I’ll be doing this feature differently for this month because 1.) there isn’t much on this month’s pile and 2.) I will be changing the way I do my reading plans for 2013, if the Mayans miscalculated. More of the second reason in the next few weeks.
This post takes its cue from this blog post on how to choose a book. I will list down the items here for your convenience. Well, not all of them. I’ll just select a few ones that are generally relevant to my picking habits.
- 1. By its reputation. The book is considered a classic or, if new, has received glowing reviews. – Check.
- 2. By its author. You’ve read and admired the author’s other works. – Check, but it doesn’t apply this month.
- 3. By its cover. You like the way it looks. – Check, but it also doesn’t apply this month.
- 4. By the movie. You’ve seen the film adaptation and wish to compare it with the book, or you want to read the book before the film comes out. – It’s somehow a check, because I haven’t heard that there will be a movie when I first desired to read one of the books. I have to admit though that the many adaptations coming out soon are exciting me.
- 5. By a recommendation from a friend. – Check. Same with #2 and #3.
- 13. It’s by a brilliant author, it was suppressed by Stalin, and it’s published for the first time in English by the New York Review of Books. – Check, but only for the first item.
There’s another item that I consider but which is not on that original list. It’s:
- By title. – Somehow a check.
There are also other items that I consider but which may fit into the other items, which are:
- By requirement. – Book club picks are self-required. This item may fall under #5 since I am friends with most of the book club members. (Note: I didn’t include the book of the month here because I only intend to borrow a copy and I haven’t met the lender yet.)
- By translator. – This item may fall under #13 but yes, it can be argued that the author is different from the translator. In that case, let’s make it fall under #1.
Enough of that already. The books for this month are:
- Les Miserables by Victor Hugo – this pretty much eats up the rest of December. I have actually managed to build a reading support group for this with some of the members of our book club. I didn’t realize that a lot of them will be interested. Is it because of #4?
- The Tin Drum by Gunter Grass – I need to finish this. I won’t let it go to next year’s pile. After all, I had a lot of trouble looking for this edition translated by Breon Mitchell.
And what happens to my backlog? And Ulysses? Nah. Forget them. I’ll just pile them again for next year. I know I have a serious backlog, but in a few hours, after I click the Publish button, I’ll be finishing my 52nd book for the year, Anna Karenina. Hurray! 2012 Reading Challenge completed! This explains my complacency.
How about you? How do you choose your books? Will you be changing your picking habits for the next year?