December 2006

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As a writer, I have an interesting position with my friends who consider me a writer: they ask for reading suggestions, as though I’ve read everything and therefore know what’s worth reading. Now, admittedly, I do read a lot. Usually more during my breaks than when school is in session. I’ve been known to knock out ten books in a couple weeks, if I have the time. But the fact of the matter is, sometimes I’m absolutely thrown for a loop when someone asks me what they should read next.

Should I suggest a romance? A historical fiction? A fantasy? A sci-fi? The problem is, that my reading tastes are so varied that I have no idea what everyone else reads. Most of my friends are a lot more picky than I am about what to read, and some of them read a lot more literary fiction than me, though I am trying to break into that genre as well. And really, the only book that has even made a lasting impression on me this past year has been Brandon Sanderson’s Elantris, that book I read over the summer that still has me gushing to anyone who will listen to my half-cohesive rambling. I would like to mention, however, how pleased I am that my friends do read, and that they think my opinion is worth asking.

So. What do you do when someone asks you what they should read next?