Undoubtedly, one of the biggest pros of running a book blog and being part of the book blogging community is being among those select few who hear about upcoming titles a long time before the actual release date. By having access to NetGalley, visiting other people’s blogs, reading about their highly anticipated books and interacting with them on social media on a daily basis, one is guaranteed to come across at least one or two new titles each week. Not to mention the amount of book reviews one may read in one week. However, for whatever reasons, not all these titles make it onto our never ending wishlists or to-be-read piles. Which made me think.
When it comes to book recommendations,who do you usually turn to and how do you tend to find your next read? Who influences you the most? Do you regularly browse publishers’ catalogues and websites and see if there’s anything that might interest you? Do you listen to your “real life” friends’ advice, do you judge a book based on the reviews you read online or do you simply read each and every hyped book simply because that’s what everyone else is reading?
After pondering about this for a while I realized only two of these apply to me. I don’t know which one is more frequent so I’d say I depend on these two sources equally. And these two sources are publishers’ catalogues and book reviews.
If you’ve been following the blog for a while you may have noticed that I have quite an eclectic taste in books and I don’t tend to review the most hyped up books out there. I haven’t read the Hunger Games or The Mortal Instruments series, for example, or anything by John Green or Julie Kagawa, or any of today’s popular YA books. I will read a few of them at some point but I’m not in a hurry to do so. So I think it’s safe to say that popularity doesn’t usually convince or affect me. And neither do my real life friends’ recommendations. Mostly because they read half as much as I do and from genres I’m not really keen on myself and it’s usually me who recommends books to them, not the other way round. That leaves me with publishers’ catalogues and reviews.
I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one but I have favourite publishers and imprints for different genres. I regularly check these publishers’ NetGalley titles to see if there’s anything new I might enjoy and I also flick through their catalogues a few times each year, making notes of all those books that may be interesting to check out later on. And of course I read your reviews. I follow quite many blogs (okay, way too much, to be totally honest) so I get to hear about lots of different genres and books with different subjects. Which is great. I’ve come across so many new titles this way, I lost count a long time ago. Which book reviews are the ones that convince me that this is something I need to read is a tale for another day but let’s just say it’s probably other people’s reviews which have the biggest influence on me when looking for new titles to read.
How about you? Who or what influences you the most? How do you usually select your next read?