Why I Am Quitting Book of the Month Club

I have posted before about Book of the Month Club, but today I am sharing why I am stopping my subscription to Book of the Month Club.

Why I Am Quitting Book of the Month Club

I got my first Book of the Month Club book way back in September of 2018. I have been a member ever since, but last month the Book of the Month Club and I broke up.

And I have reasons why I am quitting the Book of the Month Club, which I want to share with you guys.

I have been meaning to write this post for months, but I keep putting it off. Last month I finally used up all my credits and canceled my subscription, so I knew that it was time to share my thoughts.

This is a totally honest review. Book of the Month has no clue who I am besides what they know about any of their members. I bought and paid for my subscription, and after a couple of years of getting books, I am sharing some updated thoughts.

I know a lot of people love Book of the Month. It is a book subscription service that has been around for years. Although it has been owned by several companies over the years, it was founded in 1926. This means it has been in existence for almost one hundred years.

I can see why people love it. It is so much fun to get a new book every month in the mail. Although the quality of the books, as in the binding, cover, etc., is not as good as you get elsewhere, they are a great price for what you get.

I definitely feel like I am in the minority on leaving Book of the Month and that my opinion is not a popular one, but I am all about keeping it real, even when it comes to books, so you are getting my real thoughts.

The reality is that the Book of the Month books are not really the type of books that I read.

What I Read

My year of backlist books challenge has really helped me pay attention to the type of books that I like and don’t like.

It has also helped me realize that I need to stop wasting time on books that I know are not for me. That is not to say that I don’t want to read outside my comfort zone, but it is more that I am probably never going to be a fan of thrillers or hot new romance novels.

I read a lot of nonfiction, historical fiction, and cozy mysteries. I can’t remember the last time I read a thriller or sci-fi book. I also don’t read very much contemporary fiction or romance. And I am paying more attention to that fact.

Stack of Book of the Month Books

What changed at Book of the Month Club?

When I first joined Book of the Month, they almost always had one nonfiction book to choose from each month. One of the months, I chose the book The Splendid and the Vile, one of my favorite reads of 2020.

They also used to offer a lot more memoirs. Several of the books that I got and enjoyed the first year or so were memoirs.

But throughout 2020 and into 2021, the books offered by Book of the Month changed. They were offering more of the hot topic books that publishers and celebrity book clubs were pushing. They also had a lot more modern romance reads, contemporary fiction, and Sci-Fi books.

I feel like they are focusing more on trendy books than the quality of books. I care more about reading a great book with great writing than I do reading about a hot topic or current trend.

Now I will say that I don’t tend to like hot topic or trending fiction books in general. I read a lot of nonfiction, and I read a lot of backlist books.

A book that is an Oprah book club pick or a Reese book club pick is one that I would usually skip. Those just aren’t the books that I usually enjoy reading.

I am also more of a PG reader, and I don’t read a ton of romance.

I read some clean romance, and I will read an occasion PG-13 book, but I don’t enjoy books that are considered open door or what I would consider R-rated. I don’t want to read super descriptive romance scenes, even if that is what is super popular right now or considered well written.

I read to relax. I read to learn. I don’t usually like to read a book on a certain topics because they are what is getting the attention right now. I like to read a variety, and often, I read what I am in the mood for, and this often is found in less popular books, odd topic books, or older ones.

Sometimes I feel like Book of the Month is focusing more on certain trendy topics for their readers rather than on giving a variety of topics every month so that readers can find new topics, stories, ideas to learn or read on every month.

If Book of the Month Clubs was still offering one nonfiction book a month like, The Splendid and the Vile or The Hurricane’s Eye, that they offered in 2019 and 2020, I would not be canceling my subscription.

Book of the Month

Skipping Month.

I ended up skipping a lot of months over the last two years. I think I skipped more months than I got books in the last eighteen months.

I love that they allow you to skip a month, but when you keep skipping months, you build up a lot of credits.

I have gotten a few books this year that I will probably read, like the books Four Winds and Sisters In Arms, but there haven’t been very many options that I will actually read, which is why we skipped so many months.

Why I Am Quitting Book of the Month

Pausing Your Account

Over the last year, I struggled to use up my credits. A couple of months ago I called Book of the Month because my account was set to renew. I had quite a few credits built up, and I did not want to renew just to let them go to waste.

They graciously offered to pause my account for a few months to give me a chance to use the credits before I was billed again. This worked well because I didn’t want my credits to go to waste. I was so happy that they allowed me to do this. I loved this part of Book of the Month.

Over the last couple of months, my daughter and I knew we needed to use up the credits, but we struggled to pick books we thought we would read.

My daughter picked out a couple of sci-fi books that she might read at some point as a relaxing read, but we will probably end up giving away several of the books we got because they are not books that we will read.

Basically, we were just trying to use up our credits before we got charged again.

Once we had used our credits up, I knew that it was time to cancel.

How to cancel Book of the Month Club.

It was a little more complicated to cancel than I thought it would be. You have to call to cancel. You cannot cancel just by going into your membership and canceling it. Or you couldn’t when I went to cancel mine.

I don’t like that they make you do that. I can’t think of another membership that I have that forces you to call to cancel.

When I called to cancel, they tried hard to convince me to stay. Like really hard. It was a little irritating as the decision had been made months before. They didn’t seem to understand that the books they were offering were not the type of books that I read.

I felt like they were trying to convince me I should be willing to read the books that they offered.

This actually, though, only made me more convinced that Book of the Month wasn’t for me.

I like the idea of Book of the Month. I see why a lot of people love it, but it just isn’t the right option for me.

Stay tuned though for two book subscription services that I am currently loving.

If you have tried the Book of the Month Club, I would love to hear what you thought of it.

Do you enjoy Book of the Month Club?

6 thoughts on “Why I Am Quitting Book of the Month Club”

  1. I have been tempted to join but I have so many unread books on my shelves anyways that I think my BOM picks would just stack up. I get FOMO with new releases but most of them I don’t want to own so I am trying to utilize my library holds and be patient when I see a buzzy new release. I will support indies for books I deliberately want to purchase and continue to leverage my library heavily. Thanks for sharing your opinion. You definitely aren’t a “mainstream” reader and I don’t think I am either for the most part so those type of subscriptions just aren’t for me.

    Reply
    • I think unread books are a problem for most of us readers. Too many books and not enough time… And you are right, I am not a mainstream reader and I am totally fine with that. I am embracing my love of backlist books and nonfiction. 🙂 I and like you and love to support independent bookstores too. They need our business.

      Reply
  2. I totally understand why you would decide to cancel a book of the month club. I used to belong to one, years ago; it sounds like it worked differently than yours, but I also canceled mine. My book reading is personal and varies with what is going on in my life, as well as what I like. During COVID hibernation, I need laughter and smiles and uplifting material in my books. I also read what I want when I want and already have many books to choose from. Like you, no sci-fi, no trendy stuff, no vile scenes or language. Many nonfiction books are too much for me to handle at this time, so the subject matter is carefully weighed by many book reviews before I buy. Even mysteries need to be cozy ones; anything gross or overly violent causes sleep problems. I enjoy reading your book lists and your reviews and will sometimes buy a book you’ve recommended. I especially liked your year of reading books pertaining to each U.S. state–a book-a-state. I hope to do that, maybe in 2022. The variety would be fun, and finding books is almost as much fun and reading them, at least for me.
    I guess part of my problem with Book of the Month club was the regularity of a book a month, ready or not. Plus, I didn’t want to be limited by their choices. It seemed like a lack of freedom, and it became annoying. Thank you for your honesty–I think you’ll be surprised to find that many agree with you!

    Reply
    • I agree I. I have read more light and fun books the last two years than I normally do. I have read some heavy topic books, but in general, I find myself turning to more cozy reads then normal since COVID. I am so glad that you enjoyed my books from every state challenge and list. It was such a fun challenge that taught me a lot.

      Reply
  3. You are certainly not alone with your stopping Book of the Month.
    I am right behind you. I have not been pleased with many of the book offerings. I get more ideas from your posts than elsewhere. I am reading a Presidental book and following the 50 state recommendations. I am really enjoying those types of books. I love history, historical fiction and biography. When I use my last credit, I too will be canceling. I find many of the books I enjoy on my library site. If it is something I would like a copy of, I buy it. It cuts down on my overflowing bookcases. Thank you for sharing. I totally agree.

    Reply
    • I am glad to know that I am not alone. I have felt like I am one of the few that don’t like it. I am so glad that you enjoy my posts and my 50 State recommendations. We love sharing nonfiction books!

      Reply

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