So how do I pick what book to read next? Sometimes it comes down to what book have I been anticipating. Sometimes it is about the reviews or buzz about the book. Other times, it is convenience or the time of the year; for example, I got a spooky book for October to read. I think what it really boils down to is that I am easily convinced by other people reading a novel. I have to “jump on the bandwagon” and read that same book. I also read a lot of buzzed about ARCs. I am easily convinced by publishers about what the next great novel will be. I think they play an important part of what books that I read as well as others.
I would say my range in novels are YA, Rom-Coms, thriller/suspense, mystery, graphic novels, some non-fiction, historical fiction, some romance, women’s literature, poetry, adventure, literary fiction (sometimes), classics (although I have not read a lot lately), etc. I am open to reading anything if it sounds interesting to me.
Some of the things that I read and do not review on my blog includes the following:
Poetry: I appreciate the “artform” of poetry. There are so many “genres” of poetry, and it stands the test of time. I love to read contemporary poetry, but I have read my far share of “classic” poetry. “Pied Beauty” by Gerard Manley Hopkins is one of my favorite poems. It just makes me happy every time that I read it. I also remember reading “Dulce et Decorum Est” by Wilfred Owen and being sick to my stomach of the imagery of war and death. I still have nightmares about this poem and it has been years since I thought about it. I just cannot get the image of that solider out of my mind. But that is what a poem does. It moves you, changes you, makes you think, and just the imagery can be very powerful. I read “Poet X” (see my review on it) and it was Slam Poetry. I did not think that I would enjoy this form of poetry, but I really did enjoy it.
Graphic Novels: I think that graphic novels take on a whole new form when you read a novel with graphics. I am not talking about comic books with superheroes. I am talking actual novels. (See my blog post about how to post the difference between them). You appreciate the artwork along with everything else in the story (characters development, plot, setting, etc.). I treat everything down to the colors sometimes symbols for something in the story. I rarely review on my blog the many graphic novels that I read since a lot of the book community does not take them as actual books. I bought my Kindle Fire with the screen showing color, so I could enjoy graphics in their original form.
Short Stories: I also take appreciation in short stories. I give an author credit when they can do character development and other concepts in a few pages. It takes talent to be able to do a full story within a few pages versus an entire novel. I should write reviews on short stories alone, but the book community sees shorts as not standalones but as collections. Take for instance, “a Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner. It is such a beautifully written and disturbing story. How he was able to write that all in the small amount of pages. In college, I wrote a 20 page report on the word “It” in “Hills Like White Elephants” by Ernest Hemingway. But there are so many short stories by a lot of authors that people rarely read, but they should be read. I am not a Stephen King fan; his short stories though are brilliant. “Children of the Corn” is a short story by King and is brilliant! Ray Bradbury has a lot of great short stories as well.
Vignettes: A good example this form is “The House on Mango Street” by Sandra Cisneros. OMG this novel when I read it, really changed my thoughts about what a novel could be. Another good example would be “In Our Time” by Ernest Hemingway. I think this type of literature is a cross between poetry and a novel.
Novella: I enjoy these from time to time. They are nothing compared to short stories, but I do enjoy them.
Folklore: I used to love reading about urban legends, folktales, etc. I took a course in college all about American folklore. I may need to start reading more about folklore in the future. It is also interesting hearing the stories behind superstitions, stories, etc.
Magazine articles: I know a lot of people do not read magazines or do not consider them as “Books.” To me a magazine like “National Geographic,” “Reader’s Digest,” “Mother Earth News, etc. is the same as a novel. You are reading technically non-fiction and sometimes fiction. I sit down every week or month with a magazine. I learn a lot, laugh out loud at some articles, and just am entertained. I subscribe to a lot of magazines.
Classic literature: I HATE to review classic literature. A lot of classics are very different than literary fiction of today. I tend to say if the novel entertained me or not but rarely give it a star review. I enjoy learning about the time period that the literature was written. I think it helps to understand the literature as a whole. I have an entire process! I read a lot of the classics in high school and college. After college, I was burned out. I started to read “Rebecca” this month, and may need to add more classics to my TBR list. I have had a lot of the classics that I would love to read. Maybe a new year’s resolution?!?!?!?
Anyways, I may start to give reviews on these forms on my blog moving forward. I think these are important to discuss and read.
Happy reading, Book Nerds!