The Sunday Symposium is a weekly feature in which I'll be discussing various bookish topics and asking for your commentary, as well. This week, I'd like to get your take on indie/self-published novels.
So, the weird thing about me is that I LOVE indie music, but like, the second that music gets airtime on a real radio station, I stop loving it. It's no longer something I discovered and tried to force everyone I know to listen to because it is just that awesome. At that point, it's something everyone else is trying to make me listen to. I told you I'm weird.
However, some of the larger publishers ARE taking a second look at some of the more popular indie authors -- think Abbi Glines and Tammara Webber -- and giving them deals to publish the books that have already made them household names. I haven't read a book by either of those authors, but I do own a couple of their books, thanks to friends and fellow bloggers who swear by them.
But popularity does not a good book make. Beautiful Disaster, I'm looking at you. No, I haven't read that book, but based on the ubiquitous reviews I've seen blasting the love interest for being a complete and total douche and the protagonist for putting up with it, I know this book is not for me. So, even though a book has numerous fans, it can still be a dud for others. Which is one of the reasons indies scare me so much.
That said, I did read a couple of really amazing indie novels recently: Torched and Angelfall. The first was pitched to me by the author herself. Usually, I read the email and then file it away, never to be looked upon again. I get quite a few these days, and admittedly, I'm terrible at responding because I just don't know what to say. The few times I've responded politely with a "not at this time," I always get another response a little while later asking when a good time would be. But Andrea Lynn Colt's email was perfection, as was the premise of her novel. And she also had another thing on her side: a blurb from an established, well-respected author, one whose writing I've tasted and enjoyed.
With Angelfall, that was all word of mouth, and I still resisted, even though some of the readers and bloggers I trust most absolutely loved this novel. And now I absolutely love this novel. I've already read it twice and am dying for the next book just like everyone else. I have the ebook, the audiobook, and the paperback. I'm obsessed with it!
I haven't exactly changed my position on indie novels, but I have a new-found respect for them. And I'd like to read more of them. I just want to know I'm going to love them before picking them up. Is that too much to ask? No? Well then, how about you recommend your favorite indie novel to me...one that you're absolutely certain I can't go wrong with?
Also, where do you stand on independent/self-published books? I know a lot of bloggers I interact with are moving more and more toward indies, but what about the average reader? What do those of you who don't spend all your free time reading and reviewing think of indies? Or even if you are a fellow blogger, how do you feel about them?
I look forward to hearing your thoughts! And your suggestions!!! :D Have a great week, everybody!