Friday, January 22, 2010
How do you choose your next book? Sometimes a new book just bought or just borrowed from work leaps over the entire tbr pile in a single bound & demands to be read. Sometimes the next book seems to lead on quite naturally from the book just finished. My next book is often chosen because of a recommendation from my online reading group. I’ve been a member for five years & we’re a small group of about 30. Some of us post almost every day, some join in when they have time or when a book or author sparks a response, usually along the lines of “Oh, I love her, have you read...”. Black Diamonds by Catherine Bailey (reviewed below) was the result of enthusiastic raves from two of our members. I bought it some time ago on the strength of that but another mention recently sent me running to the shelves to find it & read it. In the last couple of days, Elizabeth Von Arnim’s All The Dogs Of My Life & Lytton Strachey’s Queen Victoria have been read & recommended. I have the Strachey so that’s moving towards my reading table tbr pile & I read the Von Arnim years ago but would like to read it again even though I’m a cat person rather than a dog lover. Another member of the group discovered P G Wodehouse last year & has been raving about Jeeves & Bertie Wooster ever since. I’ve picked up a remaindered copy of The Inimitable Jeeves very cheaply & will be reading it soon. The same person is my infallible guide to any BBC classic serial shown in the UK. We don’t see these in Australia for at least a year after they’re broadcast in the UK so I rely on Elaine to advise me about buying the DVD or just waiting to see it on TV. I’ve just watched the new Emma which I bought on her recommendation (review shortly) & in past years I’ve enjoyed Jane Eyre, Cranford & Little Dorrit months before they were shown on TV here. Little Dorrit still hasn’t made an appearance. So, how do you choose the next book? Serendipity or according to a strict system – first bought, first read? Or whichever book you happen to trip over in the hallway because your bookshelves are overflowing & you have nowhere to put it?