The Struggles of Being an International Booklover Part 1

First of all, I want to warn you guys about how whiny this blogpost probably is going to be. There are a lot of amazing things about the bookish community, and I’m extremely grateful to be apart of it, but this isn’t going to be a blogpost about that. That’ll be for another time.

I have never been unhappy about not living in the USA until I joined the bookish community. Being an international booklover comes with a lot of struggles, and I thought it might be fun to discuss those today, since I know a lot of you can probably relate.

Also, while I was writing everything down I noticed how incredibly long this post was getting, so I decided to split it up in a few parts!

This first one might be the most obvious one: the shipping. And I’m talking about the sending things somewhere shipping, and not the ‘wanting certain characters to end up together’-thing, because that doesn’t suck. That’s amazing.
Anyway, because most bookish companies are based in the US you have to pay huge amounts of money to have the stuff shipped to you. For example: I heard about the bookoutlet black friday sale, got super excited, and tried to order a bunch of books. The books were $30, which was a great deal for about 10 books. The shipping was $90.

real life frustrated gif omfgggg gainsandlosses
The same thing happens with a lot of bookish shops. I once tried to order bookish candles from Etsy, and the shipping was $50. That’s just a tad too much for me.

Bookish Events
Most amazing bookish events like BEA, BookCon, Yallfest, etc. are in the UK and USA. Am I able to buy plane tickets to go to these countries just for the events? No. Will I ever be able to go to a bookish event? Probably not. Am I just going to live through other people’s vlogs and tweets about being at these events? Definitely.

Print ARCs
You know when you watch those booktube videos where these popular booktubers get loads of free books? Or when you scroll through a bookhaul from a popular book blogger, they have some of those upcoming releases you’ve been dying to read, for free?
When you live in America or the UK ARCs are something you can work towards. I see it kind of as a reward for putting so much time into your blog. “You’ve written over a hundred blogposts now, and you have built up a small following. Here, you deserve a free book.” This, of course, is pretty great. But when you’re an international bookblogger, you have no chance of getting print ARCs.
And while I’m in no way blogging for the ‘free books’, it would still be great to at least be able to get them.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor frustrated gif

Digital ARCs
This one very much relates to the previous one, because when I read some posts about ARCs and realized that there was no way of me getting my hands on print ARCs, I steered towards websites like Netgalley and Edelweiss. You’d think that sending an eARC to an international problem wouldn’t be a problem, right? Well, WRONG. My requests on both Netgalley and Edelweiss often get denied solely because I don’t live in the UK or USA. And I still don’t really get this.

So, this is all for today! Tell me, are you an international booklover who struggles with the same things? Are there any other things you struggle with? Let me know!

Some Thoughts on the Bookish Community and Loneliness

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29 gedachtes over “The Struggles of Being an International Booklover Part 1

  1. Sarah zegt:

    Oooh, shipping costs are horrific. I remember buying a book off Amazon many years ago and paying as much for shipping as I paid for the book. Eek! And then it still to forever to arrive (I mean, Australia’s far away, but not so far away that it should take weeks for a book to arrive, like has happened to me in the past). Although I believe that the Book Depository is free worldwide, and their delivery times have been okay so far, so if I’m ordering online I’ll generally go through them these days. But I feel your pain!

    Geliked door 2 people

    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      I always thought that Bookdepository had free shipping, and it always seems that way, but that’s actually not really the case! The books are a different price in every country, because they add the shipping cost to the normal price, so books in the UK are cheaper than in, for instance, Australia. But it’s still a lot better than Amazon! 🙂


  2. Holly zegt:

    I live in the United States so I can’t speak directly to these struggles, but I do sometimes wish that I lived closer to a major city within the US. I don’t live close enough to any of the bookish events to be able to go, so it sometimes feels like I’m living in a different country haha. This is a great post, by the way– it really opened my eyes to the struggles of international booklovers.

    Geliked door 1 persoon

  3. Molly's Book Nook zegt:

    I live in the US so I actually don’t have these issues. However, I have a lot of blogging friends that are international and complain about this as well. Shipping is a huge deal! Even I’M hesitant one prices that are WITHIN the US so internationally…I couldn’t even imagine having to just absorb that price sometimes. I actually opened a bookish shop & added live shipping rates to try to help with the prices for my international customers. Hopefully that helps them out.

    Also, it is weird that they can’t send eBooks to you?! I didn’t know that. I know sometimes they have region specific offers on Netgalley, but if it’s not already stated which region you have to be from, it’s weird they wouldn’t send it.

    Molly @ Molly’s Book Nook


    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      It’s very kind of you that you’re taking international customers into consideration, because a lot of companies don’t actually do that! So, thank you for that🙂
      I know, it’s very weird! And I don’t 100% understand why they’d state those regions anyway, it’s not like an international blogger has a lot less impact than a US blogger, right?


  4. maya hearts books zegt:

    Oh wow, same here! Being from Spain, I feel you. For example, most giveaways on Goodreads are only for people in the US… And book boxes are out of the question! I would love to get Owlcrate, but the shipping is much more expensive than the actual box.

    I buy all my books from BookDepository because of the free shipping, but I still hate having to wait. What country are you from??


  5. maya hearts books zegt:

    Wow, same here! Being from Spain, I really feel you.

    One thing that really makes me want to live in the US is that first come first serve ARC giveaways are for US only like, always. Also, book boxes are out of the question: owlcrate shipping is more expensive than the actual box 😦

    I buy all my books from BookDepository because of the free shipping, but I still hate having to wait for them to get here… What country do you live in?


    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      YES! There are so many giveaways that I get super excited for, until I read ‘US/UK only’. It’s not fun.
      I’m from The Netherlands, so I usually buy my books from the German version of Amazon. Germany is right next door, so the shipping isn’t a lot and it doesn’t take as long as BookDepository. I hate waiting a month for my books to arrive 😦

      Geliked door 1 persoon

  6. Aj @ Read All The Things! zegt:

    I live in the US, so I’m pretty lucky with shipping books. (Except for that subscription box I wanted to get from England. Shipping cost more than the subscription.) Unfortunately, the US is HUGE, and most of the author events happen in major cities. I live in the middle of nowhere, so I’d have to drive for hours to get to an author event. That’s why I’ve never been to one.


    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      Oh yes, I always forget how huge America is! I could go for a drive and be in another country in 20 minutes, haha. But I also live in the middle of nowhere, and author events are usually only in Amsterdam or Rotterdam, which is more than 2 hours from where I live D:


  7. TizzyMatic zegt:

    A lot of us struggle with receiving arcs, and the ONLY place I’ve found a way in is NetGalley. Don’t get me wrong, NetGalley is great for what it does; however, I prefer to have the novel in my hands. Only time and consistency will get us to that point. *Shrugs shoulders sadly*


  8. Puput @ Sparkling Letters zegt:

    Ohhh I wrote a similar post like this last month and I FEEL YOU!! Shipping is the death of me. I once tried to order books from Amazon, the books were cheap but the shipping cost is unreasonable 😅 we have a lot of imported bookstores here but the new releases don’t come on time (or sometimes AT ALL) and the prices are way more expensive 😦 also YES to ARCs! I have no hope on ever receiving print ARC hahaha and yeah it’s weird why do they limit e-ARC for US/UK only? I mean, it’s digital plus we international bloggers could help promote the book in our countries, right? Great post! ❤


    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      We don’t really get a lot of English books here in The Netherlands. My local bookstore only stocks adult mystery/thrillers, and it’s usually €20 for a paperback!! So, yeah, no thank you, haha.
      Exactly! It’s not like US bloggers have a bigger impact than international ones, right? And I got an e-mail a week ago from an author that wanted to send me a physical copy of her poetry collection!! I got so excited, but she never replied after I informed her that I live in The Netherlands, so I guess I scared her off with that or something. Thank you ❤

      Geliked door 1 persoon

      • Puput @ Sparkling Letters zegt:

        Ahh really? I didn’t know that, I thought because you are close to UK that means easy access to popular books 😦 exactly! The concept of time and space don’t really exist in the internet though, as long as the bloggers have pretty much similar stats on their blogs, I don’t see the difference. Hahaha that must be it… shipping cost could be REALLY intimidating 😛


  9. Pamela Nicole zegt:

    What irks me the most…? I think that would be the digital ARCs problem. I can understand everything else, and I’ve mostly made my peace with it. I still get envious of seeing other bloggers collecting piles of books for free, either bc publishers sent them or because giveaways are much more accessible; but I’m okay. But digital!

    There is some issue with the rights and stuff but it really makes no sense to me. Maybe it would if each country had publishers that sold the book, so bloggers would have to pick the option that is from their own region. But as it is, digitally, everyone could get anything, so it makes no sense to enforce this silly restrictions.

    I stand by the fact that no blogger is entitled to anything for free, but all I wish for is a little fairness here, lol.


    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      Exactly! I feel the same way about the piles of books big bloggers get, even though I don’t understand it. Why send an ARC to a blogger when you’re not even sure they’re going to read it/like it? It seems a lot smarter to me to only send to the people who request it, but maybe that’s just me, haha.
      Of course we’re not entitled to free stuff, but I think international bloggers are entitled to the same chances non-international bloggers get, especially when it comes to electronic stuff. It’s only fair.


  10. suckerforcoffe zegt:

    I relate so much with this! Especially when it comes to books and bookish merch… I really want to get some but the shipping costs a fortune and I’m still in university and with no job so that’s expensive for me. The bookish events too, I can only dream about going to them


    • Green Tea & Paperbacks zegt:

      Exactly! I’m exactly the same, even $10 things often seem expensive to me, haha. Let alone if you add another $15 for shipping. I just can’t do that. I’ve heard there are online alternatives for bookish events, and they look like fun, but it’s just not the same, is it?

      Geliked door 1 persoon

  11. rantandraveaboutbooks zegt:

    Excellent post! I live in the US, but I’ve had issues with mailing to other countries. It cost me $60 to send my friend who lives in France a copy of a book and a few small things like bookmarks. That’s insane for shipping. I could’ve bought so many books for the cost of that small package. I don’t understand why it’s so expensive to ship from the US to other countries. Even to the U.K. costs me a fortune, yet when someone from the U.K. sent me a book they only paid £4 where I would’ve paid 5x that to ship there. It must be something with our post office. It makes no sense. Where do you live? I know even on NG they usually say UK and US only and sometimes Canada. I wonder why they restrict their markets so much.


  12. Rita C. zegt:

    So relatable! The shipping bit sucks… A lot of websites state that they “ship to Europe” and I get my hopes up, only to read that they don’t ship to Portugal (I’m a book blogger based in Lisbon) or Spain. It’s so frustrating!


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