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#bookconfessions: I Hate Recommending Books and Here's Why...

Book Confession: I hate recommending books to people.

I realize that for someone who reads as often as I do that this is a very strange aversion. Usually people who read and write love to share their favorites with others, it encourages a sense of community and people tend to like that. But I dislike being put on the spot – and as a book blogger I’m inevitably asked for a recommendation which consequently leads to me breaking out in hypothetical hives and a cold sweat and here’s why:

It’s not that I don’t want to tell you all about the book that I just finished or am mid-way through. I do! I want to gush about all the books that I’m spending the better half of my time reading, even the ones I don’t like. The problem is that my comfort level with most situations and topics is very broad and (for the most part) mature. I do not have a problem reading through awkward or uncomfortable scenes or subject matter, which you may find offensive. Language that is entirely excessive and out of control? No problem. Racy scenes that leave you in need of a change of underwear? Nope, they don’t bother me. LGBT, incest, politics, violence? I’m still reading it. If the book is just plain weird or beyond the scope of your imagination? I’m probably loving it. Here’s the thing, I rarely find anything offensive - unless you’re blatantly trying to offend me (I don’t take books personally – it’s not like the author is attempting to victimize me) and even then your success rate is likely to be slim. So number one, I don’t want to send you off with a book that you’re going to tell me later offended you to no end. Ain’t no one got time for that.

Secondly, you may be smarter than me. Or not.

How many times have you offered up a list of your favorites only to be “poo-pooh’d” by the lame brain hipster know-it-all who wants to discuss/debate existentialism versus genetic mutation, Nabokov, the theory of relativity and death all at the same time (likely in iambic pentameter)? Come on, you know the kind – we’ve all met this person in at least one college English class in our lifetime. Sorry, you’re already confusing me with your ridiculousness and I’m not interested in discussing my literary prowess with your big brain. Thanks, but no thanks.

Same goes for those friends of mine who actually thought Fifty Shades of Gray or the Twilight books were AH-Mazing reads. They weren’t, and likely you never advanced past a tenth grade reading level, enjoy watching the Kardashians and have seen way to much MTV (not that there's anything wrong with this - these things make the world go 'round). But considering the popularity of all those things, this would be the majority of people and we’re probably not on the same page. My favorite books are not going to be the same as yours. Sorry, not sorry. Also - I can honestly say those things because I have, in fact, read all of the Twilight series, as well as the Fifty Shades series and I've seen the Kardashians.

But actually sorry if that last paragraph just offended you – truth hurts but you’re still a lovely person!

Third, I am an unabashedly quirky, open minded, hopeless romantic who just wants to be taken seriously. That is not likely to happen if you all think I’m crazy because I send you down the yellow brick road reading Middlesex (which you should read because it is, in fact, an excellent book). So while I will do my very best to steer you in the right direction with a recommendation, please note that there will be some internal struggle on my part to assess which books I’ve read that you would probably enjoy. Good news is that I’ve read a lot, so there’s likely to be something in the back of my mind that would be appropriate. But on the off chance that I send you away with a novel and you come back disappointed, confused or offended, please remember - you were warned.


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