Amy and I are not the type of bloggers that receive loads of ARCs, and that is not the purpose or goal of this blog. An author friend sent us an F&G of his picture book, and I received 4 ARCs at Nerd Camp. I gave 2 of those to a friend who came from NC, but could not get there early enough to get books. I'm writing a review about one of the books later this week so I wanted to share my thoughts about ARCs and F&Gs.
I much prefer my first reading experience of a book to be with a finished, published copy. If you follow this blog, you know that many Tuesdays, I post about the books that will be arriving at my house. I love the feel and the smell of a brand new book. With a F&Gs the pages literally fall apart as you read it. My youngest child bent up the cover of one of my Nerd Camp ARCs and I had to quell my rage, reminding myself I had already ordered a final copy of that book. ARCs sometimes have illustrations that are omitted altogether or other cool features not included in ARCs. Just to add, selling/buying ARCs is beyond wrong. I also don't thing they belong in libraries. #sorrynotsorry I know budgets are dreadful, but authors deserve to be compensated for their work.
One of the funniest ARC experiences I had was when I received El Deafo from Nerd Camp in 2014. My girls (at the time aged 11, 8 and 6) read it over and over again, often fighting over it. ARCs of graphic novels do not have color. When I brought the full-color copy home on the publication date, they were mad at me because they thought I had been keeping it from them, sticking them with the black and white copy.
F&Gs and ARCs make sense for professional reviewers and for people like Mr. Schu, whose job it was to tell me 3x this summer that Deborah Freedman's Shy (her newest picture book, out on 9/27) is amazing. And while I'll be waiting almost two more months for it, that's okay, because it'll be worth it.
If you think I'm crazy, that's okay because I think someone else does too.