The air is starting to cool. There is a gentle breeze rustling through the trees as the periodical cicadas and crickets play the tune of an autumn day. I have the entire day free and I know exactly what I am going to do with it: I am going to fix a nice pot of strong tea, grab a stack of books that I purchased the day before on my trip the bookstore, and head to the garden to read while the weather still permits it.
I pour myself a steaming cupper and grab my first book eager to lose myself in the world the author created. I read the first few pages and say to myself, “I think I have read this before”. I finish the first chapter and say, “I have read this before”. I close the book and read the title, Pemberley by the Sea: A Modern Love Story Pride & Prejudice Style by Abigail Reynolds.
I have read this book before, in fact, I reviewed it when Sourcebooks Casablanca rereleased it as The Man Who Loved Pride & Prejudice: A Modern Love Story With A Jane Austen Twist. I cannot believe that I purchased the same book that was sitting on my bookshelf—a book that I have read and reread several times.
I put the book down and pick-up another book—nonfiction this time—thinking that nonfiction titles rarely undergo a title change. I am excited about this book; it was the first one that I picked up at the bookshop, Henry VIII by Alison Weir. I am eager to feed my Tudor addiction and one can never go wrong with an Alison Weir book. Expect when you have already read—and own—the book.
At this point, I am getting a bit frustrated—my tea is sitting on the stand practically untouched growing cold and I have wasted thirty bucks on two books that I already own. I pick up the third book, a contemporary cowboy romance, from my shrinking stack and get the notion to turn my phone on and Google it just to ensure that I have not read this book under another title. Although, I know that if I turn my phone on it will start ringing and I am determined to spend the day (my free day) tucked in my garden reading.
I start reading. Chapter one and two flies by, then three, then four, so far so good. I pour myself another tepid cupper start on chapter five and I get the sense that I have read this book before—only the names of the characters and the town they live in have been changed. This time I do turn my phone on and search out the book. This is the first time the book has ever been published, yet I still have the feeling that I have read this book somewhere before.
I head back to the house to fix another pot of tea and grab a tea cozy just in case I have another horrid encounter and need to run off to find another book. While I am waiting for the kettle to whistle, I search my bookshelf looking for another contemporary cowboy book that I have recently read. I find it, skim through the chapters and sure enough, even though the books are indeed two separate books by two separate authors they are alarmingly similar right down to the accident that occurred it stables only the color of the horse was changed.
I put the book down on the shelf and walk away.
By this time, I am wondering if I should just give up trying to read and watch one of the many versions of Jane Eyre that I have collected. Although I know that the weather is growing cooler and soon I will not be able to sit in the garden and read, so armed with my pot of Earl Grey, I head back out into the garden and pick up the last book in my stack.
Thankfully, I have not read this book or any version of it.
Has this happened to you? Have you grabbed a copy of a book because the cover is new and shiny and giving you that come hither and read me look only to realize that it was a reprint that is sitting on your shelf with a different title? Or have you read a book that was so similar to another book it makes you pause to see if they were wrote by the same author.
We spend so much time sharing our good experiences with book so I want to hear about your bad book experiences.
I have 1 copy of Henry VIII by Alison Weir and 1 copy of Pemberley by the Sea: A Modern Love Story Pride & Prejudice Style by Abigail Reynolds.
Leave a comment and a valid email address along with which book you would like to win.
Giveaway Ends October 16
As you may have noticed, Renee’s Reads is now titled ‘Simply Angela’. It’s the same great blog only the name has been changed. I am keeping the url the same, so those of you who are email subscribers have nothing to fear.