Formatting a book is important, but lately I have seen a lot of my Advanced Release Books coming to me so unformatted, I cringe. Reviewing them, I never mention the formatting, because I want to focus on the book. A few mis-spellings, or even grammar errors aren’t what I am talking about. Those I can handle and even laugh at but move on from pretty easily.
What I am talking mostly about is books that haven’t been formatted for paragraph breaks. Why would this bother me? Well, when an author gets into a conversation between characters, not having a paragraph break starts to get confusing when they take out the he said, she said parts. All you get is a blob of conversation back and forth with no context of who is saying what. And this starts to destroy the continuity of the image I have in my head as I embroil myself in the plot.
A second irritation is ARCs with numbers smattered around in the text. I think they are line numbers used to edit the page, but when I get it in Kindle or on my iPad, the numbers are spread through the text, not just down the sides. Add in the problem of no paragraph breaks and it gets so confusing at times what the heck is going on as well as it breaks my concentration. Yes, I have ADD and I am proud of it.
Then finally there is the PDF that is not just regulated to the ARC. PDFs are the bane of my existence when I read. Seriously? I don’t have a Nook or Kobo to compare to what I am about to say. I wonder if they do this better? My Kindle pretty much can’t handle a PDF. The font is so small that I can barely read and you can’t adjust the font without invoking some funky scrolling thing that doesn’t work. So I can only read PDFs on my computer, which I hate doing, or on my iPad. I have several programs I use for PDFs: Goodreads, BlueFire Reader, iBooks and Kindle. But again, I can’t really increase the font, but I can enlarge the screen with scrolling parts, but then this makes it hard to turn the pages. When I get a PDF, I want to throw something. That is just how much I detest them. But I don’t throw anything. I just muddle through it thinking how bad it is.
Sometimes I get a PDF for review that isn’t an ARC and if I really want to read it, I have been known to purchase it just to get out of reading a PDF.
This is mostly a rant post and now I feel better until I get the next book that ticks me off. Are there better programs to read PDFs in? A way to strip the dang numbers? I bet we can’t put paragraphs breaks in a book we can’t edit. So I will muddle through and remind myself I am lucky to have the opportunity to get advanced books and smile.
If you have any solutions to the PDF problem, please, please, please let me know. That is my biggest pet peeve right now and I am always open to way to read these better and not worry about the size of the font and how to get to the next page.