Monday, November 11, 2013

When Did This Start Exactly?

Hokay! Three exciting books!

1. The Evolution of Mara Dyer (paperback) by Michelle Hodkin
I was once told that I looked completely crazed trying to talk someone into reading this series. BECAUSE IT'S AMAZING!

2. The Hogwarts Library by J.K. Rowling
This might be the Harry Potter obsessive in me talking but when they announced that they were repackaging The Tales of Beedle the Bard, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and Quidditch through the Ages I was so excited. And than pales in comparison to how excited I was when we actually got them in. They're hardcover and lovely.

3. Llama Llama Holiday Drama by Anna Dewdney
This is another that we go back in for the Holiday season. It's my favorite of the Llama Llama books. He gets so excited he swoons!

I recommend a lot of books. We all do. It's sort of something that everyone loves doing. And we get positively giddy when someone buys one that we recommend or picks one up from the shelf that has one of our tags on it. I don't just mean the kids booksellers. Our fiction girl came into the backroom the other day thrilled because someone had bought her staff rec. We all love it.

Unfortunately this makes it equally as hard when customers completely shoot us down. It's okay that the book isn't for you but the wrinkled noses and unsavory comments sting a little.

My most frustrating example of this is talking to a customer about books and being completely on the same page about a whole list of books and talking about why we love them and having it be a lot of the same reasons and then having this happen (I'll use Divergent as the example because it's the one that's coming up the most lately):

"Oh! Have you read Divergent yet?"
*nose wrinkle* "No."
"Really? I loved it!"
"Oh...well so many people told me to read it and that's it so good...but the books they turn into movies are never very good."

This is right about the time that I lapse into a sullen, defensive silence. I try not to but I know I'll start to argue if I keep going. Usually, I switch topics to a different, unmovied book.

I understand not wanting to see the movie version. It's rare that I'm legitimately impressed with a movie adaptation and I'm not as picky as some people, so I get that. I also understand not liking the premise of the book, or not liking a genre (I know a lot of people who are over the dystopian thing). That's fine. Not every book is for every person.

But I've encountered too many people who dismiss a book entirely because it's popular.

When did that start? Why did that start?

Books are popular because they manage to speak to a large number of people. They may not have the best writing or the most well developed plot but they have something. Something that draws people in. And that's what matters. I think most of these books say something important about people and humanity. Books that can show you something about the human condition in a way that draws you in are a wonderful thing. They make people think about themselves and how they fit into the world or relate to other people.

You don't have to like them but at least give them a shot.

Is it a fear that you'll like the book and "be just like everyone else?" Or is it just scorn for other people? I'm genuinely curious as to why books that obviously have something aren't even worth checking out but there are so few people who can have a conversation about it without attacking specific books.

Take a second when someone recommends a book to ask them what it was they liked so much about it. Maybe it will be something that will appeal to you. It never hurts to try. And, quite frankly, there are far worse ways to spend some time than by giving a book 100 pages.


No comments: