Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Do You Give Book Recommendations?


I always thought that once I started blogging, and therefore really started analyzing my book choices, whenever book discussions would start up among friends and acquaintances I would jump at the chance to start recommending my latest and best read. However, I have noticed that hasn't been the case and I am wondering if I am not alone.

This is not to say that I don't love to talk about books with my friends just like I used to because I do. I definitely do! I think it may actually be a factor of me becoming more aware of the fact that reading is such a personal choice. Since I've started blogging, I've really honed my tastes and discovered just exactly what I like and don't like, having my percentages of positive book rankings increase with each year. Before blogging, I used to just read authors I knew and whatever would entice me on the bookstore tables. Now, I analyze book blogger reviews, have publishers telling me the newest and latest books they recommend, and I have to really think about whether they would be a good fit. In doing so, I have come to realize that if I put so much effort and know that not every book is a perfect for me, how am I to assume that just because this was the best book ever for me, it may not be for you! And gawd forbid it's not and you turn around and tell me so!

So basically, when book discussions come up with my friends, I keep my mouth shut, listening to what they are reading and nodding along but I rarely chime in with 'you have to read this!'. Naturally, if someone straight up asks me, I will gladly recommend books that I think they will like, no questions asked! But I gotta know, am I the only one?

36 comments:

  1. True story! I only discovered it this year (my first year of book blogging) when my best friend disliked every book I recommended. Also, the books she recommended for me were always 2-3 stars rather than 4-5 stars.

    It's funny how even people you have a lot in common with like stories that you don't and vice versa.

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    1. I know, why is that? I have the same results with a lot of my friends!

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  2. People rarely ask me for recommendations - apart from my father, and I have a good track record of recommending books that he will like. I guess I don't really talk much about books with friends - most of my friends are into high fantasy and sci-fi - which are genres I loathe.

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    1. A lot of my friends are into those genres too and nope, I will never be able to recommend something to them then either!

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  3. I give my opinion on most everything and that would include books. I suggest books I think might interest them. That does not mean my recomendations are always heeded, but I don't mind. :-)

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  4. I actually started my blog simply because I WAS getting so many requests for recommendations. This way I can give the person an idea of the book I'm recommending so they can decide if it is something that interests them.

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    1. Some of my friends and family use my blog as a book review tool and a 'what should I read next' place too which I think is the best thing ever but a lot don't which is fine too. I think that's so cool that so many of your friends read yours!

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  5. I do give recommendations, but I don't have too many people who ask me. I have noticed that I learned which books, I enjoy and which books I should pass on.

    Everyone's reading tastes are different, and it's hard to recommend a book to someone if you don't know their tastes.

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    1. I agree, everyone's reading tastes are so different so just because I adore a book doesn't mean someone I know will too!

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  6. I do give recommendations from time to time, but often find I draw a big blank when people ask me what I've been reading.

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    1. This is me! Exactly! I always look like a total doofus when people ask me what I've been reading...memory like a sieve!

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    2. Yes, why is that? I used to not have this problem! I think it's because I am surrounded by too many books now and I put them up on the blog so that I don't have to 'remember' them anymore.

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  7. I only recommend books to a few people and usually it's only books that I actually have and can just hand to them.

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  8. I, well it's not that I recommend books, I more or less gives them out to buddies. Thinking they might like them, even if I did not

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  9. I don't recommend books much, because there are so many genres, and I don't read some of them no matter how much hype a book may get. So I figure the genres I read and think are great, many readers would hate the books. I do say, I "would not" recommend this book, and why on my "Book Lust Journal" blog here.... http://gigianns.blogspot.com

    I have a few friends who sometimes borrow my books, and I tell them, I am not a censor of my books. If you start to read a book and don't like it, I won't care if you don't read it.

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    1. See if I passionately loved a book and my friends hated it I do take it personally. I've got to get better about that!

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  10. I do recommend books a lot, but I always try to think really hard of a book that will be a good match for that person. Otherwise, if I recommend a book and they don't like it, I feel like a real horse's ass lol.

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    1. Yeah, I like to give books for gifts and I'm the same way, putting a lot of care and effort into the finding the perfect gift and then I want to know as soon as they read it if they honestly liked it!

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  11. I love giving recommendations, but because I am so addicted to giving advice and I know it's important for me to rein it in, I try to only tell people what to read if they specifically ask me to tell them. And even then I try to get some background on what sort of book they want.

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    1. Yeah, I've been trying to get better about that too. I used to just tell everyone 'you have to read this'. I think the blog cured me of that!

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  12. This is exactly how I feel. I just didn't know it, or at least didn't think of it that way. Since I've been blogging I really don't pipe up and suggest books the way I did before. It does have to do with being a personal choice and I know a lot of my friends don't really enjoy the type of books I enjoy. Thanks for putting it so well.

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    1. You're welcome! Blogging sisters unite!

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  13. I do--I can't help it. I often give them un-asked-for! When I love a book and I meet someone else and I think they will also love it? I am powerless.

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  14. I love giving recommendations to people, but I am always careful to recommend books according to their taste. I used to just recommend my favorites books to people, but I eventually realized that some of my friends (particularly those who are not big readers) are into way different types of books than I am. Still, I always want to get people to at least try some books that I really loved.

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    1. That's a good point. There's nothing wrong with trying something out of your comfort zone and starting a conversation about it so it's still good to keep the recommendations coming.

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  15. I tend only to make recommendations if asked or the conversation leads to that. My husband, however, can strike up a conversation with anyone, anywhere and likes to tell people I'm a book blogger and that I can recommend them books. LOL I ended up recommending The Hunger Games to a woman I was sitting across from during bingo the other day because my husband got her talking about the kinds of books she likes.

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    1. Too funny! Glad I am not alone in not recommending books willy nilly out there!

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  16. At work I always read during my lunch break. If someone says "Reading a good book?" I just answer with a yes or no. But if they say "What are you reading today?" and look like they're getting comfortable, I'll share a little more!

    With my parents we talk about it a lot, because we have similar tastes. And on social network sites I'll often throw up a quick "Great book - check it out:"

    But I can't say I randomly give out recommendations. Although once at a Barnes & Noble I saw someone holding a terrible book I'd just trudged through so I felt compelled to warn her. She crinkled her nose, put it back on the shelf and said "Yuck. Thanks for saving me 15 bucks!" If only someone had been able to warn me....

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  17. I give recommendations if asked, or if I happen to overhear someone talking to someone else about not knowing what to read next. But in the latter example, I will only butt in if they look friendly :)

    Sometimes people ask me on Facebook for a recommendation and I always accommodate those.

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  18. A couple of my sisters in law and I have similar tastes, so I'm able to pass along the book to them once I finish it. It is usually a positive thing, as they make recommendations back. There are several books that I don't hesitate to recommend (i.e. Pride & Prejudice) but try to usually keep my mouth shut (which is very hard!)

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  19. Sometimes, tho, I read a book and think of a few people I know who would also enjoy it and I wish I had more copies to send or gift them. I have been known to thrust a YOU-MUST-READ this to some of my best reader pals but mostly, lately, I try to keep my mouth shut.

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  20. I look at it like a personal challenge to recommend books. Ideally, I can follow up and ask why or why not they liked the book and then recommend another based on that. It took me awhile to get one friend's taste but now she takes a book every time I see her!

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