Bibliophiliac is the space where one passionate, voracious reader reflects on books and the reading life. You will find reviews, analysis, links, and reflections on poetry and prose both in and out of the mainstream.

A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us. Franz Kafka

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

You Told Me to Read These Books

Top Ten Tuesday: Recommended Reading
The weekly meme I can't resist, from The Broke and The Bookish.

Dear reader, you have brought my reading life to life. I used to be a solitary reader, going from one book to another in a desultory way. Maybe I read a book review in a magazine or a newspaper, or maybe I got a title from a book. But it was just me and the books. And then I met you. And you had opinions. Obsessions. Crazes even.

Book bloggers are an interesting lot. A community of people who may never have met (though there are lots of IRL get-togethers) having a conversation about books-and that conversation has deeply influenced my reading habits. (Kerry at Entomology of a Bookworm had a good post about that recently).

So here are a few influencers, and the books they've influenced me to read (or put at the top of my list).
1. Judith at Reader in the Wilderness has pleasingly eclectic taste. She convinced me to read The Small Room by May Sarton, and I'm glad she did.
2. Bellezza at Dolce Bellezza has the most enticing header. Her equally enticing review of Little Boy Lost by Marghanita Laski convinced me to put this book at the top of my TBR pile.
3. Another persuasive review is Greg Zimmerman of The New Dork Review of Books. Greg's taste often coincides with my own, and his reviews are always witty-he strikes a perfect balance between nerdy and hip. His reviews of David Foster Wallace's work got me to read This is Water.
4. And Infinite Jest is on my Nook thanks to Greg.
5. You Think Too Much is a great name for a blog. Robyn writes reviews that are somehow just right-intelligent, but not pretentious, and often from a slightly different angle. Her deep and abiding love for Wendell Berry's Jayber Crow has convinced me to read this novel.
6. It's hard to say where exactly this came from: somewhere in all the posts about books from Persephone Press, I read a great review of The Making of a Marchioness by Frances Hodgson Burnett.I loved this little gem, and I know I would never have read it otherwise.
7. Another one that is simply in the air:  The Language of Bees by Laurie R. King.
8. The Master and Margarita is at the top of my list, also due to repeated rave reviews in the blogosphere.
9. Brenna at Literary Musings is another book blogger whose taste I trust. That's why I plan to read Norwegian Wood this month.
10. And if Norwegian Wood is not enough, Haruki Murakami fanatics in the blogosphere have caused me to also purchase The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles.

Has this happened to you? What book have you read (or plan to read) based on a recommendation?


B said...

Thanks for linking me! I'm so happy you are planning on reading Norwegian Wood. It's great stuff. I should also confess that Ben from DeadEndFollies got me onto that book.

Bev Hankins said...

Great looking list! Although I'm sure I've had some influences from my fellow bloggers, all of the recommenders that I've listed are from people I know off-line. I need to do better at keeping track of who out here in the interwebs mentions books that I wind up reading or putting on the TBR list.

Here's mine: http://myreadersblock.blogspot.com/2011/05/top-ten-tuesday-recommendations.html

bibliophiliac said...

@Brenna-Ben is pretty persuasive,isn't he?
@Bev-on my way over to check your list out...

Astrid (Mrs.B) said...

Great list! Ah yes, you must read Wind Up Bird Chronicle. It was my first and still is my favorite Murakami although Norwegian Wood comes close. They're very different.

LBC said...

I like the format of your post. I get a lot of recommendations from the same bloggers. I have had lots of recommendations for The Master and the Margarita as well.

Check out my list here

ImageNations said...

It's always fun to share titles and to pick titles from reviews.

Short Story Slore said...

I love that you remember where some of your blog recommendations come from. I tried doing that and drew a blank!

Ben said...

Whoop Whoop! People talk about me. Murakami is a wonderful writer who's still considered like an exotic fantasy by many. To me, he's one of the most apt writers that are still alive.

I am looking forward to your review ma'am. Male readers tend to like the Wind-Up Bird Chronicles more, women tend to get Norwegian Wood better. I love both (both in my top 10 of best books) but I have a soft spot for Chronicles

Birdie said...

I love that your list commemorates the recommenders as well as the books themselves. It's always lovely to remember the people when we recall the books, isn't it?

Laski is on my "wishlist" and I'll have to check out a couple of others here that I'm not familiar with.

Red said...

Love that you came by all of these recommendations through blogging! It's a great community.

Ashley said...

Since you first mentioned Justin Cronin's "The Passage" I've been meaning to read it, and I bought it the other day.

Grad said...

How right you are. Book bloggers are the bomb! I would never have discovered Barbara Pym, or read Neal Gaiman, or Jasper Fforde, or - well I could go on. And you are the second blog I've read today that favorably mentions Laurie King (the other was over at The Overdecorated Bookcase), an author I've never read. Great list of books, Bib! Keep the recommendations coming.

Anonymous said...

I know this is awful but not really tend read what I choose maybe via seeing them or my own knowledge or just picking them up of shelf at library ,that is really bad but thats why I tend review unusual books ,all the best stu

Shannon said...

What a great list! There are so many choices out there that sometimes I end up just rereading books rather than picking a new one, but blogs like yours give me a good place to start. :) And thanks for checking out my blog the other day. It's fun how we cross paths in the blogosphere!

Aisle B said...

Can't wait to read your reviews on these books that you've taken to read next.

And Adventure of sorts and I have no doubt you will come out a winner.:)

Judith said...

What a huge surprise for the mention! Yes, The Small Room by May Sarton was a deep read, I agree.

I've had an appalling semester and my blog has suffered. I'm back, and hoping to blog on for a spring and summer full of reading!

Thank you!

Judith (Reader in the Wilderness)

bibliophiliac said...

I've really fallen behind in my responses to comments. How will I continue to get comment love when I don't give comment love back? This was a really fun post-I especially loved giving credit to all of the bloggers who first recommended books I've read (or mean to read). Thanks for the feedback. Only twenty-three instructional days left in the school year--I'll be doing some serious commenting come June 11th!