NetGalley: a comedy

information resources, librarianship

I can remember the excitement I felt when I first learned about NetGalley earlier this year. There were chills. Free ebooks from reputable publishers sounded all kinds of awesome to me. I rushed to get signed up.

When I made it to the site and through the registration process, I was underwhelmed. There wasn’t a whole lot there. I did find one book I was interested, Charlie Higson’s The Dead. I shrugged to myself and requested a copy. Imagine how happy I was when I received an Adobe Digital Edition, that ever-so-unusable oft used format. My kindle looked at me with anger and disappointment. Again, I shrugged and promptly forgot about NetGalley.

At ALA last week, the name kept popping up. I heard it from big name publishers. Intrigued and hopeful, I logged in again to see what could be seen. And, much to my delight, they have gotten with the format program. I can now get books on my kindle, which makes the product more useful.

More useful than it was. But not quite useful.

The selection is still horrendous. I couldn’t find anything that called for more than a passing glance. This should be a no-brainer. Ebooks cost nothing. You create it once and you’re done. You can send it to as many people as you’d like without increasing overhead. Print galleys, though? Those cost money. And yet I’m left with this web site, which is great in theory, but offers me page after page of contemporary Christian titles. It’s so close to being a valuable resource.

So, once again, I’m leaving. I’ll set my calendar and check back next year.


2 thoughts on “NetGalley: a comedy

  1. Hi Caris. Sorry to hear you’re frustrated with NetGalley! Just so you know, we do send “NetGalley Roundups” by genre to our members, to alert you of galleys that match your interests. Feel free to sign up for those newsletters here:

    Also, you may have noticed already, but you can Browse available galleys by Publisher, too:
    With over 140 publishers represented on the site, I hope you can find something to fit your liking.

    Lastly, please know that we’re always open to feedback from our members! If you think we should change something, or you wish a certain aspect of the site was better, tell us.
    All best,
    Digital Concierge, NetGalley

    1. Hi Lindsey. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

      I was aware of the browse by publisher function, but still haven’t managed to find anything of interest, which strikes me as strange since there are so many favorite publishers listed. I find it difficult to slog through a lot of the site, as I don’t really like NetGalley’s taxonomy. For example, I wish “Literature and Fiction” had more clear internal divisions, as I am a big reader of literary fiction but not of Christian fiction. The subtle distinction could, potentially, change the NetGalley Roundups from junk mail to something I’d be more inclined to read. I’m trying out the Roundup now on your suggestion (but I’ve only subscribed to teen notifications), so we’ll see how that works out.

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