did get around to reading it. But she buys about three books a year at best. It took her over a year AFTER she bought it to read. The lady up the street from me said she bought Dragon Tattoo (what is it called? Lady with a Dragon Tattoo...something.) She hasn't read it yet. She's had it a while. I suspect she never will read it.

I'm on a reading group on Facebook with mostly casual readers (three of them are relatives.) They check books out of the library all the time--mostly the best sellers. They might read a page or two or none of it at all and return it--intending to get it again. One of them selected that Water for Elephants for us to read (Not even gonna try it. Not my thing.) And it was on a huge sale on Amazon so about 6 people bought it rather than get it from the library. ONE of us read it. And it wasn't even the lady who suggested it.

So I honestly don't know. And of course, they could have claimed they bought it and never did. I think casual reading is a lot like my sewing group. There are a number of us "casual" sewing people who are VERY good at buying the material. Actually sewing, not so much. But show me free fabric or a sale and I'll find something because, boy, do I have ideas. Sometimes my casual book group feels like that. Most of the titles suggested are NY Times ones, but actual pages read...not many. When the group does get going chatting, it meanders into "organizing closets" and "kids" and "would you believe..."

Your mileage may vary.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:21 PM   #55
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I dunno. I have one friend and she bought Da Vinci Code. She finally did get around to reading it. But she buys about three books a year at best. It took her over a year AFTER she bought it to read. The lady up the street from me said she bought Dragon Tattoo (what is it called? Lady with a Dragon Tattoo...something.) She hasn't read it yet. She's had it a while. I suspect she never will read it.

I'm on a reading group on Facebook with mostly casual readers (three of them are relatives.) They check books out of the library all the time--mostly the best sellers. They might read a page or two or none of it at all and return it--intending to get it again. One of them selected that Water for Elephants for us to read (Not even gonna try it. Not my thing.) And it was on a huge sale on Amazon so about 6 people bought it rather than get it from the library. ONE of us read it. And it wasn't even the lady who suggested it.

So I honestly don't know. And of course, they could have claimed they bought it and never did. I think casual reading is a lot like my sewing group. There are a number of us "casual" sewing people who are VERY good at buying the material. Actually sewing, not so much. But show me free fabric or a sale and I'll find something because, boy, do I have ideas. Sometimes my casual book group feels like that. Most of the titles suggested are NY Times ones, but actual pages read...not many. When the group does get going chatting, it meanders into "organizing closets" and "kids" and "would you believe..."

Your mileage may vary.
Well I can relate to the sewing thing, I used to sew and had boxes of material. My mother who is 87 still has several closets stuffed to the gills and she still sews and gives a lot away.

And perhaps there is a correllation if the New York Times Best Sellers are on sale or likely to be sold out.

Getting a book from the library and not reading it is not the same as having it and not reading it. And IMO a library ebook borrower is unlikely to be a casual reader.

I am sure there are lots of people who don't read much and who buy a book just because it is on the best seller list or all their friends are reading it and do it over and over again. I just don't see it as common behavior.


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Old 11-03-2012, 10:16 PM   #56
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Well I can relate to the sewing thing, I used to sew and had boxes of material. My mother who is 87 still has several closets stuffed to the gills and she still sews and gives a lot away.

And perhaps there is a correllation if the New York Times Best Sellers are on sale or likely to be sold out.

Getting a book from the library and not reading it is not the same as having it and not reading it. And IMO a library ebook borrower is unlikely to be a casual reader.

I am sure there are lots of people who don't read much and who buy a book just because it is on the best seller list or all their friends are reading it and do it over and over again. I just don't see it as common behavior.


Helen
I notice a lot of the NYTimes sellers on the discount rack and I think that is what sparks the one casual group I'm in. They see it on sale and then suggest it. Two of the relatives have e-readers--and both have checked out books from the library using the e-reader as well as purchased books. I don't know what constitutes casual either. The one relative probably finishes (or starts and almost finishes) about 4 to 5 books a year. The other relative was no more than a casual reader until she got a Kindle. Now she reads somewhere around 10 to 15 from the posting she does. It varies, but the last year and a half to two years she was definitely lighting up the boards compared to before.

Both of my relatives commented that they didn't get to the library very often BEFORE they had e-readers, but now they can check books out without going so they do it more often. I'm not entirely sure the books get READ, but I know a few have gotten checked out!

And, as I said, everyone will have a different experience. I'm in about 4 reading groups and only the one is casual. I hear about another relative's reading group (but they read a lot of lit and so I've never joined in). They are more traditional--meeting in person and discussing the books. I think they pick one book a month or less.
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:42 AM   #57
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I sometimes check out books from there some of my favorite authors are always on the list one of them being james patterson but i dont just read because they are on the nyt list
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Old 11-04-2012, 06:11 PM   #58
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Really? As a rule?
Uh, to me, "as a rule" means "typically", "as a defining trait", not "universally".
(Rules can be violated here and there without invalidating them.)

What I meant is that default behavior of casual readers is to buy the book when they're going to read it. Book buying is not habitual behavior for casual readers so it takes deliberate intent to read a specific book for them to buy it.

We may be working off different definitions of casual reader.

Try this one: a casual reader is somebody who "Buys a couple of books a year" as opposed to "buys a few books a month/week". They are not people who make regular trips to the bookstore looking to see what is new or who, upon finishing a book, start thinking about what new book to read. They are *not* people who "routinely check out books from the library".
Instead, they are more likely to finish reading a book and promptly wonder what's on TV.

Is that less annoying?
It wasn't my intent; I was just pointing out that dedicated readers by themselves don't (and can't) make bestsellers. There just aren't that many of us...

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Old 11-04-2012, 08:50 PM   #59
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Uh, to me, "as a rule" means "typically", "as a defining trait", not "universally".
(Rules can be violated here and there without invalidating them.)

What I meant is that default behavior of casual readers is to buy the book when they're going to read it. Book buying is not habitual behavior for casual readers so it takes deliberate intent to read a specific book for them to buy it.

We may be working off different definitions of casual reader.

Try this one: a casual reader is somebody who "Buys a couple of books a year" as opposed to "buys a few books a month/week". They are not people who make regular trips to the bookstore looking to see what is new or who, upon finishing a book, start thinking about what new book to read. They are *not* people who "routinely check out books from the library".
Instead, they are more likely to finish reading a book and promptly wonder what's on TV.

Is that less annoying?
It wasn't my intent; I was just pointing out that dedicated readers by themselves don't (and can't) make bestsellers. There just aren't that many of us...
I wasn't annoyed at all. It's possible I was annoying. I excel at that at times.

I guess the casual readers I know read two or maybe three books a year. They tell me they "like" to read. Some go to the library because of their kids and once in a while will check out a book they have heard of (I used to work at a library. I'd get asked a lot at checkout "Is this good. I heard about it...on tv, from a friend...) There are a LOT of children's activities at the library and the various things are attended by a large cross-section of moms. Not all of them are readers. Texas also has a HUGE population of home schoolers. So we got a lot of people in the library who were not there for reading. Well--the reading in that area was non-fiction for study purposes or actual books on homeschooling. Many of these parents were casual "read for entertainment" types. So my idea of casual is based on a couple of reading groups where the people say they like to read, but if they read and finish two or three books a year, that's about their max. They seem to buy more than that though. Couple that with my experience at the library--lots of parents who read one to three books a year, but came in for the various resources...and a lot of them would check out books they heard of...how many of them read them, I don't really know. I do know they would check out books for their kids almost every time. That is why they were there. But it didn't automatically mean they checked out something for themselves.

And of course it doesn't matter all that much. As I said, I was merely babbling. I do think, however, that a lot of casual readers actually buy books with good intentions--or check them out because they have heard of the books and happen to be standing in a library for a meeting, the computer use or their children's activities. (Our library also has movies. They have a movie once a month for seniors, an anime club, movies for teens--no idea how often, maybe once a month and so on.) This brings people to the library sometimes just for the air conditioning! The senior movie thing is quite popular from what I hear. I'm not a movie watcher so I've never been, but I know they continue to fund that one. The anime had funding cut, and attendance if pretty much a summer activity with less meetings in the winter.
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Old 11-06-2012, 03:43 AM   #60
camtosh
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camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.camtosh writes the songs that make the whole world sing.
 
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Posts: 38
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Tokyo
Device: Kobo touch
Quote:
Originally Posted by John F View Post
I do not follow the list, but I have read books that were on the list.
Me too. I have often wondered who actually reads them and how they get to be on the list.
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