You and Me
Once upon a time, I met a guy who only ever ate fries*. Anything else, it was claimed, would make him violently ill. Now, he looked healthy enough and suffered no heart attacks while I was watching him, so who knows? Maybe it worked out well for him. But it’s rare in life to find an adult whose belly is so cantankerous that it rejects even pizza with such colourful speed. And it is equally rare to meet an adult reader who only wants Sword and Sorcery, or Flying Carpet Wonder tales. Or whatever.
Most people, enjoy a bit of variety. Personally, I feast at many tables — historical fiction, mysteries, SF hard and soft; fantasy high, low, light and dark. I love it all depending on my mood, and I imagine that most of you will have similar lists, maybe replacing the SF with Romance, or the mysteries with Great American Novels. The only thing we can be sure of having in common, is a penchant for character-driven SFF adventure stories — i.e. the type of thing that BG does best. You probably wouldn’t be reading this otherwise.
Targeted Book Recommendations
Recommending books, as we all know, is a bit like giving presents to a loved one. You can give something that you would like, or, if you’re feeling more generous, you can take their tastes into consideration too.
I remember one particular disaster when a friend of mine suggested George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones to One-Footed Jimmy, even though everybody knew poor Jimmy has had an aversion to swords since that time the display came loose during his visit to a museum… OFJ wouldn’t touch Black Gate with a barge-pole, but imagine, if you will, that you had to buy a book for somebody who loved the magazine. What would you pick? You’re not trying to educate this person, you’re not allowed to show-off. The one thing you know about your victim’s diet is that he or she drools twice a year over the brown envelope that Mr. O’Neill sends from Chicago.
What would you choose? Why?
I’ll be putting up my answers to these questions some time next week.
* In Ireland, we refer to them as “chips”. Do NOT be confused.