I remember when I heard the news that Cornelia Read was nominated for the “Best First Novel By An American Author” Edgar. I was very happy for Cornelia. My wife and I are both big fans of her work and to see her get recognition like this was great. I told my wife “This is really going to help sales of her next book. Even if she doesn’t win, she’s an Edgar nominee. That’s great in itself.”

But I thought about that some more. Yes, there are books out there I have bought because of the Edgar nod. I was choosing between two books to read several months ago. One was by an Edgar nominated author and the other was not. I picked the Edgar nominated one and enjoyed the book. (The book was Shotgun Opera by Victor Gischler) But at the same time, I have put books back on the shelf from Edgar nominated and winning authors.

Also before I had read any Ken Bruen, I knew “The Guards” was a Shamus winner. But at the time, I had no idea what a Shamus award was. But because the book was award winning, it did make me more interested in the book.

So my question to readers is when you see a book from an author you have never heard of and see s/he is award nominated or winning, does that effect your purchasing decision?

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No, as a reader an award nominee or win does not affect my purchasing decision. However, as a librarian, an award nominee will encourage me to purchase the book.

I'm like you, though. I'm pleased for the author because hopefully it will mean more sales, more advertising from the publisher, and, hopefully, they won't be dropped by the publisher. Unfortunately, with the way things are today, they may even be dropped.
This is very interesting. I didn't think that readers gave a rat's as--um...whisker about award-winners. Peers and editors seemed to care the most. Now we can add librarians. Can we also add booksellers?
Not if I've never hear of them, but if there is an author I have some interest in, I will probably seek out the award winning title. For instance, I've never read T. Jefferson Parker. But he's a multiple Edgar winner. I'm more likely to make my first TJP book be one of his award winners. OTOH, a strong recomendation might do the same. If Jen4 Jordan tells me to skip his award winners and go for some other of his books, I might well take her advice.
Not really. I tend to go by the "feel" I get (for lack of a better word) from skimming a few pages, the jacket blurbs, etc. I can't think of any particular time an award nomination influenced my purchase.
To be honest with you, I usually have no idea if someone is an award winner or not. I may have known at some point, but I tend not to remember things like that. In the end, for me, it's all about whether or not the story looks like it's any good.
It encourages me to pick the book up, but ultimately the blurb/first few pages will be the decider.
Ditto. Less so with the blurb - for me it tends to be more about the writing on the first few pages.
If I am trying to decide between 2 authors I've never read before, it would definately sweeten the pot. After all, trying a new author can be a crap shoot. So, yes it does influence me if I am waffling. But there are other main influences I use more in picking a book, like the feedback I get from places like this, forums, blogs, etc. If discriminating readers can't stop raving, I am hooked. That's how I found Bruen, Read, Childs...the net is invaluable to me.
No. Same applies to any award be it for film or whatever. Having won some awards I know that they are rarely for the works that, in my opinion, actually deserve the accolade.
Brian
No, it doesn't influence me. But I know what a huge difference it can make for an author's future with major publishers and so for that reason I pay attention. Here at Crimespace we're the equivalent of preaching to the choir where the mystery/suspense/thriller awards are concerned, but with the general public the awards must have an impact or else I doubt they'd have become the huge sales hook they have become.
When the list of nominees for most of the big awards comes out I will check them out and see if each book is something I think I might enjoy, so the awards are a good way of finding out about new to me authors. Just because a book is an award winner doesn't mean I will pick it up though. I always read the nominees for awards that I get the opportunity of voting in - such as the Anthony, or the Lefty. And it's a real thrill when a friend, or a book I love is nominated because I think it DOES bring the book to peoples' attention. And, of course, there's nothing nicer than when a friend or favourite book wins.
I learned in Hollywood that it was always worth seeing the films nominated for Oscars and Spirit Awards, and I'm coming to the same conclusion with award-nominated books, although there are so many mystery awards that you have to be selective about which award nominees you pay attention to.

But with the major mystery awards - even if it's not particularly my style or genre, there's something that captivates about these books and makes them worth checking out.

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