Much as Teresa and I love giving recommendations to other people (including each other), one of the things we’ve really loved best about this community has been trying things we might otherwise not have tried, thanks to the recommendations of other bloggers. While both of us have very eclectic tastes, both of us also have pretty strong opinions about books (I know, you’d never have guessed) and can sometimes be hard to please. It’s all the more exciting, then, when we find someone whose taste we trust and who sparks our interest in something really great.
Jenny: Of course I can’t restrict myself to just one book I’ve tried thanks to someone on another blog. Rebecca Reads’s Classics Circuit got me to read several things I might have taken much longer to get to otherwise, including the wonderful North and South and The Custom of the Country. I’d never have tried Sonya Hartnett’s bleak, beautiful, fantastic prose if it hadn’t been for A Devoted Reader (alas, on hiatus, for the moment.) I read about the delightful Saffy’s Angel on Jenny’s Books, and the even-more-delightful Daddy Long Legs (review forthcoming) on Books I Done Read. There are fifty times this many on my TBR list. This sounds kind of trite, but I wind up feeling like a bee, sipping here and there and getting all the benefit of the hard work those tulips put in!
Teresa: My TBR list these days is built almost entirely from blogger recommendations. Tons of bloggers, but most especially Stuck in a Book and Nonsuch Book, have been singing the praises for the Bloomsbury Group books, which seem to fly completely under the radar outside the blogosphere, so I have the blogging world to thank for the hilarious Henrietta’s War by Joyce Dennys. I’m also sure I never would have heard of the dark and compelling Once Upon a Time in England by Helen Walsh were it not for the reviews at Gaskella and Reading Matters. Certain bloggers have a knack for helping me get over my cynicism about particular books. For instance, on the surface, Georgette Heyer’s books look like nothing more than formulaic Harlequin-style romances, but glowing reviews of Heyer’s books at A Work in Progress and Random Jottings caused me to cast my suspicions aside and finally read A Civil Contract. And reviews of Rosy Thornton’s Crossed Wires at Tales from the Reading Room and Vulpes Libris helped me see past that book’s ghastly pink cover. These books are just a tiny sample of the delights I’ve found through book blogs—I know there are many, many more to come!