Thursday, September 04, 2008

Booking Through Thursday: Peer Pressure

This week's BTT topic:
Have you ever felt pressured to read something because ‘everyone else’ was reading it? Have you ever given in and read the book(s) in question or do you resist? If you are a reviewer, etc, do you feel it’s your duty to keep up on current trends?
I’ll assume we’re talking about reading for pleasure, not for a class or a job. Of course, we’ve all had the experience of being “pressured” to read something that we’re not particularly interested in, because of a school or work assignment.

Well, I don’t know that I ever feel really pressured to read anything just because everybody else is reading it. I’m not usually a follower of fashions, in books or clothing or anything else. I generally find that if I do break down and buy something “just because everybody else is buying it,” I end up not reading/wearing/using the item and swearing that I’ll never do that again. I do keep up on current trends in book publishing – always have – but that’s because I’m interested in the subject, not because I feel it’s a duty or a responsibility.

In the past I seldom read books that I really had no interest in – no matter how enthusiastic the “buzz” about them might be. I’m not saying I’ve never read a book just to find out why it’s a bestseller. I’ve done that often enough (Advise and Consent, The Exorcist, Exodus, The Name of the Rose, the first Harry Potter book, and The DaVinci Code all come to mind, to name just a few) – but I always stuck with titles that sparked some curiosity or interest in me, something more than just a desire to be trendy.

That’s changed just a bit since I’ve started doing reviews online and getting advance reading copies of books – a few of those have turned out to be disappointments, books I would never have read without that obligation. But not many – I generally stay pretty well inside my comfort zone when it comes to choosing reading material, so I only ask for ARCs if the books really look like something I’d enjoy.

Now, as far as the Twilight books go – I’m not a big fan of vampires or teenage angst novels. So I think I can safely say there’s no way I’ll be doing any sampling there, no matter how hot the title might be.


  1. I won't be reading any of the Twlight books either.

  2. I don't really care about being trendy, but sometimes I am just curious. I'm not too anxious to read Twilight either - the fact that the reviews are split between raves and rants doesn't exactly encourage me towards them.

  3. I have been resisting ARCs for a long time because I feel obligated to review books of which I might not even get pass page 10. So I don't feel pressured about getting up-to-date. I pick what I like to read. :)

  4. Terrific answer! I too prefer to stay within a comfort zone when reading. It's only fair to the author and to myself - why read something I know I won't enjoy when it wastes my time and also presents the author with a negative review? It doesn't sit well with me.

  5. There's much to be said for staying within a comfort zone. I tend to do it myself. But there's also something about venturing outside that comfort zone from time to time. I've run across some reading treasures that way.


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