The Cuckoo’s Calling by JK Rowling
Am I the only person who finds it a bit ironic that nobody has heard of, or read, The Cuckoo’s Calling until its “mysteriously” leaked that JK Rowling is the author? Ironic because the last book she published using her real name post-potter had VERY mixed reviews? Why are people jumping on this book now?
The Cuckoo’s Calling had sold only 500 copies in the United States with bookstores debating shipping them back to the publisher, which I am told is somewhat typical for other new fiction books. Then, late on a Saturday night the authors identity is accidentally revealed via twitter. Within a few hours, The Cuckoo’s Calling is now on the best-sellers list on Amazon. People are jumping to read this new book. BUT WHY? Potter fans didn’t like her non-potter books.
We all know I judge a book by its cover, and if it a series, I will for sure buy based on the author. But sometimes authors don’t like to be typecast and all that. They like to be able to write in all genres that interested them. I loved all of John Grisham’s crime books, favorites including The Pelican Brief, The Client, The Firm, and The Pelican Brief. I hated, however, The Innocent Man, Playing for Pizza, and Calico Joe.
Its interesting that accomplished authors would publish under a pseudonym. Whether they think they will be judged based on previous novels, gender, or genre of book, I still think they would get more success in terms of book sales if they were to use their own name. I have pondered on this for a while with the publishing game. Self publishing vs traditional route. Are the goals of the author to see their words in other people’s hands? To see their words in print? Or to make money? Its an entire confusing world, and I don’t quite get how to navigate it as both a reader and as a writer.
So I want to know, what makes for a must buy book in your mind? Do you buy based on genre? Author? Cover? A friends recommendation? I would LOVE to know.