What about a book, makes you decide to open it up and read it?
Judging a book by it's cover or contents.
Interesting question. I think that I am most interested in the title. Then I usually look at any jacket cover for some idea of what the book is about.
I always want to know about the author--where they were born, when they were born, and what is the typical subject or theme of their novels?. That tells me a lot. If the answers are not "1971", US", and " magic and werewolves", then I might move forward and see what the book is actually about. I usually won't read "genre-based" novels, like mysteries, thrillers, romance, horror, science fiction, fantasy, westerns, or even historical fictions. I like honest novels that speak of humaness with no labeled genre. There are exceptions to my rule, depending on the author. I have more or less given up on reading new novels and prefer to go and re-read old favorites and even classics. In historical non-fiction I am only interested in primary source works or serious scholarly works that I can only find out about via the American Historical Association.
I have a whole stack of books that I have waiting to be read. I usually choose my books based on recommendations from people that say things that interest me. Sometimes I'll choose a book because it was mentioned in a newspaper article or something like that. So I guess in a way, contents and recommendations. I'm never without a selection of books that I want to read. "So many books, so little time!"
Hmm... To me, the cover usually grabs my attention first, but I also make sure to check out the title. Sometimes the cover could be uninspiring, but the title makes me interested. I usually then read the blurb on the back and/or inside the jacket. From there if it sounds interesting, I'll skim the first page or so. I'm usually open to any type of story and sometimes I'll look at a book a couple times before finally caving and getting it. I also look at online reviews. Wow, I'm making this sound like a chore, haha, but that's how I choose my books.
First: the author
2nd: I check out the summary
3rd: I read the last few pages. If I don't like the ending, I don't read the book. Life is too short to waste on poor endings.
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