The Tale of the Missing ARCs
Every once in a while, life serves up a bit of a disappointment.
As anyone who has followed this blog knows, I’ve been working on The Blue Bar for years. It is my first to be published in the USA, and I’ve been (rather keenly) looking forward to holding the book in my hands.
For my first book, You Beneath Your Skin, the publisher did not create formal ARCs. I was excited, with good reason, I think, for The Blue Bar ARCs.
The publisher sent them in two batches: one to an address in the US, another to India.
In the US, the ARCs arrived, and are slowly but surely going out to influencers.
The ARCs to India? Another story.
They stayed stuck in the customs for the longest time and were then ‘disposed off as per local regulations’.
So now, I have friends who have read and reviewed the book, but I’ve never touched an ARC myself. This is not the end of the world, of course, but having my books pulped before publication felt sort of soul-numbing.
I’m trying to find the positives, though.
One has been the positive reception of The Blue Bar: advance copy readers have stopped mid-way to tell me how much they were loving it, and some have written wonderfully in-depth, insightful reviews.
This is usually cause for concern–I never can believe good things about my work, but this time, given things like the pulping of my ARCs, I’ve decided to embrace praise. If I have to get the next draft of the The Blue Bar Sequel written, I must believe myself capable of good work, right?
Huge thanks to Elias for his book review that begins with this wonderful para:
“The first lines into Damyanti Biswas’ The Blue Bar serve as an introduction in situ. Not just to Tara, the bar girl on assignment at a crowded train station, but to the city of Mumbai. A city of islands, Mumbai is a perfect character in a crime story with disparate people, each an island to themselves. More than a setting, The City of Dreams is in turns squalid and seductive, sinister and sophisticated. And always as shocking as Tara’s low-slung saree.”
So many other reviews have begun to trickle in, each a balm to the soul. I know no book can be popular with everyone, and that there will be readers who hate it, but I’m taking the small wins right now.
What has been a disappointment or a reassurance for you this month? Are you one of those wonderfully kind people reading an ARC of The Blue Bar? What books have you been reading lately? How is life treating you?
My lit crime novel, The Blue Bar will be out this October with Thomas & Mercer. It is already available for preorders. Add it to Goodreads or pre-order it to make my day.
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