This week, I want to hear about your favorite book you read in 2013 that was NOT published in 2013. In other words, your favorite back list title.
I went back through my 5 star books for the year and found 2 back list contenders. I will walk you through my reasoning for how I picked my winner.
Each year I pick at least one of the best books of the year to save to read early the next year. [For example, I will be reading one of the consensus 2013 top 10 books, Doctor Sleep, in January.] This year's contender was The Round House by Louise Erdrich, and oh my, did I love this book. Read my review for more detail on why. As the year continued, I figured it would for sure hold the top spot here today.
But then I was asked to interview Luis Alberto Urrea for Fox Valley Reads and read the book, Into the Beautiful North . I went into reading that book as an assignment for a job, and came away from the overall experience of reading the book and being able to talk directly to Urrea about it, absolutely captivated. I think the fact that I was caught off guard by how much I loved this book coupled with the author himself being such a fabulous person made reading this book one of the highlights of my entire year.
So, while The Round House may be a better read overall, my best book that I read in 2013 that was not published in 2013 was Into the Beautiful North, and it wasn't even a hard choice.
But why walk you through all of this reasoning? Because I want to use it as an example of reading tastes and how they are influenced by more than how a book is written. As you see here, in a vacuum, The Round House was the best book not published in 2013 that I read in 2013, but life does not happen in a vacuum, and for reasons related to the book itself and my experiences with it, reading Into the Beautiful North was the best reading experience I had in 2013.
As you help readers, it is important to remember what they bring to the table in terms of what is going on in their lives as you suggest books to them. Looking at yourself and why you found some reading experiences superior to others will help you to be more attuned to your patrons needs. I share my personal example in the hopes that you can use my example to help others.
For past Monday Discussions, and in particular, to add to last week's Part 1 of the best book discussion, click here.
Next week is the last Monday I am working during 2013, so we will tackle Reading Resolutions for 2014.
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