This week is Book Blogger Appreciation Week, a sort of weeklong group hug within the book blogging community. This year’s theme is “Cultivating a Community of Bloggers and Readers,” and each day during the week, bloggers are encouraged to write about a topic related to that theme. Today’s suggestion is to highlight some of the bloggers who make the book blogging community so wonderful.
We thought it would be fun to highlight the bloggers who inspired us when we began blogging more than three years ago. These are the bloggers whom we learned from, whose style and approach helped us see what we wanted our blog to be. All of them are still blogging, and we continue to look forward to their posts, and we still feel a little thrill when their names show up in our comments. If you don’t read these blogs, you must check them out.
A Work in Progress: Danielle has an extraordinary knack for ferreting out books we’ve never heard of (or have forgotten about) but that look like amazing reads. That talent is especially evident in her new “Lost in the Stacks” project, in which she checks out a worthy-looking, but not-much-circulated book from the academic library where she works and writes about it. Every now and then, Danielle also shares photos of her beautiful needlework.
Eve’s Alexandria: Victoria and Nic’s blog was a very early model for us: only the second book on our blogroll. They inspired us with long, thoughtful, well-written, analytical posts; engagement with the literature; flashes of humor; a feminist outlook; and a bright variety of reading that suited our taste. We never leave their site without something going on the TBR list. Dangerous? Maybe, but they are not afraid of snakes…
Juxtabook: When Catherine expresses enthusiasm for a book, it’s hard to resist her recommendation because she does such a marvelous job of explaining exactly what makes a book a success. Besides her detailed reviews, her blog also features bits of bookish news and her adventures as a used-book seller.
Of Books and Bicycles: Rebecca (previously known as Dorothy W) has wide-ranging tastes that include books old and new, fiction and non, popular and off-beat—perfect for us! Her reviews are always thoughtful and frank, and she consistently provides the kind of insights we seek to help us decide about books that are on the edge of our TBR piles.
Pages Turned: Over the years, Susan’s commonplace-book of a blog has been a delicious mix: good ideas about good books, thoughtful quotations carefully curated, and a glimpse into the life of one of the most cheerfully unregenerate book-buyers and library-goers blogging today. She’s recently been joined by her friend Wendy, and we look forward to getting to know her!
Random Jottings: We may have received more satisfying recommendations from Elaine than from any other single source, including E.F. Benson, crime fiction, Frances Hodgson Burnett, and the biography of L.M. Montgomery. She leads a rich life, and we’re lucky to be included in it.
So Many Books: Stef’s blog features one of the most amusing headers of any book blog we know, but we fell in love with her blog long before she added that image. Like most of our favorites, Stef reads a little of everything, but as a recent library school graduate, she has a special interest in books and articles about books, technology, and the information sciences. Her posts on these topics are always interesting and thought-provoking (and they keep us informed without our having to read books on these topics).
Stuck in a Book: Simon has the distinction, if you like to call it that, of leaving the first-ever comment on Shelf Love! His gentle, light-hearted blog has helped introduce us to Persephone and Virago, Richmal Crompton and Dorothy Whipple, Barbara Pym and lovely original drawings.
Tales from the Reading Room: Litlove is among the best bloggers we know at dissecting the intersection between life and literature. She turns personal anecdotes into book reviews and book reviews into musings on family, health, culture, and ethics. She’s also a wonderful model of generous, but rigorous reading; she can find something of value in just about any book she reads.
The Indextrious Reader: Melwyk is especially good at inspiring us to read Canadian literature. She pushes us beyond what’s obvious and helps us get to some fascinating, beautiful pieces that we would never otherwise have seen. Her Canadian poetry selections are particularly wonderful.