Hi dear friends,
This week I am back with a lighter discussion post: how do you choose not only your next read but the one you feel will knock you off your socks?
I had this discussion one year ago with my father when he was still alive.
He was an avid reader all his life but was a bit in a book funk and asked me how I did to nearly always find the right fit in books.
He told me he read reviews in magazines made by journalists and literary critics but it did not work very well for him.
When I showed him Goodreads he was in awe!
As far as I am concerned, when I have to choose my next best read, these are the steps I follow:
First: I rely on work of the mouth!
I know which friends on Goodreads or on the blogosphere do share similar taste in books and when I see a particular read being a winner with all of them I instantly buy or add to my TBR. Same if said friends recommends me books and get all bossy on me!
Some of the best surprises I discovered that way were: I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios (thanks to Tanya), Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel (thanks to Raven), Eidolon by Grace Draven, The Silver Cage by Anonymous (thanks to Suanne Laqueur), Honor Among Thieves by Rachel Caine and Ann Aguirre (thanks to Shanah), The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang (thanks to Astrid) and I could go on and on!
Second: I have “one click” authors.
The ones that I loved all the books because they just speak to my sould. If I am aware of a new book they wrote I will pre-order immediately.
Said authors are: Amy Harmon, Emma Scott, Suanne Laqueur, Leylah Attar, Brittainy C Cherry and recently Chloe Walsh and Kate Stewart. Oh and Beth Flynn!
In YA I will buy anything by Sarah J Maas, Cassandra Clare, Holly Black, Tahereh Mafi, Brigid Kemmerer.
Third: the hype will of course draw my attention to the book but what will make me buy it or not is not the amount of high reviews but rather the blurb!
Even if a book is hyper hyped if the blurb does not appeal to me or hints at personal triggers I won’t buy it.
I have favorite tropes and if the blurb features some of them and it’s hyped the chances are high that I will buy it!
Fourth: I listen to the mood I am in!
If I crave a sportsromance no need to try science fiction it will simply not work! I noticed it’s a disservice to books that could have been loved under other circumstances to force me to read them when I am simply not in the mood!
If I need some levity I will choose a romcom. If I need an ugly cry I will choose something rumored to be utterly emotional. Etc.
And what about the covers will you say? Well I am a cover junkie but even with a gorgeous cover the blurb has to seem my jam for me to buy it.
Why don’t I rely on professional reviewers in magazines and why do I think they are often wrong?
Because I don’t know them and they don’t know me! How could I know if we have the same taste in books? Maybe they love books with cheating while I hate it? Or they like complicated books leaving you with tons of questions while I generally avoid these reads?
Of course there will always be “that” book that is hyped and acclaimed by critics for an excellent reason that I will buy like Beartown by Fredrik Backman or Becoming by Michelle Obama or …
But these are the exceptions!
Now do tell me what’s your strategy? Is it working? What are some of the best reads you’ve read and how did you choose them?
Thanks for reading!