What are you reading?

It seems to have become a bit of a fad at the moment, people asking ‘what are you reading?’ I’m not sure if it’s because with the increased sale of e-books that your chosen tome isn’t so evident or if in these more austere times we are all staying in with a good read, but everyone I know seems to be reading at the moment and they are keen to find out what everyone around them is reading too.

As I look at my new bookshelf (bought because our old one had grown woefully overcrowded) I see such a wide variety of books: Marian Keyes sits next to Andy McNab, there’s a couple of Garth Nix and a recently purchased Juliet McKenna alongside Terry Pratchett, Audrey Niffeneger’s ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’ (I know I’m going to enjoy it, but I’ve delayed reading it until I’ve stockpiled tissues, because the friend who recommended it said it’s a bit of a weepie). There’s children’s books, horror books, science fiction and fantasy books, as well as traditional fiction, classics and autobiographies. No matter what my mood, there’s a book on the shelf for me and that’s what I love about writing and books.

A friend on Twitter mentioned he liked dragons so I suggested the work of Juliet McKenna, who I’m about to start reading myself. The next thing I know, my friend had bought a huge selection of her work and we plan to read them together, our own unofficial book club (you’re welcome to join us if you too like a good fantasy yarn!). Book clubs appear to be increasing in popularity, but there’s also been a lot written about book clubs with recommendations such as avoiding some of the ‘classics’ and not drinking (I thought that was the whole point of a book club, nattering over a good read and a glass of wine!).
But there’s the dilemma: if a book doesn’t grip me, if I struggle to get through it and the thought of picking it up at bed time causes me to groan, do I admit defeat or do I force myself to go on? A quick poll on Twitter showed that most people will continue reading a book they are not enjoying. There’s something about keeping those pages turning and not admitting defeat that you only get with a book. Having said that, on one occasion, I was forced to give up reading a book by a well-known author whose work has been turned into a popular TV show for teenagers. I’ve seen the TV show and enjoyed it but the book was, in my opinion, boring with characters I didn’t care about. If you don’t care if the main character lives or dies at the hands of the evil werevamp then you know it’s time to move on. Life’s too short for bad books.

I suppose as addictions go, a predilection for buying books is not one of the worst. I can barely walk past a charity shop without popping in to check out their book selection, and while I use the excuse that the Costa in Waterstone’s does the best coffee, hubby knows I only go there so I can see the latest releases. I think my problem now is finding the time to read all the amazing books I’ve bought and people keep recommending to me! Now, just out of interest, what are you reading at the moment?

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