On Helping Someone Catch The Reading Bug + Recommending Books You’ve Never Read

I talked earlier this week about how since I’ve started blogging I’ve become a more confident recommender of books (or book pusher…whatever you want to call it) mostly because I’ve read more books and I’m really aware of everything out there. I really do feel comfortable recommending books to people based on what I know they have liked and already read, their personality or just based on a gut feeling sometimes. Obviously I love it when they love a book and come back for more. I love it even more if I really help them catch the reading bug.

I have a recent personal success story I want to share in which I’ve helped someone catch the reading bug and they keep coming back for more.

So my sister….she’s 24 and she loves the idea of reading she just really lacks concentration/motivation most of the time and just doesn’t really make time for it. She reads probably 1-2 books a year but really hasn’t read much as of recently because she has kids now and was busy with work. But when she was reading before she loved things like Twilight or any YA and Adult romance (but not bodice rippers). So recently she asked me for some books because she isn’t working full time anymore so I scoured my shelf and pick up Crash & Clash by Nicole Williams (I’d never read them but had received them for review) and City of Bones by Cassandra Clare (never read that either).

Later that night I get a text saying : “Damn you. I started that Crash book and I can’t put it down.”

And then the next day I get a text saying she was done with Clash. IN TWENTY FOUR HOURS MY SISTER, WHO READS MAYBE 2 BOOKS A YEAR, JUST READ 2 BOOKS IN 24 HOURS! And then a few days later she finished City of Bones!!

My reaction?


And then once again when my brain could comprehend what she said for real.


And then pretty much I realized I am the best recommender of books EVER (I kid, I kid :P)


But so I was thinking about how happy I am that I can feel confident in recommending things that I may not have read before. Before I always felt confined to the books I’ve read but now I feel very confident in going outside of my genres even and recommending books that I’ve never read. I feel like a combination of my knowledge of books and what is out there, what books are about, who liked them AND knowing the person and what they like typically yields a very good result. I mean, sure there are times when they didn’t LOVE a book but I feel like, in general, I’m ok with giving recommendations even if I haven’t read it but know what it is about and what kind of readers have had success with the book.

Questions for you (feel free to answer all or whichever one you want):

1. Do you recommend books you’ve never read? Why or why not?

2. What sort of things factor into your recommendation/ HOW do you formulate a recommendation? For me, it’s knowing what they have liked already and just their personality and then thinking about books that would fit the bill. Sometimes if I just feel like a story will resonate with them I might recommend it but preface why it might be different.

2. Do you have anyone in your life that you’ve really had success in recommending books to (besides bloggers)? Do they read in the same genre as you?

Before & After #7: Recommending Books

So you guys. Since early 2012 I’ve been working on this post I wanted to do about the differences between myself as a reader before I was a blogger and after I became a blogger because my habits have changed SO MUCH. I kept putting it off because of wedding plans. I wanted to make this cute graphic that was a list but, when I finally started to work on it this year, it was just looking TOO crowded with about 30 different things and overwhelming and not AT ALL what I had in mind. Then I decided…why not make it a series? The more I thought about it — it would lend to a better discussion if I just give you one at a time. I’m kind of glad my original idea didn’t work out because I’m liking this better. Check the end of the post for previous Before & After’s.


I was reallyyy hesitant to recommend books to people. I think I wasn’t confident in my recommendation skills and mostly that was because I didn’t feel like I read enough and was really limited in my knowledge as to what books were out there. Also, a fear I still have to some degree, but I was so scared that someone would HATE the book I loved and had recommended to them.


I recommend books ALL OF THE TIME NOW. Not just through the blog and Twitter but to people in my life. I feel so confident now in my skills of recommending books to people because I feel like I have a good sense of what is out there and what people would like based on other books they have read and loved or based on what they are looking for in a book. I still FEAR recommending a book and they will hate it but I think I’m getting a lot better at being able to give personal recommendations and I LOVE doing it and feel confident now. Also, I just read so many darn books and feel compelled to recommend them! I recommend books in times and to people I probably would have never done so before. I probably would have sat quietly but now I don’t hesitate.



Let’s Talk:

If you are a blogger — Were you always a book recommender or do you think you do it MORE now? If you aren’t a blogger — Are you someone who recommends books a lot to people?  For everyone — Who do you feel comfortable recommend to — family, friends, strangers? Do you feel like you are good at giving personal recommendations that end up working out for people?

Previous Before & After’s:

The Time In Between Two Books – 2/27
Being Up On New Releases — 3/6
Book Real Estate — 3/15
Re-reading — 3/20
Meeting Authors + Myths About Them — 3/27
Number Of Books Read Per Year — 4/5

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