1. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Less than half of e-book readers finish bestsellers

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Steerpike, Dec 16, 2014.

    This is data from Kobo. As most of you probably know, e-book retailers can tell how much of a book you read, how long it takes you, etc. because your device transmits that information back to the seller. Among Kobo readers, less than half who bought bestsellers ended up finishing them. Instead:

    "...little-known romances, crime novels and fantasy proved to be the page-turners, with more than six in every ten being finished....

    Overall, Britons found romance to be the most engaging genre, with 62 per cent completion, followed by crime and thriller at 61 per cent and fantasy with 60 per cent."

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/shopping-and-consumer-news/11284934/Fewer-than-half-of-readers-finished-bestselling-novels.html
     
  2. stevesh
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    stevesh Banned Contributor

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    Very interesting. The 60% number even seems low to me. I have several novels on my Nook that I haven't finished (yet), but they all were free downloads, and not bestsellers. I don't buy fiction, as my local library does a good job stocking the current novels I want to read, but it's rare that I don't finish a book I've checked out.
     
  3. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    People just don't appreciate the literature they have anymore.
    You can put down a good e-book, you can't put down a good book!
    Kids these days...
     
  4. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Just for fun I looked up how long each book was to see if perhaps that were a factor...


    2014 UK Bestseller List

    1. One Cold Night – Katia Lief - 309 p
    2. Gone Again – Doug Johnstone - 257 p
    3. Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn - 434 p
    4. The Fault in Our Stars – John Green - 337 p
    5. My Sister's Keeper – Bill Benners - 277 p
    6. The Husband's Secret – Liane Moriarty - 417 p
    7. The Cuckoo's Calling – Robert Galbraith - 464 p
    8. Her Last Letter – Nancy C. Johnson - 297 p
    9. Twelve Years a Slave – Solomon Northup - 246 p
    10. Bloody Valentine – James Patterson - 122 p

    The Most Completed Books of 2014

    1. Rotten to the Core - Casey Kelleher - 310 p
    2. The Tycoon's Vacation – Melody Anne - 206 p
    3. The Traitor – Kimberley Chambers - 496 p
    4. Concealed in Death – J. D. Robb - 417 p
    5. Wrongful Death - Lynda La Plante - (could not find length)
    6. All Revved Up - Sylvia Day - 47 p (bow chica wow wow)
    7. Present Danger - Stella Rimington - 326 p
    8. The Empty Cradle - Rosie Goodwin - 400 p
    9. The Witness - Nora Roberts - 492 p
    10. The Promise (Fallen Star Series, Book 4) – Jessica Sorensen - 309 p
     
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  5. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Am I the only one disturbed that my Kindle is telling Amazon what page I'm on?
     
  6. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    @Wreybies: Present Danger - Stella Rimington - Hardcover, 326 pages per Goodreads.

    All Revved up intrigued me as well:
     
  7. Bjørnar Munkerud
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    Leave it on a page that somehow sends them a message ... like the last page of a chapter where all it says is "'Stay away.', I told them.".
     
  8. Bjørnar Munkerud
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    I imagine this is because bestsellers by nature appeal to a large audience. The larger the audience the more different the audience is going to be and hence the book is less likely to be a perfect fit for them all. A less known, niche book is more likely to be read almost exclusively by people who were specifically looking for that kind of book in the first place, and so are more likely to enjoy it.

    I suppose we shouldn't hate on the best-selling authors too much, though. If they weren't there to be the lowest common denominator, people would exclusively buy their relatives books about knitting, cooking, horses, the Second World War or some erotica or hard sci-fi. Being able to pick a book randomly off of a list and have about a 1/3 chance (well, it might actually be quite a bit lower than that, but I suppose it's quite easy to sift through the genres and topics you really aren't going to like) of finishing and enjoying it is actually a pretty good statistic given the vastly different opinions people have from eachother when it comes to almost anything.

    There's something quite nice about realising all authors have their place, isn't it?
     
  9. Fitzroy Zeph
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    Fitzroy Zeph Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm a bit lost as to how a book becomes a bestseller if a large portion of the buyers don't find it worthwhile finishing.
     
  10. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    It's about the number of books sold in a week.
     
  11. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    The only real information that can be pulled from this is that Kobo readers have vastly different tastes then the British public.
     
  12. Fitzroy Zeph
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    Fitzroy Zeph Contributing Member Contributor

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    I figured that; I just don't see what propels the sales if people aren't enjoying the book. Is it just the authors' names?
     
  13. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    Most authors on the best-sellers list are regulars.
    Rarely is there a new name there that no one has heard of.
    Unless the author himself gets popular and appears on talk shows and stuff, that increases book sales a crapload.
     
  14. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I don't think that is the only conclusion one can draw from this information. Another hypothesis worth consideration is, an awful lot of people imagine themselves to be readers, they buy books and never finish any of them.
     
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  15. GingerCoffee
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    That's another important aspect writers should know. I've seen people who have low numbers on the Amazon selling list. It's very impressive. But two or three weeks later their numbers are in the hundreds of thousands like most everyone else.
     
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I picked up a couple Nora Roberts audio books the other day because they were on the library shelf and I have been sampling different authors' styles. They were written under the name, JD Robb. The first one was so absolutely awful, I turned them both back in. Make a name for yourself and you can turn out crap. People buy it.

    So if followup novels of people who maybe wrote one or two good books were on the list, I can see why readers didn't finish them.
     
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  17. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think that, actually, bestsellers are also bought by people who buy what everybody else is reading. Emperor's new clothes, anybody?

    I heard a guy on the train saying "I think I'm going to read 'The Aeneid'...just so that I can say that I've read it."
     
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  18. Fitzroy Zeph
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    I can easily see how if you're a wanna be reader or shop-on-a-whim type that you may never end up reading it. I have a stack of books still waiting for my attention.
     
  19. Fitzroy Zeph
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    Fitzroy Zeph Contributing Member Contributor

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    I find this wrong. It's none of their business.
     
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  20. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Don't do business with them :)
     
  21. Fitzroy Zeph
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    Fitzroy Zeph Contributing Member Contributor

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    I wish it were that simple. Do you notice every time you download a new app, it wants to use your current location and it may be nothing but a dictionary? There is a local app here being used by people to ride share, and it's certainly a noble idea and one whose time has come, except, the app is scavenging user information that it absolutely doesn't need. So yes, I can forgo buying or using a Kindle or iPhone or computer or what have you, but I still think I shouldn't have to worry about the type of information being accumulated about my habits.
     
  22. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    @Fitzroy Zeph you can buy devices that allow third-party apps (basically any tablet other than a Kindle), on which you can still purchase books from Amazon, B&N, Kobo, etc. You can read the books on the third-party software instead of, for example, the Amazon software, and avoid having all your reading data reported back to the eBook seller.
     
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  23. GingerCoffee
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    That too. What was the timeframe in the study? Not finished by a month? A week? A year?
     
  24. Fitzroy Zeph
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    Likely all those you mentioned; each used to fulfill the statistical objective desired.
     
  25. Bjørnar Munkerud
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    Yeah, I agree. I heard of a guy who had the job, family and life that he wanted, had commitments and was in his sixties, but told his friends he had decided he just had to go on a round-the-world trip even though he confessed he didn't actually want to and it would be a hassle to plan and finance it. Turns out he just felt he had to do it because "everyone else" was doing it at his age (we may have it a bit too good in Norway considering these are the kinds of problems we face ... ). #Sheeple
     
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