Be warned: This post is heavy with book title-dropping.
I have a sickness. Whenever I’d pass by any bookstore I almost always need to check out what the new arrivals are or what books are on sale. This year alone I have bought more than 30 books and have only managed to read only 2 or 3.
I don’t really have a particular taste in books. I don’t go to bookstores with a particular title in mind. Well, except for maybe Harry Potter, The Hunger Games trilogy, or the latest John Grisham book. Nothing beats browsing through shelves or scavenging in wooden boxes like they were ukay-ukay and discovering gems buried under piles of books – like The Reader I bought at Booksale for a measly P45 or Stephen King’s The Green Mile at NBS for P100 back in college.
I don’t just grab any book I see on sale and rush to the cashier to pay for it. I don’t look at the synopsis at the back cover of each book either. Usually books get my attention when the title sounds familiar (maybe i had read the title somewhere) or it had won this prize or that prize.
Here is a list of where I get ideas on what books to buy and a few titles that I have in my collection.
1. Recommended by Bloggers. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao from Jessica Zafra. The Book Thief from Duke. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo from Gillboard. The Hunger Games from Skron. Ilustrado from Minor Circuit.
2. Broadsheet Book Reviews. Bob Ong’s ABNKKBSNPLAKO from The Philippine Star. Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time from The New York Times.
3. Mentioned in Movies. Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera from the John Cusack-Kate Beckinsale romantic comedy Serendipity.
4. Magazines. I got addicted to Harry Potter after reading that Steven Spielberg planned to adapt the book into the big screen – envisioning it as an animated film.
5. Recommendations from a Cousin. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. Marley and Me. The Lovely Bones. To Kill a Mockingbird. Catcher in the Rye. Ordinary People. One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
8. Major US Broadsheet Citations and year-end Top 10 lists. The Piano Tuner (A New York Times Notable Book). The Testing of Luther Albright (A Los Angeles Times Book of the Year). Runaway (A New York Times Book Review Best Book of the Year).