So…what are you reading? This deceptively simple question is a surefire conversation starter among readers, but what the answer tells us can speak volumes, pun intended. How so? Glad you asked. Let’s talk.
So, what are you reading? Seriously, I want to know. This is partly because I am nosy, partly because my toppling TBR pile is not even close to tall enough. It’s also possibly so that I can get ideas for upcoming posts, because, sure, I could talk forever about the books that I, personally am reading, have read, would like to read, etc, but more books is always a good thing, am I right?
In another life, I used to have a system. Some of you may now be nodding sagely, while others might be shaking your heads, also sagely, perhaps saying a sad, “oh, honey,” and probably a whole bunch of other reactions in between. Said system was, at the time, that I would read one historical romance and one Star Trek tie in novel at the same time. Which was all fine, well and good, except that this (oh 90s, what a time you were) was also when futuristic and time travel romance were in flower, which seems like it should have been like my two at the time favorites having a bunch of beautiful book babies together, but….
There is always a but; we won’t pretend there isn’t. With the two book system, that gave me the dilemma of booting one type of book or the other if I was going to fit one of these new titles into the equation, and I was not about to do anything of the sort. This meant it was time to do some fancy footwork, usually in the direction of the bookstore. Yeah, the two book system did not last very long.
All of this was before the advent of the interwebs, so finding new books happened through only a few other ways. Either I had to stumble across the books in a brick and mortar store, or library, read about it in a magazine, or get a recommendation from a trusted romance-reading friend or bookseller. These options still exist, and even more, as the pool of recommendations is literally limitless. Big Five publishers, boutique publishers, hardcovers, paperbacks, e-books, audiobooks, graphic novels, manga, and oh so much more that may never have occurred to many of us before.
With all of those choices, how is a reader to choose? That’s going to vary from reader to reader, and tastes do change over time. While I’m still up for a great time travel (with preferences for the HEA taking place in the past; yeah, that’s not going to change) any day, I don’t remember the last tie-in novel I read. At the same time, I am tearing through the last few volumes of the Fruits Basket manga, my first ever manga (but probably not last: if you’ve got great romantic manga recommendations, drop them in the comments) Angst and trauma and troubled teens (and early twentysomethings) who turn into cute animals, plus family secrets, and oodles of romance…I am totally there for all of that.
After that? That’s where you come in, dear readers. I’ve got historicals new and classic, a few contemporary YAs, steampunk, and speculative historical fiction with romantic elements. How to choose? I’m not sure at this point, but my best bet is that either I will go with what strikes my fancy at the time that I need to pick a new read, or, and this is extremely likely, somebody whose opinion I value (that’s you!) will gush about some amazing new book, and I will have to get my mitts on that, posthaste. This system? I think this one is going to last.
So, dear readers, I turn it now over to you. What are you reading? Pull up a chair in the comment section, and gush, or rant at will. There’s room for everybody at this table.