Friday, March 23, 2012

To eRead Or Not To eRead, That Is The Question

I have to admit that I’m a little hesitant to try authors who are new to me if I don’t have a recommendation from a friend first.

So you can imagine how hesitant I am to try out a new way of reading. Yep, I’m talking about ereaders. When ereaders first came out, I was convinced I’d never need the things.  I already had a computer, laptop, and smart phone.  My job (writing) requires that I put an awful lot of time into staring at a screen. Why would I want to stare at a screen when I read for fun?  I do understand the draw of an ereader: it’s light, it carries hundreds of books, and you can adjust the text size for those tired-eyes days.

But really?  I’m a paper-in-the-hands kind of gal, and I disliked the idea of my book running out of batteries, or breaking and costing me big bucks to replace.  I’ve had friends and family let me hold their Kindles, fondle their Nooks, and stroke their iPads (this is starting to sound naughty!)  So I do think the gadgets are really cool and I love that the book reads like a book.  Still, I wasn’t convinced I needed an ereader.

Then someone off-handedly remarked, “Oh, and when I’ve finished the book in the middle of the night and want to read the next right away, I touch a button and the book appears in my hands.”

Whoa, Nelly. Cue the lights and bells and angels singing!  No waiting. No having to make an extra trip to the store, or order on-line and hope the post office doesn’t leave the package in the rain. I could have any book I wanted, literally, at my fingertips, at any time of day or night. And if I was looking for a new author to try, I could sample their work before buying.  Hello, heaven.

Now this is the part of the story where I tell you I ran right out and bought an ereader. Um....yeah...I didn’t. Remember how I said I’m hesitant to try a new author without a recommendation? Apparently, that’s also how I feel about ereaders too! While I do love the idea of having one (and will probably buy one) I am still, for the moment, a paper-in-the-hands girl.

How about you?  Are you an ebook reader, or a paper book reader, or both?  Have you tried a new author lately that you like to recommend to friends?  And if you do recommend an author do you share by giving an ecopy or paper copy of the book?

Today I’d like to share my urban fantasy series set in Portland, Oregon, by doing a fun giveaway!  If you’ve never read the Allie Beckstrom series and you win, I will send you the first three books of the series, signed (that’s MAGIC TO THE BONE, MAGIC IN THE BLOOD and MAGIC IN THE SHADOWS).  If you have read the Allie Beckstrom series and you win, I will send you the last three books in the series, signed (that’s MAGIC ON THE HUNT, MAGIC ON THE LINE and MAGIC WITHOUT MERCY--which won't even be in stores until April.) I’ll mail international.

Just leave a comment here about a favorite book you recommend or whether or not you like  ereaders or paper, and the winner will be chosen (and posted) Tuesday, March 27th.

Oh, and I suppose I should mention something about the books!  Here’s the back cover description from the first book, MAGIC TO THE BONE.  If you want to check out the other books or read excerpts you can find them on my page at

Using magic means it uses you back, and every spell exacts a price from its user. But some people get out of it by Offloading the cost of magic onto an innocent. Then it’s Allison Beckstrom’s job to identify the spell-caster. Allie would rather live a hand-to-mouth existence than accept the family fortune—and the strings that come with it. But when she finds a boy dying from a magical Offload that has her father’s signature all over it, Allie is thrown back into his world of black magic. And the forces she calls on in her quest for the truth will make her capable of things that some will do anything to control…

***Devon's winner is Mary Anne Landers!  Congratulations!  Please send your details to!! Thanks***


marybelle said...

I do have a Kindle, but I still prefer a hard copy.

I'm reading the series A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE by George RR Martin. It is brilliant.

Mary said...

I don't have an ereader and have no plans on getting one. I like paper books that I can trade, sell, give away ect and you can't do that with ebooks so I'll just stick with paper books for now.

host said...

I have recently bought an iPad; I have struggled with decision to buy or not buy for the much same reasons you did (not to mention that it is rather expensive here in Croatia). Although I love it - all the books just a click away (I don't have to wait for them 2-3 weeks if I am ordering books in English) - I find it tiring for my eyes. I usually read in the evenings and after staring at the computer screen all day at work my eyes are too tired for another screen. It is much easier to read "real" books. So nowadays I combine both depending on the place and time of the day :)

Eli Yanti said...

i'm prefer book but sometime i read ebook too

traveler said...

I prefer books that I can hold and feel. I don't own an e-reader and doubt that I ever will since books are so precious. I am presently reading A Place of Secrets which is memorable. many thanks.

CrystalGB said...

I read book paperback and ebooks. My first preference is paperback. Easier on my eyes and I like to hold a book in my hands instead of my ereader. Love the covers to your books.

Lil said...

I prefer holding a print book (paper) but I cannot deny the convenience of ebooks. Travelling with loads of paperbacks if just not practical.

Claire (Cem) said...

I prefer print books to ebooks, but I do own a kindle and kinda love it. I prefer the feel of a book in my hands and physically turning the pages rather than holding the kindle and pressing a button. But that said, the Kindle certainly has it's advantages by being so light, easy and fast to get books on. Not to mention the space saving involved!! Like you though, when ereaders first came out I didn't think I'd ever want one, but I have been converted (to a certain extent) and so have 2 of my best friends who didn't think they would either. It'll never replace print books for me, but I do love my kindle too.

pamerd said...


I have an ereader and I am slowing purchasing more ebooks than paper books. I am sure soon it will be all ebooks. I love the Allie Beckstrom series and have read the first 5. Looking forward to reading more about Allie and the gang.

Thanks for the chance

readinginwinter said...

I'm all over paper books ... I have an ereader, but I only use it for galleys, or some library books. I just like the feel and smell of real books. And the page turning! So many things ... :)

Great giveaway! I've never read this series ... but it looks good!


Erica said...

I prefer paperback books. I like to have it in my hands and it doesn't take batteries.

I really like Lili St. Crows Strange Angels series. I like Kelley Armstrongs Darkest Powers series and I always recommend your Allie Beckstrom series. These are my favs. I am going to be lost when Allies story is done :-O!

Bonnie Regan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shotgun Prose said...

The feel of a book is cool, but I have slowly come around to the ebook side. Having the ebooks of this series would be cool because I have been loaning out a few copies of it to friends.

xtalcat said...

would love to read your books, cash poor and book hungry!

jamieblue said...

Hi Devon! I have read one of the first three Beckstrom novels from the library, but would love to have my own real copies of the first three. I am a disabled Writer/Musician, whose disabilities bar me from work, but not from creating. I have finished a trilogy of novels for NaNoWriMo these last three years. I hadn't entered before, nor had I finished a novel length piece. It was a life goal that I finally achieved thanks to NaNo at age 47. I'm 50 now. I have won prizes for poetry and music. I have had seven musical releases since 88. But after being run over by a car in 2005, it has taken a while to get back in the groove, and with disability, my income is tiny, but my time is all mine, to create. You can hear my music at as well as read some poems. I have to edit my books, then find an agent and a real editor, unless you have better advice for me. I am fortunate enough to have workshopped during the last couple years with a writing group that has some published authors. But I had to stop, when finances forced me to move in with my aging mother in a tiny Utah town that has no good size bookstore, and our library is modern but so small. The combined Fantasy/Sci-Fi section can't have more tha a couple thousand books, and I've read 'em all. That's where I found the second Beckstrom novel, and would dearly love to own the first three on paper. Please pick me. I love your style.
I am currently just finshed reading the latest Jim Butcher Dresden Files novel, a gift from a friend.
I think it's great you're doing this. I'm going to be a long term fan, from what I've seen so far!

~Jamie G.

Northwoman said...

I love paper books, I love libraries, I love bookstores. When I vacationed through Portland last summer I actually went to 2 locations of Powells plus a couple other book stores. But I also read lots on my computer and I moved this fall and 19 bookcases overflowing means I see the writing on the wall. I am researching ereaders, talking to my friends who have them and getting all my new books in pdf format.

As for a book recommendation, I just read Dragon Bound by Thea Harrison and I loved it. I realized most of the stories I read have yummy, badass men and one might be tempted to think that is what I love. I do. But what I really LOVE is the heroine who tells Mr. Badass he doesn't make her decisions. YUP. Action, mystery, adventure, hot sex - all great, too. The other factor I crave is the funny and this is hilarious. Plus yummy men. ;)

I've read all your Allie books with major anxiety when I was reading the last one available yet. I would be ecstatic to win the last ones, especially if it means I get it sooner!

SandyG265 said...

I read both paper books and books on my kindle. I still like to go to the library and take out books. And now that summer is comming we'll be taking out audio books to listen to out on the deck.

I've read the early Allie books but would love to get the last three.

Tobi Summers said...

Until recently, I thought I was a paper books girl, but the more I think about it, the more the benefits of my Nook outweigh the sentimentality of my paper books. I love having my whole library at my fingertips and being able to get a book anywhere at any time. And I love that I can prop the cover to my Nook open and I don't have to hold the pages or anything. Perfect for when I'm eating or exercising.

My current book to recommend is Patricia Briggs' Alpha & Omega (the novella and the series). It's the perfect blend of adventures with werewolves and romance. For some reason, I get stuck in a loop when I'm rereading the series, and I'll go through it three or four times before I can finally pull myself out of it.

Thanks for the great giveaway! I've read them all, and I can't wait for Magic Without Mercy to come out!

An Again said...

I fought the e-reader trend as long as I could, giving in only when I got them as gifts. The funny thing is, while I now buy a lot more ebooks than paper backs, I still don't use the Kindle or Touch pad much for reading; my phone is more convenient, just sitting here in my pocket when I get a spare moment on the bus or what have you. Granted, that IS because I can read Kindle books across platforms.

As for books that I recommend: Magic to the Bone, and Seanan McGuire's Rosemary and Rue. Allie captures the kick-ass quality we all love in our heroines without being more-obnoxious-than-the-last, as too many UF characters are these days. Plus the action and magic always leave me wanting more. McGuire's books are a nice bridge between the old magic-just-around-the-corner UF and the new kick-ass adventure UF.

Jake said...

I've been an eReader for 2 years now. I first bought the Sony E-Reader but am not a big fan as it doesn't have any backlight and it is grey on grey. As well, it is really a unitasker as it doesn't have any other capabilities. However, the battery life is the most amazing.
Then I got an iPad, which I loved but then my husband started using it as his eReader when we were travelling.
Since neither of us liked the Sony we talked about getting another iPad or a Kobo Reader.
The price difference made the decision and I just purchased the Kobo Vox which has everything that the iPad has but in a smaller (a good thing) size and a price tag of only $200.
The Sony is currently on loan to a friend to try it out.

I love books but must say it is the best thing ever to have books immediately at your fingertips!!! I love the dictionary feature as well.

_annabelleh_ said...

I prefer paper, no doubt about it!

Jessica Storm W said...

I recently read the 50 Shades of Grey trilogy & I couldn't put it down!

I like to get the hardcopy of any book I buy, even if I put it on my Kindle 1st. So I'd have to say I prefer paper. :)

alainala said...

i love this series!!

i bought an ereader... ive used it once... im a die hard paperback person...
recently read thea harrisons new one - oracles moon? loved it!
now reading molly harper!!

Corrie said...

So I didn't think I would be an ereader person, but then my boyfriend bought me one and I was hooked! I am a college student, so hauling all of those books I love to read back forth from my house(12 hours away) to my dorm, was a pain in the butt...with the ereader, I can reread as many books as I want without begging my mom to mail them to me! I have followed the Allie Beckstrom books from the beginning, and absolutely love them - because of this, I get both the ebook version and the paperback version (I know, I am weird).
Other than that, my favorite book is Ender's Game - and I just recently discovered its officially coming to the big screen (squeal). Its hard science fiction, but truly a wonderful book - I recommend it!

Dork Day Book Club said...

I love the series and I just got an ereader. I am not totally sold on it but I am trying it out. I love the feel of paper books so might take a while to get the hang of the ereader.

Maureen said...

I am still enjoying reading paper books but I do see the appeal of the ereaders. I would recommend Home Front by Kristan Hannah that I recently read and enjoyed.
mce1011 AT aol DOT com

Katy Came said...

(Fingers crossed it works for me now).

Was given a tablet fro Christmas and downloaded Kobo and Kindle apps but have yet to use them. Prefer the tactile feel of a book. Of course if I start travelling more perhaps that'll change.

Love the series, Jenna!

Barbara E. said...

I'm definitely a paper book reader, but I have a Kindle, plus the Kindle app on my computer and iPhone. I do read ebooks on my phone quite a bit, but hardly ever pick up the Kindle. I've tried a fantastic new author recently, Kristen Callihan and her book Firelight. I loved it and can't wait for the next book in the series. When I recommend books to my sister, I've usually read a paper copy, but she just downloads the books to her Kindle, she's definitely an ebook reader.

Barbed1951 at aol dot com

sd76114 said...

I have a Nook color, but still love a "real" book in my hands too.... I don't discriminate one way or another!

LOVE the Allie Beckstrom series! A new author that I read lately is Justin Evans "The White Devil".....really good!!

Anonymous said...

I am a paperback book in my hands girl through and through, but I am at a similar point as well, where I keep hearing the benefits of an e-reader. I am still reluctant though, plus it is definitely an investment.

I have read all of the Allie Beckstrom Series and I LOVE THEM!!!! This series has become the one that I recommend to everyone! I just finished reading Fair Game (Alpha and Omega Series #3) by Patricia Briggs and it was amazing.

JenniferK said...

I have a Kindle Fire and I love it but I also like real books because you can take them anywhere without worrying if the battery will die. I would recommend "Sweet Enemy" from Heather Snow which I just finished recently.


Unknown said...

I still prefer my paper books with the beautiful cover art, but I do use my ipad/iphone to read occasionally when I'm not at home. Usually I have my favorite books as ebooks so I can pick them up and put them down without spending time remembering what is happening and who the characters are. The Allie Beckstrom books are on that list. Eeee! I can't wait for Magic Without Mercy!

Right now I'm passing around The Mortal Instruments books to all of my co-workers.

Unknown said...

For whatever reason I came up as Unknown.

Must Love Books said...

Series I adore: The Hollows by Kim Harrison. This is a series I'm always telling people to read. Every February I get all kinds of excited for the new Hollows book and every year I go to Portland and see Kim when she does her signing at Powells. Such a great series.

As for ereaders, I have one and I'm not a huge fan of it. It can be nice because it's light and has lots of books on it, but I dislike it because the format is always off, the batteries die, and it's just not as much fun to read. Plus ebooks can cost just as much as bound copies, and I can't loan out the book to other people or turn it in for credit to used bookstores. But I would still say to get a Kindle. Amazon has free books all the time or really cheap ones.

I've read your series and love them and would love to get an early copy of the new book!

hyperhamster15 (AT) hotmail (dot) com

Chrisbails said...

The series that I adore the most are Anita Blake series by Laurell K Hamilton, Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost, and That Old Black Magic series by Jodi Redford. I love many others, but those are my top favs. I love both ereaders and paperback. I have a nook and a kindle, and I still buy plenty of books. I love the ereaders because they are portable and can take more than one book with you. But certain books I still have to have the actual book. I collect and re-read many of my favs.
This is a new author and series for me and would love to win and read this book. Thanks for the giveaway.

Naomi H said...

I've been reading lots of books lately, probably too many if you ask my husband!! He seems to think that they are attached to my hand!! I like to read both paperbacks and on my iPad. Sometimes it's great to have the book in your hand, but on my iPad the hubby doesn't know when I am close to finishing a book, so it's easy just to move onto the next one.

My favorite book ATM is probably Magic Bleeds, from the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews. I enjoyed the books so much that I even read all the short stories from their website too.

I read your Allie books last year, and I've been so keen for the next 2 books in the series!! Can't wait until they are out!!

Keep up the good work Devon!

Melissa said...

I'm debating getting a kindle just because I like the dictionary and annotation features. But, I'm a books in the hand person through and through. I have a few books that I can recommend. If you're looking for a bit of strange humor try Dirk Danger Loves Life by Chris Rothe. If you like memoirs, I'd recommend Lucky Many by Michael J. Fox.

tialessa said...

I've recently started the Allie books, so I'd love to get Books 4-6!

I much prefer the feel of an actual book in my hands, but I did buy an ereader (Kindle 2.53) off a friend a couple of weeks ago (going on a vacation & don't want to lug a ton of books with me).

Authors I've enjoyed recently (it's long & as soon as I press "publish" I'll remember someone else) from Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Romance, Mystery, & Young Adult: Laura Anne Gilman (Cosa series), Jeaniene Frost (Night Huntress), Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling & Angels), Ilona Andrews (Kate Daniels & Edge), Shannon K Butcher (Sentinel Wars + Rom Suspense), Ann Aguire (all), Susan Andersen (all), Suzanne Brockmann (all), Rachel Caine (Weather Wardens), Faith Hunter (all), Meljean Brook (Iron Duke - Iron Seas), Jim Butcher (all), Lilith Saintcrow (pretty dark - Jill Kismet series), Kalayna Price (Grave series), Lynn Kurland (McLeod/DePiaget books), CE Murphy (all but the Inheritance books - not my cup of tea), Dana Stabenow (all), Rick Riordan (all his YA books), Suzanne Collins (all her YA books)

Mary Anne Landers said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary Anne Landers said...

Thank you for your post and giveaway, Devon.

Call me a Luddite, but I prefer old-fashioned books, the kind made from dead trees. After a lifetime of reading this way, it's hard to change.

But even I realize ebooks and ereaders are the wave of the future. I'll give in and buy an ereader sooner or later. Right now I've got other things on my plate.

I don't recommend books to friends. My opinions would matter only to someone whose tastes, values, and standards concerning leisure reading are the same as mine. And I don't know that anyone fits this bill. I don't go by my friends' recommendations for the same reason in reverse.

So how do I pick what to read? I go by the descriptions on the back covers of paperbacks and the inner flaps of hardbacks, advertising and promotional copy, write-ups at and similar sites, various reader/writer pages and groups on Facebook, and of course authors' descriptions of their works on blogs and websites, including this one.

To me, the most important factor in choosing a work of fiction is whether the main theme appeals to me. I've read that for many if not most readers, the most important factor is the author, especially in the romance genre. But I don't care who wrote the book, as long as I dig what the story is about.

Good luck with your upcoming projects and releases!

Michele L. said...

I absolutely love paperbacks! I think it is the cover art, blurbs on the back, author notes & reviews on inside, that get me everytime! So, I am not a big fan of e-readers. I recommend Kat Richardson's Greywalker series. I just loved her first book, Greywalker. Also, I am enjoying Cleo Coyle's, "The ghost and Mrs. McClure", series aka Alice Kimberley.

Michelle Bledsoe said...

I do both. I was hesitant at first about the ereaders. I mean I love the smell and feel and colors of print books. My ereader is in black and white. A couple of good points for the ereader is free books and, if like me you have no local bookstore, you can get your book instantly.
I find new books and definitely share them with friends. I think reading is very important no matter what genre you like just as long as you pick up a book and read. I have gotten several non readers to read more...LOL
I have not read Devon's books before. They sound really interesting. Thanks for the contest.

koonie2888 at yahoo dot com

Corrie said...

I was wondering who the winner of this awesome contest turned out to be? I can't seem to find it on the webpage! Thanks!

_annabelleh_ said...

Who won this?

Diana Guess said...

I was a little hesitant regarding the e-reader, but I decided to buy it and I don't regret anything. It's a great, little, portable device and I found the All You Can Books site with hundreds of good titles... we can have many of them for free, without paying anything!