This popped up in the FB memories thing. Still makes me laugh.
As someone who runs a semi-successful book blog (which just turned thirteen. THIRTEEN! omg wtf etc), I get asked this a lot.
Ok, not like totally a lot, but probably more often than someone who doesn’t run a book blog.
“It depends” is not an acceptable answer, apparently.
But it does! It depends on what mood I’m in, what I’ve just read, what books I can think of off the top of my head, what genre I happen to be thinking of, what I had for breakfast, which way the wind is blowing...
A typical follow-up question is “ok then, which book would you recommend to me?”
Oh gods, that’s even worse.
What kind of books do you like? What kind of books don’t you like? Do you favour the frothy airport thriller? The deep, lyrical literary doorstop? Do you like hijinks and shenanigans? Or something more talky? Do you want crime, fantasy, science fiction (specialist subjects), or something else?
Give me something to work with.
A year or so ago I took part in Jólabókaflóði, the Icelandic tradition of presenting books to be read on Christmas Eve. A friend offered to send me a book, and I agreed only on the basis that I could send them a book in return.
I think I spent nearly a week trying to select a book from my shelves to pass along. Would this one be too mainstream? This one too fantasy? Are we looking for something deep and literary (not many of those on my shelves, I must admit), or light and frothy?
I finally made my choice, parcelled it up, promptly unparcelled it again and chose something else and sent it on its way.
I hope the recipient enjoyed it as much as I did when I read it. I know that I enjoyed the book that I was sent (The Optician of Lampedusa by Emma-Jane Kirby) a lot. (Though ‘enjoyed’ might be the wrong word, given the harrowing subject matter)
It was outside my usual reading genres, and not a book I’d come across before. So maybe there is something in the idea of ‘just recommend me a book’
So, dear reader. What’s your favourite book?
And would you like me to recommend one to you?