Well, to quote Dylan, the times...they are a changin'. The new Book of the Month (they seem to have dropped the "Club") much more closely resembles a modern subcomm business. Each month, they have a limited selection of books available (just five, I believe), each chosen by a "judge", most of whom seem to come from the literary world, with a few celebrities thrown in for extra dimension. There is an active on-line forum for discussing various books which helps a lot in making your selection.
Book of the Month has three subscription options with a tremendous deal on their three month plan (more about that below).
One Month - $16.99
Three Months - $38.97 (works out to $12.99 a month)
Twelve Months - $107.88 (works out to $8.99 a month)
As someone who is accustomed to obtaining much of my reading from Amazon for a penny plus $3.99 for shipping, I was concerned about the cost effectiveness of this service. (Granted, the penny books are generally not current releases but that's a starting point.) For October's selections, I've included the lowest available Amazon price (including shipping) for a book in "New" condition.
Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff ($15.32)
Gold Fame Citrus by Claire Vaye Watkins ($17.63)
Rising Strong by Brene Brown ($15.71)
Smaller and Smaller Circles by F. H. Batacan ($10.21)
The History of Love by Nicole Kraus ($9.60)
Based largely on the comments of Judge Leigh Haber (the Books Editor for O Magazine), I chose "Fates and Furies". You also have the option of adding a book from previous months' selections for $12.99. New book selections are announced on the first of each month and you have until the sixth of that month to make your selection. I happened to make my choice on the 4th which fit conveniently into the selection window, so received my first book pretty quickly....nine days later.
My book came in a medium size branded cardboard box, shipped by USPS Priority mail. Inside was what looks like a hand written note from Leigh Haber. In it, she uses this phrase to describe "Fates and Furies": "It's a flight of fancy with a little bit of Shakespeare and a dash of Greek myth". I like this personal touch, even if thousands of readers got the same card!
And here's my brand new hardcover with dust jacket edition of "Fates and Furies" by Lauren Groff. The book has 390 pages and was published this year...a big plus to me, since I try to keep up with new fiction. When I checked out the "Also by Lauren Groff" page, I realized I had read another of her books "The Monsters of Templeton" in January, 2013. (Yes, I do obsessively maintain a reading history.)
I haven't had a chance to dive in yet since I'm finishing up Mindy Kaling's latest book ("Why Not Me") which arrived in October's PopSugar box. That one's a fun easy read though so I expect to get started on "Fates and Furies" later this week.
Now, for the GREAT deal available from Book of the Month! The code BOTM15 will get the three month subscription for $20.97...that is just $6.99 per book! That discount is not available for the month to month or annual subscriptions, just the three month term. I don't know of any other way you can get brand new recently published hardbacks for that little. (Even two round trips to the library will cost you more than that and you won't get a book in pristine condition.) If you're a hard core reader like I am, there just isn't any reason not to take advantage of this terrific discount!
Maybe I'll have a "Fates and Furies" book review for you in a few weeks....
Disclosure: Views and opinions expressed in this blog are strictly my own. Product discussed in this post was purchased by Lone Star Shopper. Post does not contain referral or affiliate links.