Cranky Reader asked what turned out to be an interesting question. I started rambling an answer and then thought I delve deeper into her question. She was asking about new autobuy authors and I started wondering when and what makes an author an autobuy. I’ve read a few readers say that after the release of Passion, Lisa Valdez is an autobuy. I’ve heard the same thing about JR Ward and Dark Lover. I read and loved both of these books but I’m not putting the author on my “auto buy” list yet. Oh I will definitely buy their next books, but I don’t want to declare them autobuys based on one book. There’s a couple of reasons for that. When I take an author off my autobuy list, I’m usually pretty annoyed with their writing. It means they have written a number of books in a row I just didn’t like. And isn't that putting pretty high expectations on a new author? And what if their first book that was really good was just a fluke - kind of like a one hit wonder? And once an author is off – it’s pretty damned hard to get me to try another one by her again. Some of my former autobuys that I don’t really want to read anymore include Mary Balogh (sorry Rosario), Suzanne Brockman, Julia Quinn and Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Those are just a few – but they are all big names that are still going strong – just not for me anymore.
So – how many books does it take to make the author an autobuy for me?
I don’t know.
I think three, but then that number is blown by Tara Janzen. She’s an autobuy after two. Maybe that’s because her two - for me - were both exceptional reads and/or I’m taking into consideration that I loved River of Eden when she was Glenna MacReynolds.
Then I have authors that I buy all of their books, but I don’t call them autobuys. Rachel Gibson is a good example that falls into this group. I have disliked enough of her books that I don’t consider her an autobuy, but I’ve liked/loved enough that I keep trying her.
I don’t know – it’s a cloudy area as to what and how many make an author an autobuy for this reader.
So how about anyone else? What makes an author an autobuy for you? And how many does it take? And once an autobuy is off your list, can they make it back on again?