Dealing with Samples #1

You might have noticed that I never do book haul posts. There’s a reason for it – I don’t buy a lot of books. My TBR is below 10 and that includes ebooks. I just don’t feel comfortable having too many unread books at home. I feel under pressure to read them all at the same time and then I lose interest and stop reading altogether. It happened. I love buying books but I noticed I function better this way.

I might not have a high TBR but my wishlist is getting longer and longer and I have tons of samples on my Kindle. It’s such a good deal and so easy. They are free, just one click away and you can sneak into a book you are not sure about and then make up your mind about buying or leaving.

It really helped me in the past – I gave books I wasn’t sure about a chance and got hooked immediately. Or even the opposite happened – I got a sample of a book I was sure I liked and in the end didn’t even make it through the whole sample because it just wasn’t for me.

Sometimes a sample is still not enough but often it helps you get a first impression on the style of writing, the characters and the general feel of the novel.

I decided to tackle my samples and write a post on what I read about once a week or so. I will give you my first impression and whether it helped me to make a decision on buying the book or leaving it. That way I am more motivated to get through them!

What I read this week:


Anderson Lake is AgriGen’s Calorie Man, sent to work undercover as a factory manager in Thailand while combing Bangkok’s street markets in search of foodstuwindup girlffs thought to be extinct, hoping to reap the bounty of history’s lost calories.

Emiko is the Windup Girl, a strange and beautiful creature. Emiko is not human; she is an engineered being, grown and programmed to satisfy the decadent whims of a Kyoto businessman, but now abandoned to the streets of Bangkok. Regarded as soulless beings by some, devils by others, New People are slaves, soldiers, and toys of the rich in this chilling near future in which calorie companies rule the world, the oil age has passed, and the side effects of bio-engineered plagues run rampant across the globe.

What happens when calories become currency? What happens when bio-terrorism becomes a tool for corporate profits and forces mankind to the cusp of post-human evolution? Bacigalupi delivers one of the most highly-acclaimed science fiction novels of the twenty-first century.

Oh, brilliant. And the first case of course is difficult.. The sample was super boring and complicated. There’s lots of talk about a factory and the inner workings and what horrible things happened to the world. It’s pretty grim and depressing and I don’t think I want this right now. I haven’t met Emiko, the Windup Girl yet, which is a shame because I might change my mind. But for now, I don’t want more of it, so I won’t consider buying.

So for now, it’s a NO


Young Corban watches enviously as boys become warriors, learning the art of war. He yearns to wield his sword and spear to protect his king’s realm. But that day will come all too soon. Only when he loses those he loves will he learn the true price of courage.

The Banished Lands has a violent past where armies of men and giants clashed in battle, the earth running dark with their heartsblood. Although the giant-clans were broken in ages past, their ruined fortresses still scar the land. But now giants stir anew, the very stones weep blood and there are sightings of giant wyrms. Those who can still read the signs see a threat far greater than the ancient wars. Sorrow will darken the world, as angels and demons make it their battlefield. Then there will be a war to end all wars.

High King Aquilus summons his fellow kings to council, seeking an alliance in this time of need. Prophesy indicates darkness and light will demand two champions, the Black Sun and the Bright Star. They would be wise to seek out both, for if the Black Sun gains ascendancy, mankind’s hopes and dreams will fall to dust.

That’s how you get me interested! I was almost instantly hooked, we get a prologue in which someone tries to resurrect Voldemort uses some evil magic to gain power, then we get a short episode on the ancient history of the land. After that we jump straight into the action and get to know the characters. I do like the style of writing and that we get chapters written from different perspectives.

I think there are a lot of cool characters I can root for, and hope that a lot of them will play a bigger role. Like that old knight Tull or the merchant with the big dog.

My only complaint so far: WHERE THEM GIRLS AT???! I hope the book features some cool female characters as well!

Will I read this book? OH YEAH!


  1. I think I need to start dealing in samples to cut down the book buying to a manageable level. If I can make use of this it might cut down on a pile of books I DNF! I can usually tell in the first few chapters what I’m going to generally think of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a great idea! I’m another one that doesn’t have ginormous TBR per se, but I do have a short list of books I want to read and it varies in size as titles come and go, but it’s not like some TBR’s with hundreds of books. This looks like a great way to share some initial thoughts.

    The Wind Up Girl has a compelling cover but the premise doesn’t really appeal to me at all. I don’t know it does look boring lol? Now Malice on the other hand looks pretty dang good! Thanks for sharing it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m so glad you decided to keep Malice. It’s an awesome book. And without spoiling anything, there is a female character in there that I absolutely love. I’m very excited to read the rest of the series and see how that particular character grows and blossoms, because I have a feeling she’s got an awesome role to play.

    Liked by 1 person

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