Friday Five Challenge ~ Would you Buy or Pass

Rosie Amber’s Friday Five Challenge, involves taking only five minutes to choose a book cover which appeals instantly. So take a break …..and have a browse.


In today’s online shopping age, readers often base their buying decisions from small postage stamp size book covers (Thumb-nails), a quick glance at the book description and the review. How much time do they really spend making that buying decision?

AUTHORS – You often only have seconds to get a reader to buy your book, is your book cover and book bio up to it?

My Friday Five Challenge is this….. IN ONLY FIVE MINUTES….

1) Go to any online book supplier,

2) Randomly choose a category,

3) Speed through the book covers, choose one which has instantly appealed to your eye,

4) Read the book Bio/ Description for this book, and any other details.

5) If there are reviews, check out a couple,

6) Make an instant decision, would you BUY or PASS?

I headed for the Teen/Young Adult section for this week’s challenge. The cover of Half The World (Shattered Sea Book 2) caught my eye and I liked it more when I clicked on it.


The book description reads…

Thorn lives to fight. But she has been named murderer by the very man who trained her to kill.

Fate traps her in the schemes of Father Yarvi, sending her across half the world to seek allies against the ruthless High King.

Beside her is Brand, a young warrior who hates to kill. A failure in his eyes and hers, he has one chance at redemption.

Must Thorn be a tool in other hands or can she carve her own path? Is there a place beyond legend for a woman with a blade?

498 pages with a Kindle price of £4.75. Isn’t available on Amazon US, to this country anyway, so couldn’t get any info.

The book has 118 5* reviews, 33 4* and just 5 spread over 1*, 2* and 3*

Would I Buy or Pass? I’d PASS.

The price is getting up there for a Kindle copy but the main reason for the pass is because it’s book 2. I like starting a series from the beginning and would be very tempted to start with the first book, Half A King (Shattered Sea Book 1) which is priced at £1.99 for a Kindle copy.

The book description could be a little more informative, I didn’t get a real sense of the story, although it might have been enough if I’d read the first book. I needed to look at some reviews to get an idea of the content, and it’s a Viking type fantasy story set in what I assume to be a mythical land. There’s a good drawing of a map at the beginning to set the scene. One reviewer, Kate, describes it as ‘ a cold, beautiful place of ice, mountains and forests.’ From other reviews I skimmed through it seems Joe Abercrombie is a very popular author with several book under his belt and consistently high reviews. If the cover of the first book had jumped out first, my Buy or Pass choice would more than likely have been BUY. 

If you’d like to enter next week’s challenge check out Rosie’s blog to read about the Friday Five Challenge.

18 thoughts on “Friday Five Challenge ~ Would you Buy or Pass

  1. Hi Cathy, always a difficult decision with a series, some books are stand alone, many are best read in order. I suspect that as this is fantasy a reader would really benefit from starting with the first book, I wonder what the book cover looks like for the first one.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s interesting – forgetting for a moment that this guy is a very popular author, it underlines my theory that writing a series is not always such a good way to go. Sales of the subsequent books are completely reliant on people having read and thorougly enjoyed the first one, whereas if you write standalones they can be picked up by anyone!

    Liked by 1 person

      • Wow, you guys really have me thinking. Since I have a prequel partially written, I had planned to publish that with the same protagonist. I guess I shouldn’t make such a big deal about the books being a series after all. I had read that readers like series, especially the younger reader.
        Anyway, I have a lot to think about when I finally get the prequel out.
        Do you know a/b my debut novel “Secrets & Lies in El Salvador”? A young American woman goes to war-torn El Salvador:

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m not keen on fantasy books and am a bit wary of buying into a series. I see lots of books that are book 8, 9 or so on in a series and I just don’t want to even begin – it makes it feel like a chore! So this would have been a pass from me. I scroll straight past anything that has ‘part…’ or ‘number …. in the …..series’ in the title. But that’s just me 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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